On The Road—Story Telling Time

(Best of Celebrating Your Journey – October 9, 2007)

To all my readers: With 2019, the 14th year of my Celebrating Your Journey blog articles, “From the Heart” byline, I will be offering the “Best of the Best” articles you found helpful through the years. Many thanks to everyone who have given input and followed along w/ each month’s lifeskill—Relationships/Core Values, Time Mgt, Career/Money Mgt, Recordkeeping, Possessions, Housekeeping, Wellness, Meals, Childcare, Recreation/ Entertainment, Reflection, and Celebration. For my new readers, may these lifeskill articles offer you encouragement, insight, and commitment to seek, reach, and achieve your life dreams and goals in synergy.

Throughout our daughters’ young years, we would always go camping in the Texas hill country and travel to the four corner states during the late summer months. The girls were always excited about seeing new and familiar places. We rented a pop-up trailer with all the conveniences of course.

I remember one summer we went camping close to home at Choke Canyon, Texas. We brought a newly hatched duck from our animal menagerie that wasn’t doing well. We set up comfortable warm bedding with a light for it and watched it carefully throughout the night. The next morning we decided to see if it could walk. So, we took “Goldie” outside. Naturally, when Goldie saw my daughter Kelly’s tennis shoes, it immediately started following her everywhere, chirping merrily along. That was one of Kelly’s most favorite vacation times as Goldie became one of her closest pets. And it was definitely NOT designated as the chosen entrée for Roasted Duck with sage, onion & apple stuffing!

Over the years, we have had many camping adventures in the Arizona & New Mexico deserts, Colorado aspen tree line mountain tops, and California’s beautiful ocean side. With every vacation their father made up a story or two along the way to keep the girls from getting bored to tears on the long hours getting from one spot to the next.

John asked each of us to think of one word each, and he would weave a story around them. One story in particular the girls never forgot. The words we gave him were “strawberry”, “dragon”, and “garden patch”. What an imagination he had. The hours flew by! And we wanted to keep giving him three words for another story to create.

Even today, we all keep encouraging him to write his children’s stories down for all to read. Hopefully, one day you just may see them on your bookstore shelf.

John asked each of us to think of one word each, and he would weave a story around them. One story in particular the girls never forgot. The words we gave him were “strawberry”, “dragon”, and “garden patch”. What an imagination he had. The hours flew by! And we wanted to keep giving him three words for another story to create. Even today, we all keep encouraging him to write his children’s stories down for all to read. Hopefully, one day you just may see them on your bookstore shelf.

So, whenever your kids in the back seat gang up on you and decide to throw a fit or try to jump out the car window if you don’t stop soon, weave a story or two or three. For many of you today, you may have a DVD TV/player in your car to keep them zombied. How about using this precious time where you can actually interact together? Have them create a story themselves from words you all choose. I guarantee the hours will feel like minutes when you arrive at your next vacation destination. But for longer trips, by all means have an assortment of activities and distractions, as offered by Parents/Family Fun Magazine (former source: FamilyFun.com):

  • Books on tapes for the road
  • Car-ride food treats (healthy of course!),
  • Getting to know you games ( e.g. Two Truths & One Lie—taking turns, the first person tells the group three statements about himself or herself. Two are true and one is a lie. Everyone tries to guess which one is the lie; Mad, Sad, Glad—take turns describing something that made you mad, sad and glad during the day; Personal Adventures—take turns sharing the memorable events of your lives, scariest, funniest, best, worst, most embarrassing, most proud of; What If–take turns answering hypothetical questions)
  • Laugh out loud—in the privacy of your own car, you can laugh as loud as you want or shout out the answers to questions.
  • The car next door—invent stories about people in the car next to yours. What do you think they do for work? What’s their favorite food? Where do they go on vacation? Get into lots of details
  • Buzz—this is a team effort to try to reach 100 without making a mistake.
  • Alphabet words—starting with A, find words on signs that begin with each alphabet letter.
  • Where do you do it?—one person mimics a sound, and everyone tries to guess where this sound is performed.
  • Building words—take turns saying letters and build words together.
  • I spy—someone says “I spy with my little eye something green.” Whoever guesses correctly goes next.
  • Scavenger hunt in the car/find it on the road—compete against each other or work together as a team to spot all items on a list.
  • Tray top games—crazy creatures created out of paper, one minute of words
  • Ultimate travel activity bag—bring a bag of goodies along such as colored pipe cleaners for creating different creatures, pencils, papers, kazoos, deck of cards, stickers, some of your child’s toys