Keep A Travel Bucket Ready!

Last year I developed The Kids Travel Bucket. Right now it is on the top shelf of my coat closet, ready to be pulled out at a moment’s notice. Not only is it handy during long, cross-country road trips. It is super handy for weekend day-trips as well. Plus, it is really easy to put together.

What you’ll need:
-a clear bucket with lid
-crayons or markers in indivdual bags for each child
-an art surface
-coloring books
-notebooks and loose paper
-lots of stickers
-jar of drawing ideas
-jar of road-game ideas
-little containers of play-doh (oh yes, my sanity during a long drive is completely worth the effort to vacuum up all the dried up play-doh at the end of the trip)
-paper cups, plates, bowls, wipes, and napkins
-bribery candy
-a timer
-travel DVD-player
-spare batteries for any other electronic devices

Add just before you travel:
-1 toy per child (their choice)
-books (set a number per child)
-movies (set a limit that makes sense with trip duration)
A container full of drawing ideas helps keep the creative juices flowing long after everyone has been riding in the car for way too long.

I found this little lap desk on Amazon and have gotten a lot of mileage out of it.

Our travel bucket tucked away at the top of the coat closet, just waiting to go somewhere fun. I’d like to see it get to a beach this summer!


Put it all together, keep it tucked away out of sight, and plop it in the car when it is time to travel. The travel bucket. Time-saving. Sanity-saving. Every mom needs one, so make yours today!

Now you’ll have time to remember to put your own favorite book in your purse. You’re welcome.



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26 thoughts on “Keep A Travel Bucket Ready!

  1. I love this idea!!! It’s always hard for me to find car activities during trips and more often than not I end up with a bunch of random toys the kids have picked out. Thanks!

  2. I’m so excited about this blog and your business too, Mary. I think there are a lot of people out there who could use your help. I love the ideas you’ve shown on here so far, and look forward to following your posts. Wishing you LOTS of success!

  3. I think it’s fantastic that you are doing this, Mary! I look forward to following your blog, and I wish you LOTS of success with your business! I think a lot of people could benefit from what you have to offer!

  4. great idea! I’m past the point of having to find activities for them now since their (pre)Teens and the kindle and ipod have helped keep me sane – wish i’d had done this box 5 years ago!!

  5. Love this idea!!!! I have “church bags” ready to go, but could really use this travel bag idea! Thanks for the tips, Mary! So excited for you in this new adventure!!

  6. I love this idea. It will make things so much easier than packing and up packing everything for each trip. I don’t know why I feel the kids can only have 1 set of coloring books. Why not have 2 and not worry about forgetting something. Also, I’m very excited about having you come to my house to help me get organized. I feel like I’m living in chaos and it just puts me on edge whenever I get home from work.

  7. Great job Mary. One of my favorite tips for car travel was to include some ginger snaps for tummies that don’t like long car rides so well!

  8. It’s about time you got out there, Mary. You’re already a pro so you deserve to be paid for your talents! I think I’ll be checking in here frequently because I can use all the tips I can get.

    Love the idea of having supplies pre-packed for the grabbing. Something we’ve found helpful with a car full of kids (5, that is) is to have a small backpack for each child that contains similar items to what you’ve described. Not as tidy as your box, but helpful with the ownership needs of older children. Now I just need to work on having them pre-packed.

    1. I love the idea of backpacks! On our 2+ day trips out west, the kids each have a backpack too where they can put the stuff they accumulate and their own books and toy. Thank you for always being so supportive. You are awesome, Wendy!

  9. Welcome Mary!

    Love your blog name and this idea of creating a box for travel.

    I carry two bags with me when I go out. I usually tote a large LL Bean bag with coupons and everything baby and then my little LL Bean bag(both monorgrammed of course) with my purse etc for traveling in and out of the restaurant or store. My Baby Girl now wants to bring a few bags with her when we go out……

  10. I LOVE my Smart Packing List. I have one for myself and all my kids. I print one for each of us, and review the lists crossing off items we don’t need to take and adding items specific for that trip. Then I give my kids their list and let them pack themselves. For my little one, I have her put all her clothes and toys on the bed and I check off the list as we put the items in her suitcase. My boys are now on their own. I take the lists with me and refer to it when we are packing up at the end of the vacation, that way I know I haven’t left anything.

    I also mark my pillow and pillow cases with my initials, so I come home with the pillows I brought (very helpful at family reunions).

    iPod/iPod, computer cords also get labeled.

  11. This comment needs to be under a different category, but I’m going to send it and you can delete or move it as you please.

    I label my bed sheets and pillowcase sets, noting which bed they go on, i.e. Master Bedroom. It helps me keep my sets together and saves me time when I’m changing all the sheets on the same day.

  12. I kept a packing list on the computer. sit down once and think of everything you’ll need for the whole family. It’s great to just have whenever. as the kids grow up, trade tampons and razors for diapers and bottles. :D

Leave a comment! I love to hear what you think!