6 Reasons To Travel With a 6-Year-Old

I guess you could say this wasn’t our first rodeo. We’ve taken a grandkid on an RV road trip with us before. Eleven years ago we made the trip from California to New Mexico with our now 22-year-old granddaughter Sierra.

Two sisters - 16 years apart

Our two granddaughters, Sierra-22, and Gabriella-6

New Mexico is the homeland of Phil’s mother who passed away 3 months ago at 101. She would want us to continue the tradition of visiting there so we set out with our youngest granddaughter Gabriella. There is a lot to be gained from traveling with a 6 year old.

RV pulling car

RVing to New Mexico with grandkid

1. YOU GET TO GO TO BED EARLY

And get up early, even if that’s not your desire. You also get to skip all those evening shows and leisurely dinners you might be accustomed to. Forget about sitting around having cocktails and hors d’oeuvres – you gotta get dinner on the table pronto!

And, if you’re lucky like me, you may get a whole bunch more sleeping companions in your bed with you. Hey, what happened to Papa? Why, he’s enjoying a good night’s sleep on the couch all by himself.

Grandma's bed full of stuffed animals

Grandma’s New Sleeping Companions. Note the small space left for Grandma!

2. You Get to go to restaurants that have kiddie play areas

The smart people at Cowgirl BBQ in Santa Fe make it easy for families with kids to have a nice dinner or, better yet, Happy Hour which happens earlier. $4 beers and terrific beef, pork or goat meat sliders. And my favorite – a tortilla chip encrusted New Mexico chile relleno. Cute cowboys and cowgirls do the serving, too.

3. YOU GET TO USE YOUR LEFTOVER FOREIGN COINS

It was the bite of the apple that made Gabriella’s tooth come out. What luck for her – the Tooth Fairy is very generous when you lose a tooth in the RV, especially if your grandparents recently came home from Asia with lots of foreign coins they forgot to cash in. We hoped that stores in New Mexico would play along with us when she tried to spend the ones from Hong Kong or Thailand.

Child with missing tooth

It was the bite of the apple that made this tooth come out

Child with money from Tooth Fairy

The Tooth Fairy was very generous. Hey, are those foreign coins??

Purse for money from Tooth Fairy

These special coins deserve a Route 66 coin purse

4. YOU GET TO HAVE YOUR OWN PERSONAL FASHION MAVEN

This child has style and I always get a kick out of seeing how she dresses herself. She is not bashful about telling me when, um, maybe I need to put on a different top. We had brought her a gorgeous outfit when we returned from India which she regretted not bringing on this trip because it was “Indian”. That’s when we got to explain to her the difference between the Indians in India and the Native American Indians. It turns out that she knew about American Indians already. She told us the story of how they helped the pilgrims by teaching them about corn.

5. YOU GET TO hear the darndest thiNGS

While in the car one day, Phil and I were in disagreement about something or other which we were discussing quite vigorously. From her car seat in the back our little “teacher” said to us, “You guys, you guys, you need to confer!” Well, that stopped our quibbling for a while as we discussed with her what she meant. She said that meant to talk it out and then everything will be ok. So we learned something, and now we confer rather than argue. It does seem to make things work out better!

This little child has a way of getting things done for her by others. She used her special charm on Phil when she needed something moved for her. “Papa,” she said, “be a darling, and put this over there for me.” You can bet he did.

Early in the trip when I was still trying to work out how I would get enough room in the bed I shared with her, she complained that I was taking too much space. She let me know that “kids need their personal space, too.” I told her that I agreed with her, but since I am twice as big I deserved twice the space in the bed. I’ll let you figure out which one of us prevailed on that.

What really made me chuckle happened one day when she was making a bracelet for her sister. She had picked out some beads at a gem and mineral shop in Taos, along with a chain on which to string them. The chain had and end piece that screwed off so you could add beads. Gabriella arranged the beads on the chain by herself but had trouble getting the end piece to go back on. “Grandma”, she said, “will you help me screw this on? You are really good at screwing”.

Child with a smoothie-mustache

A Smoothie-Mustache on this funny child

6. YOU GET TO SEE A KID HAVE FUN!

What a fun trip we had with this little one! Since it was the 2nd time we’ve taken a grandkid to New Mexico in an RV, we felt like it was deja vu “all over again”! I’m glad we could share it with both of our grandkids. Take a look below at some fun things we did on this trip.

Have you travelled with young kids before? What tales do you have of those experiences? Please share your stories in the comment section below. Your email address will not be published but your story will be enjoyed by others. I’m eager to hear from you.

