Top 5 Reasons I’m No Good At Packing

Packing gives me hives. Not the “carrying a loaded pistol” kind of packing, but the “leaving for New Orleans for sightseeing, meetings and banquets” kind of packing.

I know you’re all, “Oh, poor Peri has to go to Bourbon Street. Wah. Wah. Wah.” But knock it off! Here are the top five reasons I’m no good at packing a suitcase.

1. Shoes: How many pairs can I fit into one 50-lb. suitcase? The answer–not enough. I’ll need dressy shoes for the banquet, cute shoes for sightseeing, fashion shoes for meetings, tennis shoes for the gym, flip-flops for the pool and cute sandals for everything in between. That leaves room in my suitcase for a Wisp toothbrush and a bobby pin. Not acceptable.

2. Underwear: You can never have enough clean undies. I need a pair for each day, with matching bras, because you don’t want to be attacked by a crocodile and wind up in the ER having your clothes cut off while you’re wearing mismatched underwear. Fashion faux pas. Tim Gunn would NOT be happy.

(“This just isn’t working for me.”)

3. Books/Magazines: If I’m sitting in an airport, or on a plane, without something to read, just shoot me. So, I need a book to read and several magazines in case the book gets boring. Then I’ll need a couple more books in case the meetings are boring and I finish my book. Then I’ll need more magazines in case the maid at the hotel steals them. It’s a never-ending cycle of publications. And I REFUSE to purchase a Nook or a Kindle. Hear me? Re. Fuse.

4. Hair/make-up products: The best thing to do when traveling, is to utilize that no-make-up, fresh-faced glow–but it takes a lot of products to achieve that look. With concealer, foundation, sunscreen, moisturizer, serum, scrubs, cleanser, eye shadows, eye liners, mascara, primer, powder, blush, lip gloss, lip stick and lotion–PLUS shampoo, conditioner, leave-in conditioner, mousse, gel, hair spray, dry shampoo, bath gel, body scrub and a loofah, that’s a lot of space. Ummm. Maybe I can just UPS that stuff directly to the hotel.

5. Neatness Doesn’t Count. Right?: When Tom packs, everything is folded, rolled, separated and organized into colors, function and usage–kind of like an IKEA associate did his packing. When I fill a suitcase, things are fashionably wadded and fitted around various shoes. Sometimes, items are stuffed INTO shoes. Kind of like this:

(Will a shopping cart fit in an overhead?)

And what if it rains? Or hurricanes? What if I’m invited to a spur-of-the-moment black tie event? What if I participate in a voodoo ceremony? There are so many potential fashion opportunities. How will I ever pack it all!!??!!

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183 thoughts on “Top 5 Reasons I’m No Good At Packing

  1. Every woman I know, including me, can totally relate. It’s like some sort of Female disease. 😀 I do pack IKEA-ish though up until I open my bag and look for something to wear. :))))

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  2. and i thought i was bad at packing! my sense of style usually goes out the window when i travel. i pack 4 pairs of shoes: hikers, chucks, flip flops and nice sandals. the only books i bring are travel guides and a journal. my hair is in a ponytail the whole time and make-up is at a minimal (lipstick/gloss and blush). i do tend to bring too much clothes though and sometimes end up not wearing everything at least once.

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  3. I usually fly to travel and over pack. LOL! I don’t pack my suitcase neatly anymore due to U.S. Customs searches through my suitcase and distorts my stuff.

    http://kalafels.wordpress.com/

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  4. Canadiantravelbugs

    Well I have been there and tried to pack it all… all you get is weighed down and lugging around a bunch of stuff you don’t need. Is there a massage therpist at your destination? My advice… pack light and buy what you need…. after all it is an excuse to go SHOPPING!

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  5. It’s so hard being a girl and having to pack!! Ughh I understand your pain 🙂

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  6. We feel your pain! Love this blog! Especially the part about crocodiles. We are all about advising layering so there’s less in your case. And wearing big stuff on the plane. Because our sister company (gooutdoors.co.uk) sells outdoor gear as well we are always recommending zip off trousers and synthetics that dry quicker so you can wear them again and again? But i know the real world can be harder! You might not want to stroll around Paris in a baselayer! I did a personal blog on packing that you might like to read! http://morethanakeyword.blogspot.com/2011/08/ryan-air-hand-luggage-packing-guide-for.html http://morethanakeyword.blogspot.com/2011/09/hold-luggage-packing-for-girls-less-is.html

    Hope this helps!

    GO Activities x

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  7. […] dịch từ blog Life and Laughter Like this:LikeBe the first to like this post. from → Ghi chép ← Tận dụng pallet […]

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  8. I am so sharing this with friends!

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  9. I love this post! I am so right there with you when packing for a trip. We are taking a cruise in March and I am already trying to figure out how to pack. I’ve been on two and know that there is not a lot of room in the cabin but….it is hard to decide what to take vs what can I do without…so tough for us gals!

    http://aprilhawk.wordpress.com

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  10. haha! I love this! it is totally true!

    http://wgduc.wordpress.com/

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  11. Great post!! Can really relate to the ones you mention here…

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  12. i can relate to item # 3. =) i’ve always love to carry around more than one reading mats.. =)

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  13. realanonymousgirl2011

    You pack like my husband. Maybe you should just bite the bullet and pay for the extra check in luggage.

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  14. That’s life plain and simple. Keep blogging!

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  15. books are my biggest stumbling block to keeping my suitcase under the maximum weight! I always pack too many AND end up buying one at the airport “just in case”.

