How to nail packing light
Now that we are finally on level 2 and able to venture outside our province, here is your guide to know how to pack light, especially when you're travelling with kids.
We have all been guilty of overpacking when going on a holiday and having kids exacerbates this problem because there is so much more you need to pack for the kids and then we find ourselves in this uncontrollable cycle of asking ourselves the question of "what if". What if they get sick and mess all their clothes, what if they wee and poo in their pants if you're still potty training them and the list goes on and on. These kind of "what if"s naturally lead to overpacking extra clothing or toys which the kids never end up using.
In order to avoid this I have trained myself to treat packing for the kids as I treat packing for myself. When I pack for myself I make sure that I really plan my looks so that I can create mix and match outfits with less clothing all while still having lots of different looks to choose from. This includes trying to limit your shoes and bags to only a few and making sure that they are neutral colours that can be worn with anything. What I normally do with the kids is maybe add in 2 - 3 extra pants and tops for them than I would for myself to ensure that if the "what if"s happen, I am still prepared.
Winter travelling makes this even more difficult as clothing tends to be heavier and thicker and takes up a lot more space. When it comes to jackets or jerseys for me and the kids I ensure that I take one neutral colour jacket and or jersey that matches with everything I have packed. Another trick if you are travelling during winter is to choose a maximum of 2 pair of boots for yourself and ensure you are wearing the pair that would take up the biggest amount of space in your bag, when travelling to your destination. You can also wear the one jacket you have chosen when travelling to your destination to save some space in your bags. The exact same applies to the kids.
When trying to decide on toys I always involve the kids and I explain to them that there is a limited amount of toys that they can choose to take. This ensures that they are still part of the process of choosing their loved toys but ensuring they understand that there is not unlimited space to pack everything. I normally also check which toys they have chosen and make sure they are not too big to ensure that we will be able to fit them all in but it will be give and take and sometimes if the kids insist on one big thing then we normally just work around it.
Travelling with less baggage especially with kids, makes life so much easier for everyone especially if you have to cart everything through an airport. The idea of "less is more" has been a saving grace for me and makes the travel experience that much less stressful.