Because most philosophies that frown on reproduction don't survive.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Packing List

First off, I want to know: who are these five people in the poll who only read my posts? I guess I'm flattered... Thanks for the vote of confidence? I have a feeling that if we'd put in an option stating, "I only read Darwin's posts" that he would have gotten a lot more than five votes. It's on now.

But seriously folks -- there is packing going on. We leave at 4 AM Saturday for an 18 hour drive to Ohio (straight through -- why not, ha ha?) so I have to Be Ready. I've already starting packing the kids' stuff, so if you see my children wandering around in ratty rags it's because all their other clothes are in a suitcase, and by gum, they'd better stay in that suitcase until Saturday.

I'd remembered that my friend Mrs. Big Tex had a packing checklist for vacations, and she's given me permission to post it. I'm using it to help keep all my ducks in a row. If you guys have other useful additions, or any tips for major family packing (as in, we need to pack for two weeks), please share and do your part to help us Get Out the Door at Four.

Packing List

Skirts, dresses, slip
Shoes: sandals, tennis, dress, boots
Swimsuit and coverup/t-shirt

HBA (Health and Beauty Aids)
Soap/Body Wash
Face wash
Toothbrush and paste
Hairbands and barrettes
First Aid Kit

Cell phones and chargers
Camera and charger
Laptop and all cords
Alarm clock (use cell phone)
Chart and Thermometer (NFP)
Sand toys
Sleeping bag
Water bottle (if flying do not fill till through security)
Gifts (Wedding birthday etc… if attending event on trip)
Plane tickets/itinerary
Contact info for people visiting

Baby Packing List:
Shoes: sandals, tennis, dress, boots
Swimsuit, diaper and towel
Winter – gloves, hats, scarves, snowsuits
Diaper cream
Nose plunger
Wash clothes
Toys and books
Church books
Burp rags
Blankets, special pillow
Changing pad
Baby monitor
Toothbrush and paste
Burp rags
Sippy cup
Baby friendly food
Hand sanitizer
Baby Carrier: Sling/Ergo/Moby D
Medicines – Tylenol, teething tablets
Flying/crossing the border – Copy of Birth Certificates

Things to do before leaving the house:

Do early
Tidy up outside, lock shed
Put all important things in the safe
Put a hold on mail
Line up a place for any pets
Pay the bills ahead or take them with you
Plan for friend or neighbor to watch house, make sure they have a key and contact info for you.
Light on a timer for appearance someone is home

Do the day you leave
Turn down (or up for you southerners!) thermostat to 55 degrees
Take out the trash
Wash dirty laundry
Rinse dishes or run dishwasher
Turn off ice machine on fridge
Park off road (for those of us who usually park on the road and could get towed if we leave the car there for more than a couple days)
Turn off Electricity to water heater
Check to make sure freezer and fridge are closed securely


CMinor said...

Well--hope it's a pleasant trip!

The Opinionated Homeschooler said...

Crossing the border? When Eudoxus and I took the Offspringen into Canada, we had to have passports for them.

Actually the guard wasn't even going to check their passports, but when he asked "Where are you coming from?", Eudoxus' philosopher's brain went: That's ambiguous ... Since it's an international border it would make sense for him to be asking what country ... but it's obviously the U.S. since we're in a car ... but maybe he means our country of origin ... but he could mean state, though it's not clear why that's relevant ... city would be even less relevant ... here up north they might not even know where Austin is ... state makes the most sense. Right, state." Then, many seconds after the initial question, he hazarded: "Um ... Texas?"

After that, we had to roll down the windows for child inspection and present passports for careful comparison.

So if you're going across to Canada with just birth certificates, you might want to get your story straight ahead of time.

mrsdarwin said...

No, no international travel this time. This list is just what my friend sent me, verbatim, so not everything applies to our particular trip. However, I will remember your advice next time we go international, and tell the border guard that we're from Marin County.

entropy said...

Looks like you've got all the packing taken care of.

My advice is for the traveling part: do not stress about when you get there. We traveled 14 hours with our four a few weeks ago and deciding ahead of time that we'd just get there when we got there made a big difference for me (i.e. I didn't get grumpy when we had to make more stops than usual). Also get Hank the Cowdog on CD. Goofy and funny and there's a ton of them and get From the Mixed-up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler, that was a good listen too.

Btw, you'll probably be in our neck of the woods around lunch time--you should stop by!

Foxfier said...

Advil liquid gels/asprin for non-toothers. Anti-Alergy pills of some time are also handy, in case of bug stings. (break apart and apply directly on bite works pretty good)

Oh, and aloe, for the burns, scrapes, and bug-bites.

TS said...

I have a vacation pack list too. I see no 'Guinness' or Guinness-cap-with-bottle-opener-attached on your list sadly. :-)

I also have "stop newspaper" and "hold mail" on my list.

Have a safe trip -- Ohio, the heart of it all, welcomes you!

Darwin said...


I admit that I have a fondness for those "Ohio, the Heart of it all!" signs, perhaps because they make me feel at home. My heart is always glad when we get to that stretch of I-75 where you go over the hill in Kentucky and suddenly you can see the whole Cincinnati skyline spread out before you. It brings tears to my eyes.

mrsdarwin said...

...except that it's MrsDarwin writing the above. Darwin doesn't have the sentimental attachment to Ohio that I do, seeing as it's not his hometown and all.

Damn Blogger sign-in tripping me up again!

1990bluejay said...

Gads! What a list. While we'd pack a fair amount of stuff, the opinion took root between the 2 of us was that needn't pack many of these things since we could always purchase them at our destination. It's not like you can't find Johnson's baby shampoo everywhere! As for the water heater and washer. I always turned the water flow off to it for a trip. Was luckily enough to be home when mine decided to break at the spigot...

Jenny said...

I went ahead and added baby tylenol & baby benadryl to my list because we ended up making a trip into town on our last visit for each of those (and now I have extra bottles at home). The whole water heater discussion brings back bad memories of the week we prepared for our most recent visit without a water heater! Yep - the darn thing gave out & started leaking like a sieve the week we were to go out of town. It took hubby days to figure out the problem (the water pooled under the washing machine and we assumed that was the culprit - he assembled & disassembled the blasted thing multiple times looking for a leak) and then we finally had to shut the water heater off completely 3 days before leaving. It was AWFUL!!!! So I will always count a working water heater as a blessing in my packing week (or any week for that matter!)!

Barb said...

I always get emotional when I see that view of Cincinnati when we've been away on vacation. If we come into Cincinnati from the west on I-74, LaRosa's has a sign at the Ohio border that reads "Welcome Home". I love that too...

Pro Ecclesia said...

Driving straight through is the only way to do it. We usually leave just after dinner and arrive around lunchtime (or a little after) the next day.

Bill E. said...

A few observations:

-Burp rags ARE mighty important.

-Are you sure you won't want a
warm shower when you get home?

-You had better add necessary sheet music and instruments to that list.

I can't wait to see you all again. Be safe.

Uncle Wheel

TS said...

Ha, Mrs. D, I was thinking, "gosh that's pretty sentimental for the very rational amateur economist Darwin."

By the way, liked the underlovelies reference. It's much more cryptic than Justice Breyer's term.

mrsdarwin said...

TS, the comment from Bissage at 10:39 on the post you linked to had me choking to keep from spitting my sandwich all over the screen while tears of laughter ran down my face.

Dorian Speed said...

Thank you, thank you, thank you for this list. And I'm so glad your trip and the wedding were fab. We are about to embark across the country, so I remembered this extremely helpful post.