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  16. This post is very easy to relate to for me! I laughed in agreement in reading your statement about possible last minute fashion emergencies that make packing that much more of a hassle. The intimidating baggage weight limit the airports enforce on us passengers, although a great safety precaution, don’t make anything easier, for that matter 🙂

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  17. Great post! I can definitely relate to the need to have different outfits with the proper shoes for different potential situations, just in case! I try my best to take things I can mix and match in terms of outfits (as best as I can–lol!); for example, a shirt that will go well with pants or jeans, or a skirt, etc. and a dressy pair of shoes that match with at least two outfits. On a longer trip (especially when you have no place to do laundry!), this definitely presents a challenge, though–lol!

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  18. Haha. I hate packing as well. I relocated 3 times in last 3 years to 3 different countries. I know what I am talking about. Packing for a travel trip is like heaven for me. Try packing for a year somewhere else. I wish I could have one of the Harry Potter bags, where you can fit anything in!

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  19. You can probably still buy a steamer trunk, but unless you are going on an actual steamer, it isn’t practical. =)

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  20. And my boyfriend thinks I try to pack too much. Going away for the weekend? Gotta bring 5 different outfits and 4 pairs of shoes. Never mind going on vacation. I like to have options when I travel. I don’t wanna be stuck forced to wear only two different outfits (in the weekend example). What if the weather is drastically different than predicted? What if I wake up in the morning and don’t want to wear what I brought? I totally agree. Packing is the hardest.

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  21. I’m the type of person that waits until theres 10 mintues left to leave, throws a bunch of stuff in a bag and hopes i’ve got everything I need. For some reason I always pack alot of books with me. I mean I NEVER read on trips but everytime I pack I think that I’m going to have all this free time to finish few books, even if its just a one night trip.

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  22. i take my ipad and iphone everywhere with me even when I take my laptop. I use that at airports to read and watch movies even in transit.As for the rest of it I take a pair of sport shoes and a pair of thongs and thats it. To put it simply, leave most of the stuff at home! 🙂

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  23. your photos were great.

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  24. This is so right! I want to bring everything, but it’s so heavy and end of the day I just give up and bring minimally, then get upset for not bringing everything I wanted to!

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  25. So true! Shoes can easily take up half of a suitcase. My solution: on my last out-of-state trip, I threw my clothes, shoes, and belts into one big eco-friendly bag. Wrinkles? You bet.

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  26. Ha! Although I am a guy, I’m the one in the family who has to pack shoes for each occasion. My wife thinks I’m crazy. Thanks for the good laugh.

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  27. Oh my, I have often wondered if something was wrong with me. I packed for 2 weeks in Europe in one tiny suitcase – one pair of the most comfy shoes ever (which I wore on the plane and every day of the trip), 4 pairs of pants, 4 shirts, 4 sets of unmentionables, a jacket (pesky rain in London), and a bathing suit (for scuba diving!). My dh and son did the same thing – we knew we would be lugging our suitcases off trains, subways, buses, etc. We found the cutest laundromats (where Mama would wash, dry, fold, and tuck back in your suitcase for you to roll back to your hotel after a day of sightseeing). We had room to bring home a hand carved chess set from Athens (my son’s choice) and other souvenirs.

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  28. Searching for the Light

    The joys of being a women. no suitcase is ever big enough and then when you get there you realise that you really should have brought the red shoes, the LBD, and the other top that goes with the trousers you packed, so next time you need an even bigger suitcase.

    Solution: Take a man with you, they only ever need one spare shirt,a pair of socks and underpants plus razor and toothbrush so plenty of room in their baggage allowance for all the little extras you can’t live without. 🙂

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  29. Donna Amis Davis

    Absolutely. Packing is the pits. Unless it is for a week at a beach resort – throw in a little bathing suit, a wrap, some flips, a paperback, and you are good to go. But for meetings in the city with sightseeing on the side – very tough. I totally agree with you on the shoes. Do I ever really use those bulky cross-trainers that take up half the suitcase? Not usually, but I’m guilt-ridden if I leave them home. Love your site!

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  30. I completely agree with the book part. I always need to have at least one book with me when I travel. Someone gave me a Kindle as a present, and it is super handy (it’s light and the books are so cheap), but I certainly prefer normal books. There’s just something about holding a book in my hand that makes the whole experience more enjoyable. That’s why I end up packing several books on my trips.

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  31. Wow! I feel your pain!

    I’ve been staring at the piles of clothes I have to pack for weeks. I’m trying my best to consolidate though.

    Not function over fashion but multi-use items and color stories that will offer endless mix & match options.

    luckily, it’s not so hard for me with shoes. at home i have a million shoes but on the road it’s only 3 pair: trainers, sandals, flip flops.

    Good luck!

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  32. Packing is hard for me because I need to wear what I FEEL like wearing and I don’t know how I feel until I wake up. I’ve found the best thing to do is just go shopping while you are on vacation. Problem solved! 😉

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  33. Start playing TETRIS!!

    Your packing skills will be off the charts

    🙂

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  34. LOL. I feel your pain!!! Packing is a painful process. You nailed ALL of my issues with packing! Love it!

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  35. Take a hint from all those destitute creatures you find loitering at bus stations, and simply pack your treasured belongings (i.e. shit) into a heavy duty trash bag 🙂

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  36. But the more important question is

    ‘Which bag/suitcase/holdall should I use?’

    Something I’ve experienced recently, yet again!

