Magazine article USA TODAY

Pack Up Your Troubles in That Old Kit Bag

Magazine article USA TODAY

Pack Up Your Troubles in That Old Kit Bag

Article excerpt

Packing for a family vacation can be so stressful that you might think it is easier just to stay home. However, do not cancel that trip to Disney World just yet. Instead, follow these tips for packing from Cara Sayer, the mother (of invention) behind SnoozeShade products for infants.

* Packing. Before you pack one thing, create a list or search for one online. It will give you a basic checklist to print off. These are incredibly helpful and remind you of the smaller stuff you might otherwise have forgotten.

* Luggage. Your goal is to take the least amount of baggage possible without underpacking. Rolling clothes takes up less space and leaves them less wrinkly Stick shoes into plastic bags so they do not get your clothes dirty. Aim to take fewer bags than people.

* The important stuff. You will need your flight itinerary or driving directions, a driver's license, photocopies of everyone's birth certificate and passport (in the event yours are lost or stolen), hotel and car rental confirmations, and credit card contact information. It also is helpful to have copies of things you plan to do and guidebooks.

* Entertainment for all. For everyone's sanity, leave the Legos and noisy toys at home. This is the perfect time for new drawing supplies, activity books, finger puppets, small toys, card games, books, portable DVD players, and LeapPads. (Remember the headphones and chargers.) Do not underestimate the oldies like I Spy, Tick-Tack-Toe, and Hangman.

* Clothing. Think comfort, layering, and coordinating. Pack two pairs of well-worn shoes for each person, as well as enough outfits and underwear for each person per day plus two extra. Try to coordinate as best you can so they are interchangeable. Also, pack two swimsuits per person and a cover-up. With the exception of babies, keep the pajamas to a minimum as they easily can be reused. …

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