CRUISING ALONG with a buddy

As I have told you before, I really love to travel and have been fortunate enough to travel to many interesting places. I have also traveled with many “interesting” people. Have you ever been on a trip with that one person who somehow takes the joy out of everything? You know….the one who complains that the food is not “like what we have in America” (duh), or that the people dress funny, or that traveling in Italy in the summer is hot, or the worst one of all–“nobody speaks English.”  And this person usually has an annoying, whiny voice that carries all the way to the back of the bus.

One roommate I had was afraid of everything. She was afraid that she would get sick from the food, she was suspicious of the “foreigners,” she was afraid that the cab driver was driving too fast (actually he was!), she was afraid of the people on the train heading to the city on a Saturday night. She held on to her suitcase with a death grip, until I finally convinced her that young people on their way to a club had zero interest in her “old lady bag.”

I am pretty sure that none of my traveling companions for this trip are in any of those categories; in fact, I know so, because I have traveled with them before.  Lynne and I have been on two long trips together “on the half price plan” (without husbands) and she is the best traveling buddy ever. We have also traveled together as couples, so no worries about this trip.

Here is some free advice for you: Before you plan to go on a trip with anyone, do a dry run of a day or two. Sometimes your best friends are really great friends, but really poor traveling companions.  I cannot tell you how I know this, because some of my friends read these posts. Just trust me on this.

Having said all that, I can’t wait to show you some of the cute outfits that Lynne is taking. She was nice enough to come over and let me take pictures of her, even though I am not the world’s greatest photographer, to say the least. I really appreciate having such a good friend! Notice the cute flowy black pants, and what a great job she did of mixing and matching. I will post these on my 100 Black Pants page.

In the “under 20” department, this adorable orange and white top was purchased at a consignment shop for $5.00.

Black pants, orange sandals
Casual dinner outfit

I wish you could see how sparkly and beautiful this top is.

Dressy, black and gold
Dressy outfit for Captain’s Dinner
Black pants, flowy top, cruisewear
Another pretty dressy outfit
Same outfit without the top
Same outfit without the top
Lynne with purse
Headless photo with cute catfish purse. Bad photographer, great outfit.

dressy purse, evening purse, gold purse, metallic purse, catfish purse, fish purse

I couldn’t find one like this, but here is something kind of similar:

Fish purse

Purses for Women Luxury Rhinestone Crystal Fish Evening Clutch Bags Vintage Party (Gold)

This will be my last post until we return. But you can be sure I will have lots to share in a couple of weeks. I might even have to post some “what not to wear” shots!

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CRUISING ALONG Cruise Clothes Part 2

Here are some outfits I plan to wear to dinner on the cruise:

Pink dress navy sweater.jpg (289x640)

white pants, green sweater, cruise wear

Black dress white sweater.jpg (372x640)

Cocktail dress, cruise wear, dressy

Dressy, cocktail dress, silver wrap

And along the lines of “under 20”, I paid $7.00 for the long black dress! I have had the silver wrap for a couple of years. It makes anything dressy.

Here it is on my last cruise, with the short black dress. This dress was from J Jill, and I wear it with all kinds of different things. I couldn’t find it online, so it is probably not available anymore. Here I have on the dress, black leggings, and a turtleneck, because it was chilly.

IMG_5287 (480x640)

The cocktail dress was free, thanks to my sweet daughter who recycled it to me, and the pink dress was $8.00, and it is reversible.  I am a big spender!

The sweaters are from The Loft Outlet, but I can’t find them online. They were more than $20, but well worth it. I paid about $26 each, depending on the sale on the day I bought them. And I don’t know if you can see the adorable super sparkly wedges,but they were $8.00!

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CRUISING ALONG Cruise Clothes

Today I am continuing my series on packing for a cruise. I have finally decided what to actually put in my suitcase, and I think I have every occasion covered. Today I am showing you some things I plan to wear on the ship during the day.

I am sorry that you have to see so many pictures of me, but it is easier for me to try the clothes on and take a picture than it is to try to figure out how to photograph clothing all nicely arranged and looking like a super Pinterest post.

Trying things on and taking pictures helps me decide what to wear. Someday I might show you some of the outfits that didn’t make the cut, but I don’t want to ruin my good mood by looking at those!

Well, okay, I will show you one, but just so you know how much you can improve your look by taking pictures.

DSC_0011 (222x640)

Now that you have that image burned into your brain, let’s move on.  Here are some things that look a little better:

Black and white, jeans

Red polka dot 3 (303x640)

Terry shirt 1 (327x640)

orange jeans, navy sweater, navy flats

I will probably add a few accessories, but these are the basic outfits that I plan to wear the days that we are at sea.