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  37. I’m hearing you loud and clear!!!

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  38. streetinspiredtoronto

    Great post! To your question about the steamer trunks, the answer is YES! At Rimowa!

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  39. Packing makes me nervous… yeah, stuff the clothing in the shoes, I’ve done that, it’s a great place for socks. I’ve found this to be true: pack too much, you don’t use it. Pack too little, you wish you had packed more. See, this is why I get nervous. I agree, it’s hard to cut back on the make up stuff, but as for shampoo/conditioner/body soap and a ‘in a pinch’ product to wash out a few small items, check out http://www.jrliggetts.com Great multi-tasking shampoo bar that also passes airline inspection.

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  40. My goal is to get my packing down to one pair of underwear and a toothbrush – for an around the world trip! I saw someplace that a guy (of course!) came up with a coat that is full of pockets inside and out. You pack all your things in the coat and Voila! No luggage fees, no carry on issues, etc…I have to get me one of those!

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  41. My problem isn’t so much packing everything for the trip there (although it does have its difficulties), my main problem is always getting everything back home. Somehow I always end up leaving with way more then what I came with.

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  42. Wow..you are really well prepared, even for the matched underwear. well i think U still can bring as many as you need (that’s my motto in travelling), i usually arrage my clothes as big as the travel bag or any carrier i have. that surely will gives U more space for other things.

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  43. I have the same problem with shoes. What if I am on my feet all day? Should I take flats? Or sneakers? What if I have to glam it up? Should I take heels? And then different heels for different days to match the different outfits. Should I take my comfy slippers too? So for like a two day work trip, I end up taking four pairs of shoes! 😀

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  44. I have the same problem with shoes. What if I am on my feet all day? Should I take flats? Or sneakers? What if I have to glam it up? Should I take heels? And then different heels for different days to match the different outfits. Should I take my comfy slippers too? So for like a two day work trip, I end up taking four pairs of shoes!

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  45. Very funny… and congratulations on being freshly pressed. “Tim Gunn would…” (chuckle… and great photo to match).

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  46. me toooo!!
    outandabout7.wordpress.com
    hippyhipster.wordpress.com
    filmwordsmelodies.wordpress.com

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  47. I’m allergic to packing, too. Shoes I find so hard to pack, and I always wonder how many pairs of socks I really need. I weigh my bags down with books and books and lots more books (this is why eReaders are so useful for traveling). I only bring the absolute necessary makeup, and buy a few new things if I forget something important. Finally, packing neatly is not high on my list, though I do try to at least make things look somewhat neat. 😉 Congrats on being Pressed!

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  48. Don’t pack more than you need and pack pieces that can be mixed and matched to create more than one outfit. As for the shoes, pack only what you need. If you’re going to be wearing black, pack the black shoes. And if you fold things and then roll them, you can fit a lot more than if you just fold and stack.

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  49. “When I fill a suitcase, things are fashionably wadded and fitted around various shoes. Sometimes, items are stuffed INTO shoes.”
    I wish I didn’t relate to that, but I do. Oh, how I do. VERY funny, loved it!

    http://sipsofjenandtonic.com

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  50. I’m not alone!! I absolutely loathe packing. There are some many variables and what ifs!The options are endless!! I am terrible… until the moment i leave my house I’m continually finding things I “need” and attempting to stuff them in my bag!

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  51. This is hysterical and I can so relate to the shoe thing. Sometimes I’ll have more shoes than outfits. The standard joke from family members when I’m going on a trip is; so, how many pairs of shoes did you bring. I’ve taken to lying and saying, just a few.

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  52. Not only do we pack the same way, we must be married to the same man! My husband is organized too with the whole rolling and sorting thing. And he so does not get the necessity for multiple pairs of shoes and planning for possible “what-if” dressy occasions.

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  53. Very funny! 🙂 Thanks.

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  54. I agree! The worse scenario is if you’re going for a winter holiday with temperatures deeping below 0 degrees! Imagine all that layers of clothes you’ll have to carry! And since you want to look like you didn’t spent the whole trip wearing just 3 sets of clothes on camera, of course you pack more! And that adds up! And then there’s the lady business! If only they could create some cool cream that combined all the different moisturisers, toners, serum, etc.! We wouldn’t want to look ugly in our holiday pictures! Or even for a business trip; presentation is the most important thing!

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  55. Well you can always travel light and buy necessary stuff on the other side of the country.

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  56. The ability to pack is an unappreciated talent!

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  57. This is hilarious! I’m no good at packing either. I”m always forgetting something or realizing I packed things I’m not going to wear.

    Nice to know I’m not alone!

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  58. Darlin’, you simply need to lower your standards!

    My husband is the big packer, always with lots of changes of clothing. I’m fine with the standard NY uniform (black, black and more black). You can take very little and have hotel laundry clean it or (yes) hand wash a bra or two in the sink. Shoes are tough, especially if you’re trying to look good (i.e. not sneakers all the time.)

    I’ve done a week or more out of a carry-on…I add lots of scarves to change the look of a few outfits. Jewelery is easy; in your carry-on.

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  59. He! He! Sure, because what does one wear to a voodoo ceremony? I think you need a special outfit for that alone! LOL Have a fun trip…and bring cute running shoes to the voodoo thing, just in case! ROFL

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  60. Lol.. I couldn’t stop smiling when I read the stuff you mentioned… it’s so true, especially about hair/make up product.. Apparently, it’s not just me who can’t pack. When I travel with my boyfriend, I rarely do it by myself, I will let my boyfriend do that for me.

