New Year’s Resolutions!

HAPPY NEW YEAR!

We have officially reached 2019. Another year has come and gone and now it’s time to start it all over again. Resolutions have always been hard for me. I try to go above and beyond and start out really well but then burn out a month or two in. The goals I try to do now are pretty simple and I try to have them benefit my mental health as much as possible. One year, I wrote down on a slip of paper everything that made me happy. All the slips would go in a jar. On New Year’s Eve, I opened the jar and read about all the happy moments I had in the year. There were a lot of emotions: some made me cry, some made me happy, and some made me mad. Overall I rather enjoyed it as it was a nice reminder of all the good things in life.

blog post_ NY Resolutions

  • Start and finish school
    • School has never been my first choice. I tried a few classes here and there after high school but was more focused on my career. A few months ago I made the decision to go back. I didn’t want to take any time off work so I looked into online programs. I am now enrolled at University of Phoenix with a certificate program. This allows me to be done in about 6 months. I start my first class middle of January and while I’m looking forward to it, I’m also terrified!
  • Create a daily routine for myself and stick with it
    • There’s so much going on in my life that it’s hard to keep myself disciplined with certain things. Now that I’m adding school to my hectic schedule, I created 2 daily routines for myself: one for when I do work and one for when I don’t. I’ve created a basic outline for both of what I imagine will work best but I plan to make adjustments once I actually start school.
  • Continue therapy
    • It’s hard asking for help. It’s taken me a long time to ask for help, even with my own friends. I constantly feel like such a burden to everyone in my life and I don’t want to think that way anymore. I’m tired of letting my mental health take over so many areas of my life. I’ve started taking medication again as I know I truly need it. With therapy, I hope to overcome some issues and to learn how to live with my anxiety in a more positive way rather than negative.
  • Create a budget
    • I budget my bills pretty well. I always pay on time and make sure I have enough for everything. This year I’m making a new goal for myself with my budget. As I’ve mentioned in previous posts, I still live with my mom. Living in California is expensive enough with roommates and can be near impossible by yourself. With this budget I want to go into as much detail as possible in every aspect of my life so I can see where I can save more and spend less.
  • Learn to be more assertive
    • I am not an assertive person. I feel like there are times that I am but generally I’m a pushover. It’s hard for me to say no to people(especially authoritative figures) and if I feel like I’ve been wronged or my feelings are hurt, I won’t address them with the person. I continue to let myself be “used and abused” over and over again until I start to break. This year I want to push myself to be more assertive. I don’t want to continue putting myself in uncomfortable situations just because I feel like I should. If something bothers me with a friend or relative, I want to be up front about it so they understand their actions and how it affects me.

 

This year I want to focus on me. I never put myself first in any situation and now is the time to. It’s time for me to break out of my comfort zone and explore endless possibilities for myself!

 

Tell me about your resolutions in the comments!

 

Anxiety and Depression 2018

It’s taken me about 10 tries to try and write something up about this because I don’t really know where to start. This won’t necessarily be a “blog post” either. This is me reaching out and addressing my anxiety and depression. I hope that it can be helpful for some of you and give you hope for yourselves.

2018 has been a whirlwind year for me. My health has been a major issue -mental and physical. I’ve had so many doctor visits, tests done, and medication switches that I don’t remember who I really am anymore. I recently had something happen in my life that really made me realize that I need help. I’ve been struggling with my mental health for a long time and let it take over a lot of areas in my life. I decided to go back to therapy and try antidepressants again. I used to be really against medication but because of everything going on and my hormones being imbalanced, I know that this is the best option for me right now.

It’s hard to see the light at the end of the tunnel. Right now it feels like I’m 50 feet below dirt and drowning in water at the same time. It’s hard to focus on a future when I can’t focus on what’s happening in my current day. I try to stay positive as much as I can but I’m not in a place where I can do it by myself and feel okay about it. Not yet, anyway.

2019 I’m trying to stay hopeful for myself. I’m taking steps to take care of myself and to put my needs in front of others. I’ve always struggled with that and I think that’s why I’m now in the position that I’m in.

For anyone that is also struggling with mental health, you are NOT alone. Make yourself heard. Talk about your anxiety and depression with your friends, family, and peers. I was never comfortable with it until recently. I’ve found that it actually helps a lot when people are aware of your triggers and symptoms. Everyone handles their anxiety differently and one thing may work for one person but not the other. Help them understand what you need and help educate them about mental health.

