To Do: Blog Post. Check!

todotatoo

I am a list maker by practice. I come from a family of list makers and thrive on the act of checking/crossing off something from my list. Kids these days put their lists on various electronic devices… and I get it. I do it, too. But, for me, the act of writing it down–putting pen to paper–is powerful. Completing, one-by-one, a list of tasks is empowering… or crushing, if you are feeling less than motivated. Josh makes fun of me and my lists, but I get -ish done, yo!

As I found a ridiculously cheap ticket, it was declared that I should return to the land of my family for the holiday. And although it feels weird to be leaving the paradise of Southern overpacked1-300x200California, I am flying back to Georgia for a super short/super long (depending on who you ask) trip. I am returning to Toluca Lake the 8th of January, but am so excited about the people I am going to get to hug and the time I’m going to have at home… including (fingers crossed) a visit with the one and only Coralie Anne. If you’ve ever traveled with me, you will know that I carry a lot of baggage… and lots of luggage, as well! Har! I have been a notorious over-packer… which is why I am making a super conscientious effort this time to not do so. As I will only be home for a few weeks, it won’t be necessary to pack for a super long-term trip; just enough to be washed halfway through the trip. In the past few years, I have done some travelling (again, not as much as some, but more than others) and have (through a system of trial and error) got it down to a science now and I wanted to share the fruits of my wisdom.

I like to think of myself as a master packer. When I travel, I want to make sure that what I carry is both versatile and essential at the same time. I want each clothing piece I carry to fit into a wide range of outfits. I want my beauty products, however, to be essential. I like the products I use and want to make sure that I can take them with me tidily when I travel. As easy as it is to pick up something you forgot when traveling, it is also pretty nice to already have exactly what you need cleverly packed in your suitcase. To make sure that I travel with everything I need, I have developed a finally-honed packing list that, when crossed off, will get you ready to travel. Since I am printing one out for myself, I thought I would share it also with you guys for future trips or for anyone traveling this holiday season. And, if you like to travel faster and looser, then this post will basically be a study in how a Leigh packs for the holidays.

overpacked-car

 

 

 

 

If you are driving, then pack to the ceiling…

 

 

 

 

 

 

but if you are flying, then you are limited with how much you can bring. I am the queen of 49.8 pound pieces of luggage (the maximum)… which is again why this year I am simplifying. With the rates airlines are charging these days for checking your bags, it behooves everyone to travel a little lighter. Along with any bags you plan on checking, most airlines allow you one carry-on bag and a secondary backpack/purse bag. I abuse this system all the time. If your carry-on bag is too big to fit in the plane, then they will “check-it plane side” meaning you don’t have to pay the extra money to not have to deal with it by checking it earlier but you also don’t have to wrestle with it in the overhead bins during your flight. If you are going to use this option, make sure that you don’t have anything that you can’t be separated from in the larger carry-on (i.e. life-saving meds, etc.). But, you also have the other bag; which I call the travel bag. The travel bag contains things that need to stay close to your body at all times when traveling. It also applies on car trips. It is the bag that you keep within arms reach. When you fly, it should contain your essential electronics, their respective chargers, headphones, your identification, and money, and diversions to distract (crosswords, gum, etc.). However much you pack after that depends on how much you feel like unloading at the x-ray machine at security. I also like to travel with a few fold-up, reusable grocery bags on deck in my travel bag… cause when you go to the airport, all bets are off and you never know when you are going to need a bag, right gurl?!

What follows is my personalized packing list. Feel free to add/remove/modify/customize your own packing list based on mine.

Travel Bag:

  • Electronics:

    • Phone/Charger
    • Tablet/Charger
    • Computer/Charger
    • Gameboy/Charger
  • Headphones- good headphones when traveling are eeeeeeeessential.
  • Proper Identification- passports, tickets, etc.
  • Stationary– I travel with pieces of stationary and find suspended time in airports is the perfect time for catching up on correspondence. A lot of airports have post office boxes and if you are ever stuck at an airport, walking to mail your letter is a great time killer. Plus, you are sending out real mail!
  • Any medication you are taking. If you are separated from your luggage, this is something you want to have with you at all times.
  • Coats when applicable… they are a hassle to tote in the airport, but they also make good pillows/blankets in a pinch.

Depending on how many options you like to travel with clothes-wise, the next list is generally what I carry in my carry-on/checked bags. When traveling with toiletries, remember to pack them properly so they don’t explode in your bag.

Carry-On/Checked Bag

  • Socks
  • Shoes
  • Underwear/Bras
  • Support Garments
  • Bathing Suit/Covers
  • Pajama bottoms/tops
  • T-Shirts
  • Workout Gear
  • Tops
  • Bottoms
  • Dresses
  •  Jewelry
  • Scarves
  • Hair Accessories
  • Hair Styling Tools and brushes
  • Hair Styling Product
  • Toiletries/Shower toiletries
  • Vitamins
  • Makeup/Perfume
  • Miscellaneous– you know what that means. It can mean presents for family, your favorite back scratcher, or any other rando-crap that has to come with you that doesn’t need to be on your person at all times. For Josh, it’s his Snore-bot CPAP machine.

Are you a list maker? Did I leave out anything? Do you have a packing secret? Do you subscribe to the rolling or bundle method when packing your clothes? Do you even give two toots?! If you do, here is an un-annotated version of my list for ease of copying/pasting.

Travel Bag:

  • Electronics:

    • Phone/Charger
    • Tablet/Charger
    • Computer/Charger
    • Gameboy/Charger
  • Headphones
  • Proper Identification
  • Stationary
  • Medications
  • Coats

Carry-On/Checked Bag

  • Socks
  • Shoes
  • Underwear/Bras
  • Support Garments
  • Bathing Suit/Covers
  • Pajama bottoms/tops
  • T-Shirts
  • Workout Gear
  • Tops
  • Bottoms
  • Dresses
  •  Jewelry
  • Scarves
  • Hair Accessories
  • Hair Styling Tools and brushes
  • Hair Styling Product
  • Toiletries/Shower toiletries
  • Vitamins
  • Makeup/Perfume
  • Miscellaneous

Safe travels, everyone! Hope this inspires you to start checking stuff off your to-do list… no matter how you do it. Hopefully, lord willing, I’ll be writing my next post from Georgia!

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Leigh

Leigh

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