Originally Posted by Wheeee!
Some challenge indeed
Kids get pretty fed up very quick....
I think there will be some acclimatization period, a couple of weeks maybe. But then one gets into the routine. The kids will have their chores preoccupying them, as well as games and lots of small adventures. I believe a clue here is to involve the kids and not only leave them as bystanders waiting for playtime - after all, they all want to do as the grown ups do and to help out a bit:
- Take part in the itinerary planning
- Checking inn and out of accommodation
- Keeping log books, journals, blogging, facebook, etc
- Servicing the bike
- Setting up camp
- Light camp site fires
The change in life, going from being just an average kid, to becoming an important integrated part of a family team surely must be an uplifting experience for a child? It will help build self confidence, self respect, self pride, and make them feel great about being both useful and competent to both learn and deliver. Also, I think learning a bit of patience as well as being able to cope with things that are not all fun and play, simply because as an integral part of a team one is obligated to pull ones load or help out someone in need, are all good things to learn even at a young age. But, of course, they are kids, and need to be able to be kids, so a healthy balance must be stricken between play and responsibilities... more like being allowed to play "grown up" once in a while.
As for entertainment en route, kids can easily sit in the back and read, play video games, watch movies, listen to music, photograph, or do animal spotting, sing, catch up on some sleep (wearing a harness strapped to the rider) or whatever.
Reading up on local history, legends and folk lore, wild life, doing a bit of storytelling, etc, paves the way for exiting exploration and enable the kids to see the world arround them with amusement and curiosity. Bringing some fun toys that enable them to interact with other children (balls - all kids love balls), storytelling, swimming, seeking out playgrounds, pet animals, seek out farms, or even the occasional amusement park/aquarium/zoo (where available), theater, movies, etc. Bringing small instrument like a harmonica that they can practice playing, even while riding... The opportunities are endless...
Imagine being a kid and be with your two biggest heroes all the time (mom and dad). Camping, storytelling, playing card games, exploring... What a blast that would be. Also, wherever you go, you are welcomed as a tiny pop-star. I am more worried about returning home and how they will adjust to "normal" life.
As for cars - cars are a pain. Every time we get in one, my wife and all my kids start snoring after 15 minutes, leaving me to focus on the road ahead. The difference between a bike and a car, as quoted many places, is the difference of seeing a great movie and being in one.
For added safety we will be wearing harnesses where the kids are strapped to the rider. That way, if one needs to get off the bike in an emergency, the kid comes with. And also, there are no worries about the kid falling asleep. Strapping the kid to the bike however is a no-no.