Way back in February, I wrote a post about a word for the year like my friend Heather does (she was published in the Spring 2013 Kindred magazine. Did you see it?) The word I chose at that time was PREPARE. In the intervening months I have mislaid the notebook (and found it again), but loosely tried to keep up with lists and things. I need to get back on task with doing the lists, though. They DO help and trying to juggle things mentally isn’t the best plan for me. Writing things down also helps me remember them (thanks to college for teaching me that trick). And physically writing them is different from typing them, at least for me.
We’re getting ready for a cross-country trip and I’ve been making lists: packing lists (carry-on versus suitcase), shopping lists (one main list with different locations in separate sections), to-do lists (a general one of everything I’d ideally like to get done, a list just for laundry loads, a list of the week with dinners listed as well as major tasks), a knitting list so that I can decide what I might realistically get done on our journey. I’ve also started lists for the kids. Thing 2 is good with lists. He started his and hung it on a cabinet door so that he wouldn’t lose it and could add things as he thought of them (I suggested this and he agreed it was a good idea). Thing 1, though, resists my list-making ideas. It may be that trying to think of things to pack is challenging for him to do alone and he’d rather have help (or he’d rather someone else made the list – this is handy when one wants to blame someone else for things that don’t get packed, but I digress).
Plans were made before this trip was planned, and so I’ve been forced to do more thinking ahead than I usually do. I’m generally a last minute packer. The night before finds me doing last minute laundry, and helping the kids pack, and then getting all crazypants when I decide to pack for myself last. I’m trying to avoid that this time, especially since Thing 2 has classes on Thursday (jellyfish) and Friday (roller coasters). Sleeping in isn’t helping my system. Lists are trying to help.
You can see my lists. I’m generally a fan of that half sized sheet of paper. Some lists need more (like the packing lists), but I do a lot of ripping or folding paper in half and using that for a list. That paper is all stuff I found when cleaning out some file boxes. The other sides have rules and regulations for a camping weekend. The yellow stands out for me – right now I know that the yellow lists are related to this week.
You can see my dear Cuppow mason jar water thing. I’ve been putting things in the water to encourage me to drink more (one must stay hydrated in the desert). Today it’s tangelo and blackberry. On the right is the King of All Trail Mixes. There is some nutrition in there (nuts, dried fruits) and there is some fun in there. If I remember everything, it contains:
- peanut butter filled pretzels (Trader Joe’s)
- Tempting Trail Mix (TJ)
- Rainbow’s End Trail Mix (TJ)
- Salty, Sweet and Nutty Trail Mix (TJ)
- Just the Clusters cereal – maple pecan (TJ)
- Banana chips (Sprouts)
- Diced dried pineapple (Sprouts)
- Yogurt pretzels (Sprouts)
We’ll take some of that on the plane and pack some of it in the luggage. I should probably put some containers of it in the boys’ carry-ons. The last time we made it was for a car trip, so I controlled the large bin of it (I mix it in a stock pot), and gave scoops of it to the kids. Having their own will be easier to manage on the plane.
Do you travel with your family? How do you decide what to pack and what you can live without? I always pack too many clothes.