I know I have written a blog before about how I pack all the kids clothes in zip lock bags by outfit. That's just how I like to keep everything organized while traveling. Another thing that I have done is make lists. Lists upon lists for everything we need to go on different types of outings.
I have a list if it's a getaway with a pool, a camping weekend, an entire week of camping, a resort getaway, a hot vacation, cold vacation... Honestly it's quite ridiculous.
I have done this since we got married. We have always traveled so much and liked to get out so often that I can have our entire family packed for any type of vacation in under half hour because I just get the list and quickly gather everything up. With this being said, there is sometimes human error. We often laugh about our GT boutique weekend. This was quite awhile ago now; before we were even married. Jason and I were living in an apartment in Ottawa and we were going away on a last minute meet up with friends in Deep River to go camping. Super easy! There were just two of us but because we lived on the 14th floor we had to bring all the camping stuff downstairs to load the car. We just followed the list and were loaded in the car ready for a great weekend. We drove 3ish hours and started setting up the tent. Following regular protocol, Jason sets up the camp outside, I set up inside the tent. I had the bed set up and was putting the clothes in the right spot when I called to Jason to bring in my bag of clothes. His reply was that he already had. We do have a 12 man tent but let's get real here, it's not big enough to miss a red duffel bag. So we talked and searched a bit more and then Jason looked at me and said "oh the red bag". I replied yes of course! His reply "ummm it was holding the door open at the apartment and ... it may still be there. So my list was complete but my bag of clothes with my shoes tied to it was sitting three hours away holding the door open at the apartment. Deep breathe and long sigh. Anyone who has been to deep river knows it's no metropolis. I think we could probably count on one hand the number of stores that even sell clothes. So along with our friends we headed to the GT boutique (fancy way of saying Giant Tiger) to buy me clothes and shoes for the weekend. We laughed our heads off all weekend at my choice of attire but honestly it is a memory we laugh about often still.
So fast forward to a few weekends ago. The whole family was going down to the Kenai area for a long weekend for Mathew and Zachary's hockey tournament. So Jason and I got everything on the list ready the night before we were heading out. We were shocked that all Mathew and Zachary's close fit into one big bag, Jason and I had another duffel bad and Joshua and the girls had all their clothes in one blue duffel bag. Quick, effective and simple. The next morning Jason packed the van as I got all the kids ready and an hour later we were off. Jasper was actually in the van with us for this trip so we had his cage as well between two kids in the back seat. I can't remember what we were talking about but it came up that at least we know we only needed 3 bags to go away for a few days still. We were about two hours away from home at this point, we had the first game starting in about two hours and I mentioned that the blue bag that the three little ones clothes is packed in even has a wet pouch so we can put all the swimsuits etc in there if they are wet on the way home. Jason then has a look of shock in his eyes. He says "that blue bag, where is it"? I replied no idea it's gotta be in here somewhere it was on the list. He says he honestly didn't remember putting it in the van this morning. Eeekkk so we are 2 hours from home, 1.5 hours from destination but the hockey game starts soon so there is no way we can double back. Our options are
a) I make the return 7 hour trip solo and pick up the bag.
b) We hit up any store that is open in the off season in the Kenai and buy some clothes
So option 'b' it is. We lucked out because Walmart was having a clearance on a lot of kids clothes so we were able to get all three of them outfits for the weekend for pretty cheap. Shockingly it's pricey to buy kids undies and socks last minute hahaha!
So even the best laid out plans fail sometimes and yet not sure how much of a fail it was because every time I grab that sweatshirt to put on the girls, it makes me laugh thinking of racing like crazy through Walmart picking up whatever was their size on sale before the hockey game started :)