I have a confession to make – I am an over-packer. I once went to Costa Rica for a week with 8 tank tops! I always like to have what I need and if it fits and doesn’t go over the weight limit I feel like I am doing okay. In an effort to get things under control, avoid baggage fees and fit five people and their luggage in a car this coming weekend – I am going to employ the principles of the 100 Thing Challenge.

I saw Dave Bruno, the author, at SXSW this spring (you can listen to the talk here) and it got me thinking about all the stuff I have. I am not going to propose that I just start throwing things out at the moment, but I am am going to try to keep my suitcase a more reasonable tangle of items. I am after all, guilty of packing more shoes than I have days to wear them.

The good thing about my first attempt is that I am packing for a week in the woods – which of course means nothing fancy, only practical. Grand Lake Stream isn’t known as the fashion mecca of anywhere so no one will wonder if I wear the same sweatshirt all week. As I started laying out my clothes I had barely the basics out when I had already counted to 27, I was even being generous with myself counting two piece bathing suits as one item each. I hadn’t even made it to the toiletries, outdoor gear, books or electronics. Yikes!

I decided to just put everything on my bed, count and see what I could weed out – or borrow from Brian, I think that’s within the rules of the book. Here is what I ended up with:

1. Everything from my Travel Toys post, minus the iPod charger and wishlist items (oh yeah, one of the dry bags made the cut). Total items = 6

2. Toiletries, all 20 of them, including one bottle of sunscreen. Hope that’s enough.
3. Clothing, 27 items pictured and not pictured – 6 pairs of socks, 10 pair of underwear (don’t judge, I like ’em clean) and two bras. Total items = 45
4. Three pairs of shoes, five magazines, one required grad school book, two idea journals, one pen, my Kindle, sunglasses, my wallet and two bags. Total items = 17

5. Finally, a few more items not pictured: my laptop (a splurge to lug, but my mom called today to say that they have WiFi now, yay blogging on vacation!), my laptop bag, my cell phone, my tiny purse, a pack of gum, a snack and my jacket, because my mom said it was in the 50’s there, brr. Total items = 7

This leaves me with room for five items to spare in case I forgot something, don’t get as much homework done as I need to or if I wear a necklace or something else not counted already. Looking forward to seeing how this goes and paring things down even more in the future. Thanks for checking in!

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