Best always, CarolSue

22 responses to “6 Reasons To Travel With a 6-Year-Old”

  1. MimiWry says:

    I absolutely love my grandchildren they are so much fun to be around,

    • CarolSue says:

      Mimi dear, I know some of your grandchildren and know why you love them – they are terrific. Your children, too! We are looking forward to seeing you when we get to Florida later this year – around December, I’m guessing. Luvnkisses, CarolSue

  2. Steve Hoch says:

    SO cute Carol! You’re lucky to get to take such a fun roadtrip…. twice! Good stuff.

    Steve

  3. Donna says:

    So, good at screwing, eh? That’s a classic. Sweet and funny and smart…she’s a treasure. What a great memory to tuck away for the future. You’re pretty good at writing, too…love the way you tell your stories. Have a wonderful Kauai month!

    • CarolSue says:

      Thanks Donna. I’ve got 2 great grandchildren and am grateful for that. Makes life sweeter. Wish you were here on Kauai so we could have fun together. It’s so relaxing for me and Phil’s pretty happy, too. Luv u.

  4. Carole says:

    Great stories! Marty, 5 then 6yr (bday in New Orleans)daughter Lisa & I traveled for 4months in a 67 Volks camper van after leaving t Caribbean sept 9, ’74, arrivin in Honolulu dec 26 & on Kaua’i in Jan. Our 40th anniversary coming.
    From Florida to Maine, back down thu t verdant Tenneesee & Kentucky hills to t Alamo & on to Guadalajara. To Baja & on up t pacific coast (tho had to back track to Nevada cause CA wanted us to leave our tequila at t border, no way) & up to San Fran for home made everything with friends including a $1. Xmas tree for Lisa.

    Back in New Orleans & Lisa’s 6th bday, playing toss with uncle jack (college roommate of Marty’s who still tells this story), when he tossed t ball a bit too far into t campsite’s forest & coming back from her attempted retrieval with tears & no ball he asked her why. “I can’t go in there uncle jack, there’s a sign & it says ‘No Tree Passing’!” Only 6yr olds. Endless stories. Love

    • CarolSue says:

      Wonderful story, Carole. Thanks so much for sharing it. You and Marty had some fabulous adventures in your life! Looking forward to seeing you while we are here on Kauai. Can we go to the Hindu temple together? I’d love to see the progress on the structure. We have lots of stories of our adventures in India. Hello to Marty.

  5. Jodi says:

    Thanks for the laughs, CarolSue! One time Victor and I took a 6-week road trip from Phoenix to Vancouver, then down the coast all the way to San Diego and back to Phoenix with our daughter Tian, 6 at the time. She made an entire home environment in the back seat of the big ol? Buick complete with art room, napping fold-out, her own snacks refrigerator and a Barbie swing. For some reason we only had a couple of choice cassette tapes with us and ended up playing them over and over and over: one was Patsy Cline and the other was The Doors. By the time we?d crossed 3 or 4 state lines Tian knew every word to every song and pretty soon she was singing “Blue Moon of Kentucky” in her sleep! My favourite part was when we pulled into a gas station in some quiet suburb while we?re all rocking out to the inimitable Jim Morrison?s brilliant “Roadhouse Blues”. Victor suggests we all get out to stretch our legs. The doors open and Tian jumps out, air-guitar in hand, swaying to the music and belting out “Well I woke up this mornin? an? I got myself a BEER…….”. I do recall a few weird looks from other customers at the time….! Jodi.

    • CarolSue says:

      Ah, Jodi darlin, this is priceless – told in your inimitable way! Thank you so much for sharing your funny tale. Your family is a hoot. Luv u and look forward to seeing you and Big V while we are here on Kauai. Mua.

  6. Alicia says:

    How fun! And great memories were made for all three of you. I loved reading it and imagining this darling girl saying the things she did.

  7. sally z says:

    We love your blogs….Alf is reading it now…the whole thing…and laughing out loud!! He’s reading the Thailand part where you had the festival and wedding! Thanks for sharing! Hope you guys come to MCC this winter….would love to see you! Hugs, Alf & Sally

    • CarolSue says:

      Thanks to both of you for reading. It’s been an amazing time for us as full-time travelers. We’d love to see you, too. Motorcoach Country Club is a one-of-a-kind place for RVers, and most RVers we’ve met are swell people, like you and Alf! Glad we’re friends, dear heart.

  8. Ally Asbe says:

    You are a good “screwer.” Rolling on the floor laughing. Great piece, Love.

  9. Linda says:

    CRITCH and I took grandson justin with us at 11 and he was so fun. Was with us 6 weeks and so much help for me, then had 8 yr old granddaughter for 2 weeks. Great experience for everyone as they are smart and wise!!!

    • CarolSue says:

      I agree they are smart and wise. I think of this one as a kind of “old soul”. I learned a lot being with her. Plus I PLAYED, like, on the floor. Takes a young one to get me to do that. Joy.

  10. Erna says:

    How fun, leaving soon to see my grandbooba’s.

  11. Pete Hueseman says:

    Sounds like you 3 had a great time.

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