Mini-Break: The Packing List

Dear Internet,

It’s been a hot minute since I’ve done a packing post; but much of that has to do because most of my latest flights have required me to check in baggage, which is no fun for a packing post.

As some of you may know, I was set to travel to Toronto for #teamharpy business but the trip got cancelled at the last minute so I decided to take a mini-break for a few days. Yes, I’m not revealing where.

With that in mind, it was optimal to pack carry on rather than check baggage, so behold gentlemen!

Before
Before
after
after

In addition to my solid shampoo, conditioner, and body lotion, I’ve also purchased a LUSH solid face cleanser and I’m packing solid coconut oil for my face as well. No matter where I travel in the EST, it is cold and super dry, hence the need for solid coconut oil.

I also swapped out my beloved charging brick for a Jackery one as the old brick kept dying every few charges. So far the new one has held up for almost a year (compared to a few months with the old brand).

On this trip I’m not packing toothpaste or a loofah as I will be using the ones where I’m staying. But I do have travel toothpaste ready if I require another trip! While I’m bringing one of my favorite clutches to act as a wallet, I’m also bringing one of my Coach bags that is crossbody nylon to use for everyday out and abootness. That is packed flat in the bottom of my bag. Additionally, I shoved socks into my dress boots and as par usual, everything is rolled tight.

Tom Bihn bag:

  • Ugg boots (wearing)
  • Dress boots
  • Socks 5 (6)
  • Coach nylon bag
  • Underwear 6 (7)
  • Camis 2 (3)
  • Bras 1 (2)
  • Cords 1 (2)
  • Heart dress
  • Tights 3
  • Sports bra
  • PJ jimjams bottoms
  • Green/black tunic
  • Blue leggings
  • Tshirts 6 (7)
  • Turtleneck
  • Cardigan – wearing
  • Winter coat – wearing
  • Scarf – wearing
  • Gloves/hat – wearing
  • Belt – wearing
  • Make-up bag
  • Tooth brush
  • Drugs
  • Solid soap, shampoo, lotion, face wash
  • Contacts, saline solution
  • Glasses
  • Solid coconut oil
Rickshaw bag:

  • Mac Air
  • iPad
  • Personal notebook with pen bandolier
  • Clutch with money
  • Bag o’cables for devices
  • Portable recharger brick
  • Quart bag with toiletries
  • Pouch with miscellany
  • Ms. Marvel graphic novel
  • Bag of cashews
  • Cliff bars

As much as I love my pencil bag, I’ve noticed I don’t use all the pens, pencils, etc that is in it so I purchased a Space Invaders pen bandolier to go around my journal and this has been one of the best purchases ever.

I always seem to get hungry when I travel and spend gobs of money at airports on cashews, so I decided to pack my own.

I will be at place that has laundry available, but without the need for laundry, I can go seven days on the current list and closer to two weeks if I just wash my underwear, bras, and socks. Not too shabby for not being in the game for awhile.

xoxo,
Lisa

This Day in Lisa-Universe:

RDU: The Packing List

Dear Internet,

It’s been a crazy lately, and that’s putting it mildly. Tomorrow morning I head to my third trip in a month and I feel like I’m becoming such an old pro at this packing thing that is getting slightly ridiculous.

I must catch you up on where I’ve been!

In late March, I went to the Code4Lib conference in Raleigh, NC which was turned out to be pretty awesome. The conference itself was intense and I learned a lot AND met a lot of great people. I’m so enamoured of the community! I was co-running an all day pre-conference, which meant I had a lot more stuff, namely swag for 30 people, to haul in addition just my self and toiletries.

I was in RDU for five days/four nights with sketchy weather. The day before I flew in, it was 76 degrees and sunny. My entire stay, it was mid-50s and rainy.

Behold my packing prowess:

RDU: Before
RDU: Before
RDU: After
RDU: After

Since I’ve been fine tuning the packing process in the last few years, I thought it might be helpful to see what gear / gadgets / geegaws I’ve been using to help with the minimalist packing aesthetic:

Gear / Gadgets / Geegaws

The big AHA moment is realising that by converting as much of my toiletries to solids, such as shampoo/body soap/lotion, it does NOT need to go into ye olde quart bag, which is brilliant. Also, the Travel Smart Travel Bottle Set was a great investment because it allows me to take my favorite products such as hair manipulator, face lotions, and other products in travel sizes. It may have been a bit pricey, but we do not have a Container Store near me and I was having a hard time finding the jars and bottles in the sizes I wanted individually.

The New Trent iCarrier 12000mAh Portable Dual USB Port External Battery Charger/Power Pack has also been great investment since it will charge my iDevices simultaneously, which is a boon for long flights. I’ve been so in love with this product, I’ve bought it as gifts for friends and family.

