Planning 101

Yesterday when I got home from work, I tossed aside my "paperwork" to tackle some weekend preparations. Why do I still refer to it as paperwork? Typing my notes, altering my care plans, adding call logs into my mini; hardly PAPER work. Well, whatever that mini is (most days my nemesis), I tossed it aside and got right to work organizing a weekend bag for each kid. There is no school on Friday on account of a teacher in-service day. My lucky two will be spending the day at the beach with Kiki and Papa.

I overthink. I stress. I pack and repack. I always bring twice as much as is required. The weather is still lovely, but cooler in the time between beach and bedtime. Shorts, t's, dresses, jeans, sweatshirts, long sleeves. Additionally, wouldn't you know that we are now venturing head first into Seve's favorite season. He just just adores fall with those crisp early morning tailgates, last ditch stops at the portajohn before hustling to his seats, kicking a hole into the toe of his sneakers banging on that metal wall in front of Marc's seats. Ah, football season, you come so fast, taking copious amounts of time with planning and executing the perfect game day packing job. It's not just about the tailgate treats, but also bibs, wipes, diapers, amusements, blankets, sweatshirts, and eagle paraphernalia/propaganda.

Saturday is opening day. So in addition to swimsuits, I had to be sure to locate some Eagle wear for the kids as well. Those bags are stuffed, zipped, waiting by their bedroom doors.

I couldn't just pack. No, no, no. That would be far too easy. I also started thinking about the looming clothing switchover, my most dreaded part of the season. That time of both t's and sweats, ugh, I hate that time. Then because I cannot help myself and am a sadist I started mentally packing each of them for 6 days in Florida... with that new storm looming off the coast of Africa, picking up speed each day, and I had to stop letting my mind go to that awful place. It will be fine. It will be.

Later this week I plan to tackle that other packing as best as I can manage. I'm utilizing auntie c's suggestion to use gallon ziplocs, one for each day. (Monday, Connor shorts and t, Caroline tutu.) I won't be able to stop myself from tossing another ziploc for each of them with some extra t's, shorts, socks, but this method will hopefully limit my packing Achilles heel; the what if items.

I opened my closet yesterday and looked through the bag in the corner that I have been stashing "things for Florida." Coloring books, stickers, Caroline's special request of goggles for the pool, balls to entice Connor to spend time in pool too, travel sized containers to fill, one time use laundry detergent, a Cars Matchbox car, two princess tiaras (Aurora and Ariel), and those amazing collapsible cups. It's a lot and it all has to go somewhere.

I am in a rare situation where I want to check as much as possible. Im hoping two large checked items will be enough. Boys in one bag, girls in the other, or big person/little person pairings which i suspect will fit better. We have Magical Express delivering our bags to our hotel from the airport. With no stroller until we arrive at the hotel, we will need all available arms and energy to contain the kids in the airports. I'm planning on "personal items" for all three ticketed passengers and one larger carry-on with swimsuits, a change of clothes and must have items like diapers. I'm looking at this as an opportunity for Caroline to help pack her own entertainment, to be reponsible for, carry, and enjoy digging through on the flight. We are flying JetBlue (sidebar, you fly to Orlando yet do not have Disney channel?) which will be great for Caroline, but not for Connor who is like the dog in Up. "Squirrel." I'm hoping the window is intense flight entertainment for him... or that the passengers around us have a great sense of humor and are easily charmed.

Any other packing strategies from seasoned travelers with kids?


  1. I definitely would not call myself a seasoned traveler with children, but the last time few times I have flown, I mailed all of our checked luggage. I send it FedEx Ground, so that it arrives the day before we arrive. In the end, it costs me perhaps $10 more than the checked baggage fees.

    Perhaps in this situation, it is not ideal, since you have to get the bags to a FedEx location somehow when your vacation is over.

    I love doing this. The prep work is worth not having to lug my heavy checked bags, child, and carry-ons the day of the trip.

    Best of luck, and enjoy!!

  2. LOVE the Ziploc bag idea. We haven't had the pleasure of flying with both kids yet but Katherine loves it and is a pretty seasoned air passenger. No real advice, just don't make her carry on too heavy because then you will end up holding it. And see if Logan has any family security lines. RDU has these and they are a Godsend for getting your kid through security.

  3. There is aUPS store right next to my gym in Walpole. FYI.