Greetings, friends! I’m back from Florida, and while it was hard to leave our lovely spot, it sure does feel good to be home. I’ve had a lot of questions about what I packed for our trip, so I took some pictures.
I’m an unapologetic over-packer, so this isn’t necessarily a “what to pack” post; it’s simply what I actually packed. Or, rather, what I actually wore. I did pack a few other things, but I didn’t need them, so I figured it would be most helpful to share what I actually used.
For anyone tuning in, our family just spent a week in Cape Coral, Florida, where we rented a home on the canal through VRBO. We weren’t sure what the situation would be with Covid, so we didn’t make any plans for excursions or anything beyond a couple of dining reservations.
Our goal was to have a place that was beautiful and spacious and completely equipped for us to stay there for the whole week and not really go anywhere or do much of anything.
As it turned out, we did go over to Sanibel Island for a half-day, and we spent a day at Fort Meyers Beach. We also went out to eat a few times, and we went to a local church on Easter Sunday. Otherwise, we just hung out at our VRBO and enjoyed the warm weather and the gorgeous canal views.
Tomorrow, I’ll share my outfits from the trip, but here’s what I packed and actually wore, and how I packed everything. Everything is linked at the very end of this post.
Let’s break it down. I packed two pairs of pajamas — one to wear and one to wash. I also packed this Athleta wrap to wear over my pajamas in the mornings, or if I needed something to throw on with shorts and a t-shirt in the evenings.
I packed three swimsuits, which worked out well because I wore one every day. I could have gotten by with two, but they don’t take up much room. And I also packed a swim coverup, although I didn’t really need it because I wore jean shorts over my swimsuits most of the time, but it did make for a cute Instagram picture.
I also packed a my new Tesalate beach towel — it’s fast-drying, super absorbent, compact, and lightweight. It’s also “sand-free” so the sand shakes off, and you don’t bring half the beach back with you.
Of course, our house had beach towels, but I just got this one and thought I might want to photograph it. I did use it quite a bit around the house, and I brought it with me to the beach. I LOVE how compact it is — it took up almost no room in my beach bag.
Hoping to get some exercise in, I packed a tank top and running shorts (and my sports bra, of course.) I wore my running shoes on the plane because they’re heavy and take up a lot of suitcase real estate.
Beyond that, I packed a pair of white jeans, blue jeans, white shorts, and jean shorts. I never wore the white shorts because the weather wasn’t as warm as I was expecting, but I would have worn them to dinner a couple of times instead of the white jeans if it had been hotter. And then I packed a variety of tops — thinking I could mix and match with the jeans and shorts for hanging out at home, dining out, and any sight-seeing we might decide to do.
I expected to wear more jeans and t-shirt outfits, but I really didn’t. I basically lived in my swimsuits with jean shorts or a coverup on top while we were at the house, and I wore the white jeans every time we went out to dinner. I only wore my blue jeans once, but I was glad I had them that day.
Here’s how it packed in my medium-sized suitcase. All the clothes fit on one side — anything I didn’t use or mention above is underneath, so this actually holds more than it looks like here.
My shoes, bags, and toiletries fit on the other side. I know it’s a lot of shoes for a week of doing a lot of nothing, but I did wear them all multiple times, and I was glad I had them. The only ones I didn’t really wear at all were my Birks.
If I was trying to be a minimalist, I would have ditched the heels because they took up a lot of suitcase real estate and the studded flat sandals would have been fine in their place. I did wear the heels twice, though, so there’s that!
All my makeup and some of my skincare is in the black travel train case. Anything that didn’t fit in there is in the small grey cosmetic bag. I also packed my Dyson hairdryer with the two attachments, and the big round brush I use. I never travel without my own hair dryer. I learned that lesson the hard way! I do still have my T3 travel dryer, though, and I think next time I’ll just use that.
I also packed my straw tote bag — only used it once, when we went to Fort Meyers Beach for the day, but I definitely needed it. And I packed two crossbody bags. I wanted my YSL camera bag for church and dining out, and I used the Hobo brand crossbody when we went over to Sanibel Island.
Of course, I didn’t really need both — easily could have left the YSL at home, but I enjoyed carrying it. I stuffed it with socks and underwear, so it really didn’t take up much extra space. (It’s under the hobo bag in this picture.)
For both travel days, I wore a grey tee with my Vuori joggers with my denim jacket on top. As I mentioned above, I wore my running shoes to save room in my suitcase; otherwise I might have worn my Birks.
I don’t feel like I brought an excessive amount of clothes, but I definitely didn’t wear them all. I guess I’m used to vacation where we go out and do a lot more things. Even when we go to the Jersey Shore, I end up needing real clothes more often. I’ve never spent so much time in a swimsuit in my life — and we have a pool in our backyard, lol!
I really have no experience with this kind of lazy vacay, but I’m definitely a convert! This was by far the most relaxing vacation I’ve ever taken, but next time we do this, I won’t bring as many clothes and shoes. That said, I have no regrets. I would rather over-pack than under-pack any day. I like to have options.
Before you ask, I also took a picture of my carry-on bag and everything inside.
I’ve had my LV Neverfull for at least five years — probably longer than that, and prices have really gone up since then. This was my first luxury designer bag — a Christmas gift from Paul. I always use it as my carry-on bag when I fly, and my travel tote for road trips.
Buying pre-owned is an option, if you’re looking for one. Mine looks practically like new still, so they really do hold up to a lot of wear and tear.
This is the MM size, and it’s just big enough to hold my laptop, chargers, a change of underwear in case of emergency, and my purse essentials. I almost always check my luggage, so this is usually all I carry in the airport.
As far as what I carry inside, I love these clear Truffle Clutch bags for holding charging cords and other sundries. I have a set of three, and I use them in my totes to compartmentalize everything, but they’re also great for travel because you can put your liquids in them and put them through security.
I also carried my laptop, a Kindle, Anker portable charger, wallet, sunglasses, wet wipes, tissues, and a bottle of water — which I drank on the way to the airport. Of course I couldn’t take that through security. And, of course, my trusty Slip face mask! Although, I actually wore a disposable on the way home.
So yeah, I guess that covers it! Tomorrow I’ll be back with my outfits from the past couple of weeks, including what I wore while we were in Florida.
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