This post is sponsored by Chevrolet Traverse.
Now that school is back in session, our routine is falling into place. We’ve settled into our weekly schedule of carpooling to school and I’ve mastered the fine art of making the most of my time in the pickup line. I have to say that life is running pretty smoothly. But I’ll admit that a large part of this has to do with the fact that we’ve moved closer to the boys’ school. Where mornings and afternoons used to be packed full of travel back and forth, now we’re super close to home and I’m finding that this change is making it much easier to simplify our daily routine as well as work in a little time for some extra fun.
You see, our days used to be spent on the go and it would leave us longing to be at home on the weekends. But now that life has taken on a simpler style, we’re branching out and finding ways to make our fall weekends more of an adventure.
Now, in order to make weekends a special time where we actually felt like going on adventures, I had to find ways to simplify our weekday routine. A big step in that process had already been accomplished by our timely move. But, in addition to our close proximity to the school, I came up with a few extra ways to help us maximize our weekday hours to ensure that we have plenty of time for adventure on the weekend.
I quickly discovered that by keeping three simple things in the back of my car, I could make the most of our weekday time and allow more room for adventures on the weekend.
Snack Station: I started with a snack station for the kids. Even with how close we now are to our home, there are often afternoons when school activities keep us going. Where in the past I’ve frantically run from place to place trying to find a healthy snack for the kids, I discovered this year that by having a few bottles of water, some granola bars and a few pieces of fruit in the back of the car, I’m always prepared for life on the go. So when sports practices, play practices and after-school clubs pop up, life runs smoothly through them all.
Mobile Homework Station: Homework is a schooltime reality. Finding ways to do it effectively is essential and that’s where a mobile homework station comes in handy! Whether I’m stuck in traffic, waiting for one kid to get done with after-school activities or simply spending an afternoon away from home, the kids have everything they need to ensure that they can do their homework quickly
Clothes Changing Station: Running back and forth to change out of school uniforms and into play clothes or sports uniforms has eaten up a lot of my time in the past. We’ve tried the whole duffel bag thing, but I’ll be honest, it just didn’t work for us. But by packing the kids’ extra clothes and sealing them in large plastic bags so they don’t get intermingled or confused, I’m making changing on-the-go a breeze!
If you have kids that are in any age range, these three portable “stations” for your car are a perfect way to simplify your weekdays and help you make the most of your time on the go, ensuring that when you get to the weekends, you’re all caught up and ready for an adventure.
And that’s where the fun really starts. You see, my organization during the week combined with the reduction of my commute to and from school means that we aren’t so tired at the end of the week. It means that we haven’t been in the car so much that we don’t want to travel on the weekend. And seeing how organization helped change our weekday lives, I decided we’d try to the same approach for weekend adventures with a Fall Adventure Planner.
We quickly decided the way to make the most of our beautiful fall weekends was by planning a new adventure each and every weekend. Now, before you go thinking this is some major deal (or a big financial investment) let me share the kinds of activities we’ve been enjoying. Living in the mountains, we spend our days hiking, picking apples, fishing in streams and having picnics in open fields. There are endless outdoor options near us and the best part is most of them are super inexpensive if not free! But they do take some planning. In order to make the most of our weekend time, I came up with an easy Fall Adventure Planner that allows me to stay organized and take everything I need for each of our journeys. And it also ensures that I don’t get to our destination and realize that I forgot some of the essentials.
With my printable Fall Adventure Planner and Checklist in hand, figuring out weekend activities that the whole family will adore and more importantly, ensuring that they are a success is as easy as filling in a few lines, checking a few boxes and packing up the car for an unforgettable adventure.
Instantly, planning went from being some overwhelming task to adding a few simple pieces of information to a laminated checklist. So what should your Fall Adventure Planner include? I’m so glad you asked!
Choose Your Date: This is the easy part. Choose an upcoming weekend when you want to have an adventure and add the date to your planner.
Choose Your Destination: This is where you can get creative and think outside the box. Fall is such an amazing time to be outdoors and planning the perfect adventure can be as simple as heading into your backyard or hopping in the car for a trip to see the sights. Once you’ve determined your destination, add it to your planner.
Choose Your Activities: Based on your destination, you can choose activities that your whole family will enjoy. Try for activities that are age-appropriate and that everyone can do together. Hiking, riding bikes and having a picnic are fun fall activities the whole family can enjoy.
Once you’ve determined the basics of your adventure, it’s time to check off the essentials.
Make Sure the Car is Gassed Up: You don’t want to run out of gas halfway to your destination and, while I’m sure there will be gas stations along the way, planning in advance helps you make the most of your weekend time.
Pack Your Food: Whether or not you plan on having a picnic, make sure to have some food on hand for when everyone gets hungry. This can be as simple as water and snacks or it can be a full-blown picnic with sandwiches and chips. It’s always a great idea to ensure you have food items for everyone on your adventure.
Plan for Extra Clothing: Fall evenings are known for cooling down, so make sure you’re prepared. Grab a light jacket or sweatshirt for everyone and it’s never a bad idea to take an extra pair of shoes. That way, if your adventures get a little muddy, you won’t track the dirt all the way back home.
Pack Activities for the Ride: Whether you’re staying close to home or going on a road trip, making sure you have activities to pass the time can be the difference between a great road trip and one you’ll never want to repeat. Technology like the available built-in 4G LTE Wi-Fi® * in the 2016 Chevrolet Traverse makes it easy to stay connected and keep trips extra fun! Plus it ensures that you’ll be able to stream, surf and download all your memorable moments along the way!
By simply creating a checklist that took my disorganization and turned it into a fall adventure planning success, I was able to transform weekend trips from something that stressed me out to an adventure that our family can’t get enough of! Now, the kids are anxious to make it through their well-organized weeks and find out where our weekend adventure will take us. They don’t fight me on homework or fuss about being on the go. Because with some creativity and a little planning, we’ve made sure the start of our school year is full of fun, family and, of course, adventure!
Tell me, where will your fall adventures take you this school year?
With spacious seating, ample cargo space and available safety and entertainment technologies, there’s no better vehicle to bring the family together than the Chevrolet Traverse.
*Requires a compatible mobile device, active OnStar service and data plan. 4G LTE service available in select markets. Visit onstar.com for coverage map, details and system limitations.