This Spring Break is a whirlwind for me and my family- Disney Cruise, Universal Studios, Cocoa Beach, Kennedy Space Center and Sea World. This 12-day trip requires some separate flights to accommodate everyone’s schedules, meet-up places, and five different places to sleep. Planning it has been exhausting. I am glad we are in the home stretch!
I’m not normally a “packer” per say. More of the throw it all in and hope you remembered everything type. But that strategy finally bit me in the behind last month when I forgot SHOES for a five-day conference thus leading me to heed the advice of some friends that are expert packers: Melissa, Kim-Marie and Andi.
Combining their advice with my incessant need to google everything, I have found some new products to help me get everything we need down to carry-on luggage. It helps that the last part of our stay will be in a gorgeous house designed for people with disabilities.
Luggage – I invested in some new luggage for myself last month. Since I travel so often alone I wanted girlie luggage all my own that I can leave half way packed. Sherpani fit the bill perfectly. I’m kind of obsessed with it. At first I thought it was just pretty and I loved it for that alone. But no, this stuff was designed by women and it shows! It’s light, has pockets every where you need them and is incredibly deceptive in how much they hold. You can easily hold 5 days worth of stuff in the 20-inch Meridian. Thankfully the Tiffany Blue (they call it Air Blue) that I wanted is last years color so I was able to get mine 30-50% off. I bought five bags in total which was total overkill I have to admit.
Cubes – Kim-Marie suggested that we use mesh bags to keep all those undies organized and not rifled through by security. Which led me to find these packing cubes from Eagle Creek. I bought mine at The Container Store. I have one that is labeled “weather helpers” with that scarf, mittens, dry weave t-shirt, quick dry folding jacket and umbrella for all those times I have bought those things on trips when the weather changed. I have another labeled “swimming” and “underwear”. They are perfect for being able to reach in and grab that one item you need.
Travel Space Bags – I have to admit I thought this was hokey in the past. Then I bought one, put in my kids sweatshirts and shrunk them to half the size. I am sold. Picked mine up at The Container Store.
GoToobs – I am in love with these squishy tubes. Human Gear sent me a few to try and I promptly went and bought a bunch more. My strange use for these food grade, non exploding tubes? My favorite coffee cream. Hotel coffee makes me cranky, what can I say?
Jewelry Roll – I used to throw all my jewelry into a Ziploc bag. Leaving me with a tangled mess and broken pieces when I arrived. My friend JoAnn suggested the old school jewelry rolls. Even my grandmother had one of these! Duh! I found some at TJ Maxx and Marshalls but I have big clunky pieces and the velvet one I got at The Container Store just seemed more durable and not much more expensive.
Ballet Flats – I bought mine in the lobby of the Gaylord Opryland hotel when I realized I forgot shoes last month. Best $20 I have ever spent on a forgotten item. They fold down into a tiny pouch and go with everything. They aren’t fancy by any means but they are comfortable and versatile and take up very little space.
Makeup – I adore Smashbox makeup but let’s face it, it’s pricey. While looking for travel sizes I came across a “Try It” kit at Ulta. PERFECT and even better (and cheaper) for travel then the actual travel sizes they sell!
I am always on the lookout for products that help make my travel easier. What products did I miss? Share your favorites in the comments!