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  61. The ‘what ifs’ drive me crazy, too! Funny post :]
    http://ghanaseewhaticansee.wordpress.com/

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  62. wakakaka … same with me.

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  63. This post had me laughing so hard! And at 7:37 in the morning, that is such a serious compliment! I completely feel your pain.
    Every time I travel (which is often since I am a travel agent and so travelling is part of my job) I end up calling home the first day to make my boyfriend laugh “toothbrush” or “hairbrush” or “socks”. It’s just one word sentences and it’s what I forgot that time.
    I can only hope that if you are invited to participate in a voodoo ceremony that they will expect you are living out of a suitcase and provide you with appropriate attire! 😉 Oh yeah, and if you fly first class each person gets 2 free bags still on most airlines. That is one for shoes and toiletries and one for undergarments and other random necessities (you still won’t fit your black tie appropriate gown sadly).
    Life is a journey…Travel it well.

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  64. Ditto to all! Thanks for the chuckle!!

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  65. You’re writing comes from the heart! I love the comments under the pictures. I will defiantly follow your blog!

    indiraadams.wordpress.com

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  66. LOL!

    I’m very interesting in your post. Could I translate it to Vietnamese, my language, and put your link as source in my blog? Pls. advise.

    Thanks you,

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  67. Love your post! I’m a maniac packer – I love to pack and repack multiple times before a trip, so that every item ‘settles’ in nicely. Not to mention being anal about hand baggage allowance being stretched to the last gram with stuff that I ‘might’ need if the baggage gets lost/delayed!

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  68. FANTASTIC post! i can really relate.
    I am terrible at packing! Shoes and clothing is the worst for me. I like to have a choice and variety when it comes to what outfit i wear and what shoes go with it.
    Such a lovely post 🙂 really made me smile.

    Amy.

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  69. I love your post. You are now on my blog list.

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  70. Yeah, that’s right, you worry about this and that and those, and oh-my-god, you’re going to run out of stuff, and you’d wish that you had just been able to fit in a few more things…………..

    …………..and then you end up being so very contently happy with what you packed, and you realise that all those crazy possibilities you thought might smack you in the face never happened. And you return home with your messy suitcase, with tired arms, and a thankful mind: that you hadn’t packed any more than you had!!

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  71. I understand your pain.
    Packing for a weekend break or even just a one night stay is horrendous for me. I need at least three ‘overnight’ bags. What if it rains? What if it suddenly gets really hot? Will I need boots or heels or both? Not forgetting hair products & electrical items!
    However this was completely overshadowed by the packing I had to do in August. I had to pack my suitcase with a years worth of belongings to come out to Canada. I think this was the hardest thing I’ve ever had to do! I had to leave so much behind that I now want & brought things with me I am never going to wear. I mostly packed summer things so now the weather is changing I am totally unprepared for the rain & cold. Why can’t the baggage allowance on flights just be unlimited?!

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  72. As much as I want to be neat, it’s just difficult, I have no patience in keeping it neat once I find that I don’t have enough space in my luggage and having the need to sit on it so that it can be closed. But make full use of space, like put stuffs into your shoes, sometimes it saves quite some space! 🙂

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  73. I often have nightmares about packing what to pick and what to leave and often miss my plane or ride in this confusion. Thank God these are JUST nightmares.

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  74. Ugh….you just reminded me that I haven’t packed yet! Two toddlers + me = no bueno. I HATE packing!!!!

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  75. shoes present me with a trouble too!

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  76. So do I, I’m not good at this. I’m very confuse while I must decide which thing that I should pack in. Because I have a lot, but I don’t like to bring many things.

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  77. This is so funny! 🙂 I also have the same problem before. But now, I plan my activities beforehand and create a sort of lookbook per day per event. And then I just leave a few extras for emergencies. With my itinerary on hand, I create an outfit for the day and at night–complete with accessories from head to toe. That way, I’ll be sure to pack only what I need. And then I roll everything when packing to conserve space and to prevent wrinkles. 🙂

    Ladies do have a hard time packing. :))

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  78. You know, I got a lot better at packing once I realized that they did, in fact, have stores where I was going. If you get invited to a voodoo ceremony, I’m sure you can pick something up.
    Oh, and about the toiletries? Travel size. That’s all I can say.

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  79. LOL, I find it hilarious that clothes aren’t one of the numbered categories. I always end up with way too much stuff, sometimes repacking it into my husband’s suitcase because mine is over the weight limit. Ooops.

    On cool trick I always use is to back socks and/or panties into my shoes. And jewelry too, rolled up in panties! It’s amazing how much room is in shoes, especially gym shoes and winter ones.

    Happy travels!

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  80. Haha so true about the shoes, I run into that problem too!

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  81. This was incredibly good! I hate to pack because I am a neatnic and everything has to be just so. And shoes! Oh my gosh! Once I went on an overnighter and had 4 pairs of shoes. Wore them all too.

    Sarah

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  82. You need Mary Poppins magical carpet bag 😉 Love the post – congrats on making f.p.

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  83. my brain refuses to think ahead. ia lways find myself missing at elast 2 things that i need on every vacation!! 😛 it’s strange ebcause i always OVERPACK jsut not with the right htings… 🙂

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  84. This made me smile! I totally agree with you especially since when I pack all I get 98 percent of the time is a carry on bag. Great post 🙂

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  85. This is so me (and apparently everyone else here)! My problem is leaky things. I’m a product whore and I can’t get by without bringing a gazillion bottles of liquid or gooey glop and inevitably something oozes out.

