I’m Packed!

There’s nothing I like more than packing and planning ahead, so of course three days before I’m due to fly out, I’ve got my suitcases filled and stacked by the doorway.  They were even under 50 lbs on my first try!

When I tell people I’ve got to pack a year’s worth of possessions into two suitcases, most people furrow their brows and look sad for me.  They are so wrong!  I LOVE IT.  I love moving and having the opportunity to choose the things I really like, abandoning everything else.  I love leaving holes in my possessions, looking forward to the things I’ll buy in Greece (shampoo and boots).  I love the feeling of knowing that I can fit my life into two suitcases, a backpack, and a computer bag.  It makes me feel free.   Continue reading

Packing for a Year in Greece: Entertainment

Based on this blog, it should be obvious that I take entertainment very seriously.  Ingesting stories is how I grow and/or stay alive.  So when it comes to preparing to move to Greece, the majority of my planning has revolved around books and media.

The one problem?  I have to pack a year’s worth of possessions into two suitcases and a backpack.  While I would LIKE to take two suitcases full of books, even I know that is impractical.  So I’ve improvised.   Continue reading

How to Live Out of a Car for 32 Days

Over Hill Under Tree requested that I write about my packing list: what I took, and what I picked up along the way.  Before I left, I wrote “Packing for a Month-Long Roadtrip,” but I like the idea of sharing what I took that was necessary, and what I could have left behind.

THE DAILY NECESSITIES

Every time I stayed with someone, I took three bags with me into their house:  my purse, my laptop bag, and my 14 x 22 inch suitcase.  This meant I always had my phone, computer, clothing, and toiletries with me.

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A 14 x 22 inch suitcase is not huge, and I fit a month’s worth of supplies in it.  What exactly did I have with me, and what would I have changed?   Continue reading

Packing for a Month-Long Roadtrip

My #32DaysInMyCar roadtrip begins tomorrow!  I am so in love with organization that I truly enjoy packing.  Luckily for me, the month of October will involve me living out of my car as I stay the night in eleven cities with multiple friends.  I threw a wrench in my own plans by including a five day trip to Dallas, meaning I have to pack for a plane as well.  The trickier the better!

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I’m packing a small suitcase as my main luggage, which I’ll take into people’s homes.  I’m a fan of rolling clothes, and putting as many things (toiletries, socks, makeup, etc) in individual bags.  When traveling, I always take a white laundry bag to keep my dirty clothes separate from the clean ones.  And since October should hopefully get chilly, I have two scarves (one bright, one subdued) for fashion and for warmth.

The nice thing about this trip is that I will be staying with different people every couple days.  That means I can pack fewer clothes and not care about people seeing me in the same outfit twice.  Of course, the Internet will have documentation of my fashion apathy, but….the Internet knows a lot of embarrassing things about me.  What’s one more?   Continue reading

How to Plan a Roadtrip

My 30-day, 3,800-mile roadtrip is still two months away, but half the fun of a thing is anticipating it.  I’ve been color-coding calendars, putting together lists, and compiling suggestions on how to do this right (aka fun and cheap).

Ways to Save Money

  • Use the GasBuddy app to find the cheapest gas stations while on the road (suggestion courtesy of The Traveling Praters).
  • Stock your car with lots of food and snacks with discounted rates at Sam’s Club.
  • Because you have all that cheap food, try to avoid fast food restaurants as often as possible.
  • Avoid motels.  Stay with friends (or friends of friends) as often as possible.
  • Bring your own water bottle and fill up at gas station soda fountains.

Continue reading

Why I Love Moving

I’m a planner, so although I’m two months away from moving to Peoria from Dallas, I have already started thinking about packing.  Which, and I know this might make me extremely weird, genuinely excites me.  I love packing!  I love moving!  And I think it all comes down to simplicity.

The physical and psychological weight of clutter depresses me.  I like to have a few things I love very much (my cat and my books), and the rest is cycled in and out of my life.  It’s too easy to accumulate junk when you live in a full-sized house for year after year.  The more you have, the less meaningful individual things are.

In addition to the relief of having less, there is something very cleansing about starting over.  I love routine, but only to a point.  Eventually I grow tired of these things always being in this place, and assuming that this item can only fit here.  Moving into a new room in a new house offers a chance for creativity.  You get to see your favorite possessions in a new light, because they’re featured in a new space.  Old things feel new again.

Moving can be stressful.  But there’s a reason I’ve lived in four places in the last five years.  I love getting to de-clutter and start over!

Blog Rec: The Budget-Minded Traveler

When I stumbled across The Budget-Minded Traveler, I immediately knew I’d struck gold.  She writes perfectly in-depth posts about traveling accessories (suitcases, backpacks, scarves with passport pockets) and traveling tips (visas, cell phone usage, packing inspirations).  Her blog archive is a wonderful place to start, with a tag cloud to help you find a subject you are especially interested in and a list of her most recent posts.

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My favorite post so far (I’m still happily exploring her site) is her Ninja Packing Tips:  Packing List for Europe With Just a 30L Packback.  She includes a lot of pictures and incredibly specific suggestions about what items to take with you and which to leave at home.  It was very inspirational, and I want to make my packing increasingly compact.

Once you get a chance to look at The Budget-Minded Traveler, share your favorite posts in the comments!  I’d love to check them out.