How to entertain a toddler on a long car journey

1 Aug

Last year – as a four month old baby – Toby took a strong dislike to long journeys in the campervan. As we drove across Europe, from North Spain to Norway, this became a serious problem and a source of car sickness for me. There was simply nothing that could be done other than close your eyes and pray for it to be over soon.

As we set off on our 1000 km campervan trip this year, memories of frantic wailing came flooding back – and I’m not talking about Toby’s tears. And I wondered, what am I doing to myself again? This year – against all odds of Toby now walking and not being able to sit still for more than  a second, things have seemed slightly (though not much) easier than last year. I’ve developed a few skills to ward off the crying:

  • When you see a tracter, act as though utterly amazed. It’s the first tractor you’ve seen in your life and it’s a miracle. Nothing beats the size of its wheels and the cow s*** on its windscreen.
  • If there’s no tractor to save you, point and shout with a tone of uber exctement: ‘Look [insert child’s name]’. This is often enough for them to forget thoughts of tears and look around in wonder as to what all the commotion is about. And once they’ve realised there is actually nothing to look at, they are so consumed with thoughts of what a loon their mother is that tears are the furthest thing from their mind.
  • Once the confusion has worn off, turn the radio on and dance and sing at the top of your voice. This re-ignites the confusion and haults the tears.
  • Repeat as required.

One Response to “How to entertain a toddler on a long car journey”


  1. Best of the UK Parent Blogs: Ten at Ten (65) | Tots 100 - July 6, 2012

    […] PR Mummy takes leave of her senses. All in the name of toddler entertainment, you understand. You know when you’re driving and your toddler is in the back, bored and increasingly irritable? You know how you would do pretty much anything to make the whining stop? Yeah. That. […]

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