Lists, Lists and More Lists

2018, at least until August, will be known around here as Our Year of Lists. At least that’s what it feels like now. We are in the throes of list-making in order to make sure that when we take off on the Big Adventure everything, or at least as much as possible, has been taken care.

List making can be fun (especially for someone like me who loves organization), but as we’ve learned about lists from past experience, when one thing gets done or is taken care of, two or more things seem to pop up and go back on the list

Here are nine lists we are currently juggling:

  1. Reservations/tickets: This list is pretty straight forward, and includes all travel-related reservations (lodging and transportation) we need to take care of, but will also include reservations for things like museums in Florence, for example. There will also be some fill-ins as we get closer to departing, like an overnight stays here or there between plane connections. We’ve already been able to get some reservations made (India, Australian train journey, Kaua’i rental), but it’s still too early for much else of it. The 2018 part of our journey can’t get started until we know when and where YaYu will be going to college, and that won’t be known until around the end of March. Brett and I work together on this list – I’m the researcher, but he keeps the spreadsheets and marks things off as they get done (and tracks the money).
  2. Paperwork: This list has two parts: 1) Official things like visas and 2) personal paperwork, and what we need to keep and where it will get stored while we travel. We are currently working on winnowing down our personal paperwork, and Brett is keeping a spreadsheet of where and when we need to worry about visas and other documents.
  3. Clothing/shoes: While this list has been fun to think about and compile, it has not been as easy as we thought. We will literally be living out of our suitcases for a year, and need to have both cold and hot weather clothing, as well as be prepared for everything in-between. We’re both almost done with acquiring what we need, and then will do a practice pack and weigh and see where we stand and what we (may) need to take out. I have searched for lists of what to pack for a year, but everything I’ve found is for travelers who intend to live out of a backpack for the year, and we’re not those people. We’re trying to keep things to a minimum, but want to have some variety for the year.
  4. Toiletries/medications; This is another seemingly easy list that’s turning out to be not as easy as initially thought. We’ll need to make sure we’re taking enough medication (both prescription and over-the-counter) to carry us through until we’re back on the mainland over Christmas, but we’ve decided that we can pick up most toiletries as we travel so we want to keep this as minimal as we can, and take just enough to get us started. Excusez-moi, où est la crème à raser? But what should those items be?
  5. Electronics: Both Brett and I are sure we have all the electronics we will need and want as we travel (laptop, iPad, iPhones, iPod, Kindles), but also want to make sure we take along all the accoutrement as well, things like chargers, cords, adapters, ear buds, etc. as well as back-ups.
  6. Miscellaneous: This list is really just the odds and ends of stuff that doesn’t seem to fit anywhere else, like books we want to load on our Kindles before we set off, or small financial matters (local and otherwise) that we don’t want to forget to take care of. Following the Senior Nomads example, we want to carry along our own pillows, so they’re on this list so we don’t forget them. Also included on this list are games we want to take along to play during down times.
  7. Downsizing/storage: We have divided our household items, including our car, into three areas: Sell, donate (or throw away), and store. We’ve already sold some things, and will be working for the next several months on the donate/throw away aspect. We have a pretty solid idea now of what we’re going to put into storage, but we go back and forth on some items (with Brett usually insisting we let it go).
  8. Kaua’i bucket list: This (bittersweet) list was posted last week.
  9. YaYu’s college stuff: All the admission paperwork has been submitted (or almost all), but once we know where she will be going we will continuing the list of what she will need in the way of clothing and dorm essentials, most of which will be purchased at her college location.

I’m sure there is probably one or two other areas I’ve forgotten about, but when I remember, they’ll get lists as well. We’ll be able to finish checking off some of these lists sooner than others, but most we’ll be working on right up until we go. The key is going to be staying focused, and relying on the lists to make sure it all gets done and that hopefully nothing gets forgotten.


17 thoughts on “Lists, Lists and More Lists

  1. As a list maker, I understand. We just decided on our next big trip and are already waitlisted for several places we would like to stay! Consider adding “greed” a simple dice game that we have traveled with for many years and countries. Our kids just gave us a ProCase cord keeper for our travels. Both of them (military/GS people) use theirs all of the time.
    It is fun to watch things on a much grander scale then I ever have thought about!


    1. These lists are the only way we are going to be able to keep things straight – there is just too much to remember and keep organized!

      Greed looks interesting – for now though we are planning to take Scrabble, Yahtzee and a couple of decks of cards. Our family plays Yahtzee a bit differently, for a more interesting game that requires more strategy (we play across the scorecard versus down each row). It not only goes faster, but you have to be careful how you use your rolls.

      I am going to check out the ProCase card keeper. Sounds like something we could use. Thanks!


