If you’re planning to be away from home more than a few days, and you don’t want to bring every item in your wardrobe, you have to plan for laundry while traveling. We used to leave home knowing that somewhere down the line we’d find a laundromat and figure it out. But then, when we got there, we found buying supplies was costly, and when the change machine was empty? Well that was downright maddening. So now, we plan ahead, and doing laundry while traveling is a snap.

We start with a lightweight bag.

travel laundry bag

We chose this one from The Container Store because of a few key features:

  • It’s made of a strong, lightweight material.
  • The bag packs inside itself.
  • It can be securely closed with a zipper to keep dirty clothes inside.
  • It has handles.
  • The bag has a pocket for supplies.

Here are a few other options: (You should know that as Amazon influencers, we earn from qualifying purchases.)


Plan ahead for laundry while traveling

Before we leave home, we put one scoop of powdered laundry detergent in snack-sized ziplock bags. To decide how many to take, we think about how long we’ll be gone and how much laundry we think we’ll need to do. Then, we put those mini-bags in a larger ziplock. This keeps the small bags of detergent together and provides a safety in case one of them accidentally opens. We also label our bag so a government inspector might have an idea of what it is (and is not).

laundry travel

But wait, there’s more! After putting the detergent in the larger bag, we add enough dryer sheets to the larger ziplock for our trip, as well. Now, we have a packet ready to go with the laundry supplies we’ll need. And bringing supplies from home is so much cheaper than buying them at the laundromat.


what you'll need to do laundry while traveling

We hear you say, “But I use liquid detergent at home.” No problem. You can still buy a small box of powder and keep it for when you travel. After all, it’s not going to spoil, and you can make sure you have the type of detergent you want for yourself and your family.

But there’s one more step. Find an empty pill bottle, and fill it with quarters. Now, gather all your goodies together and be ready to do laundry while traveling.

coins for laundry

Prep your laundry bag.

Now, just grab your lightweight bag that meets all the criteria above. When ours is folded in on itself, we can just slide the detergent and quarters inside it.

travel laundry bag

It really folds into a handy little package that fits nicely in your suitcase. The bag and enough detergent for five loads of laundry weighs o 1 lb., 1/2 oz. A pill bottle full of quarters weighs about 11 oz., but you can adjust that as needed.

The bag doesn’t stay like that for long, though. After all, we have dirty clothes the first night of our trip. So, we unfold the bag and start putting soiled items in it. Then, we move the detergent and quarters to the bag’s pocket and keep adding dirty clothes at the end of each day. Now, when it’s time for laundry, we just grab the bag and head to the laundry. Inside the bag is everything we need: our dirty (soon to be clean) clothes, quarters, detergent and even dryer sheets.

Yes, doing laundry while traveling isn’t necessarily what you want to do, but if you’re on the road long enough, it’s something you need to do. With a little preparation, the process is pretty painless.

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  • Last week, we had the pleasure of making handmade pasta (via the internet) with our friends, Deb and Massi, who were in their home kitchen in Italy. ⁣
You can read all about it, and get the recipe, on our blog. Yep, you guessed it, the link is in our bio. ⁣
We met Deb and Massi of @italyunfiltered a few years ago when they created an amazing food and wine itinerary for us. We've remained friends and it was so good to see them, even if they were a world away.
  • We were supposed to be in Rochester, Minnesota, this week for Ann to see a cardiac sarcoidosis specialist about some recent issues with her heart. Of course, we did not travel to Rochester for her scans and doctor visits because of the coronavirus outbreak.⁣
Instead, her cardiologists called her from their homes and her scans and tests will likely be delayed until June or July. We'll keep in close touch with them if anything changes, as well. We are so grateful for all of the healthcare professionals who are continuing to work crazy hours from home as well as in our hospitals around the world.⁣
This is such an unprecedented and stressful time for all of them. Words will never be enough to convey our gratitude for the roles they are playing in the battle against this deadly virus while caring for those with other diseases and illnesses at the same time. ⁣
Every healthcare provider we've talked with in the last two weeks has had the same message for those of us who don't have to go to work at a hospital. ⁣
Just. Stay. Home.
  • Yesterday was Day 16 of social isolation for us. Because of Ann's underlying heart condition and suppressed immune system, we've cooked all our meals at home (no takeout). We've starting to get more and more creative as time has gone by. ⁣
Last night, we made chicken and shrimp vindaloo and learned online how to make homemade naan.⁣
It wan't as good as our favorite Indian restaurant, The Oven, but it did satisfy the craving we've had for Indian food. ⁣
What are you craving these days?
  • We moved our living room furniture around this week and put two swivel chairs near the sliding glass door. Each day, we take time to turn around, rest our minds, enjoy in the view, and just be. #webelieveinhome
  • Our daughter, Meghan, is a cardiac ICU nurse. Despite all of the current uncertainties in healthcare during this pandemic, early this morning she put on her scrubs and went to work a 12+ hour shift. 
She is not alone. Across the country and around the world, healthcare workers are putting the safety of themselves and their families at risk to help others. It's what they do. Every. Single. Day. 
We are incredibly grateful that there are selfless people like this in the world and we pray for them and we hope you'll join us. 
We couldn't sleep this morning, so we wrote instead. Click on the link in our bio to read our morning thoughts and prayers.
  • Trying to decide where we’ll travel this weekend. Covered porch? Living room? 😉
  • We are staying home. 
We've been here for almost a week now because Ann is one of "those people." You know the ones. Those people with an underlying health issue. Those people with a suppressed immune system. One of those people who could become seriously ill, need hospitalization, and even die if exposed to the coronavirus.  Those people need your help to stay safe and live. And all you have to do is stay home when you don’t NEED to be out.

Over the past few days, we’ve seen photos, videos, and witnessed first hand people of all ages (but mostly young people) gathering in groups for what us mid lifers would consider “non essential” reasons: birthday parties, movies, youth sports practices, St. Patty’s Day celebrations at the bar, spring break at the beach, and the like. 
We don’t understand it. 
We try not to judge. 
But just for a time during this worldwide pandemic, could we ask people who are participating in non-essential activities to consider who “those people” most at risk really are?

Those people are already battling serious illnesses.

Those people want to see their grandchildren grow up.

Those people need to do their jobs as nurses and doctors.

Those people are first responders. 
Those people run the grocery store, and the pharmacy, and the gas station. 
Those people pray for you and your generation. 
And what about those other people? 
The ones you know.

Those people who made sacrifices to meet your needs.

Those people who took care of you when you were sick.

Those people who went to your games and cheered you on. 
Those people who taught you in school.

Those people who helped you pay for college.

Those people who cooked your favorite dish for you.

Those people who taught your Sunday School class.

Those people who have forgiven you.

Those people who will always love you unconditionally.

We keep wanting to scream, “It’s not about you, it’s about those people!” But the truth of the matter is, IT IS ABOUT YOU. 
You have the power to help.
You have the power to influence others.
You have the power to flatten the curve.

And by not changing your behaviors, you also have the power to harm. 
How will you choose to use your power?j
  • We’re sharing your postcards and encouraging you to help others and stay positive. 
If you’d like to send us a postcard, mail to: Postcard Jar, PO Box 334, Crete, NE 68333.

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