Below are a list of items we found incredibly helpful to have as a travelling family.
The best purchase we’ve made in 2010! It’s light, portable, and can carry thousands of books. We’ve purchased numerous books (including travel guides and children’s novels) via 3G/Wifi. Download takes less than a minute. You can even download many classic novels for free!
We were a little hesitant to purchase the Kindle cover with light at first because it seemed pricey, but after carrying it everywhere with us, we can’t imagine not having it. In fact we highly recommend buying the Kindle with the cover. It not only acts as a great protective case, but has a fabulous light attachment for reading in the dark.
In our opinion, one of the best features the Kindle has is its built-in dictionary. We use this Kindle to read our Homeschool thematic novels based on the country we’re visiting. When we encounter a new vocabulary word, all we have to do is place the cursor by the word, and a definition pops up automatically. We also think the spoken text feature is nifty, but we hardly use it, as we like to read out loud to each other instead. We LOVE our Kindle! So far the only negative thing we have to say about it is that we only have one. Once our emergent readers start to really get into chapter books, I think we’re going to need another Kindle in the near future.
As a safety precaution, when travelling with little children across borders, it’s important to have an ID on them at all times. So far, these are the best ID bands we’ve found on the market. Each band acts like a locket which holds folded waterproof paper which you can write your child’s identification and medical information in. Our purchase even came with a free sharpie marker. Our boys (due to asthma and severe peanut allergy) wear the medical alert bracelets. They’re light, dry quickly, and are attractive.
ID on Me also has GREAT customer service! Marie from customer service has been incredibly wonderful and accommodating with our orders. I rate them a full 5 out of 5! Check them out!
One of the few GPS models to have maps for both North America and Europe, we have found our Garmin to be incredibly handy driving around the Costa Del Sol in Spain and navigating our way on foot through the mazes in Morocco’s medinas. This little device has paid for itself many times over both by saving us money since we don’t need to buy maps, but also by saving us from a great deal of hassle. Very worth our money!
We splurged a little for our two older kids and bought them excellent quality backpacks. These osprey packs come with a lifetime guarantee and has many wonderful features. Every Osprey pack has a built in protective rain shell you can pull over, and has fabulous storage compartments. Once our two older kids grow out of these packs, they’ll still be in great condition for our two younger ones to use.
We bought two and found this braided rubber clothesline to be super handy. It can be stretched to 7 ft and can hold about 12 pounds of wet laundry. No clothespins required! In some of the places we’ve stayed in, I’ve connected the two lines with a carabiner and also fastened the ends to hooks and railings with carabiners. It packs well too!
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