I Rock at Packing

You know how I describe myself as a “recovering Type A overachiever?”* Well, I’m working hard to relax a bit more and leave some of that Type A stuff behind me. Except when it comes to packing… I am an AWESOME packer.

I’ve worked packing down to a science and I even have spreadsheets divided by the type of trip and who is coming with me. Oh, am I going on a cruise with the husband? No biggie. Taking a long weekend to the beach house with the baby? Bring it! Going to a different country for a work conference where I need to be dressy? I show that trip who’s in charge!

So how do I win at packing? Well, my goal is to pack EXACTLY what I need for the trip and not one extra thing. If I wear everything I’ve packed, I consider that a WIN at packing. And frankly a WIN at LIFE!

Want to see the method to my madness? Well, check out my packing list from last week’s trip to Vancouver:

breakdown 2

By planning out exactly what I need to wear each day, I can make sure I’m not just throwing in a bunch of stuff that doesn’t go together. I also include underclothes and pajamas, of course.

If I was short on space, I could have pared it down to just one pair of jeans and one sweater, but I like options. Also, with rain in the forecast for every day I didn’t want to end up trying to put on wet jeans if I was soaked on a sightseeing trip. Everything on this list (and everything I bought for my husband and Jack) all fit in just a backpack and small Heys carry-on suitcase.

So, you want to see a bunch of dorky pictures of all my outfits?

Tuesday: (jeans #1, t-shirt, sandals and scarf) I wore this on two planes, sightseeing and dinner.
Wednesday 1
Wednesday morning: (jeans #2, t-shirt, jacket, sneakers) I wore this for a ton of walking and sightseeing. I have no idea why Kid Rock is on TV…
Wednesday 2
Wednesday afternoon: (dress #1, sweater, sandals) – I wore this outfit for the conference check-in, one session and a welcome reception.
Thursday 1
Thursday: (dress #2, sweater, sandals) I wore this from 7am – 5pm for my conference.
Thursday 2
Thursday night: (jeans #2, t-shirt, scarf, sneakers) This is my ‘last chance at shopping’ outfit! It was raining outside, so I didn’t even bother with trying to keep my hair under control.
Friday morning: (jeans #1, t-shirt, sweater, sandals) – one last conference session and then a LONG plane ride. I finally got home at 2:30 am on Saturday!

Wait… did you not think these pictures were dorky enough? Well, how about THIS:

silly pics
Just in case you think I get American Next Top Model’s smizing perfection in every shot… here’s what the majority of the pictures looked like on my camera when I got home:

So how about you, do you like to pack JUST what you plan to wear on your trip or do you prefer throwing in your whole closet and sorting through it all later? Am I the only one who feels like I WIN at packing if I wear everything I packed?

* If you didn’t know that you can totally look up at my website header… see, it’s there.

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14 thoughts on “I Rock at Packing”

  1. I always pack an extra pair of shoes whether it be flip flops, heels or sneakers (depending on where we’re going) I had one incident of shoe breakage and had to buy another at an unGodly cost! Never again will I be left with no extra shoes! I must say I have gotten a whole lot better at packing for trips. Our last trip I had one small suitcase. Go me!!

  2. I am the worst at overpacking! I’m always worried I’ll need something I’ve forgotten… Or find a stain on something I packed and not be able to wear it. Or rip my pants. Or go swimming more than I anticipated and thus run out of clean underpants (because you MUST put on fresh ones every.single.time.) These things have HAPPENED, Joules. I think I’m traumatized.

    1. So what you’re saying is that if I run out of clothes at BlogHer I’ll know where to go? Actually, BlogHer is going to be a tough one to pack for… I mean how much space does a tutu take?!

      1. Yep. I’m taking the train, not a plane, so luggage isn’t a big issue. Plus I’m bunking with Chrissy who is also an over packer. I have not purchased a tutu as yet. If it’s too big, I suppose you’ll just have to wear it on the plane 🙂

      2. I’m MAKING my tutu! One of those tie tulle thingies.

        And so what if I like to BE PREPARED. It’s going to be hilarious rolling into work with my suitcase(s) for a conference in my backyard. Like a boss…

        That being said, I totally feel like I win at packing when I don’t dig through my clothes and cry that I have nothing to wear. If I have an outfit for every occasion and options, that’s a total win.

        But I also create crazy organized lists with plans for what I think I might wear and possible extras and ways to re-wear sweaters and jeans. But never socks or underwear. Always bring extras of those.

      3. Chrissy – I also saw some easy online instructions for making a kickbutt tutu. I’m just trying to decide WHEN I’d actually wear it before committing the time to make one….

        Katie – Plan on bringing an empty tote bag for swag if that’s something you’re into. I ended up with a FULL BlogHer bag full of swag and that was AFTER I traded out the stuff I didn’t really want.

        Chrissy again – It is much easier for me to be a packing nazi when I have a structured event like I did in Vancouver. With BlogHer there are so many more challenges — like what do I feel like wearing to the afterparties — that I’ll probably end up throwing in a few (dozen) extra sparkily options!

  3. You were in Vancouver?! I was in Vancouver last week, too! But, sadly, my duffel bag looked nothing like your expertly organized suitcase. Inside of my bag was a melee of jeans, sweaters, t-shirts, ballet flats, jackets, scarves, yoga pants, and a sundress (random and unclear how that got there). And then, with one sweep of my arm, I dumped my entire make-up drawer on top of the clothes. Apparently, that is what happens when you don’t get around to packing until 15 minutes before the cab arrives to take you to the airport. Opps…

    Did you get a chance to check out Stanley Park? I am obsessed with it and the ridiculous salmon tacos at the Go Fish shack near Granville Island. I need to return immediately.

    1. I WAS in Vancouver last week and had a great time! I didn’t get a chance to check out Stanley Park, but did walk to/around the Gastown area, as well as Robson street and Granville Drive. I’m planning to write up a full post this week on my adventures/shopping/thoughts on food. =)

  4. I make lists too, just like yours! Except I always have to add in something else, just in case! And being in the UK, you need clothes for every possible weather variety!

    1. The weather does mess up our best plans, right?! I usually dress in layers since you never really know what to expect… and conferences always seem to be super cold!

  5. I ALWAYS pack extra!!! I’m afraid I will be getting dressed and decide that the outfit I planned looks hideous on me that day and if I don’t have extra then I will be stuck in said hideous outfit. Plus I like to be prepared for emergency circumstances like bad weather, stains, etc. I think my type A/overly organized personality won’t let me be unprepared! 🙂

    Love the pics!!

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