Car trips with little ones can pose challenges, especially when it comes to keeping spirits up as you make your way from point a to point b. From the time our kiddos were around 6 weeks old, we've taken them here, there, and everywhere by car. Finding music that we all enjoy together has made such a difference.
Here are some of our favorite albums to make car trips fun.
Why we love it:
Charlie Hope includes original songs as well as familiar ones (like Mr. Sun) with pleasing harmonies. I like her laid back sound. The kids love her playful lyrics and rhymes.
Why we love it:
We grabbed this CD on a whim at the library, and it became an instant favorite - playing non-stop for our 10-hour drive! The songs are from the TV show (which is based on the books in the Charlie and Lola series) - none of which we knew when we grabbed the CD. The songs are quirky and get my kids laughing and singing. I often think of this one as our "worst-case scenario" option to bring a little levity when the trip feels too long.
Why we love it:
We find it hard to be grumpy in the car when we turn on the catchy beat and lyrics of SteveSongs. As my kids have grown, they enjoy the information behind the lyrics - such as the scientific explanation at work in "Water Cycle" or the humor behind "Fast Monkey."
Why we love it:
The jazzy rhythm of this CD gets lots of mileage in our car. Songs like "Happy!" and "I'm a Bubble" have turned some frowns upside down on long car rides. The pleasing quality of Jennifer Gasoi's voice and instrumentation make this one I reach for often.
When taking road trips to visit family and friends, we are often traveling during and after bedtime. The jazzy music that kept everyone engaged and happy earlier in the trip often proves too much stimulation for later in the evening. We often reach for this CD (as well as Lullaby Renditions of Journey and Lullaby Renditions of Queen). If classic rock standards aren't your vibe, Rockabye Baby! makes a whole host of other popular options sure to meet your lullaby needs.
Do you listen to music in the with your little ones car? What is your favorite kid-friendly CD? Leave it in the comments below!
Looking for a path to take baby and stroller on you inaugural outing? Here is a list of paved path locations you may enjoy in the Corridor. These are also perfect options for wearing baby without having to worry about the terrain underfoot or little walkers who do best on an even surface.
Playground stop and jog in Lower City Park
Photo credit Suzanne Halekas
Lower City Park, Iowa City
Enjoy the ducks and geese on this flat paved path near the Iowa River.
Waterworks Prairie, Iowa City
This quiet park features prairie and wetlands - perfect for spotting butterflies, birds, and other wildlife.
Fall at Terry Trueblood
Photo credit Heather Trana
Terry Trueblood Recreation Area, Iowa City
Enjoy a 2-mile stroll around Sand Lake. The recreation area also features water rentals and a playground constructed of a natural materials.
Strolling on the Northridge Trail
Northridge Park, Coralville
This figure-eight paved path features a pond with fountains. Take the trail under the interstate for access to the Coral Ridge Mall or follow it out of the park for a stroll on the Northridge Trail into North Liberty. This trail does feature some elevation changes as it winds through the Coralville neighborhood, so keep that in mind as you plan your outing.
Little walker on the Clear Creek Trail
Clear Creek Trail, Tiffin
For a quiet walk punctuated by the occasional train, take the Clear Creek Trail starting at the Half Moon entrance.
Train watching at Cedar Lake
Cedar Lake, Cedar Rapids
For an urban stroll, check out the 1.5 mile loop around Cedar Lake. While a portion winds through some trees, the majority edges along railroad tracks, which may delight any kiddos who are train fans. For more mileage take the Cedar River Trail north or south.
A sweet stop at Dan and Debbie's
Hoover Trail, Ely
For another launching point on the American Discovery Trail, hop on the Hoover Trail section at Ely Pond. To make your walk a bit sweeter, stop in at Dan and Debbie's Creamery and grab some delicious ice cream.
South Troy Park Trail
South Troy Park Trail, Robbins
The short and sweet South Troy Park Trail connects to the Cedar Valley Nature Trail - another stretch of the American Discovery Trail! Enjoy the a short stroll in the park or connect to the trail heading north or south for more distance.
Bridge and creek on Donnelly Park section of Boyson Trail
Lindale Trail, Marion
To access the paved Lindale Trail via a short stretch of crushed stone trail, park at Thomas Park and head north or park at the quieter Donnelly Park and head south.
For a longer adventure on crushed stone, take the Boyson Trail in either direction.
Do you have another favorite paved path in the Corridor? Share it in the comments below! Looking for more family adventures in the Corridor? See all posts on that topic here.
Johanna received a Ph.D. in English in 2014. Now a postpartum doula and educator of childbirth, breastfeeding, and infant sleep, she blogs about pregnancy, birth, postpartum, and parenting.