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July 07, 2009



Great post!

I am one of those "pack my whole life in a suitcase" kind of person. But lately I've been taking more weekend road trips and after a while you don’t want extra baggage. You start to notice the little things which could of stayed home. Now I’m trying to pack the least possible but still being able to have options. I used to pack everything because you never know when you may need this or that. Then I realized I never really needed "this or that". So now I try to have a color scheme so all my clothes can be made into endless outfits, instead of bringing 50 different outfits. I try to only bring shoes that are versatile and comfy.

Also, one thing I have always done is make a list. You list everything you may need from toothbrush to undies and everything in between. The list helps me narrow down what clothing pieces I choose to bring. Also it really helps you remember the necessary things. I hate having to run around buying a toothbrush when I have 3 at home. Another thing I started to do was leave a few traveling items in my bag. I have a deodorant, lotion, toothbrush and toothpaste in my travel bag so once I start to pack that’s already in there.

Ken & Hanako

Wait! You know how to play Mahjongg? You HAVE to teach me when you get here. I learned when I was a kid, but have forgotten. (I guess I could get a set so you don't have to pack it though.)


I always end up packing too much also, but we don't travel enough. If we traveled more, I'm sure I could learn how to pack more efficiently (Uh-yeah, sure...LOL) I do write lists to make sure I have the essentials. In fact, my purse always has way too much in it, too!
Oops! Signed in w/google.
Rayvenne (Collette)

Charles Conlan

Great Story about Aunt Ruth.
She had a good partner with that Uncle Charles.
Have a good day.

Jen Laceda

Ziplock bags are indeed my best friend when travelling. So are baby wipes for my daughter and for me, as are hand sanitizers!

Leigh Shulman

Excellent advice! I particularly like the idea of leaving the basic travel items in your bag, so you never forget what you need most.

Also makes it really easy to just pack up and go last minute.

Leigh Shulman

I'll be honest, we spent so much time laughing over terms like "break the wind" that I didn't actually learn how to play. But I'd be happy to try to learn and play together next time we see each other. Also, bridge, I'd love to try bridge again.

Leigh Shulman

Yes, I always have too much. Even this trip leaving Salta and going back to the US for the summer, I wrote my lists, packed early, took out what we didn't need. And yet I still feel like we're lugging too much stuff.

I have to admit, though, almost everyone I know says the same thing.

Leigh Shulman

Yes! Baby wipes. Especially with kids, particularly little ones. I've also been told those are your best friend at Burning Man too. But that is another story altogether.

Soul Travelers3

Good one, Leigh! Your Grandma Ruth sounds cool. Thanks for including us with the link love! I gave it a stumble.

When I was young, I always over packed. Friends still talk about all that I brought with me on a peace trip that went all over the former Soviet Union in 1988! LOL! What was I thinking??

Now, we have become experts on packing and we can go months with just 3 small daypacks each ( kidlet can roll or carry hers) and that includes homeschool supplies and at least one laptop! It usually just takes me an hour to pack it as I have the main ingredients down to an art form. We zip on cargo ships, planes, trains, buses or whatever is needed.

Even backpackers are amazed at how little we carry. People just don't need as much as they think. We have done it with 3 seasons of clothes needed and including special occasion things like going out in NYC or Istanbul.

Actually kiddo is the hardest to pack and has the most stuff. Luckily she is still so tiny that they don't take up much room. Hubs and I have and need very little.

I really love the freedom of needing so little. We are beginning to think it is normal ( while traveling) to wash a few clothes while taking a shower and even my 8 yo is good at washing clothes by hand. ;)

All of our belongings fit into a van sized motorhome & we have more books with us ( for kidlet) than anything else ( plus a full sized digital piano!). Even with this little bit, we have too much and will do a major purge before we head to Africa for a long stay. Like Noah's shoes ( my dad & brothers wear that size too!), I can not find my clothes sizes everywhere, but so far that has not been a problem since I don't need much.

We started our world tour in 2006 and hubs & I are still wearing the one pair of socks we brought! My 8 year old is still wearing a few shorts and T's that are in 12m size! We buy good & use things up. ;)

Living light and traveling light gives us such freedom that I am really grateful to be raising my daughter like this. She likes "stuff" so it is great training for her. Learning to pack light is essential for today's global citizen, eh? ;)

C. Russo

Great post! Your Grandma sounds like my kind of gal! She had the right mindset, just get up and go. Also, packing and leaving the bags next to the door is awesome! Love the idea and always try to make it happen; but I usually end up packing the day before or the morning of as well.

Like Lilly said, we've been taking a lot of weekend trips so our packing is slowly getting better by the trip. I used to pack a lot of things I didn't need, but now that has changed. Lilly makes a list and we use that to make sure we aren't taking extra items that will have no use.

I also love The Universal Packing List; I'll make sure to use it on my next long journey!

international movers

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Leigh Shulman

She and Lila seem to have a lot in common. A few years a part. They even have a similar look.

And yes, Grandma Ruth was really cool. Totally ahead of her time. I think she'd have loved the travel blogging world and would have been rushing ahead of everyone to get things done.

Now that we're more settled, I have more clothing and stuff, but I still hold on to the traveler's mindset. I never want to much stuff.

Along our travels, tho, I've thought about your everyone carries his or her own stuff rule, applying even to five year olds. It's a good life lesson, I think.

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