  2. For toiletries could you buy some empty travel size bottles and use these for your first day or so in a new place. That gives you time to find an affordable place to stock up and when they run out you can just refill from your current ones for the next stop


    1. Thanks for the good idea – we gave the girls GoTube silicone travel bottles for Christmas, and I just ordered a set for us!


    1. We want you to come over anyway, but when you’re here you should come and look through the stuff we’re not storing and see if there’s anything you want. We’re selling a couple of pieces of our Japanese blue & white, and some of our small cast iron teapots among other things.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I keep reading lately about airlines banning certain electronic devices. Is that a concern? I always felt that if I traveled I would want to take my Kindle with me


    1. I think everything is good to go for us. Probably the only thing we’ll use during actual travel is the iPad – we plan to load some movies on it. We both love our Kindles – so much easier and convenient than carrying or packing a book or books.


  4. I love lists and I love crossing stuff off of them! Sometimes I’ll even put something on the list that I’ve alteady accomplished, just so I can cross it off!!


    1. I know exactly what you mean about making lists and the thrill of getting things crossed off, although I’m more about getting the list finished and done. I hate it when I get close and then a few more things get added – grrrr!


  5. The travel toiletries are something I personally would spend a little bit more on in order to get something truly great that will be with you for longer than you expect and also perhaps do more tasks in the bathroom than just one.

    I’ll give you one example – I have a L’occitane verbena shower gel which is tiny. I got it for free as a gift with purchase but I will be buying it over and over, once I use it up. It goes with me whenever we travel and it has done since 2016. We do quite a few overnight trips and I prefer to use my own stuff in the bathroom.

    This shower gel I use as a shampoo, a body wash, and a hand wash. It smells amazing. The scent sticks around especially in the hair and it is lemony and fresh, and I have a small hand cream in the same flavour. When I use that hand cream in the car, everyone knows, they can smell it! And if you look at the container it looks like it has just arrived brand new, even though I used it for our long trip in 2016. I only need the tiniest little bit.

    I do not believe you have a L’occitane on Kaua’i but I do believe you will find one in most larger airports, definitely here in Australia you would.

    Previous to that I used a product from Bath and Body Works from their essential oils range called Energy which is orange and ginger scented, again that could be used for shampoo, body wash and hand wash.

    I always carry a small bottle of Tea Tree Oil when I travel because if I cut something or get a small burn, it is antiseptic. 🙂 In Australia we have a great company called The Thursday Plantation who make the tea tree oil and it is excellent, make sure to pick up a bottle when you are here!


    1. No, no L’occitane here on the island! But, I would be very interested in checking out any multipurpose product, especially one that smells as good as you say. I am planning to buy one of the Malie travel sets (in plumeria) before we go, to let me enjoy Hawai’i a little bit longer.

      Tea Tree Oil is also a good idea – I can pick some up from one of the natural food stores here before we go.

      We were once given tubes of Lucas Pawpaw lotion – that stuff was amazing! I am planning to stock up when we are in Australia.


  6. As a fellow list lover, this all sounds like great fun! Also, although I rarely (almost never) post a comment, I have followed your blog since you were “Losing It” in Portland. I may be almost as excited to hear about your trip as you are to travel.


    1. Your comment made my day! I have been blogging for nine years now, so you’ve been a reader for a long time. Thank you for sticking with me for so long and through all of the changes.

      List-making is fun but while getting things checked off is satisfying, it’s not always fun. We are very motivated though right now, and want to be in a good place when we set off, with everything taken care of, and lists are the only way to make sure of that right now.


  7. You are so organized. I am also a list maker, and just considering the lists I made for two weeks in Italy, I’m a bit overwhelmed. But, as they say in corporate meetings, you eat an elephant one bite at a time. 🙂 (So glad those meetings are over for me. Ha!)

    I am enjoying your prep posts.


  8. The lists, more than anything, help keep us focused. But, I know there are things we have forgotten and that will pop up later.

    Right now the most important list is the one for downsizing. When we see or find something that we can take care of, we do it, whether it’s on the list or not. Even with that, this part of the adventure going to require the greatest effort and be the biggest headache.


  9. The lists help make everything real 🙂

    When I traveled in France for 16 days this spring, I was very pleased with this charger/adapter combo:
    BESTEK Portable International Travel Voltage Converter 220V to 110V with Interchangeable Worldwide UK/US/AU/EU Plugs + 4 USB(6A Max) Charging Ports for iPhone, iPad, Samsung, Tablet.

    It does make a soft white noise but charged my phone and DSLR camera battery very quickly.

    I second the LOVELY scent of L’Occitane lemon verbana!

    Are you thinking about taking a zip drive to back up your laptop while traveling in case something happens to it?

    Grocery stores in Europe, and I also imagine Australia, have aisles of toiletry products just like the USA.

    Your lists sound great – so organized!


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