Tuesday 5 February 2013

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Getting Teenagers Out of Bed While Traveling

There's a lot of things about traveling with your kids that get better as they get older. As teenagers, my kids don't fight as much, they can pull their own suitcases, and the last time I ordered a child's meal at a fast food restaurant (for them at least...) was years ago. Add in the fact that afternoon naps are no longer required (again...we're talking about the kids here...) and traveling with my teenagers is becoming downright convenient. 

There's a flip side to all this convenience though. While the traveling itself is becoming easier, actually getting started is now a lot tougher. The teenage reputation for liking sleep is well earned, and the biggest challenge you're likely to face in your traveling day is getting your kids out of bed. Yelling at them doesn't help, and apparently all teens dream about earthquakes because it doesn't matter how much you shake them, they aren't waking up. In my experience however, there are a few, more subtle things that you can do to get your day underway. Next time your teenager doesn't want to get up, try one of these tricks:

Text them

Teenagers are self-trained to ignore the sound of their parents voice, but even the tiniest rumble from their cell phone will snap them into an upright position almost instantly. The fact that your international flight leaves in an hour and a half means nothing to them, but finding out what Suzie saw Johnny doing last night is worth getting up for. 

Talk about how fast the internet connection is

This is the go-to technique in our family for getting the boy out of bed. The key seems to be mentioning a number over 20mb/s. Anything less than that and you'll only get a faint grumbling as he turns back over. Don't overdo it though. Speeds over 40mb/s will get him out of bed right away, but you'll never get him off the computer after that.

Wait...if he just got up...How did he get the coffee already?

Start counting your money

You wouldn't think that the sound of opening a wallet would even be audible in a room where the TV is on and the air conditioning is running, but my girls will leap out of bed if they think there's an opportunity to grab a little shopping money. As a side note, this technique also works very well if you're wondering where your wife has gotten to. 

Did you hear that? Somebody's counting by $20's.

Get amorous with your spouse

This doesn't sound like it should have any effect on the kids at all, but ask yourself...when was the last time you tried to get affectionate with your significant other and you weren't interrupted by a child? It's been a while hasn't it? Probably about the same time that said child was born. Kids have a sixth sense about these kind of things, so if nobody wants to drag themselves out of bed in the morning, just cuddle up with your partner...and brace yourself. From my experience, six inches is the magic distance. When your lips get that close to each other, the pillows will start to fly. 

The old fashioned way

Yeah...sometimes the old ways are still the best ways...

This post is a part of Travel Tips Tuesday at Suitcases and Sippy Cups and Walkingon Travels. If you didn't get here from there, you should go check it out. There's people there whose kids get out of bed on their own. I'm pretty sure they're adopted...from another planet.

Written by Steve Pratt