In addition to the above, I also packed with me:

Tom Bihn bag:

  • 30 brown bags (for swag)
  • Nearly full gallon bag of pens/stickers/etc (swag)
  • Four mini Rubber Duckies (swag)
  • Jewelry box
  • Make up bag
  • Tissue paper (for swag bags)
  • Loofah
  • Ice pack
  • Umbrella
  • 1 Tieks
  • 1 Chucks
  • Dress boots (wearing)
  • 1  (2) Jeans
  • 1 (2) Bra
  • 2 (3) Socks
  • Drug case
  • Cardigan
  • 7 (8) T-shirts
  • 1 Skirt
  • 1 Dress
  • 6 (7) Underwear
  • Toothbrush
  • Toiletries bag
  • 1 Yoga pants
  • 1  pair of glasses
  • 1 tank tops
  • 2 pairs of tights
  • Spring jacket (wearing)
  • Gloom (card game)
  • Fluxx (card game)
  • Chrononauts (card game)
  • iRig microphone
Rickshaw bag:

  • Mac Air
  • iPad
  • Work notebook
  • Personal notebook
  • Fountain pens
  • Pencil case
  • Clutch with money
  • Bag o’cables for devices
  • Portable recharger brick
  • Quart bag with toiletries
  • Pouch with miscellany

Since I’m recreating this a month later, I’m sure I’m missing a few things, but this is the gist of the packing. And the best part? I could have made my clothes last for longer than a week AND since I was carrying of swag that I was going to hand out to people, my bag was going to be emptier coming back. SCORE!

xoxo,
Lisa

This day in Lisa-Universe:

MRY: The Packing List

Dear Internet,

I hopscotched my way from Monterey back to Grand Rapids more smoothly than a baby’s bottom, which surprised and delighted me as my past experiences with United have been awful. They have totally picked up their customer service, planning, and execution of getting people on their way which now puts them back in the front for airlines when I go looking for flights.

After TheHusband picked me up late Thursday afternoon, we had an early dinner and then went right home. Not long after I had unpacked and gotten settled from the trip, I slept for nearly 14 hour straight with no breaks even to pee. I was that fucking tired. Some of the people I met at IL were coming down with various and sundry colds and sniffles, so I’m hoping I shook enough of that nastiness out while sleeping, drinking Vitamin C to help (and also helps with potential cases of scurvy), and congratulating myself for having the foresight to take the day after I came home off from work.

For this trip, I was smart enough to grab pictures of my bags once I got to the hotel, before unpacking, and what the bomb explosion looked like after I had unzipped. Exhibits below:

Before.
Before.
After.
After.
Tom Bihn bag:

  • Tolietries bag
  • Make-up bag
  • Drug case
  • Jewely box
  • Loofa sponge
  • 1 Chucks
  • 1 Tieks
  • (1) dress boots
  • 1 (2) scarf
  • (1) hoodie
  • (1) leather jacket
  • 1 pair of leggings
  • 1 pair of Jammie bottoms
  • 1 skirt
  • 1 jean jacket
  • 1 umbrella
  • 1 ice bag
  • 1 pair of sunglasses
  • 1 pair of glasses
  • 1 brick for Mac Air
  • 2 (3) bras
  • 2 dresses
  • 2 cardigans
  • 2 tank tops
  • 2 (3) pairs of pants
  • 3 pairs of tights
  • 6 (7) pairs of socks
  • 7 (8) pairs of underwater
  • 8 (9) tshirts
(Not seen.) Rickshaw bag:

  • Mac Air
  • iPad
  • Work notebook
  • Personal notebook
  • BBC History magazine
  • The Whale Road (book)
  • Fountain pens
  • Pencil case
  • Clutch with money
  • Bag o’cables
  • DS3
  • Portable recharger brick
  • Quart bag with toiletries
  • Pouch with miscellany

And I’m sure after all is said and done, I’m missing a few items.

There is a couple of key things when packing minimally: Roll everything, bring items that can be worn multiple times, pack as many solid toiletries as possible, and bring as much neutrals as you can stomach.

I was in Monterey for 6 days/5 nights, but ended up with enough clothes for over a week AND I had at least two clean outfits left when I came home. There were a couple of things I didn’t think about when I packed, such as while wearing my dress boots to Monterey, there may be a chance I didn’t want to wear them coming home, which ate into my luggage space. Packing a leather jacket, a jean jacket, a hoodie, and several cardigans seems like overkill, and also eats space, which could be consolidated by getting one neutral jacket that will work for just about all weather types.  I also packed more layers with the outwear because not one weather site was consistent with the constant changes of weather happening while I was going to be there.

Could I have done better? Always can do better. The brilliancy of bringing solid shampoos, body lotions, and body soaps opened up ton of space in my quart bag. Plus I wasn’t feeling cheated out of my toiletries. My clothing choices could have been streamlined more by quite a bit and if I didn’t have this burning desire to dress like a Lifesavers roll every day, it would be a lot easier.

But considering a similar trip taken 18 months ago to a similar place with similar weather had me lugging around a 50lb+ checked bag with all of MUST HAVES, this is bloody brilliant.

 

xoxo,
Lisa

This day in Lisa-Universe in: 2012, 2011