I’ve provided some numbers if you need to reach out to someone. I’ve called the Suicide Prevention Line before and there’s no shame in it. They are there to help YOU. YOU are the priority. Never forget that, even when it seems like you’re the last person in the world that deserves anything.

I love each and every one of you and wish you all a positive new year.

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-8255

Crisis Call Center: 1-800-273-8255

National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) Helpline: 1-800-950-NAMI (6264)

Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) Helpline: 1-800-662-HELP (4357)

How I Shop Differently as a Minimalist

*This post contains recommendations purely made by myself. I have not been paid or given incentives.

Black Friday and Cyber Monday have come and gone and holiday shopping continues. I have about half of my Christmas gifts purchased and plan on finishing the rest this week.

In one of my posts about my trip to LA, I had mentioned the items I had bought. As I continue minimalism, I’ve noticed so much of a change in my shopping habits.

The other day I was hanging out with my boyfriend and he mentioned some items that he wanted in the future. Every item he rattled off was expensive, hi-tech, and name-branded. With each mention of these items, I found that I had zero connection to the same wants. Perhaps it’s because I’ve become minimalist and have a new way for my life or perhaps it’s because I used to be that person that wanted the expensive, name-brand items.

My first job in California was at a thrift store. We bought and sold clothes that other people brought in. In order for me to become a good buyer for the store I needed to know the brands and the trends. I wanted to be really good at my job so I did my research. I found what people really liked and what these big brands were. It was really different for me especially coming from a small town in Minnesota. I truly believe that this job started my downfall in fashion. Don’t get me wrong – I love fashion. I love posting my outfits and I love helping my friends and family with their styles. But because I was brand obsessed, that became my main focus. I wanted only Michael Kors bags. I wanted True Religion jeans. I wanted cute Brandy Melville clothing. I ended up leaving the thrift store after a few years and started at a new retail store. There was a different policy here – no bags allowed. This is the case for many companies as it helps reduce employee theft. I had a beautiful beige Michael Kors crossbody at the time. It went with everything and it really did give me so much joy. However with this new policy, I soon got tired of having to transfer things from my purse to a clear plastic backpack just so I could go to work. Soon I stopped using my crossbody entirely. This was the start to my end of brand name items. It wasn’t until I left retail that I started to realize I didn’t actually need any of these things. I began my career again in veterinary care where my uniform was scrubs. I had no reason to keep up with fashion trends or worry about putting together different outfits everyday. And because I was wearing scrubs every day, I started to value the outfits I was putting together when I was going out with friends or just running errands.

I continued to shop as I normally would have (minus big brands) and had so many clothes piled up in my closet. It’s still a work in progress, as I constantly change my style, but I am very proud of where I am at today and the new shopping habits I’ve picked up. Here are some things that I’ve learned along the way:

