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Entertaining Kids when traveling without them ideas for working mothers and traveling parents.
Travel, I remember when I was single and traveling was an exciting part of the job. It didn't matter how often and to where the trip was, leaving home was never an issue. Sure, I had responsibilities waiting when I returned such as laundry and bills but no emotional attachments to anything left behind. My travels at the time took me to very exciting places and allowed me to gain experiences I never would've otherwise, but at some point the exciting travels became routine, uneventful and soon after came husband, followed by children.
Being a career mom is very difficult when you're raising a family, you quickly become a renouned artist at mastering the balance act. If your work requires you to travel it becomes that much more difficult, not only for you but for also for the loved ones you leave behind. My children are young, and can't quite comprehend the idea of travel for work. My daughter last week asked, "mama, why are you taking a suitcase for work?, there's no house there, it's work!". I am fortunate that I have adjusted my work position travel much less, but I may still have to do it every once in a while. Believe me, it doesn't really matter how often you travel, the affects on the little ones remain the same.
My Babies Sara, Jenna, Andrew
If you're busy, time will fly!
God has blessed my life with triplets that fill my day with excitement and smiles, not to say that I wouldn't enjoy a break every once in a while, but the heart break that twinkles in their eyes as I am leaving, turns my much needed break into a heart break. We as adults can keep our emotions under control and know that the sadness in saying good bye is short lived, because once we get to our destination, we're swamped with tasks that makes travel time fly by quickly. For my little ones, they're still in the same place, dealing with the same emotions I left them with and they're simply too young to comprehend mommy leaving.
Thinking about the concept of being busy makes time fly, I decided to come up with a few ideas to ease the mind and emotions of the little ones. I decided that if they are busy or have a responsibility and tasks to take care of during my absence, it will hopefully take their mind off things and keep them occupied until I return.
Children are mysterious and amazing at adapting to new ideas and responsibility. The same ideas can be used if mommy and daddy are leaving on a small alone time trip, even if for a few days.
- Make a chart for everyday you are gone and they can check off the day before going to bed
- Leave a personal item behind, your favorite pillow or blanket and ask your child to take care of it while you're gone
- Assign tasks that are in direct connection with the item left behind. "Every morning, I need you to take the pillow out to the patio and air it out, leave it for two hours while you play, and don't forget to bring it back in, it's mommy's favorite pillow and you're in charge of taking care of it!", take this bracelet, or ring and wash it every night after your brush your teeth, etc...
- Assign them a task of making you a drawing every day and sign it, tell them they cannot check off a day on the chart, until a drawing is completed and hung next to the chart, promise them the next time you leave, you will take the last drawings with you on the trip and keep them by your bed.
With the power of the internet and video conferencing, most traveling parents have a way of seeing and conversing with their children while on the road, remember to talk about those tasks you assigned to them, and remind them of how important their responsibility is, because you will soon be returning to see the progress they've made.
Children want nothing more than to please us as their parents, to empower them and give them the responsibility of taking care of an item that's important to us will take their mind off things and keep them entertained and busy until we return.
There are many other ideas and they should vary based on how often you travel, you want their tasks to be exciting not redundant. I just shared a few ideas on how to ease children's emotions while the parents travel, I would love to hear what you have to say and if you have a few ideas of your own, we can share and broaden the list of activities and tasks for the happiness and mental well being of our children.