Chic-out, Don’t Freakout


After spending a little less than a week in Virginia at my orientation (just wait till you hear the classes I got stuck with. “Inside the Mind of Poe.” If only they meant the Telletubbie rather than that creepy poet), I have just returned to my not-so welcoming bedroom. I only say this because I neglected to clean my room before leaving, so rather than flinging myself onto my comfy quilted bed first thing, I am halted in the doorway by the mess of clothes and magazines strewn about my floor. Its my own fault, really. Curse my foolish brain for believing it would all magically disappear while no one was here to gripe over it. If only that were a real phenomenon…

Now, not only must I tackle my room, my suitcase and the bear of a laundry pile that continues to rage in my bathroom, but I must face the worst of them all: packing AGAIN. That’s right, I am off to the airport once more in less than 24 hours–this time, for a week and a half. While I am perhaps the WORST packer in the history of packing, I really shouldn’t complain. After all, I am packing for France. Paris and Nice, to be exact, and with my elder sister Katie alone. No parents, no brothers to whine about all the shopping–just us girls and our Rick Steve’s guidebook (I seriously recommend this dude to anyone traveling anywhere who doesn’t wish to look like a terribly lost tourist. The guy knows his stuff). 

This trip will be somewhat of a continuation of a similar trip the two of us took a few summers ago when Katie graduated from college. Now, here we are returning to our favorite city on earth so that Katie can explore Paris’s business schools (smahtypantz) and I am just tagging along for the ride (yayy graduation presents! Thanks ma and pa, much love <3 ). Of course, we have planned our mini vaca so that we will arrive just in time for le 14 juillet aka Bastille Day (think 4th of July but with baguettes and fancy cheese instead of BBQs). I simply cannot wait for the incredible parade, fireworks, and Bals des Pompiers (translates “Party of Firefighters.” yes, firefighters) that will be going strong well into the wee hours of the morning. After 4 days of shopping les marchés, stuffing our faces with almond croissants and nutella et banane crepes, and touring the schools, Katie and I will hop a train to Nice where we will enjoy (hopefully) a sunny few days à la plage. 

Yes, yes, this trip is the only thing I have been thinking of since school ended, but the more fun activities that are involved can only mean one thing: packings a bitch. Typically, while staring at my empty suitcase for 10 minutes, wishing it were neatly packed full with all my cutest outfits and essentials, all my mind can express is uuuuuuggggggghhhhhhhh. But this time, I am determined for this process to be different. Instead, before I even haul my suitcase down from the cedar closet, I checked the weather for the week (mix of rain and sun, 65-75 degrees) and have put together a list of all the things I KNOW I will want to bring.

Meredith’s “Chic-out, Don’t Freakout” packing guide:

  • Jeans (blue skinny, blue flare, colored, white, optional: printed)
  • Denim shorts (short shorts, high-waisted, looser destroyed cut-offs)
  • Other shorts (patterned, crochet, faux leather black, floral, bright teal or other summer color, gym)
  • Palazzo pants and/or cute (not crazy) jumpsuit
  • Day-to-Night dresses (highlow, flowy and crochet, colorful mini, chic maxi, LWD)
  • Blazer (any color, whatever will go with most of your things)
  • Skirts (maxi, bandage, A-line)
  • Tank tops (solid white, black, nude, any other color that tickles your fancy, lace cami)
  • Tops (some flowy, some fitted, some long sleeve, some short. Variety of patterns)
  • Tshirts (for lounging/pj’s/working out. hah.)
  • Belts (thin waste belt, wide waste belt, preferably a belt that will actually hold your pants up, if needed)
  • Sweaters (solid pullover, 2 versatile cardigans, cool patterned cardi)
  • Hoodie (your fave)
  • Bleached jean jacket
  • Etc: cropped lace vest, chiffon kaftan
  • 4 bathing suits (incase one decides to make you look disgusting at the last minute)
  • 2 Heels (wedge and a pump, both versatile)
  • Walking shoes (3 comfy cut sandals, 1 plain flip flop, TOMs, 1 plain flat, 1 jazzed up flat, combat boots)
  • Sneakers & socks
  • Bras & Undies (however many it takes)
  • Yoga pants
  • Toiletries (all cute and travel size!)
  • Make-up bag (I know its tough, but minimize! Try to pack small palettes with a couple of colors to get the most variety in terms of shadows)
  • Accessories (your daily neck, arm, ear and finger candy, some statements pieces)
  • 3 Bags (1 mega carry-on, if needed; 1 medium travel bag; 1 crossbody bag- absolutely ESSENTIAL for Europe travel)

Well I suppose I must take a crack at actually following this list. Who am I kidding– writing this whole post was just a way to procrastinate. Wish me luck! 

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