I’ve always really hated packing! I had such a hard time packing and choosing my clothes. I was always paranoid that I will forget my toiletries. Then Vera came and I also had to do that for her. I had to figure out a way to make things less stressful and faster for packing and unpacking.
We usually take a vacation every winter to escape the snow! This year, we decided to become snowbirds and go up north. We rented a beautiful and cozy chalet with floor to ceiling windows. It overlooked a lake and it was surrounded by trees, we had an amazing view. The best part is that it snowed beautifully while we were there, it made us feel like we were in a Christmas snow globe. I decided to write about how I pack and keep things easier when we go away.
Before, I used to just pack everything I might need and in their original containers. It took so much space and weighed so much. I obviously did not need all of it or use all of it. Now I started to only pack the essentials and the same products for everyone. I only pack shampoo, body wash, body lotion, face cream and face wash. They go in little silicone containers. I like the silicone containers because it’s easier to squish out the product and they last longer. I keep them in a toiletry bag that always stays in the suitcase. I only take the bottles out if they are almost empty. I can refill it and I put it back in the suitcase right away. This way I don’t have to worry about packing it every time I go away or that I will forget something. Other things I keep in this bag so I don’t have to worry every time are: face brush, hair brush, curling iron, razor, tooth brushes and toothpaste.
There is a way to make things fit better and save space in your suitcase. In my closet, I fold everything into little squares. I put them in my suitcase the same way and organize them by outfits. When I pack to come back home, whatever is clean is folded the same way and is organized by categories. This makes it a lot easier to unpack. I can just grab the clothes and put them right back in the closet. I have become so much better at not overpacking. I do a lot of short trips and weekend getaways. I always start with the easy stuff, 1 pair of pyjamas, 1 pair of comfy clothes, 1 pair of sports clothes, 1 comfy bra and 1 nice bra, 2 panties per day, 1 pair of socks for walking on the floor. When I pack my actual outfits I like to pair things so I can mix and match. I pack 1 nice dress with shoes. 2 pairs of jeans, one light colour and one dark. I pack 2 shirts to match both pants and 1 sweater to match both pants. I make sure that all the clothes I choose match the runners and the pair of shoes.
Something that really helps to unpack and not have everything sitting around for days is to organize the dirty laundry when you pack it. I like to unpack the day I come home. That way I can run the laundry and my husband can put the suitcase away in the storage room. I like to separate the dirty clothes in one side of the suitcase. I keep 3 laundry mesh bags in my suitcase. I separate them into lights, darks and socks. When I get home I just put each pile into it’s own basket.
I don’t like wasting time going to the store to grab diapers or wipes. I also don’t like to change Vera’s brand of diapers or wipes. If I am traveling by car, I bring a separate bag with a pack of diapers and 1 pack of wipes. If I am traveling by plane, I pack them in my suitcase if I have space. At the end of the trip, If I have used it all then I can use the extra space for my shopping! If I really don’t have space, I only pack enough for the plane ride in my baby bag and buy them there.
The first time I traveled with Vera, I brought so many toys and so many books! My baby bag was so full and heavy. We did not use all of it and things got lost. Now, I only let her bring her favorite toy at the moment and the book we are currently reading at night time. She has her little back pack where we always keep her going out activities which are her tablet and a small note book with stickers and small washable markers. During the trip we will most likely end up buying her a couple of things she likes. It has to fit at the bottom of the travel stroller if it’s coming back. This is more than enough.
I now like to keep things really simple and light. There are enough things to worry about, carry and to watch for. Less is better! We always love to travel in runners and comfy sports clothes with a warm sweater or our light jackets.