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  • Understanding Brands
    • I told you that I used to be brand obsessed. I felt like it gave me a certain status and anything below these brands were unacceptable. There are only two items out of my whole wardrobe that I have splurged on. That would be my Dooney & Burke small crossbody and wallet. I bought these about a year ago and it was because I decided to treat myself. The purse I had before I used for quite some time and picked it up for $5 at a thrift store. A lot of the times, people think that because it’s a huge name brand and that it’s expensive means it’s great quality. Sometimes that’s not always the case. There’s also the fact to keep in mind that you can get the same item at the same quality for a much cheaper price. I mentioned that I loved True Religion jeans. They were super cute, fit my body type at the time, and also lasted for a really long time. Over time I realized I didn’t want to spend that kind of money on jeans and the fit wasn’t working for my body anymore. Now I get my jeans from American Eagle. They are reasonably priced and they LAST. My oldest pair right now is about 5 years old and you would never know it! The latest pair I bought is already 3 years old and in perfect shape.
  • Needs or Wants
    • This may sound weird but I think I was destined to be a minimalist. Looking back, I had the same fundamentals and values but never knew how to completely discipline myself. It was always when I had my items and stood in the long line for the cash register that I would start contemplating my purchase. The longer I stood there the more I looked at my item(s) and realized that it wasn’t worth waiting any longer for. I’d get out of line, place the piece back, and leave the store. I’ve done that several times throughout my adult life and have never regretted that choice. As I’ve gotten older, I’ve put so much thought into every purchase I continue to make. Understanding the needs and wants for yourself are extremely crucial. For example, when fall and winter rolls around, I love seeing all the sweaters on display. I already have several sweaters but seeing new ones in different styles and colors is tempting. I’ve reached a place with myself now where I can appreciate the article of clothing and continue my trip without purchasing it.
  • Understanding Sales
    • Sales are a dark hole that should be avoided when necessary. Stores put the sales there so you buy more than you need because, hey!, it’s on sale and cheap. Some sales however can be extremely beneficial if it’s for something you need. When I go shopping, I generally stay away from the clearance sections. Everything ends up there at some point but you’ll find a lot of outdated items. You’ll also find things, like a shirt, that aren’t your style but because it’s so cheap you’ll buy it anyway. You’ll wear the item once and then it ends up in a corner never to be seen or worn again. The key is to stick with your favorite brands and know when their sales are. In a lot of blog posts about saving money, you’ll find that they’ll tell you to unsubscribe from store’s mailing lists. While I fully support this idea, it’s also not a bad thing to stay on mailing lists for stores you really enjoy. It’s a great way to get coupons and find out about sales going on in store or online. There are a few stores that I still subscribe to and just because I’ve subscribed to them doesn’t mean I’m using every coupon or sale they send to me.
  • Buying in Bulk
    • A majority of my shopping is done online. I hate going to the mall and being in large shopping crowds. If I do have to go to the mall I have to mentally prepare myself days in advance. My main website is Amazon and I do pay for Amazon Prime so I can get my items faster. But let’s say I needed to get a pair of jeans. I usually check the store’s website to see how much I would need to spend for free shipping. After knowing that, I wait to purchase until I need multiple things so I can take advantage of the free shipping and other deals they may have. This saves me money by waiting for things I actually need instead of trying to find something to bump myself up for free shipping. It also eliminates the need for me to place multiple orders.

 

Living in California has been a new challenge for me. I never cared about brands or fashion until I moved here and realized that that is a major part of the culture here. I easily and quickly got swooped into the belief that to be successful and to show your status it was essential to have all these things. Trying to get the new and shiny electronics or the newest fashion trend didn’t make me happy. It made me anxious and depressed because I felt like I was behind or not good enough if I didn’t have them. I live my life so comfortably now and okay with knowing that I don’t need all these things. My iPhone is most certainly not a newer model and my laptop is a Google Chromebook I purchased 5 years ago. Both run smoothly and I have no desire to spend money for a new model when these work perfectly well.

When I write these posts I don’t urge for you to become minimalists. I urge that you rethink the importance of things in your lives. Are you truly happy and if not what can you do to change that? Our lives are short, fast and should be lived happily – not stressed over new things or what our hard earned money can buy.

 

I challenge you the next time you go shopping to hold each item in your hand for five minutes. Imagine it in your life, walk around with it, connect with it. Do you need it? Does it spark joy?

Leave comments below and discuss!

6 Christmas Tricks and Gifts on A Low Budget

Christmas has always been one of my favorite holidays. Growing up in Minnesota, I loved being out in the snow and seeing frost on the trees. One of my favorite traditions was going out to a tree farm to get our beautiful Christmas tree.

Even with the beautiful weather, amazing traditions, and fun events, Christmas is one of the most expensive holidays. Depending on your family size, friends, or your co-workers, gifts you want to give start to multiply quickly! In order to help prep you for the holiday, here are some tricks and gift ideas that I’ve used!

Christmas Budget

 

Trick #1 – Ebates. I swear by this website. I had seen commercials about it all the time but never really thought much of it. Then last year around Thanksgiving, a coworker of mine was telling us how she uses Ebates and loves getting money back for her purchases. After I signed up I became hooked. I do a majority of my shopping online anyway and they even offer in-store cash back as well! It’s easy and free to use! Newest additions: Get cashback for Lyft rides and Doordash orders!

Use my code here to get a free $10 to you!

 

Trick #2 – Buy early. It doesn’t seem like much of a trick but trust me it will help you in the long run! I’m not a fan of large crowds, especially at the mall. I dislike being at the mall and avoid it as much as I can. When holiday season rolls around the crowds only get worse. I start my Christmas shopping about mid-November. I start planning who I want to get gifts for and budgeting. I also scope out any deals I can. This includes preparing for Black Friday and Cyber Monday. It’s a no-brainer that this is a great time to buy your Christmas presents. Almost everything is on sale and for amazing and unbeatable prices. Want to hear something even better? Pair these sales with Ebates and you’re bound to save the most money and get money back while doing it! Not to mention you’ll have your Christmas shopping done ASAP and take away some holiday stress off your plate. Win-win-win.

