I used to travel every other week for work, and lived in hotels a lot so traveling and traveling preparations has always been a piece of cake for me. I was always ready to leave on an instant’s notice. I’ve even shopped around that lifestyle. I made sure to always buy clothes that are easy to travel on and with, but still end up looking well put together.
Although life has changed a lot for us, we still travel at least 3-5x a year. Now with 3 kids (one of which is still an infant) and 2 adults, my husband is surprised that I still managed to pack just one good-sized luggage for everything we need on a 2-week trip. He of course credited my so-expertise in packing. And even I thought that was an incredible feat as well. But really ----- packing this time around was quite stressful for me.
You see we’ve just added a little girl into our mix of 2 little boys. Packing wasn’t this crazy with the boys, but packing for a girl? Oh Geez! Suddenly more chaos and confusion attacked my brain (or whatever is left of it). Before packing, I made mental notes of what she needed. Now I must pack the matching bows, and tights, shoes, etc…etc…It all became too much. I can’t even begin to rationalize packing anymore. I came up with 3 pair of shoes, 5 pair of tights, her entire collection of hairclippies (just because you never know), 5 pajamas, 3 dressy dresses (we might decide an impromptu ball?), 12 tops, 12 matching bottoms, and about 5 sweaters or vest to complete her ensemble. I said to myself – this is ridiculous! I decided to downsize, but none of it happened. 50% of our luggage contents actually belonged to my 10-month-old baby girl!
Now this brings me back to the first time I received my ultimate dream job in the Fashion Industry. This was of course way before thoughts of having kids were even in the radar. I was to fly to NY for 3 days, 2 nights and meet up with my new bosses along with the designer herself. I was so excited and couldn’t begin to figure out what to wear or bring to my first meeting. Needless to say, I packed almost my entire closet. Ok, I’m exaggerating. But it sure does look like I did when I mistakenly decided to have the car service drop me off at the office first instead of leaving my gargantuan of a luggage in my hotel. Every single person I met in the office noticed my luggage like it is a big mole on the tip of my nose and one even asked if I was moving in NY. I sure made quite an entrance, because according to a co-worker of mine I was remembered by all - as the big suitcase girl. I still cringe to this day when I think of that past scenario.
Having had experienced an embarrassing moment like that, you would think that I have learned to not overdo things for my daughter. Out of the dozen outfits I brought to NY, I only wore 1/3 of it. And my daughter wore only the 12 tops and matching bottoms, and use only one pair out of the 3 pairs I brought throughout the whole 2 weeks. Having a girl is all so new to me.
Can any experienced traveler mom of girls give out some tips on how to do this? Because really – I’m afraid if I don’t get help now, then she may just cross her “Overzealous Mom” off the list when it comes to planning her wedding one day.
( This posting with the comments were transferred from the Chicago Moms Blog site owned by the SVmoms group. They've decided to close down in business in 2010 and they allowed us to copy out )