26 December 2010

Packing Light

I hope everyone had a relaxing and chaos-free Christmas.  Being far from family is difficult for us at Christmas especially.  But we managed to have fun during a 5 day trip to Prague.

It wasn't without its challenges, though.  It was bitterly cold.  We stayed in a tiny apartment (but much better than a hotel room).  We flew on a cheap airline with very strict bag limitations.  So...we needed to bring a lot of heavy clothes but we had hardly any room to do it.

Fortunately for us, we have experience with traveling light.  For a family of five, that's no easy feat.  But here's a summary of how we made it work:
We wore our heaviest clothes on the plane, we wore several layers and rotated outer and inner once  so each outfit could be worn twice, we washed socks in the sink, and we did without.  We figured out which bags we could bring, and when they were full, they were full.  That's it.

In general, we try to follow these basic rules:
1.  Plan the packages first.  Which bags, how heavy/full.
2.  Plan to wash clothes.  We almost always try to stay in an apartment with a washer.  If that doesn't work, we at least do some laundry in the sink.
3.  Plan to go without.  Just as when we first moved overseas and had to go without most of our things, we get creative with fewer items.  This is especially true for entertainment items for the children.

If we can pack for 3 days, we can pack for a week.  And if we can pack for a week, we can pack for a month.

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