Trick #3 – Take online surveys. I’ve mentioned this before and I’ll mention it again because it’s a great way to earn some fast money! There are many survey website out there and each offer different rewards. Most rewards are gift cards to major retailers(ie Macy’s, Amazon, Target) but other rewards can include airline points, spa gift receipts, and physical possessions. This comes in handy to either give to other people or use to get the gifts.

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Christmas gift #1 – Putting together a holiday bundle from the dollar store. There’s no shame in it! You can find so many great gifts especially around the holiday season. One year for Secret Santa at work, I went to the dollar store and created a cute little Christmas bundle. I took a Christmas mug, some chocolates, a Christmas themed pen, and a small amount gift card to Starbucks and put it in a fun bag. It’s extremely easy, has that wonderful Christmas feeling, and inexpensive!

Christmas gift #2 – Homemade sweets. Food is the best way to someone’s heart! Last holiday season I made so many sweets at home that were good for my low sodium diet. I brought many to work with me and they were gone in a day! I had coworkers requesting I make them again for them. You can get very creative with it too! One recipe I had was for spiced nuts. It took less than an hour to make and they can go in a fun, decorative tin and be given as a gift. Christmas cookies are always a big hit and there are so many different kinds out there. Baking is inexpensive and the fact that they’re homemade brings a warm and special touch to the gift.

Christmas gift #3 – Re-gifting. There are a lot of opinions on whether or not it’s okay to re-gift. I personally don’t see a problem with it as long as you don’t re-gift to the person that originally gave it to you! With all the moves I’ve had in the past several years and now being minimalist, I’ve found plenty of unused or unopened items that had been sitting around doing nothing for months. I knew I was never going to use any of them and there were some items that I knew would make perfect gifts for some people. With this method, not only are you saving money, but you’re also getting rid of clutter from your home. Those gifts deserve to go to a person that will love and cherish them instead of sitting in some corner of your home collecting dust.

 

Hopefully these tricks and tips will help ease some of your holiday stress this season! Keep the conversation going in the comments below!

Items I bought in LA

*Post contains links and items I recommend. I have not been paid to advertise

“Does this spark joy?” If you’ve done research on minimalism then you know this a common phrase you should ask yourself. When going through your items to decide if you want to keep them or not, you are to hold each item and see if you have any emotion to it. I’ve found this extremely helpful while cleaning and organizing my things. Just recently I was cleaning out a storage bin and found a key chain with my name on it. I remember the exact time and place I had purchased it but when I held it in my hands, I had no feeling towards it. It was a great memory and experience but I had not used the key chain in years and had no intention of using it again. Another thing I found in the bin was a painting of a volleyball and a drawing of Rolie Polie Olie I had done in the 8th grade. I can’t remember the last I had them out on display but seeing them and holding them in my hands gave me a rush of emotions. I am in no way, shape, or form an artist. My art teacher had worked well with me and extended my deadlines to give me extra time to work on my projects. In the end, my painting received a good grade and the drawing was displayed in the art showcase in the school hallway. These I found acceptable to keep, and in storage, because they still bring happiness to my life when I see them.

Alright, so I think you’ve got the basics of it, yes? Moving on!

My recent trip to Los Angeles was my first vacation since becoming a minimalist so I thought I’d share the items that I bought and why!

First off, a huge majority of my money went towards transportation, food, and experiences.  I can honestly say that I had no problem swiping my card or pulling out cash for any of things that I purchased – even food. During the trip I realized that this is why I wanted to become a minimalist. I wanted to experience this place I’d never been to before. I wanted to try all the food I could that I wasn’t able to get back home. I wanted to go to all these different places and experience as much as I could. 

My purchases in Los Angeles are as follows:

  • Beetlejuice earrings from Hot Topic
    • Browsing around City Walk after a day at Universal, we went into Hot Topic. They had a Beetlejuice section, as it’s the 30th anniversary, and I fell in love. These earrings caught my eye right away and are a style that I like very much. It was an instant purchase and I’ve received so many compliments by wearing them! This one passes as an acceptable purchase because it’s something I wear frequently and it gives me joy every time I wear them.