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  86. It’s useful for me —-a girl always confused about packing

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  87. I am not the best at packing and it’s even worse because there are the liquid restrictions, and you can’t have a water bottle in your bag, and that kind of makes you crazy. I think that packing for women is just really tough because we need our shoes, our change of clothes, let alone our beauty products! It’s hard scaling down, so I can completely sympathize.

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  88. “The best thing to do when traveling, is to utilize that no-make-up, fresh-faced glow–but it takes a lot of products to achieve that look.”

    LOL!!! So true!

    My main problem is that I can never decide what I’m going to wear until the day of. Often, I’ll lay my clothes out at night before I go to bed, and the next morning the outfit just isn’t working for me. What if I’m having a fat day? What if I want to wear something looser fitting? What if I miraculously lose 15 pounds during my trip? Must pack for all situations. 🙂

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  89. This one’s funny. A great laugh to begin this day! And am guilty of this, especially number 2 and 3. Haha! Congrats on being FP’d! ^^

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  90. my trick is to push your carry on to the limit. You know how you can have one carry-on and a “purse”? Well, my purse is actually a huge bag with my purse shoved inside of it and surrounding it is all of my make up, toiletries, and extra clothes/shoes that would not fit in my regular suit case.

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  91. Loved this post because everything about it, is so true!

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  92. This is hilarious, mostly because I can totally relate. I suck at packing because I usually forget stuff that is not fun to wear but necessary like pajamas and Abreva!

    Congrats on your Freshly Pressed status! Well deserved with this post.

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  93. Very funny post and so true. Although it is the unpacking that gets me these days. My husband will get back and be unpacked in 30 minutes; I’ll still be dealing with half unpacked suitcases a week later. Don’t know what it is. Actually, I do know what it is: I need a maid! Congrats on being FP’D!

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  94. I always put my shoes somewhere seperate, but no matter how hard i try i ALWAYS forget something. I hate packing and no neatness deff does not count.

    http://confusedoptimism.wordpress.com/2011/10/05/hello-world/

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  95. I hate packing too, mostly because I tend to “over think” my vacation with items I think I need but in the end, I never use them… shoes are a pain too! I try to find a pair of shoes that I can just wear regardless of the situation and just buy some new shoes when I get to my destination 🙂

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  96. I detest packing! But since I love to travel that’s the price I pay.

    Thanks for the laugh, I really needed one today, especially since I am starting to stress over packing for my November trip.

    Congrats on being Fresh Pressed!

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  97. Being a long term traveller and mere 7st weakling i have become adept at packing – I take silk clothes with me or just buy when i’m there – good excuse for shopping! I have to disagree about the kindle though – as much as i like a book in my hands, its been a godsend in terms of weight restrictions

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  98. We should stay in touch because I totally GET you. Here’s the thing. I keep a bathroom, shampoo, toothbrush, make-up bag stocked at all times. I hate, hate, hate packing that stuff. Soooooo whenever I’m ready to go, I just grab that back. I always buy new toothbrushes on my return trip and stuff ’em into the bag. But shoes. My goodness, you’re right. Once you are where you are, there is no turning back. And you MUST have the right shoes. I must have the right earrings too. I feel naked without the right earrings. Undies? Yeah, I overpack them too. You never know. You NEVER know. There are too many what ifs out there, and there may not be a department store standby standing by. I have decided, however, to keep a spare pair of socks in my suitcase at all times. You never know when your little tootsies might get cold at night. Oh, bless you, my sister. Finally, someone understands.

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  99. I’ve been to a voo-doo ceremony once in Haiti …….I stood there, over dressed, on Pins & needles….

    spread the humor:charlywalker.wordpress.com

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  100. I hate packing, too, although I would give anything to pack up and move out of here!!

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  101. I hate packing.

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  102. […] Top 5 Reasons I’m No Good At Packing by Life and Laughter on October 5, 2011 […]

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  103. Wow, I couldn’t have said it better myself! Packing takes a lot of time and thought. When I am about to go on a trip, I start packing a week in advance to monitor what I usually need on a daily basis. You need your day outfits, night outfits, and of course shoes to match each along with matching jewelry. For this situation, shoes can fill a whole suitcase by itself!

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  104. I get anxiety about packing. I usually just pick a few key items that I’m in the mood for (new pair of shoes, favorite sweater that it’s been too warm for, etc.) and build multiple outfits around each one. Whenever I pack heavy on one thing, like shoes, I force myself to go lighter on another area, like diversity of looks. Like others have said, I pick a color palette and just use accessories to make the outfits distinct.
    I’ve been trying to pack lighter and lighter with each trip because I hate carrying heavy bags, but it occasionally comes back to get me. Like I’d stopped packing shampoo and conditioner because they are supplied everywhere I go… until this summer when my hotel only left two-in-one, which never actually is two-in-one, so I had to use lotion.
    Not pretty.

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  105. It shouldn’t be a problem, because you have to take an extra suitcase anyway. Where else will you put all the clothes you buy on your trip?

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  106. Haha, this is so awesome and true, especially about stuffing things into shoes!

