Packing Tips for Multi-Purpose Trips

Packing Tips for Multi-Purpose Trips - image via Unsplash |

To my mind, the greatest reward and luxury of travel is
to be able to experience everyday things as if for the first time, to be in a position
in which almost nothing is so familiar it is taken for granted.
(Bill Bryson)

Hello, sweet friends! Remember when I said we didn’t have any travel planned for July? Well, that was true until my Mister had a work trip pop up. He’s heading to Philadelphia and New York for meetings, and I’m tagging along so we can meet up with friends and make a weekend of it.

We love traveling together and now that I can take my work with me, it’s hard not to find a reason to join him. While he’s away on business meetings & lunches, I will be writing, blogging, social media-ing, and exploring two delightful cities.

Last summer we went to Europe for 19 days with just 2 carry-ons, a backpack, and large purse. For this 6-day trip, we were determined to keep our luggage light. The warmer months make it slightly easier to pack less, but keeping our luggage lean for several days with various occasions was not easy. We have business attire, casual clothes, things to wear out, and workout gear, all bundled together in one bag each.

Here are a few of my favorite packing tips for multi-purpose trips:

Start with shoes and work your way up

As much as I want to bring cute heels, I know we’ll be walking a lot. I’m wearing black flats and packing my new Sperrysbrown sandals, and light-weight running shoes.

Build outfits, make a plan, and roll-up

I know this is super nerdy, but I keep an Evernote to plan out what I’m wearing each day. It’s not that I have to stick with the schedule, but it helps me to see things in writing.

For this trip, I’m wearing a more business-y dress on the first day because my Mister will be traveling in a suit. I have a few other dresses that will transition from day to casual nights, depending on the accessories. I also have a pair of running shorts, yoga pants, and two tank tops. It’s easier to get a workout in while traveling if you arrive prepared!

I started rolling my clothes for our Europe trip last summer and I haven’t looked back. It reduces the amount of wrinkles, helps my suitcase stay more organized, and it seems to help me pack less.

Travel-size your toiletries

I love shopping on because they send free samples with every order. I hold onto my samples, trials, and travel sized toiletries for trips like this one. It makes getting ready on the go just a little sweeter. A few of my recent discoveries are Drybar’s Detox Dry Shampoo and Seaberry Moisturizing Face Oil by Fresh — both available in smaller sizes.

Remember the essentials

Are there things you rely upon every day? For any trip, I know I will need my headphones, laptop, iPad, Kindle, and chargers. I’m hoping we will find time to work out 2-3 times, so I’m bringing my Fitbit and heart rate monitor. Since our schedule will be largely dictated by my Mister’s meetings, I packed some tea, EBOOST, and Kind Bars… in case I get caught without lunch or coffee. I also packed our vitamins, a notebook, my favorite pens, and sunglasses.

I hope you find these packing tips helpful for your next adventure! I’ll be sharing some pics on Instagram and of course would love any NYC or Philly recommendations!

Image via Unsplash

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This Does Not Define Me

This Does Not Define Me - image via Death to the Stock Photo |

Have patience with all things, but chiefly have patience with yourself.
(St. Francis de Sales)

Hello lovelies. I hope you are having a beautiful day! Things are good around here. I have been practicing yoga more often and trying to get on track with my July goals after the holiday weekend. How is the month more than halfway over? Slow down, summer!

So, here’s a bit of truth-telling about blog life… it’s been a few weeks since I started blogging again and I’ve seen a steady decline in my email subscribers. I get these notifications from MailChimp when people unsubscribe and it’s been stressing me out! I understand emails pile up and I’m a huge unsubscriber myself, but it’s hard not to take it personally.

Now when I sit down to write, a little thought creeps into my head. “Better make this a good one or you’ll lose more readers.” Such a mean and useless sentiment, right? I would never say that to someone else, so I need to stop thinking it to myself. As silly as it sounds, I need to remind myself that this does not define me. Oh, and I can turn that email notification off.

I’m still getting into a groove with this place. There are so many things that I want to do. I want to take better pictures, craft helpful how-to posts, reawaken my newsletter, post videos, and maybe even work with brands one day. All these ideas are great, but consistency is my focus. The rest will come (or not) with time.

The lesson is in crafting something meaningful. Something I would want to read. Something that’s compelling. Something that inspires me. And something that inspires you.

Wise people say the journey is the reward. As much as I know this to be true, it is hard not to get trapped by the bright and shiny payoff. Striving towards goals is important, but there’s equal value in boldly standing still and strong. Not staying in one place forever, but long enough to sink in, learn a little, and appreciate the moment.

And when things (aka MailChimp subscribers) slide backwards, that’s ok too…

Image via Death to the Stock Photo


New Series: Study Habits for Life

New Series: Study Habits - image via Unsplash |

There is no wealth like knowledge,
and no poverty like ignorance.

Now that I’m back to blogging, I have been thinking up ideas for posts and new series. I will keep sharing my monthly goals, and I’m planning to check-in quarterly on the progress of my thirty before thirty list. I might also breathe new life into my creative weekend to-do lists, and of course I’ll post playlists from time to time.

One idea that has surfaced through my brainstorming is the concept of studying… even though my school days are well behind me. In my latest post, I mentioned that Todd Henry’s interview with Ryan Holiday resonated with me. During that conversation, the two discussed Ryan’s approach to reading and his study habits. Digging through his archives got me thinking about how I could cultivate study habits for life.

I was a good student growing up, but my “all or nothing” mentality could make school challenging. I did great when I was confident in a subject, but skated by when I was less sure of my abilities. I remember falling asleep in Precalculus because it never made sense, but I would stay up all night doing extra work on English projects I liked. College was better since I had some choice in the classes I took, but there were still entire semesters where I did the bare minimum and others when I poured my heart into everything.

I have not given “studying” much thought since graduating from college. I pursued a career in sales, and eventually fell into HR and recruiting. I did not study much, but I practiced a lot. My approach to improving my sales pitch and recruiting were all about repetition. The more practice I had, the better I got. Now, I am building a new business and working to find happiness in my every day. There are many opportunities for practice, but I want to start studying again. Without it, I am missing opportunities to think and learn. I am not effectively building on what I understand or expanding what I know.

So, every so often I plan to write about this exploration of my study habits. I will share how I’m applying my grown-up study habits to everything from yoga and cooking, to travel, wedding planning, and blogging. I hope this exercise will help me let go of that “all or nothing” attitude, and give me the chance to focus on the process of learning.

Image via Unsplash


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