Today I find it quite humorous that we pack the same amount now for a weekend away with four children than when we did with one. I am sure it was because I didn’t know what to expect and if there is room in the car, I WILL fill it. 😉 As we have grown as a family, I have learned a few tricks here and there that have helped tremendously for being prepared for the “just in case” scenarios without overdoing it as well as realize the freedom in minimal packing! I tried to snap the process to break it down. I’m always up for hearing additional packing organization tips for family travel.
One Large Suitcase
I usually let them bring their own little skipHop suitcases, because they love the exhilarating independence! However, if it is just a weekend, I pack the three kiddos in one large suitcase. Which includes:
- Bathing Suits
- Pajamas & underwear
- Two outfits (and maybe four for the the potty training child)
- One pair of shoes (and they wear the second pair in the car!)
- If there’s room, a favorite doll or blanket, otherwise, they carry into the car. (Surprising them with these sweet handmade dolls from AlimRose)
Immediate Reach Bucket
I have started to put a bucket behind the passenger seat or driver’s seat filled with those things I usually use in the car ride:
- Water bottles
- Diapers (and for this trip, swim diapers)
- Baby teethers and toys
- Reading material in case I happen to get ten minutes of silence! (Can’t wait to dive into this book.)
Separate Bag for Baby
The baby of the family usually requires the most gear! I have pared it down over time though to things I actually use on a trip, and find it easier to keep them in a separate easy access tote bag altogether.
- Mini Baggu Zip pouch filled with diaper balm, thermometer, roller bottle of essential oils for flu symptoms and one for relaxing sleepytime, portable diaper trash bag dispenser, etc.
- Swim Trunks and sun hat
- Baby Blanket and his favorite stuffed elephant and rattle.
- Two outfits per day (they always end up with a blowout)
- two pair of sandals (pictured above are from Donsje and Old Navy)
Beach Bag to Go
Beach bags require very little actual necessities, but I am sure we will be tacking on buckets, floats, beach tent, and flip flops without a match.
- Sunscreen and Aloe (Thank you for all the recs on facebook! A few I am trying that have safe ingredients and aren’t too pasty: Badger (for the baby), Goddess Garden (for the kids), and Alba (for Gabe and I).
- Linen baby wrap to carry around Rocco.
- Straw Hats
- Water bottles and reading material
Towel and Play Mat Bag
I throw all the beach towels and leather beach mat into one bag! I also carry large plastic bags for any wet suits or towels for after the beach or pool. (The ESCAPE bag is from here.)
One suitcase rule
If its just a weekend away, I try my hardest to fit everything into one suitcase…what always gets me is the shoes. (I come from a long line of shoe hoarders.) However, what helps is thinking through versatile pieces that mix and match, so I usually can fit in four outfit options with minimal pieces. I sort everything else in small bags. Jewelry in one, makeup in one, and skin and hair products in another. I also wear an outfit in the car I can re-use there. Sources: Sun hats, fringe tote, Steamline luggage (10% off with code IHOD10), water resistant make up bag)
We bring our camera, goPro, and any other chargers in one bag as well safe and sound away from swinging legs;)
The kids also each pack their own little bag of books and coloring pages for the car along with their pillow. As for Gabe…he is notorious for fitting everything into a backpack. So stubbornly that he will even hand carry a shoe that may not quite fit.
We will be sharing some of our Rosemary Beach adventures on snapchat (user name: annaliesemeyer) and instagram if you want to see the place! It’s a beauty. Although, I’ll be mainly leaving the phone aside for some serious wave riding and sand castle building with my babes;) Have a wonderful Mother’s Day weekend!