    Like

  107. So so funny! I am getting married in 8 weeks and we are going to Vanuatu for 2 weeks for our honeymoon. My future hubby said we should just take carry on luggage and buy everything else there, sounds good until you realise that you can not take razors, some deodorant or even emery boards in carry on luggage… sorry honey we are packing properly. So we are limiting ourselves to a swimsuit and one outfit for good dinner, one exercise outfit and casual outfit, thongs, runners and a nice pair of shoes and toiletries and everything else we are buying there. WAY out of my comfort zone!!! But gotta try everything once… worst comes to worst we have our swimsuits, we could spend a lot of time at the swim up bar at the resort hahaha!!!

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  108. Peri, you know there is only TRUE solution to your packing dilemma? Your problem isn’t so much packing as having enough space to pack your ESSENTIAL in.

    Therefore there is simply only ONE thing to do: only ever travel with FIVE NUDISTS. In this way you can use their baggage allowance. In addition it makes dealing with the profilers of TDA at the airport security a LOT more interesting!

    Always enjoy reading your posts!

    Like

  109. Hilariously accurate. I love that no make-up look that actually ends up requiring more products.

    Like

  110. Very funny post – I quite enjoyed reading it although I can’t relate too well. I’m a very light and practical packer. I just think about it this way…

    Going out of town for three days, during which I plan on going to one nice place, two events, then sight see the rest of the time. That means I’m packing one outfit for the nice thing, one nicer outfit for events and a casual (the nicer get-up is meant to be a mix-and-match back-up for emergency nice event), and one comfortable bottom for sightseeing with lots of tops and accessories. (feminine deodorant spray, tide spot pen and mini febreeze sprays are your friend) As for underwear, yes 100% agree never too much – they don’t take up much space, always pack 1 for each day + 2 extra in case you run into trouble.

    As for make up and accessories and all that, I hit up Target and buy all of the travel-size options and keep them in a designated spot for travel. You don’t need to take four bottles of perfume, every shade of the rainbow in eyeshadow or tall bottles of moisturizer. Oh, and most hotels you go to will supply tooth brush/tooth paste/comb/shaver/etc. if you request it at the front, if you’re severely pressed for packing space, although these things tend to fit somewhere.

    One thing I definitely agree on though, is the shoe part. Sometimes I take a pair or two with me carry-on and stuff the rest into the main part of the suitcase. As for packing clothing, depending on how much I pack I’ll either roll my shirts or lay everything flat. I don’t fold my stuff cause then you end up with creases anyway.

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  111. Welcome to New Orleans! And don’t worry, we don’t have any hurricanes forcasted to hit anytime soon …

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  112. loved your post. photos are fun. I was in a hurricane on one of my trips. Don’t worry. You’ll have plenty 🙂

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  113. Wow. I can really relate. Thanks for sharing. Now I know I’m not the only one. Connie
    http://7thandvine.wordpress.com/

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  114. Egad! I never thought about stuffing things into shoes! That’s brilliant! My biggest issue is the exploding-bottle-of-lotion conondrum. Suggestions?

    Like

    • Big Ziploc bags. The answer to anything liquid.

      Like

      • A lot of supermarkets sell those glad sandwich ziploc bags, I use them a lot for taking little bottles of shampoo etc. because there is nothing worse than putting all that effort into packing and planning and getting there to discover white goop all through your stuff… not fun! Also I often put the lotion bottles in the shoes 😀

        Like

  115. i have to say, i’m kind of a master-packer. here are my top 5 suggestions that help me even in a hurried packing situation…
    1. roll your clothes to reduce wrinkles and make better use of the space
    2. no more than 3-4 pairs of shoes…black, brown, flats, and heels (if you plan accordingly you can always get away with just black)
    3. undies are over-rated…take a few small pairs. you can go panty-less or just buy a pair when you’re at your destination.
    4. nook and ipod. give up books and magazines.
    5. minimize all your make-up and other girly products. if it’s a true vacation you shouldn’t need much make-up or hair stuff.
    I can get away with a carry-on for a 7-day vacation. Went to Aruba for 9 days, had a carry-on and a large purse. Bring it.

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  116. I was getting dangerously close to fed-ex-ing everything I own to my destination when a friend gave me some great advice: “Pick a color”. Pack everything to kinda mix & match with the most common color in your closet. (Think “Garanamals”.) Fabulous post!

    Like

  117. I’m actually living off of a suitcase right now. I’m travelling around the States for three months. So far, it’s going pretty well, although I stepped in a puddle yesterday, and I only brought one pair of shoes… Anyways. Thank you for posting and congratulations on being FRESHLY PRESSED!

    Like

  118. OMG, I thought I was the only one who packed more shoes than clothes. I also start out folding, end up rolling then end up shoving my clothes into the suitcase begging it all to fit.. I am so challenged I just end up crying with frustration and really just want to go “sans” suitcase wherever and shop when I arrive. I think if I hit the lottery it would be the answer to a prayer, also no problem lugging the stupid suitcases on the plane, either. Then again, I wouldn’t have to fly with the peons I’d have my PRIVATE Jet, but that’s another matter! I too have know idea which persona will need what on any given day, so need many costume changes, how can that all be fit in a suitcase? Great blog!

    Like

  119. I have a solution for Number 2. Don’t wear underwear! I know I don’t. As for Number 3, I won’t press the issue too hard because you seem pretty headstrong, but my Kindle was honestly the best purchase I’ve made in a really long time. Truth.

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  120. This cracks me up. I almost always forget something, but I never really stress over packing. Must say that the post caught my eye because the woman I rent from freaks out when she even thinks about packing a suitcase. She says the worst part is she never knows what she wants to wear, and what if she’s miles away from home and decides she needs that one outfit? My theory is that life is too short to lament the fact that you forgot your pj’s.

