Minimalist Travel~~Sunday & Luggage
Since my last post I have been asked several times how we will manage Sundays. Because our family likes to travel for several weeks in a row we usually try to attend church where ever we are. This meant that I needed to find clothing that would fit into our travel packs and that would meet our “travel clothes requirements.” (Hand washable & must dry over night.) I imagined that this was going to be the most difficult part of purchasing travel clothes. It turned out not to be that big of an issue.
All photos have been grabbed from the sites where I purchased these items because my camera battery is dead! :o) I’m sure you’ll see plenty of the real stuff in photos of our upcoming travel!
Due to the size of our bags, we are not bringing different shoes for church and so I have made an effort to match our church outfits to our Keens. (We normally would not wear Keens to church, but it is the nature of the beast when traveling like this!) If you are just starting your travel wardrobe, may I suggest that you find your church clothing before you buy your shoes! Shoes usually come in a larger variety of colors or even more neutral colors, where as suitable dresses don’t have the variety!
Da was super easy as his dark colored travel pants, paired with a button down shirt from Columbia Wear worked well enough. (Why is it so easy to find clothing for men? And why can I buy stuff without him trying it on and always get it right?)
On the left are the dresses I purchased for the women of the family. The black dress is for Marmee and the blue dress is for Xuxu. Both dresses are from Travel Smith and so comfortable we could wear them to sleep in (but we won’t.) Both dresses match perfectly with the cashmere wraps we purchased in Yangshuo, China and so we have a way to dress them up for cooler weather and for more formal needs. (I’ll be carrying my wrap even during summer travel because LDS chapels are notorious for having the air-conditioning too high.) I opted out of the v-neck dresses because I have no chest they are usually cut too low and would require a Shade…i.e. more clothing to carry. Another option is skirts that you can wear for daily wear. You can find some examples at Athleta and Columbia Sports. I was unable to find any that were long enough for me to wear for active travel days, thus the dresses.
For the little girls I had to do more digging, but eventually found dresses made by Columbia Sports. See image below. I purchased them from Zappos.com because of their FAST shipping and fantastic return policy. I paired the dresses with black capri length dancing tights from the local ballet shop to make them modest! Star’s is an almost grey purple, Mouse’s is blue and Pie’s is pink. They all look adorable! **Update: The girls wore these dresses all day today and they were long enough that we could skip the capri tights if we wanted! I will probably keep them on hand for cooler weather, but I won’t pack them if we’re traveling in hot weather!
The plan is that everyone will be carrying their own bag and everything they bring will fit into that bag! The bags we have chosen (with the exception of one) are CamelBak. We decided that rather than carry water bottles as we have done previously, we would empty the water bottles into the bladders at the beginning of each day. This way, everyone is carrying their own water supply, lids will not be lost dropped on the dirty ground and there will be less bickering about who backwashed into drank out of what. (The one pack that is not a CamelBak is from Eagle Creek and it also has a water bladder. I purchased it in 2004 and it is still in perfect working order! This bag is a little larger than the other bags we are bringing and will transport my camera equipment along with Da’s belongings. It often happens that the camera is around my neck and not it it’s case, and so we’re even! )
Between this post and my last one, we have the clothing, shoes and luggage covered. The only other items we are bringing are these:
- Toiletries: each person gets their own shampoo, conditioner, small hairbrush, ponies, toothpaste & toothbrush. Those who need shaving items and deodorant will carry their own.
- We always purchase journals for each child when we travel. We have found that inexpensive composition books do the job really well! So, a journal and a pen will be in each bag.
- Marmee’s camera will be in Da’s pack, and the two older girls will be allowed to bring their digital camera’s and chargers.
- Each person can bring an iPod shuffle loaded with their own music . We have two wall chargers that will go in Marmee’s bag.
- Those who have Kindle’s will be allowed to bring them along. (Marmee will be loading “out loud” reading for the littles on hers.)
I am not the type of traveler that takes a million things along to keep children occupied. I would rather have them draw, read, write in journals, make friends, take in the scenery, enjoy the sound of a different language or even just “people-watch.” Even the smallest child can learn to do this. (This starts at home, btw, by turning OFF the boob toob! But that is another post!) We have traveled all the way to China and back with 4 children…twice, without the aid of DVD players or DS systems. On every flight (really!) the stewards have commented on my children’s excellent behavior, so I know it works!
See my first post about Minimalist Travel here!
Update: See the clothing in action at Disney Land!