Monday, May 30, 2011

Packing For Two Weeks in Germany

As I pack for the trip, I keep repeating "minimal" in my mind. We will be doing lots of walking with our luggage as well as hurrying to make plane and train connections.  We change hotels every two days, and I don't want the headache that would come with repacking a massive suitcase for every move.  The four of us have all decided to take one backpack each.  That may sound small and impossible, but I could easily fit way more than I need in my backpack.  Even though I have the room, I still don't want to be carrying too much weight around.  Hopefully my back and shoulders will thank me at the end of this trip.

Here is a look at what I will be taking with me.

The trip is 12 days, but I am only taking 6 shirts with me.  I don't think anyone will care that I will be wearing each shirt twice.  I don't plan on running a marathon while in Germany, so my clothes won't be getting too dirty. I will also be taking a black cardigan, three tank tops (I love to layer), yoga pants (for wearing on the plane and as pajamas), and two pairs of pants.

My blue crossbody purse is perfect for traveling. In it I will carry my camera, Kindle, chap stick, hair tie, bobby pins, mirror, sunglasses, Advil, and a pen. I also like to carry a money belt for my passport and most of my money.  I still have a lot of Euros left over from my last time in Germany.

For my scrapbook/travel journal I am taking tape, double sided adhesive, and airplane approved scissors.  For toiletries I have sunscreen, face moisturizer, a small amount of makeup, comb, deodorant, face wash bar, shampoo bar, two mini bottles of conditioner, and hair straightening gel.  (An unneeded luxury, but I hate my curly hair.)  I will also be taking a camera battery charger, the Kindle charger cord, a collapsible water bottle, very small tripod, band aids, and a stain remover stick. 

Germany Travel Journal

I’ve learned through experience that I always forget more than I remember when it comes to traveling. The big moments stick in my mind years later, but the little moments are gone. That makes me sad. I wish I had pictures and writing about the terrible hostels I have stayed at and the weird food I have eaten. The more I travel, the more I learn to really document the entire experience.
Two years ago my mom and I spent a week in London. This was my first experience with taking a journal and scrap booking the experience as it happened. I learned through that experience that I love the idea of writing down all the little details as they happen. If I had waited until I returned home, so much of it would have already been forgotten. Plus, I am never able to follow through with scrapping once the trip is over.
One change I want to keep in mind as I create my Germany travel journal is less is more. I am only taking a pen/marker and some double sided tape with me. I don’t need the extra embellishments. Especially since I plan on taking one small backpack for the 12 day journey. I won’t have room for any extra stuff. I am even worried about fitting the journal itself into my bag.

I am obsessed with Remains of the Day style journals. This is the perfect style of journal to document all the moments of my Germany trip. This was my plan for creating my journal.

1. Pick out the paper.
I originally planned on using only patterned paper from my stash. A visit to my local scrapbook store blew that idea away. I went looking for chipboard that I could cut down to use for the front and back covers. Then I spotted a piece of paper that I loved and everything went downhill from there. I came home with 20 pieces of paper. I added 30 pieces from my stash for a total of 50 pages.

 2. Cut the chipboard covers.
Decided to cut the chipboard pieces down to 8 x 6 ½. Cutting the chipboard was not as easy as I had hoped it would be, but it worked out in the end. I also glued paper to the back of each cover. There was a snafoo that forced me to add a strip of blue to the edge of the back cover.  Let's all pretend I did it on purpose.

3. Cut the patterned paper.
The patterned paper was then cut to various sizes. The largest being 6 ¼ x 7 ¾. I want the journal to have an eclectic funky look, so the papers are not uniform in size. I also added some envelopes to the paper mix.

4. Put it all together.
I took the journal pieces to school and used the bind-it-all machine. (Thanks GPS!) After some paper scrunching and a few choice words, I was able to get the spiral binder in place.

5. Start journaling.
I am not going to wait until I am in Germany to get going on this sucker. One of the best parts of traveling for me, an organization and planning freak, is all the stuff that happens before I ever leave home. I want to add those details to my journal. So I added in my to-do list as well as some information on all the preparation I have be doing to get ready.