We recently managed a short but fabulous family break away to Center Parcs, which was truly awesome and there will be more of that to come. Having to now pack for two adults and two children it is somewhat of a monumental effort to gather together all the stuff that we need and the thought of this, never mind the expense, meant a trip abroad was really not on the cards this year.
Luckily our battered old Saab, with its missing wing-mirror cover and stereo that has been stubbornly silent for the last three years, does have a rather large boot. We set about our usual packing routine the morning of our departure.
I throw the kids clothes, nappies, creams and Calpol in a super large shopping bag and entertain the toddler whilst giving Little Miss’ bouncy chair an occasional kick so she does not feel forgotten. (I do kick the chair, not the child, just to be clear.)
Mr B loads up the pram wheels, buggy board, moses basket stand, carry-cot etc into the boot.
I chuck him bag number one.
He re-arranges the boot.
I throw my clothes into a reasonabley large holdall along with my make-up, wash things for all of us, towels and flannels for the babies, sing a song with the toddler, kick the bouncy chair.
I chuck Mr B bag number two.
He rearranges the boot.
We head for the kitchen. I grab a second super-size shopping bag and pack all of Little Miss’ bottles, formula, microwave steriliser, milton, bibs for the toddler, cutlery for the toddler, beakers for the toddler, grab some pre-made meals for the toddler from the freezer, add plenty of boxes of raisins/breadsticks/biscuits for the toddler along with several million packets of Organix crisps. I pull the toddler out of the food cupboard where he is merrily sprinkling its contents with a crumbled up oxo cube and kick the bouncy chair.
I chuck Mr B bag number three.
He rearranges the boot.
We return upstairs with another large carrier bag because it is now ‘appliances time’. This may be a holiday but there is no way on earth I can spend the best part of a week away from my beloved laptop, let alone my kindle. The laptop, however, gets a bag all of it’s very own. THAT is how much I love it.
The rest of the appliance bag however is actually quite startling in it’s sheer enormity. It would appear that for four days away we now require:
- Hair dryer
- Hair straighteners
- Kindle plus Kindle charger
- 2 x mobiles plus 2 x chargers
- Laptop plus charger
- Night light for babies plus charger
- Gro-clock for toddler plus charger
- Baby-monitor and base unit plus 2 x chargers
I also would have included electric toothbrush plus charger but figured there were probably not enough plug sockets in the place to cope with such an electrical overload. Manual brushing would have to suffice.
I retrieved the toddler from the middle of the laundry pile, kicked the bouncy chair and handed Mr B my final bag.
He looked somewhat distressed.
“We need this? All of it? It is just four days right?”
“ Yes, we do. And yes, it is.” I chirped, and kicked the bouncy chair.
He rearranged the boot.
Finally, after eventually managing to close the boot and sweating
profusely a little, he plodded upstairs and packed HIS bag.
Now I felt a bit bad. (His ENTIRE luggage is smaller than my handbag.)
We retrieved the toddler who was now halfway over the garden wall, bundled them both into their incredibly fiddley carseats and got in.
“Ready to go?”
“Yep.” I replied.
He turned the engine.
“Wait!” I screamed.
“The bouncy chair.”
He got out to rearrange the boot….
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Michael Cargill says
That is an awesome Pan Am bag though.
I remember the Center Parcs adverts on TV from years ago, they looked like heaven.
And it seems I can access your site from work.
I do love this bag. We picked it up on honeymoon and the American women loved it!
Sam @happyhomebird says
I cannot travel light at all and my appliances bag would be twice that with the iPad, laptops x 2, water flosser….
Water flosser? What is a water flosser? Now I feel I may need one too….
Knitty Mummy says
Hilarious! We don’t have a car so have to travel as light as possible as we’ve got to carry it all! We used to be amazing and share one small suitcase between us for 2 weeks away, but now we have kids “as light as possible” is a suitcase so big I can happily get in it (and still pack a few things) and 2 enormous rucksacks.
LOL, I hope you don’t have to carry that suitcase far! Ouch!
Liz Burton says
Such a funny post! Did you see that cartoon the other week about a mum getting ready to go out V a dad getting ready? So true.
I hope you had a lovely time though x
We did thanks Liz. I didn’t want to leave. And actually with the amount I had packed we could have stayed for a month LOL.
Boo Roo and Tigger Too says
This is so funny, I often think we are moving house whenever we go on holiday… why do we need so much stuff? hubby asks me every time.
I have no idea but we seem to need more and more each time!
Emma (@emvanstone) says
Awwww sounds like us! My husband is the opposite though and packs loads of stuff. Trainers, shoes, wellies, boots, gym kit, squash rackets…
I think we would need a new car if Mr B didn’t travel light!
It gets so much easier as they get older, promise. Brilliant post! 😀
Oh please be telling me the truth *despairs*
Actually Mummy... says
Brilliant. I was with you all the way unitl I saw hubs’ bag. My other half has the biggest bag of all of us – me and the kids share a holdall, he has a suitcase. Though these days the electrical entertainment bag is the biggest!
Electrical stuff is seriously taking over our luggage. The amount of chargers we need is insane!
Oh so funny and do true – especially the bit about the man just packing the boot and not actually having to think about all the things needed
I know! It is the ultimate avoidance tactic I reckon.
Elizabeth (Rock-A-Bye Parents) says
It’s amazing how much stuff kids need! My cousin came to visit a week ago and she borrowed a lot of my son’s baby stuff for her 4 month old. So much stuff! Even traveling with one toddler I feel like I have to pack half the house to go anywhere for a few days.
You really do. It is bonkers.
Otilia (@romanianmum) says
with two kids you can never travel light. is good i don’t carry any makeup anymore or hair products for me as i simply don’t use any 🙁
Jeez who has time for make-up LOL!