Wednesday, July 20, 2011

vacation essentials

H and I are both going out of town this weekend, for a whole week. Alas, we are not vacationing together. She will be lounging on the beach (my jealousy is past the point of no return) while I am going to Utah. Not that it won't be super glamorous (sarcasm), but it simply not the same as being in a bathing suit all day with sand between your toes.

I don't know about you, but I always have trouble packing. Especially with a child in tow. It's not as bad now that Dean is older, because when he was a baby, I would pack everything. Including (but not limited to) a high chair, bumbo, exersaucer, play mat, toys, books, etc.

When I was younger (and single), I was very chaotic in my own packing regime. I would grab literally half of everything in my closet, shove it in a suitcase and pray that it zipped when I sat on it. This routine makes getting dressed on vacation a total nightmare. Plus, I always had to pay the extra $50 because my suitcase weighed too much.

Over the years, I have learned packing techniques that are more streamlined and keep me sane throughout my trip.

This notepad allots me a semblance of organization with the insanity of packing a family.

As a side note: Does your significant other expect you to pack for him? Mine just puts out haphazard piles that I throw in a duffle and then once we are on the trip he asks questions like, "Did you pack my razor?" If it wasn't in the pile, I didn't pack it.

A toiletry bag with labels or clear pockets that can hang on the door (I always find really cute ones at TJMaxx, Ross, or Marshalls)is a travel staple.

Aviation-friendly plastic bottles (I bought some from Target that came with labels and a clear bag).

A separate bag for makeup and makeup brushes (if you don't have a bag for brushes, don't sweat it. Just put them in a large ziplock and roll the bag!)

Other tips for traveling:
*If I am going somewhere for a week or longer (and I am not staying at someone's home) I like to bring my own bottle of hand soap. Have you noticed how those bars of soap in hotels are super harsh and never foam up?

*I never iron anything before because it will most likely crease and wrinkle no matter what I do. And every hotel offers an iron!

*Place clothes in the suitcase by weight. Shoes first (nobody wants their silk dress spoiled by tennis shoes), then jeans, sweaters, gym clothes, then dresses, skirts, and blouses on top. I read an article that gave me some good tips about packing. The woman suggested topping the packed suitcase with a few layers of tissue paper that has been sprayed with your favorite perfume. Love this idea! So fresh and so cleanclean.

*If an item can possibly leak all over other things in your bag, I either packing-tape the bottle cap or put it in a separate ziplock bag.

*For weekend trips, I use a vintage suitcase. It's small enough so that it keeps me limited on my usually countless clothing options, and it is simply chic!

Things I will be bringing on my vacation:
-six million magazines, because I am like 3 months behind.
-my new favorite snack of whole natural almonds mixed with dark chocolate covered raisins
-this book, that I will hopefully finish!
-and these guys. 'cause what else do I need?


Britney Jean said...

i hate packing. i always pack way too much. and my husband doesn't expect me to pack for him, but i do anyway. because otherwise he will have ugly shirts, no socks, no toothbrush, no deodorant, no flip flops, no swimsuit. basically...he'll be missing everything. haha.

The Banners said...

my grammy (an expert world-traveller) taught me a cool tip to help with wrinkles...lay out all of your shirts flat, one on top of another and then roll them up together. its works great! have fun on your trips girls :)