Road trips are great, right?  The weather is awesome, you roll down the windows and crank the music, and there is no stress at all.  Yay!  That was how is used to be before kids.  And then those little needs - constant needs - change the dynamic of the car for the rest of our lives.

What's the biggest road-trip-ruiner when kids are involved?  Here's mine!

My kids are 6, 4, and 2 and just like your kids they have needs that don't stop when they're on the road.  In fact, the needs probably increase because the restless factor is involved.

It's not the constant asking "are we there yet," or even the physical fights that ruin a road trip for me.  (The 4 and 6 year olds sit close enough together that they can reach across and punch each other....I can't get the car seats far enough apart to prevent it!)  There's plenty of talking with three kids and sometimes one interrupts another and then the yelling escalates with everyone trying to get a word in, but even that is okay with me. Mama can block out the noise with the best of 'em.  And DVD players help.

Jen Austin Facebook

The biggest road-trip-ruiner for me is this:  the constant potty breaks!

When the 4-year old has to go, she has to GO.  She gives me no warning and usually about 45 minutes after the last time we stopped to go to the bathroom I hear, "Mama!  I have to potty bad bad bad bad!  I'm gonna go in my pants. ."  To which I say, "Ok, we'll stop at the next place I see."  And then I keep driving and pass about a hundred places with bathrooms just so we can get a little further down the road, and I stop after about a half hour of procrastinating.  She's onto me now, but I got some good mileage out of the tactic while I could.

When the kids sleep, it helps!  That's a successful road trip when a nap is involved.

What are your biggest road-trip-ruiners?  I'm interested to hear your take.