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  121. Perfect timing for me, as I begin to (over)pack for a week-long trip to the SouthWest! No doubt I’ll pack enough for an army! Or family of 5, at least! (I’m just one person).

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  122. Very fun post, put a big smile on my face! Sorry about your packing difficulties, but the upside about bringing less is that you can always buy something there 😉 Thanks for posting and congrats on being freshly pressed!

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  123. #1. Is my TOP reason!! Ugggggh!

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  124. Great post! I loved this, especially the no-make-up, fresh-faced glow that takes a lot of products to achieve! Hotels should just have your shoes there already.

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  125. I think we must be somehow related! I am sure of it. I get to travel for work often (sadly more by car these days, but those trips aren’t the interesting ones!!! I usually add a bicycle on those – so you can imagine the packing challenges there!) Anyway – my precious shoes are so often the problem too! I am horrified at the thought of only 2 pair – anything more than 2 days is usually a 4 pair minimum!!! I always always always pack my gym shoes full to the toes – the only way to have a hope of getting enough stuff in there! I have been known to courier things home from trips (easier when work is already shipping a bunch of boxes anyways!) and I pack an extra bag into my suitcase. Why is it that things never fit back in at the end of the trip!!!
    Awesome post. Congrats on being freshly pressed!

    Like

  126. I usually pack to much. And all the times I have moved I don’t think I even need half the stuff!
    I should stick to my dad’s rule “Credit card in the glove compartment, tux in the trunk! And you are good to go!”

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  127. I despise packing as well. Especially if I have to take a plane to travel. For me, it is better to travel by car. Then – I can take more than I need, and no one will know that I have cleaned out my bathroom cabinets, and packed way more underwear than I will need. If I could hire someone to pack for me, I would.

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  128. Funny, smiley post! I am a roller of clothes, and shoe jammer form way back…I can now fit 8 days worth of clothes into my wallet….:)

    Have fun in New Orleans! Fresh Pressed…awesome.
    Jessica

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  129. Funny! I’m about to travel next week and have major packing angst. My friend suggested I write a post about it and then write about the trip. If I get to it, will give you a pingback.

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  130. Ahaha great post 🙂 And I agree with some comments here, packing for short trips is worst, because in theory you should bring less stuff but there are still all the possibilities of weather/events/places, just compressed into a shorter space of time. Argh.. And yeah nono to anything but a real book. Or ten.

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  131. i share part of this you know… even for a domestic flight, you can’t carry pomade weighing more than 8oz or so… but u may consider getting a $75 kindle to solve the book problem… for the fun of it, this is a remarkable post!

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  132. Ah, yes…as soon as I read your last point, I thought “Oh…THAT’S where we agree!” I can’t stand packing but solely for the purpose that I get sick of doing it rather quickly and end up throwing everything into a big pile into my suitcase. After 3 minutes, I couldn’t care less if things were folded or not; I just want them in there! Haha.

    Great post and congrats on being Freshly Pressed! 🙂

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  133. Packing is especially hard when you’re going to a certain country for the first time. You are not so familiar with the weather that you don’t know what to bring or if you could even use those that you did

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  134. I totally relate! I’m the worst packer in the world. My husband will have this light carry on and I’ll be lugging around a huge suitcase! I totally feel your shoe dilemma and also the makeup look on trying to achieve the no-makeup-look! 🙂

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  135. Thans for a good chuckle (and sorry for laughing at your real-life conundrum). It’s just all too familiar to me 🙂

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  136. I always, always make a list. I am not insane enough to put my clothes in ziploc plastic bags but I usually end up stuffing in last minute items.

    Like

    • 2 gallon Zip-locks work amazing for packing (and even better for re-packing when you want something from the bottom). I use them instead of stuff-sacks for backpacking – they also help you compress clothes so you are not wasting space with packing air. if you haven’t yet I would suggest giving it a try (helps with organizing too!).
      http://nathanmenkveld.wordpress.com/

      Like

  137. Love the shopping cart! Isn’t it funny how you can spend days packing a suitcase only to have the TSA open it, rifle through it, and re-pack it in just seconds? How do they do that?

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  138. Hey whats wrong with a kindle??? 🙂 I’ve got one and its really useful, although I’m a student so I get to read tonnes of books for free. courtesy of my university.

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  139. I have to start packing days in advance so that everything I might potentially forget will get noticed. My husband thinks that I am strange because I will pack and unpack a million times before leaving!

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  140. Yesss!!! You feel my pain!

    I’m the worst at packing. Like, EVER!!!

    I’m the woman at the front of the baggage check line emptying “heavy” items into my super oversize carry-on that’s actually another piece of luggage.

    Cute 🙂

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  141. I feel your pain!

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  142. First time I moved I used big black hefty bags for almost everything. No clue how my stuff managed to make it out!

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  143. I love your piece. I travel for a living as a writer and have yet to master the art of packing which I am doing as we speak for my next cruise. I hate, hate, hate to pack. There are cruises now for nudists, you can imagine how little packing they need to do.

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  144. Peri, you are hilarious! Picturing the Ikea style packing and the sharp contrast of the shopping cart photo made me laugh so loud the cat jumped off my lap. Thanks for putting a big smile on my face today 🙂

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  145. Oh god, I feel your pain! Don’t forget leaving room or bringing an extra bag for any souvenirs or clothes you purchase while you’re down there! I also bring my own hair dryer because hotel ones usually suck, and those are not easy to wrangle into a little corner of the suitcase. It takes me at least a day to pack, but my boyfriend packs about 15 minutes before we leave. All in one. tiny. bag.