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  • Sweet Pumpkin Crunch Body Scrub from Nectar Bath Treats
    • Nectar Bath Treats is an extremely cute store. I looked at their website and it doesn’t list any store locations but you can order items! If you do get a chance to see this store though I highly recommend it! All the products are vegan and handmade. But the best part? They all look like desserts! Macaroons, pies, ice cream – you name it! While browsing, an associate told us about their body scrubs and had us try some samples. Right before the trip I just happen to run out of my scrub and was very pleased with theirs so I bought one! It’s kept my skin super smooth and the smell is amazing! After using it frequently for the last couple of weeks, I can honestly say I won’t be purchasing body scrubs anywhere else!

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  • Cat Ring from the CatCafe Lounge
    • If y’all know me then you know I’m obsessed with rings. It’s my favorite pieces of jewelry to wear. I have a total now of 7 rings that I wear every day and all are very special to me. While visiting this cafe I saw that they had cat jewelry and apparel. The jewelry caught my eye right away and the ring was so simple and beautiful. Another fun fact about it: The woman who makes the jewelry gives the proceeds to help cats be spayed and neutered – how amazing is that!? I purchased the ring because it was very cute and fit perfectly on my thumb(where I happen to be wanting another ring) and knowing that the money goes to a great cause makes it that much worth it to purchase.

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  • Tank Top from the CatCafe Lounge
    • My second purchase here was a tank top. I love anything cat related, as you can tell by my above purchase, and I love supporting small businesses. This shirt is everything I live by and so it was absolutely fitting for me to get. It’s also a great reminder of an experience I had with some beautiful cats(who are all up for adoption!)

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And there you have it! Outside of food and travel, I only purchased 4 items my entire Los Angeles trip. Before I would have bought everything I liked or get a bunch of souvenirs. Now that I’ve started this new lifestyle as a minimalist, I know that many purchases I would have made would have brought me joy at the beginning but would have no real impact on my happiness in the long run. It also saved up money that I used for other things like trying new foods or drinks and not feeling guilty for spending that money.

LA Food Recommendations

When I go to a new city I like to try new food places. I know a lot of people who are totally fine hitting up the same food chains in different cities but I don’t prefer it. I like to immerse myself in a full experience of a new place and that includes food!

Los Angeles, like most major tourist cities, has a ton of places you can try. I started by using Yelp to see what places people were raving about. My mom had talked to some coworkers and received recommendations from them and our Airbnb host was absolutely amazing and gave us some amazing recommendations as well.

Keep reading to see my recommendations to a few places we visited in Los Angeles!

  • Micelli’s
    • By far one of the most fun restaurants I’ve ever been to! A family owned restaurant, Micelli’s sits on a corner right near Universal Studios. There is a complimentary valet available to park your car in a private lot right outside. Once you step inside you feel like you’ve been transported to a different world. The decor inside is so fun and there’s always something new to look at. All the employees are so cheerful and happy to help. The best part? The waitresses sing! That’s right, all the waiters and waitresses take turns singing and putting on a show for everyone inside. Even with all this going they are very attentive to their tables. The food is absolutely amazing and I recommend trying their house wine and after dinner drinks.
  • Karl Strauss Brewing Company
    • Loved this place so much I visited twice! I have zero complaints. The staff were incredibly nice and gave fast service. They have a ton of beers you can choose from and they’ll give you a list of their daily specials as well. I went with the Windansea and enjoyed it very much – especially for me not being a huge beer drinker. I’m extremely basic when it comes to eating food so you won’t find any special recommendations from me. I love macaroni and cheese and practically did cartwheels when I saw it on their menu. It’s a huge helping and there was not a single piece left – most amazing food ever! There’s also the option of indoor and outdoor seating. I never got to sit outside but I would have loved to as you get to see the hustle and bustle of City Walk and can even get live music from performers below.
  • Porto’s Bakery
    • I wasn’t in the immediate area for this bakery but it was totally worth the drive! This is another family owned place with an amazing background story. Walking in and staring at all the delicacies was a little overwhelming because I wanted one of everything! If I had had more time I would have loved to try so many more items but the pastry I had was amazing by itself. Another great thing? It’s dirt cheap for amazing food. Our two items were less than a small coffee at Starbucks. You can’t beat that!
  • CatCafe Lounge
    • So I found this place on Airbnb and I’m obsessed. This organization takes in cats and helps socialize and prepare them to be adopted. For $25 you’re able to go hang out with 30+ cats for an hour and a half and help socialize them. All are up for adoption as well! It was one of my favorite parts about my trip – tea, lounging, and cats. It was really hard walking out of there not adopting some of them. Here is there website for more info!
  • BluJam Cafe
    • This was my favorite spot to have breakfast and I will absolutely be returning when I’m in Los Angeles again. There are several locations but the one I went to was on Melrose Avenue. It’s a small place but I never felt crowded. Since there were a lot of people it was fairly loud but not where you had to shout across the table and the music was kept at an acceptable volume. I also really loved the interior design. I felt so calm and at peace! Our host and waiter were extremely friendly and attentive and the food was 10/10. I highly recommend trying their french toast churros.

