This is how we packed for three people (One mom and two kids) for our one-month trip to Mexico. I'm recording this more as a reference to learn from our mistakes for next time. I'm sure I still managed to both overpack and forget things. We will be staying at our home where there is laundry and a kitchen for making meals - but of course we are on vacation, so I don't want to be stuck doing laundry every day. I'm hoping this packing job will allow for comfort balanced with manageability while traveling. Also - packing cubes - where have you been all my life?
Black Rolling Duffel Bag 1:
1. Leo: packing cube containing 8 outfits. Top and bottom rolled together. Mix of pants/shorts and long/short sleeves.
2. Diapers: packing cube containing 10 cloth diapers. Stuffed and ready to go. With Zoe wearing gutchies half time this should be plenty - but I'm not above buying a pack of disposables if I can't stay on top of laundry.
3. Socks and Gutchies: packing cube containing 10 undies for each kid and 8 pairs of socks for each kid.
4. Unmentionables: packing cube containing 4 pjs, 6 pairs of socks, 9 pairs of underwear and one spanx for mama.
5. Mama: packing cube containing 4 outfits for mama, rolled individually.
6. Support: packing cube containing nursing tanks and bras for mama.
And here it is all packed up. I love that I can take everything out to look for something and repack it in under two minutes.
Black Rolling Duffel Bag 2:
1. Mama: packing cube containing three outfits for mama. Notice I spread my clothes out over both suitcases...if one gets lost in transit I will have at least a couple things to wear. The kids' clothes are a bit easier to replace, but now I'm wishing I'd done the same for them.
2. PJs: packing cube containing 6 pairs of pjs for each kid. Long sleeves for cool nights.
3. Zoe: packing cube containing 10 outfits for Zoe, including two dresses. Zoe's clothes are the smallest - meaning I can fit more outfits into her cube. This works out because she is also the messiest.
4. Flip Flops: for mama
5. Dresses: Two dresses for mama rolled into a small market bag. We have larger versions of this bag in Mexico for shopping at the mercado and I thought the kids might like to have theirs.
6. Pool Ring: An inflatable pool ring that Zoe can sit inside. I rolled it tight and stuffed it in a small cloth pouch (the kind Charlie's laundry detergent used to come in).
7. Shoes: A pair of slippers for each kid (can't go barefoot EVER because of scorpions) and Zoe's sandals. Each pair will be stuffed into one of the side pockets.
8. Empty Bag: I stuffed this empty back into the bottom of this duffel just in case we need more room on the way home - or stuff seems to multiply during the trip.
Here it is all packed up and on top I stuffed a flotation vest for Leo. You know, because that's a good use of limited luggage space.
I bought this backpack especially for this trip and I really love it. You can't really see it in this picture, but it's a lovely blue with orange lining. It is carryon size and fits SO. MUCH. STUFF.
1. Ergo: Don't leave home without it. I was surprised at how small it rolled up.
2. Cardigans: One for each of us. Good for cool evenings or cold airports.
3. Toiletry Case: This deserves a post of it's own. Seriously.
4. DVD player: To play DVDs that we may buy or borrow on my computer. We don't have cable in Mexico and it will be nice to have some entertainment options.
5. Laptop: with neoprene case.
6. Sunshine: Packing cube with swimsuits and sunglasses for all of us and sun hats for the kids.
7. Cords: All our chargers and USBs.
8. Change of Clothes: One fresh outfit for each of us - just in case we get stranded somewhere. Oh the joys of flying standby.
9. PJs: One pair of pjs for each of us - just in case of an unexpected overnight stay. Plus laundry bags.
10. Snacks: Trail mix, pretzels, peanut butter pouches, cheddar crackers, freeze dried fruit. We could survive 48hrs on this. I think this might have been excessive. The cooler isn't necessary for the flight - but I thought it might be useful for day trips during our stay in Mexico.
11. Collapsable Water Bottle: It doesn't take up any room when empty and is a lifesaver when finding drinkable water is a challenge.
My two year old Skip*Hop messenger bag is beginning to come apart at the seams - but I think it had one good trip left in it. We've worked this bag hard. I love it because it easily hangs off the stroller handles and has lots of pockets.
1. Sunglasses: A second pair for each of us might have been excessive.
2. Diapers and wipes: four disposable diapers and a pack of disposable wipes in a cloth pouch. I do feel like we are so close to being out of diapers that I don't want to ruin our streak of cloth diapering...but I'm done lugging dirty diapers over international borders.
3. Wetbag: Just in case there is a need to quarantine clothes.
4. Gum: In the least travel-friendly container ever. Maybe I should dump it into a plastic baggie.
5. Magazines: Real Simple and Living. I am determined to read these at some point. Determined, I say.
6. Kindle: Shows, games and books loaded for all of us.
7. Umbrella: Because it's rainy season!
8. Outfit: A change of clothes for Zoe, because like I said: Messy.
9. Headphones and emergency lollipops: I will bribe my children if it comes down to it.
10. Comb with baby hair ties, sanitizing wipes (more for surfaces than hands), headache medicine, pencil and a pen.
The kids *can* carry this, but mostly it will be in the under carriage of the stroller.
1. Stuffed Animal: One for each kid. Leo obviously chose William Jess.
2. Art Supplies: Crayons, clay, markers, and mini water paints.
3. Memory: Matching tiles to play a game of memory with Leo.
4. Notebooks: One for each so they can keep their art to show dad when we get home.
5. Books: A selection of lightweight books. I hesitated to bring these since we have the kindle, but they just love flipping through books so much.
6. Cars and Action Figures: They each got to choose one vehicle and three action figures.
And here is all is. Thankfully my sister is traveling with us, because I'm not sure I could juggle it all on my own. Am I forgetting anything major? What should I have left behind?
Things I seriously entertained trying to bring with me:
- Zoe's Life Vest: Much bulkier than Leo's. My sister suggested I make her wear it on the plane since I couldn't fit it.
- Yoga Mat: Because I might want to work out.
- Picnic Blanket: We use it all the time!
- Balance Bike: Because I'm coconuts.