Packing for Long Trips: The Struggle

I have made it! I am in the Midwest for about 3 weeks for my birthday, Christmas, and New Years Eve. I got here on Tuesday but have either been sleeping (so tired), trying not to freeze (so cold), or being social with family (so not really my thing). But on a lighter note, I am officially completely done with school! But back to the topic at hand;

In the past when I would come home I would have trouble packing. I always felt like I needed to bring everything in my room “just in case” and I would never use/wear it. I went a different route this time and it helped me a lot.

First things first, lets talk luggage. I had to buy a new suitcase the last time I came back because the zipper broke. let me just tell you, that stuff isn’t cheap! I ended up finding one that I liked that had polka dots all over it for $70 but then I looked a little deeper and found an all black, 5 piece set for $65. Obviously I had to go for the all black.

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I recommend a set like this because it comes with a bunch of different sized bags. The little suitcase it perfect as a carry on or for short weekend trips. I love the makeup case and the duffelbag as well. The main suitcase it really big (still within the airline’s requirements though) and has two outside pockets and internal pockets as well.

Now on to the actual packing:

The first thing I did was went through my stuff and tossed everything that I wanted to bring on my bed. I literally mean everything, regardless of if I was actually going to bring it or not. While in my closet if I had even the slightest feeling of wanting to bring it, I put it on my bed – it’s all in the name of science here folks.

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Next I went through piece by piece and actually thought about it.

“How many times would I actually wear this?”

“What else can I wear it with?”

And so on. If I couldn’t wear it more than twice it didn’t make the cut. I think that has been my issue in the past. I would leave for around 3 weeks and pack a TON of stuff that I would only wear once instead of packing less of things I can wear over and over again with different things to make a completely new outfit.

After that I went on to shoes. This is where I really die a little. I love all of my shoes and love wearing them but they are so heavy and take up a lot of room. (I mean…I wear a 10. In my defense I am almost 6 ft tall, it would be weird if I had baby feet!) For this trip I limited it down to 4. I wore the biggest on the plane and the rest were put into the bottom of my suitcase. When deciding on shoes I like to make a couple outfits and then decide which shoes I would regularly wear with them if I wasn’t going to be away and see how many times I would wear a certain shoe. For this trip I went for the combat boots, the heels, the studded boots, and my baby flats for running around in.

I got lucky with this suitcase because you can unzip the lining and put the shoes down there. I don’t like when my shoes touch my clothes because they have been on the dirty ground! If my luggage doesn’t have a lining that I can move and place the shoes under I wrap them in plastic shopping bags.

After my shoes are all in I put the largest things in my suitcase – sweaters, sweatshirts, pants, etc.

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Then I fill in all the openings with the little things that can be folded a couple times and fill in all the holes around the sides.

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I put my makeup bag and any hair tools I’d like to bring on the outside pockets. To keep them safe I usually wrap them in a pajama shirt or something like that. I’ve watched the airport guys just toss bags around and I’ve prefer that my stuff not get broken!

That’s basically it! I still hate packing for things but I brought home a lot of stuff (and ended up forgetting a lot too….bah.) this time that I can wear again and again without having to bring a giant carry-on also, just a backpack to keep my laptop in. My luggage is big but since you pay the same price regardless of the size why not get your money’s worth? I love reading posts about people that can go for a long time with only a carry-on but I just don’t think I will ever get to that point. I need the variety!

xoxoxo Megan

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