 

I have another trip to Los Angeles coming up soon so stay tuned for more recommendations!

Saving for my LA Trip

If you’ve been following my Instagram (and if you don’t, you should!) then you know that I was in Los Angeles for a mini vacation! It was my birthday and so my mom and I took a trip to Universal Studios. Now, I’ve lived in California for about six years and I have never been to LA. I figured since we were already going a few days for Universal that we might as well do some sight seeing too!

We spent a total of six days in Los Angeles and, yes, it was a little expensive. So how did I do it? How did I manage to take care of bills, have fun, and not stress about money? Read on to find out!

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Before I begin, I must add that I did not pay for this trip entirely by myself. As I was going with my mom, she helped pay for things too. It was also my birthday trip so I deserved to get spoiled a little!

Travel ~

Airbnb. I’ve been using Airbnb for almost 2 years now and I absolutely love using it for trips! You’ll find it is much cheaper than staying at a hotel and the hosts are so sweet and some will even give great tips and recommendations! The one I booked was only 2 miles from Universal and it was around ~$850 for two people the entire stay. Before you let your jaw drop, understand that this was an amazing price! I did compare to other hotels and found that if we were to stay at one, the cost would be well over $1,100. The other great thing is that I was able to split this up into two payments – one half when I booked and the other half about a week or two before our actual stay. This was perfect because I wasn’t out $850 in one pay period and I was able to save up and be mindful for the next few months before the other half of the payment.

Plane Tickets. For the plane tickets, we used Southwest, my favorite airline. We get alerts emailed to us and they were having a sale going on with cheap ticket pricing. Also you don’t have to pay for checked bags if they’re under 50 pounds – you can’t pass that up!

The last thing we had to do was book a rental car. This was all on my mom as I am not 25 years old and cannot do so.

Lyft. This is a shout out to our awesome Airbnb host! She lives about 2 miles away from Universal. When we checked in with her, she asked if we were planning on going to Universal and if so, if we were planning on driving and parking there. We told her yes and she advised us that we take Lyft instead. From her place, it was $7 or less one way to go to Universal. Parking your own car was upwards of $35/daily. In the end, we totaled out that we used exactly $35 on Lyft to get us to and from Universal (and one night for City Walk). That saved us a whole day of parking and took out any stress of it as well!

Packing ~

I never like to check a bag unless I absolutely have to. I’m also the kind of person to over pack. I’ll bring multiple pairs of everything so that I have it just in case. I’ll pack the fancy outfit…just in case. I get crazy with it. This time, I packed extremely light and only had my carry on. I packed for my trip a shirt for each day, a sweater, two pairs of shorts, one pair of jeans, and three different pairs of shoes. It made packing so much easier and less stressful to do!

But Kait…that doesn’t have anything to do with saving money? Wrong! If you were packing this in a carry on and flying with an airline that doesn’t charge for a bag over a certain weight limit, you just saved yourself some money. You also saved space for yourself if you buy things while on your trip. Imagine if you bought too many things and didn’t have enough space for it all? You’d end up having to buy another bag or small suitcase to make everything fit.

The other thing I did to help save money was to buy empty travel size containers. If you’re like me and use a special shampoo and conditioner, you wanna stick with that and keep it with you on the trip. Most of the time, though, these shampoos and conditioners don’t come in travel sizes. Sure you could buy some other kind but you’re most likely not going to use the whole thing, it then never gets used again, and it goes in the trash. So I buy empty travel size containers and put my shampoo, conditioner, and moisturizer into those bottles. Whatever I don’t use on the trip just goes right back into the original bottle and voilà! Money saved.

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It doesn’t seem like much but doing all of these things helped take so much stress out of my vacation and allow me to have a fun time doing all the things I wanted while I was in Los Angeles!

What are your tips and tricks for when you travel? Comment below!