Thanks for stopping by. Wish you were coming with me!  That is true.  It would be so much fun to have a whole cruise ship full (haha..my readers might fill a couple of tables in the dining room) of people who love to talk and think about clothes. I can guarantee you that my roommate and I will not be talking about that. It is probably his least favorite topic of conversation. But at least Lynne and I can critique each other’s outfits. (And probably other people’s too, but we are trying to overcome that bad habit. LOL)

Today I am linking up with Tania on Wednesday’s Wardrobe.

Don’t forget to subscribe if you want to receive notice of new posts!  I plan to post two or three more times before we leave.

CRUISING ALONG Packing

Today, I thought I would share with you a few things about packing for a trip. As you know, we are leaving for an Alaskan cruise in a few days, and I am still in the process of getting ready.

After a few long trips, I finally figured out that I have a lot more fun if I organize everything before I go, and make it easy to find things to wear and to find things in my suitcase. In my last post, I told you about figuring out what to wear when. Today, I am talking about my actual suitcase.

To be honest, I am a “rumbler.” No matter how carefully I pack, I can never find what I want in my suitcase without rumbling through it. Whatever organization system I have breaks down pretty quickly, and I get really frustrated trying to find my stuff.  A couple of years ago, I found something that totally revolutionized my packing……packing cubes!  I now pack different items or categories in the appropriate size cube (I even label them) and can find anything in a jiffy. And it is so easy to unpack my suitcase and put things in drawers. Most people would not have to label them, especially if they are different colors, but I need the extra visual reminders.

The ones I use are from eBags, and I love them. I have several sets in different colors, because I do share some with my husband, but he only uses one or two.

http://www.ebags.com/product/ebags/value-set-packing-cubes-slim-packing-cubes/115846

These are also available from IKEA:

http://www.ikea.com/au/en/catalog/products/20323061/

If you want to be thrifty, you can use Zip Loc bags in different sizes.

I admit that I am probably a bit overly zealous about this, but I have learned that the less I have to think about on vacation, the more fun I have, and the more it seems like a vacation.

I will spare you from the banality of seeing my actual packed suitcase, but here are a couple of the packing cubes, ready go to.

Cubes (480x640)

In my next post, I will show you some of the outfits I am taking.

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CRUISING ALONG Men & Women

Nothing gets me more excited than planning for a trip.  I LOVE to travel, and have been fortunate enough to have been able to go to quite a few wonderful places around the world, including Europe, China, and Israel.

Seeing other countries and cultures is more than just educational. It is easy to think that the way we live our life is “normal”, and that things are pretty much the same everywhere, but when we get out of our little corner of the world and experience first-hand the sights, sounds, smells, tastes, culture and people of another place, we are forever changed. The cliche that “travel is broadening” is more than true in so many ways.

Even with the internet, and with all the information that is available to us, there is no way to really know what a place is like without going there. A book, a movie, or a website cannot provide us with the atmosphere of a place, and there is no substitute for actually interacting with the people who live in other places.

One of the great things about travel is seeing how many different ways there are to live life, and how many beautiful things and people are in this world. The creativity of people never ceases to amaze me, and I love seeing how other cultures interpret life on this planet.

Soon my husband and I will be going on an Alaskan cruise. We did this before about ten years ago, and can’t wait to do it again with our very good friends, Tim and Lynne!

So, let’s talk about packing for a cruise. For my husband and Tim, packing is a one-hour experience…take some jeans, shirts, pants, jacket,2 pairs of shoes, raingear, and a suit…throw them in a suitcase, and good to go.

But for Lynne and me, it is a whole different thing! We start weeks ahead of time, thinking about what we are going to wear, and doing whatever shopping we need to do to make sure we have just the right outfits. Don’t laugh, but here is what we have to think about in order to pack correctly:

  • Comfortable travel outfits
  • Dressy outfits for formal nights on the ship
  • Comfortable shoes for excursions
  • Outfits to wear to dinner
  • Outfits to wear on cruising days
  • Shoes to match each outfit
  • Jewelry to match each outfit
  • Coats and jackets
  • Purses

We also have try things on, and make sure stuff goes together, especially if we are trying to mix and match to save luggage weight. We have to wear our new shoes around for awhile, to make sure they are really comfortable. We have to think about layers, because weather in Alaska can be unpredictable.

I have been working on packing for the last week! But it will be worth it. I will have an outfit for every occasion already planned out, and can relax and enjoy the trip without worrying about what to wear.

This is the first of several posts about getting ready for the cruise.Here are links to the others:

Packing

Cruise Clothes 1

Cruise Clothes 2

Cruising with friends

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