Packing Overseas: Toiletries


Another fantastic shot of the inside of a plastic box!

This post in the series is focused on toiletries

and some possible changes in types

so it’s more conducive for the traveling lifestyle.


1. Shampoo Bars & Soap

Have you heard of these gems?

It’s the same as liquid shampoo in that it nourishes the scalp

and cleanses the hair but in bar form.

We love Chagrin Valley’s shampoo bars

and there’s a lot to choose from;

our favorites are the citrus (light & fresh) flavor & the butter bar (moisturizing!).

They carry soaps too and we have also used their shampoo bars as soap in a pinch.

Clearly I bought these at Chagrin Valley Soap & Salve Company.


2. Shaving Bar

Along the same lines, there’s these lovely little bars of shaving goodness.

Imagine taking those air-pressured shaving creams and having them explode=No Fun!

Enter these lovely and masculine-ish smells and bars.

Bought also at Chagrin Valley Soap & Salve Company.


3. All-Natural Deodorant

Okay, so you have showered and shaved,

but you know you’ll start sweating but you don’t want to be stinky.

And you want something that travels easily but works great

without any junky stuff, right?

My husband and I love Primal Pit Paste!

It works awesome and we actually both like the thyme & lemongrass strong jar!

I bought this at Primal Pit Paste.


4. Toothbrushes, floss, toothpaste, razors & razor heads, chapstick, etc.

I bought our Tom’s fluoride free toothpaste at VitaCost or Amazon.

Toothbrushes were purchased at Target & Dollar Store & gathered (for free!) at our dentist.

We bought a huge pack of razor heads at Costco (it cost an arm & a leg but should cover us for over a year.)


As like all the rest of the posts, I try to put it all in ziplocs

and then contain them in a small plastic bin.

***For keeping the cost down, I kept a lookout for Target to have plastic bin sales

and was able to combine it with their cartwheel coupon app.

What are some toiletries that are a must for you?

Packing Overseas: Household Cleaning Supplies


Stellar picture huh?

I am sure I got your attention with this classy, artistic shot!

This post is on considering,


and packing

cleaning supplies.


1. Dish soap.

Will the new home have a dishwasher?

This dish soap has a couple claims that I am counting on

(tough on grease & sulfate free)

but I haven’t ever used this kind.

I bought this on

(go through ebates for cheaper prices!)


2. Produce Wash.

We are headed to a country where the recommendation is to

either soak your produce in bleach before eating it

or bring produce wash.

I opted for the latter option.

I got this large container that includes a spray bottle at Costco.


3. Castile Soap.

I am a lesser is more type person.

So this castile soap is a multi-purpose cleaner.

It’ll be our hand washing soap

(I don’t care for sanitizers as everyday soap.),

and all-purpose cleaning agent if needed.

Another use is body soap in the shower!

I bought this on as well but

you can sometimes find it as cheap on Amazon.


4. Baking Soda.

Need I mention how useful this is?

Scrubbing toilets and grout,

brushing teeth agent,

& laundry booster

I bought the huge container cheaply at Walmart.


5. Shout & Powder OxyClean

Need I explain?

4 kids.


Nice clothes.

Stain Removers.

I bought both at Costco.


6. Powdered Laundry Detergent

I bought 3 boxes of laundry detergent.

I can be picky and when I have a chance

to use what I want, then I’ll do it!

I bought the laundry detergent at


7. Household Cleaning Supplies & Sponges

Have you heard of City Maid Green?

I really love their cleaning products.

The wood polish is awesome!

And the all-purpose lemongrass smell is so fresh and light!

And they sell concentrated formulas so it’s a cinch for sending overseas.

I bought City Maid Green over the phone

and the sponges at Costco.

You’ll have to check with your shipping company,

but typically they’ll allow items to be shipped as long

as they are in their original packaging

and do not contain any alcohol.

All-natural, organic products were given a big green light!

I packed most items in large ziplocs or taped them shut on the outside as well.

So want to review again?

1. Dish soap

2. Produce Wash

3. Castile Soap (Hand washing soap)

4. Baking Soda

5. Shout & Oxyclean

6. Laundry Detergent

7. All purpose cleaning supplies & sponges

What is a cleaning household staple for you?

My Kids are Hoarders


How many blankets are enough for Sweet Cheeks?

What is enough?

Is there a standard for enough?

Do your kids also like to pick up trash and call it treasure?


I have mentioned this book before,  More Or Less

I just keep reading it and it’s so good!

I wrestle with determining what the kids enjoy and delight in

and what is excessive or plain junk.


Do you ever look around and just realize all the messes are made up of stuff?

How much stuff do I need?


As we go overseas, I want to downsize and reduce the luxuries to just our true favorites.


Loving brothers give Sweet Cheeks their blankets to cuddle with in the morning.

Have you wrestled with these questions?

How do you handle it with your kids?

And I’m not off the hook yet, I need to also ask the tough questions for myself.

What are necessities and what are conveniences?

How much stuff do I need until I am satisfied?

When is it enough?

5 Ways to Multitask like a Genie

I am not sure if this is a proud moment or a humble admission, but I like to multitask and seem to have found a way to manage life multitasking.

There’s always laundry to do, the hope of reading more of your book (see previous post), floors to be cleaned, and some calories to be burned.

how to multitask like a genie

Here’s 5 practical ways I carry out two or more tasks at once.

1. While I fold laundry, I will play swagbucks videos on my phone, earning me extra points and ultimately cash.

2. If I am already making food, I like to make extra. Growing up, my mom always doubled or tripled recipes. Most lunches were leftovers from the previous dinner and wow, I love leftovers! And especially if you are my kids, they will love you forever if you make extra cheese quesadillas! Or check out Money Saving Mom for this homemade ham and cheese pockets.

We like to switch up the combos with a pizza one, veggies and cheese, the tastes are endless!


Extra quesadillas for another day!

3. Teach and guide your homeschooling child while your are working in the kitchen, making bread, flipping quesadillas, chopping vegetables as prep for dinner or washing dishes. Another neat aspect is The Third is able to use some of his newly acquired learning in real life situations. If i am kneading dough, he can help me divide it into thirds or sixths. If I am making egg quiche, he can help me count the eggs and ask about the origins of the eggs and why there’s a white part and yolk. He helped add 4 tablespoons of vinegar in the 1/2 cup of oil which made the base of our salad dressing thus he was able to see the differences in various measurements.


Homemade Raw Cashew milk & Carrot, Cilantro, Celery & Granny Smith Juice

4. The more I am at home with the kids, the more I crave interactions with adults. When is was training for my half marathon, I would listen to podcasts while I ran. A few of my favorite podcasts are: How They Blog, God-centered Mom, The Splendid Table, Ravi Zacharias. Exercise + listening to adults use words with more than 6 letters=awesome!!! Or clean the house while the kids are asleep (yes I clean at 8pm at night, at least it’s quiet!) put on some headphones, grab your mop and listen to something encouraging!

On the days I clean with kids, one is usually strapped to me!

On the days I clean with kids, one is usually strapped to me!

5. Ok, when #4 doesn’t happen, do it with the kids. There’s very few days my kids don’t need to burn energy. Either include them in your exercise, ie. squat with your 20 lb baby (yes, Sweet Cheeks loves it when I squat with her), have a dance party (it’s amazing how tired you can get when you are jumping and twirling), or get outside and while the kids bike, you push the jogger and race them. While the kids catch up (I am assuming you are faster) do lunges. It’ll get your heart rate up.


Post run/biking with the kids