February 13, 2015

Baseball Season: Packing Tips + A Checklist

This one is for my baseball ladies out there that are starting to pack for the next seven or so months! I realize that since we are only entering our third Spring Training, I am definitely still seen as a rookie to this whole baseball life thing.  But, with three years of packing under my belt, I think I've got some tips that could be helpful for some of my first time baseball ladies packing for Spring Training.  Now a lot of these tips are going to depend on whether you are in Florida or Arizona for Spring Training, what your living situation is (furnished vs non-furnished), or if you are driving or flying.  But there are some general tips that you might find helpful!

I'm preaching to the choir here.  But really, do you need 15 pairs of shoes for Spring Training? Or for the entire season for that matter? Really try to narrow down what you will actually use daily or weekly.  The other stuff can stay at home or in storage.  Really you can live without a lot less than you think.

If you are familiar with capsule wardrobes, this is the best way to think about your outfits for Spring Training or the season.  Think of it this way: pack as few items as possible that make as many outfits as possible. Plan outfits that have pieces that can be interchangeable with different outfits.  I like picking my favorite pairs of jeans/shorts and go from there.  A couple cute shirts with each bottom should get you through! And to make it even easier, go ahead and put the shoes and accessories that go with each outfit.

I personally like to divide my lists into two sections: Must Have and Luxury.  Obviously the must haves get packed firsts, and then things off the luxury list get added if there is room.  For instance, my coffee maker is on my luxury list because I never know if I will like the one in our furnished rental.  However, if it doesn't fit in the suitcase, it is cheaper for me just to go get Starbucks every once in a while than to ship my coffee maker across the country for Spring Training.

Like I said, this packing list will be different depending on your situation.  I drove to Spring Training our first two years, but I am flying this year.  The years I drove I had everything packed for the season  when I left.  Thankfully, most of our minor league teams have similar climates, but I always packed a few bags I could ship home that were climate specific.  I'll divide my list into what I pack when we fly just for Spring Training and what I pack for the whole season.  We pretty much always rent furnished, but bring our own linens and housewares.

A few clarifications...

-As far as "kitchen supplies" go, I have a box that only gets pulled out right before baseball season with kitchen items that I know I'll need.  It just eliminates going through and having to decide from what I use at home what I need to pack.  It is just easier for me to keep it separate.  For example, in our baseball season kitchen box I keep four plate, four bowls, and four plastic cups from Chris' Low A team that we use during the season.  I also have a cutting board, 3 pots, measuring cups, one sharp knife, and a colander.  I gathered all this in our first season just by buying things as I needed them to make a recipe.  This way I didn't end up with things I don't use, and now I've gotten to the point if I can't make it with what I have it just doesn't get cooked.

-Packing a separate toiletry bag for road trips really has made a difference.  It doesn't make me feel like I'm constantly packing and unpacking.  I just keep notes of what is running low and make sure they get refilled before the next road trip.  I leave it in my duffel bag that I use for road trips so all I have to throw in is the outfits I want to take and my makeup bag.

-Another tip I learned that can really be beneficial is to pack boxes that are ready to ship before you leave based on the climates of the teams you could end up with.  Then a friend or family member can ship you your cold or hot weather clothes depending on where your husband is assigned at the end of Spring Training.

I know this post is all over the place, but so is baseball life.  There are so many situations that play into what to pack or how long you need to pack for.  But these general lists have made packing easier for me.  Let me know if you have any questions or have any other tips to add!

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