I’ve started packing. That’s right, our next trip is 70ish days away and the suitcases are out and starting to get full.
The process started when the weather started to warm up and I began to exchange warm weather clothes for cold weather clothes in the drawers. Well, if I’m going to do that, I might as well make the packing list and pack the needed items when making the clothing exchange. Makes sense, doesn’t it?
The packing list was a bit trickier this time, as we are taking a Disney Cruise followed by a week at Walt Disney World. Yes, we have done both before, just not together—back to back. Some items that we would pack only for Walt Disney World—such as ponchos and umbrellas—have to go with us. And, some items that we would take only on a cruise—such as sand toys—have to go with us, too.
The list was made—which includes a list of clothing for the 3 of us, then a list of “extra items” that includes things such as paper work, passports, electrical chargers, etc. Then there is a list of toiletry items that includes items such as sunscreen and tooth brushes. As I pack each item, it gets crossed off the list.
There is also the planning of what goes in a carry on bag as opposed to a suit case. I was explaining this to the husband and watched his eyes glaze over as he gave me an automatic nod of understanding. But it goes something like this. . . when we arrive the day before our cruise, I want the clothing items that we are wearing the next day—our embarkation day—to be in the carry on bag for easy access. That way I don’t have to dig through big suitcases to get our clothes. Also in the carry on bag, I need jammies for that night for all of us, along with dinner dress clothes for when we get on board—in case our luggage doesn’t make it to our stateroom by dinner time (this has never happened to us, but I have heard/seen cases in which this has happened), and bathing suits for afternoon fun when we board the ship.
This means, that I make the decisions about what everyone is wearing when as I’m packing. That’s one reason why I start packing early!
Next comes, the sets of matching Disney shirt. Which ones will we be wearing this trip? Once that is decided, those get packed along with shorts. Yep, the boy and the husband have enough shorts to have some packed and enough left over to get them through May, June, and July. And, when I did the clothes/drawer switching—as mentioned above—the shorts that the boy is about to outgrow, are now packed, as they won’t be returning home with us. Did the same when packing his swimsuits and undies!
Another packing consideration, especially for shorts, is no denim shorts this trip. Since we are traveling in July and are likely to get wet from water or sweat, denim is difficult to get dry and may cause more chaffing than shorts made of other fabrics. See—these are the things I think about while packing! Then I tell the husband. Glazed eyes again!
Packing for the cruise offers a different kind of challenge. We need day clothes that mostly consist of swimsuits and cover-ups. For the guys, this means swim trunks and a shirt. Easy! It’s a little more complicated for me, but doable. Then there are the day clothes for when we aren’t swimming or on a beach. Since this time is limited, these clothes can be worn more than once. Then there are the dinner clothes—nothing formal for this trip, but there is an expectation of nice clothes in the dining rooms. Think nice pants and polo shirt for the guys—skirt, dress, or nice pants for me.
For the husband, I pack 3 pairs of nice pants—black, brown, and tan—along with some nice shirts that can be worn with any of the pants. Since dinner and the show take up just the evening portion of our day, as long as there are no significant spills, the pants can be hung up and worn again. As for the boy, same idea. As for me, I prefer the slinky/stretchy separates that I can mix and match—in brown and black. And, they are a breeze to pack—no ironing!
I’m not worried about having enough space—we’ll be fine. Just want to make sure everything is organized.
Packing early also helps me figure out if we need anything in particular. For example, went to find a specific shirt for the husband and discovered that something had happened to it along the way—who knows what? So, a replacement is on its way.
Packing early also helps me build excitement and anticipation for our trip. You see, I’m already picturing what we will be doing on certain days as I pack. It’s almost like I get to experience our trip before we get there. I know there is something about re-living an experience, but can you pre-live an experience?
Anyway, I’m crossing items off the packing list as I go and continue to explain my thinking to the husband as he listens ever so politely at my ramblings.
Where are the pirate gear and the boy’s new pirate costume? I need to get those in the suitcase. . .