Trip Essentials: Things I always pack

cupcakes and commentaryThis is A from July 2009. Silly baby! Look at those chubby arms!

Whenever we take a trip I make lists. I have a list for the car, hotel, what to pack for my husband and I, and what to pack for the boys.

Some of the items that always make my list (and probably yours!):

For the boys:

Outfit for each day + two extra changes of clothes

1 pair of pajamas per two days of trip

Weather appropriate socks and shoes

Weather appropriate hats and sunglasses

Toothbrush and travel sized toothpaste (I save the ones you get at the dentist for this such occasion)

Travel sized shampoo, baby wash, and lotion (or you can purchase cheap containers from Target or Walmart)

For J, five diapers per day (that is a minimum, I pack extras in the diaper bag and I have extras in a make shift changing station set up in the car). I think on our first road trip ever I asked the boys pediatrician if there was anything we should bring or think about. He laughed and said, make sure their seatbelts are secure and pack LOTS of diapers.

For my husband and I:

Outfit for each day plus one change of clothes

Warm and cold appropriate pajamas (no matter where you are going). We adjust the temperature in the room so the boys are comfortable, which usually means I am cold….so I bring warm pajamas.

Weather appropriate socks and shoes

Weather appropriate hats and sunglasses

Toothbrush and travel size toothpaste

Travel size shampoo, conditioner, etc.

Make-up for me (I go with my everyday essentials plus one extra eye shadow palette)

Hair essentials (If I know the place we are staying has a hair dryer, sometimes I won’t bring mine, but I usually cave and do bring it. I always bring a 1 inch curling iron and a flat iron)

Okay. So that’s the basics. Here are some other things I pack that you may or may not have thought of:

A flashlight (with new batteries). Super important if you have to rummage around at night, or the power goes out in the hotel, as it did on our trip to Chicago last year.

A hand held travel steamer. This may sound crazy, but irons in hotels (even the nicest ones) can be unfortunate. I borrow my parents, but if you travel a lot it is a good investment, especially if you are going to a special occasion type setting where your clothes need to be wrinkle free.

Thermometer. I never, ever travel with children without one. If you do travel without one, you will need it. And you don’t want to try to find a Walgreens in a city you aren’t used to navigating at one o’ clock in the morning.

Every medicine that the boys could possibly need during the trip. My basics include motrin, tylenol, benadryl, and kids culturelle. Again trying to find these items when you need them can be difficult and they can be much more expensive than you find at home. Make sure you bring appropriate measuring cups, syringes, etc. for the medicines. I have a steel sided vintage Caboodles case (yes, you read that right) that I lock all of our medicine in. That way I know where it all is and the boys can’t easily access it.

I also pack any medicines that we might need in that same case (my basic extras are adult tylenol, motrin, excedrin, culturelle, emergen-c packs, and mucinex). Based on our history I never travel assuming we won’t get sick. In fact I travel knowing that at some point, someone will, and it’s best to be prepared.

A lint roller.

An umbrella.

Gallon and sandwich size ziploc bags. Trust me. You won’t know where or when, but you will need them.

A tide to go stick

A small container of non-antibacterial dish detergent (I like the Palmolive free and clear. It’s little). It plus the tide to go stick helped remove a ketchup stain from A’s white oxford shirt at my cousin’s wedding last summer.

Three things if you are going somewhere cold:

A coat and hoodie for every person.

Baby aquaphor healing ointment and/or Elizabeth Arden 8 hour cream skin protectant. If you are going somewhere cold and dry either of these are awesome for chapped hands and cheeks. It saved my face one year that my Mom and I went to Chicago in November.

Little microwavable hand warmers. You can find them at Target and on-line at Etsy shops.

Three things you are going somewhere warm:

Beach towels

Rash guards + swimsuits + sunscreen (I use sticks for faces, lotion for body, and kid friendly spray for their hair)

Hooded towels/ robes. When heading out from the beach when we took A, we would put his robe on him and take off his swimsuit and everything so he was covered up, but we could shake the sand out of his clothes.

Happy packing! πŸ™‚

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  1. This is a great list! I feel like I need to print it for all my students on their trips. πŸ™‚

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