    How do they do it?!

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  146. So true, so true. Maybe you could find that Miss America contestant that once did packing as her talent to give you some tips.

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  147. I’ve packed for overseas trips several time a year when I was living outside the country, so I know what you’re talking about! It’s seriously stressful!

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  148. I just give in and check one HUGE bag (usually half filled with shoes) and I wear my bulkiest shoes on the plane (save valuable luggage space that way).Also, you can buy a cute pair of tennis shoes, making them great for sightseeing and hitting the gym. Sample size cosmetics are AWESOME solutions for traveling, because they are just the mini version of the good stuff you keep at home. As for matching bras and panties, I give in and just take white, black and nude. I dont bring my fancy, fun options because then(like you) I over pack the panties and bra combos. Actually, I overpack always 🙂 but I am well prepared. Just think of yourself as a well prepared woman.

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  149. LOL Awesome post, love it. (I’m totally with you on Kindles. Nuh uh.) Thanks for making me smile this evening – I needed it. 🙂

    Congrats on FP!

    Kate
    http://ukate.wordpress.com/

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  150. I love this post! I have the same problem, except I try to pretend that I’m organized. Externally, “I got this.” Internally, “AHH! It’s not closing. I have to eliminate some stuff… Oh no, I have to take that.”

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  151. haha completely agree- packing = nightmare, particularly concerning toiletries. I also get this weird urge to pack for all seasons regardless of where I am going JUST IN CASE..

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  152. Two thoughts that may help:
    (1) How many times have you packed something and then not used it on your trip at all? I used to always pack my workout stuff, and then I started to notice that out of the last 10 trips, I used them… never. Likewise I have NEVER ended up using the pool while away at a business function, even though there was one available. Ditto with certain shoes, outfits, etc. Conclusion: that stuff does not go with me on trips any more, unless the trip itself is somehow geared around that activity.

    (2) They sell things at your destination. No, really. There are stores there. Almost everywhere, in fact. So if you pack 2 pairs of shoes – a pair that are sort of casual/dressy and a pair that are good-for-walking-but-not-totally-hideous for siteseeing, etc – and then you discover that you need flip-flops (need? really?), or get invited to a formal event, you can actually BUY what you need THERE.

    Plus (WIN!) that gives you an excuse to buy something new. If you needed one. Just keep in mind that you’re going to need to get it home somehow, and you might not want to have to wear three layers of clothes on the plane because none of it fit in your suitcase.

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  153. I can relate to this – especially the shoes! lol My husband never understands why I must pack so many shoes! And if we’re going on a beach vacation of course I’ll need at least 4 or 5 different bathing suits, outfits for going out, outfits for walking the beach …. and on and on the list goes! Amazingly I have managed to fit it all in one big suitcase and a carry-on!

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  154. This is the story of my life. On top of it all, my partner and I spent a year living in Haiti, so what to wear to the voodoo ceremony was not so far out of the question.

    My post on this might make you laugh–“A Pack Rat’s Parable: On Traveling with too Much Stuff.”

    http://reinventingtheeventhorizon.wordpress.com/2010/12/17/a-pack-rats-parable-on-traveling-with-too-much-stuff/

    Your post made ma laugh out loud–hard!

    Kathy

    Like

  155. Very funny, I especially love the Tim Gunn reference, though I’ve resigned myself to the fact that he would shudder in horror at pretty much anything I’ve ever worn. And it’s nice to know at least one other person who is without kindle/nook and still totes around the real thing 🙂

    Like

  156. I LOVE packing, I’m odd like that I also like perfecting it because I’m a backpacker at heart!
    Loved the post (;

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  157. “The best thing to do when traveling, is to utilize that no-make-up, fresh-faced glow–but it takes a lot of products to achieve that look.” Your post gave me a good laugh today. Great Tim Gunn pic, too.

    Like

  158. Oh my GOD it’s nice to meet a kindred spirit. I’d rather have my fingernails pulled out individually than have to pack. And the worst kind of packing is for the quick overnight or weekend getaway — AWFUL!

    I’m a girl who likes to dress according to mood. Who the hell knows what kind of mood I’m going to be in days from now?

    Agreed on all accounts — great post!

    😉

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    • I agree! I can’t decide what to wear TODAY–let alone what I’ll wear in THREE days!

      Like

      • “I can’t decide what to wear today–let alone what I’ll wear in three days!” Story of my life!

        Wholeheartedly agree with this post–I suck at packing and always end up buying clothes when I’m away because what I packed wasn’t appropriate.

        Like

      • I absolutely agree with this; in the morning I’m grumpy and want to be comfy, by mid-afternoon I’ve usually cheered up and want to don a party-frock, then I need to wear something sensible but smart for school run and then just plain sensible for playing and walking the dog, I need something clean on to cook dinner in or fabulous if eating out, and just before bedtime I’m back to comfy mood – to do plan this for everyday you are away and also pack for unexpected voodoo ceremonies (often whilst tired the night before boarding a 6am flight) ALWAYS results in not even one good outfit and looking like a bag lady the entire trip!

        Love your post, spot on.

        Like

    • SO true! And men just don’t seem to understand why exactly us gilrs NEED a large suitcase for a day away – hello? We have to pack for eventualities!

      Like

  159. I like to travel by car, preferably by SUV. Then I can pack all my stuff.

    Like

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