Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Packing My Oldest for College

Now that the dust has settled and Carter is firmly entrenched in college (except for the weekends he comes home to visit his girlfriend) I can look back on how I prepped him for school and decide what worked and what didn't.  Today I am going to go over packing.  After researching on pinterest I created a Carter-specific packing list:

Click the picture to get a downloadable and printable copy.  This was pretty specific to Carter and what he and I thought he needed, but it's generic enough for everyone else.  
When I was packing him one things I did (that got me accused of being an enabler) was to pack him a big box of extra toiletries.  I bought two and three of everything, except shampoo and conditioner.  There were a couple reasons for this--the first being that it just is one less thing he has to worry about.  He was not going to have a car at school and this way he doesn't have to worry about finding a ride to replace something.  Also, he can share. If someone needs toothpaste or deodorant, he has extra. Since college he has also discovered ordering from Amazon so he has already replaced a few things himself by just ordering it online.
Here are the things he is really glad we packed:

1. Backpack:  We bought this one from LLBean.  He loves it.  It holds all his digital equipment and isn't too bulky. It's one of his favorite items and since it's from LLBean, I know it will last (commercial!).
2. Chromebook: Carter isn't a really big computer guy, so when we were looking for a laptop we decided that he should give a chromebook a try. Chromebooks are basically online devices and since he was coming from a high school that heavily used Google Classroom he realized 99% of everything he does on a computer is online. The small glitch to start was printing, but he got Google Cloud set up and is now able to print easily.

3. Portable charger and 6 foot cord:  I talked about this in a previous post, but he uses this constantly. He never has to worry about his phone or ipad dying on him, and he has a nice long cord for plugging his phone in at night and still being able to use it in his elevated bed.

4. Dollar Shave Club: I posted about this before but just have to say again how awesome this service is for college guys. They also have a line of body and hair care products that can be added any month. I am going to teach Carter how to log into "his" account and look things over so he can add to his order if he runs out of stuff.   
(by the way, if you want to join for one of the men in your life, use this link so I can get some credit)

5. Cold & Flu Medicine: Add this to the toiletry box. It's so nice for them to have it and not need it than need it and not have it.

6. Apple TV (or a Roku): Carter's room came with a TV, I don't think that is standard yet and if your child plans on having a TV they will want to be able to stream onto the TV so their computer is not always busy. Carter loves his apple TV and it is used constantly in his room. I think he would tell me it is the favorite thing he packed.

7. I also made him a "just in case" box with things like tape and a screwdriver and scissors. I know that they have all been used because I have gotten calls and texts about how someone needed something and Carter had it and they were all excited they didn't have to go buy it! 

When I made the list it was mostly for shopping so I didn't put things on his list that I already had. As the summer was progressing and our pile of stuff to pack got bigger I realized that there were a lot of things that he used daily that we needed to remember to pack, that's why there is a section on the list of things to "remember to pack."

One thing we didn't pack that we ended up ordering (seriously, amazon prime, best thing ever) was a desktop organizer. Carter didn't ever use a desk at home so he didn't need an organizer, but the first day realized he'd need something, so we ordered from amazon and it was there two days later.

If you are a parent packing your child, what aha moment did you have when packing?  If you are a college student what was one thing you were really glad you packed?

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