Smooth seas do not make skillful sailors.

-Ethiopian Proverb-

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

High Ho High Ho! It's Off to Pack I Go!

As we are only 2 weeks and 3 days away from flying to Ethiopia, the frantic packing has commenced! I have encountered people who fit into 1 of 2 different packing styles; the "less is more" packers and the "if I don't pack it, I'll regret it" packers. I fall into the latter category for sure. For those of you who have seen the first Austin Powers movie where he discovers that his girlfriend is a "Fembot" by opening her suitcase and seeing how frighteningly organized all of the contents are with each article of clothing in its own separate Ziploc baggie, you have an understanding as to how I like to organize belongings for a trip. I think my method of organizing, which borders on the obsessive/compulsive side, freaks out my darling husband. For this trip, I have divided all of our contents equally between suitcases with all things, with the exception of clothing, secured in plastic containers and fortified with rubber bands to keep the tops from popping off! My oldest daughter L shoots me incredulous looks whenever she looks through my suitcases! So far, I have packed the following items:

1. travel pillows
2. travel blankets
3. first aid kit
4. books
5. pens and pencils including Sharpies
6. toilet paper
7. paper towels
8. gum
9. over-the-counter meds (15 different kinds)
10. prescription meds (8 different prescriptions)
11. peanut butter
12. jerky
13. Cliff Bars
14. hand sanitizing wipes
15. laundry soap sheets
16. flashlight with extra batteries (the power goes off a lot in Addis Ababa)
17. solar alarm clock (wouldn't want to over-sleep!)
18. travel garment steamer
19. travel hairdryer
20. Wet Ones (individually wrapped and in packs of 25)
21. umbrellas
22. sewing kit
23. electrolyte drink mix (gotta stay healthy and hydrated!)
24. instant coffee (for me the caffeine addict)
25. powdered creamer (coffee is just not coffee without cream)
26. tape
27. scissors (with blunt edges of course)
28. Downey Wrinkle Releaser (double bagged with Ziplocs)
29. puzzle books (it's going to be a long plane ride)
30. clothes pins (you never know!)
31. extra rubber bands
32. Ziploc bags in 2 different sizes
33. individual Kleenex packets (public restrooms are rumored to be short on supplies)

I think that's all for the time being. I'm hoping that the above list can be useful to others who are going to be traveling, and I really welcome any suggestions for items that I may have forgotten. I haven't even begun to tackle packing the clothes, electronics, and paperwork that we need to bring over. Just think, on the next trip, I get to pack all this stuff plus the stuff for the babies as well as orphanage donations! Exciting times folks! Exciting times indeed!

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