Packing Light

I meant to post yesterday but I got sucked into a packing- and list-making vortex instead. On the upside, all our clothes are packed and ready to go. Tonight/tomorrow I’m going to do toiletries, electronics, etc etc.

Last time we went to Hawaii we had to take so much extra stuff with us because of the wedding: my dress and Taylor’s suit (obviously), three extra pairs of shoes (all mine, don’t even ask), make-up, my blowdryer and straightening iron, nail polish, blah blah blah. We had a big suitcase, a small suitcase on the way there and two on the way back (yes, I bought a suitcase there), a backpack, a garment bag and my purse for the two of us for just three and a half days. This time three of us are going for a week and we’re only taking the big suitcase, one small suitcase, Taylor’s backpack (which is full of his camera equipment so I’ve absolved myself of all responsibility) and my purse. That’s it!

Usually I have a terrible habit of Vince Noir-style overpacking, but I really didn’t want to this time since I’m the one who would end up having to haul it all to the airport, so I made a real effort to reduce the amount of crap I’m bringing. Here’s how:
• Instead of just throwing stuff into the suitcase willing-nilly, I made a really specific list and packed only the items on the list after careful consideration of each one.
• Being realistic. Am I REALLY going to go running while I’m there? No I am not, so I don’t need workout clothes or running shoes. Am I REALLY going to do anything with my hair besides tie it back? No I am not, so I don’t need a ton of hair products or styling tools.
• Since I dress monochromatically, everything I’m bringing is grey, white, black or denim (it’s a neutral, okay?). Everything matches everything else.
• Since I dress like a slob, 90% of the clothes I packed double as pajamas, eliminating the need for actual pajamas.
• Dressing efficiently for travel. It’s cold here. It’s hot in Hawaii. Instead of wearing a heavy, bulky outfit on the plane and changing into a whole new outfit once I get to Maui, I’m wearing a sundress with leggings, a cardigan and a light jacket. When I get to the airport my coat will go into my checked suitcase. When we get to Maui, the cardigan and leggings will go into my purse and voila: I’m appropriately dressed. Symphony is doing the same.
• 90% of my travel clothes also double as pajamas.
• My Kindle! Two six-hour flights = lots of reading. I downloaded a four-book series with each book (in actual book form) averaging 750 pages, all in a lightweight package the size of a moleskine. So much more space efficient and lighter than actual books!
• There are some products (shampoo, bodywash, etc) that we all use. Instead of bringing full-size bottles with us, I’m packing travel sizes for the first night, and the next day we’ll go buy full-size ones to use while we’re there.

I’m feeling pretty good about nearly all our packing plans except one: I was going to bring my grey Club Monaco purse for carry-on since it zips shut (important for being stowed under plane seats), but Taylor and Symphony are both bringing their netbooks. With the only other carry-on bag being Taylor’s backpack crammed with camera equipment and no extra space, I’ve been put in charge of them, so I need
a) a second carry on bag (it would technically be Symphony’s carry-on item but I would end up carrying it, I just know it)
b) a bigger purse
I’d much rather bring a bigger purse than a whole extra bag, but the only one I have that’s both big enough AND has a closure at the top is… my MbMJ diaper bag. I guess it might get some use a bit earlier than I’d planned!

2 Replies to “Packing Light”

  1. I started reading your blog a few weeks ago, and I thought you seemed like a lovely person. While I am normally a reader and not a commenter this post FORCED me to leave a comment. You mentioned both The Mighty Boosh and making lists in one post. Those are 2 of my most favourite things in the entire world. I no longer think your lovely, now I believe you are an incredibly, amazingly, lovely person.

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