Now that I am staying put for 6 months, I am unpacking the boxes that I had in my car for my journey out here, plus the three that I mailed.
In July, it was hard to know what I might need. I didn't know where I'd be living or what kind of clothes I would need for work. I packed about half my clothes both casual and work and a suit and one pair of heels, 3 'sneakers', 2 flip flops and one flat. I packed one plastic tote of kitchen items such as one small pot, 4 of each plate, cup, fork, knife, spoon and the few larger serving pieces, an apple corer, a few tupperware containers and a corkscrew. I had two small boxes of electronics with camera accessories, a wireless adapter, Google ChromeCast, wires- lots and lots of random wires, a DVD remote (yet the DVD is in another box in my parents basement), a few small tools, some hangers, some scrapbook supplies, a tote filled with bathroom supplies, a small seat, and one throw blanket and one pillow and finally one tote of food and paper products. I also thought that if I found a job and a place, that I'd have all my stuff shipped out to me via pod, so this was just to carry me through a few months.
On my first visit home in October, I packed two boxes and mailed out to me, snowshoes, hats, snow pants, scarves, gloves, 3 coats, my winter boots, more tupperware, another small pot and some cooking gadgets like a whisk, rubber spatula, one of those small immersion hand mixers, a few recipes, and a shower curtain. These boxes cost about $78 to mail. I carried back in my carry on some more clothes. It was hard because I still didn't have a place to stay consistently, and I didn't know what I may or may not need.
My second trip home was in Nov ember and I just found out I'd be signing a 6 month lease so I shipped one large box for $48, with one suit, lots of hangers, three pairs of shoes, pictures, knee highs and socks, a picture holder and a few other various items like a few candles, shower curtain rings, and my St. Anne statue. In my carry-on I packed a king size comforter, a humidifier, and 2 family photos. The price of that box surprised me, but it was kind of big and weighed about 32 pounds. For $50 I could have checked it at the airport and gotten another 10 pounds worth of stuff.
Obviously I didn't pack well at any of these times. The first time was the hardest and I didn't use a lot of that stuff until more recently. It really just sat in a few boxes untouched in the back of my car for months. I didn't use any of the electronics, only a few 'work' outfits for interviews, and only used the scrapbook stuff once. The wireless adapter I just plugged in yesterday, I've used a few tools and many of the hangers, and the hat, gloves and jackets.
I am not sure I can give advice to anyone who wants to travel with just a car load of stuff. I think some kitchen equipment is valuable - I still need to get a small frying pan, but I've used most of the kitchen stuff I toted along. Various clothes are important - both change of seasons and work/casual. Unfortunately I haven't found a job yet, so that didn't get much use, but other people may luck out faster than me. The electronics & wires could have waited (minus the laptop, iPad, camera and phone equipment). I used the small folding seat when I attended little league soccer games and would have along the way if I picnicked (which I did not). The pillow and throw blanket were very handy, but not enough once it got colder. The bathroom supplies tote I used some here and there and other items not yet...but you know, it is always good to have some medication or a thermometer around just in case...and I actually did use my ice bag when I broke my toe - so that was a smart use of car space. Scrapbooking supplies was a 'luxury' but I figured I'd have a lot of free time and a plethora of pictures...yet I am working on 2013 still and haven't ordered or even uploaded many pictures from my trip yet.
And I have been out shopping to pick up both practical things and things to make the place look a little homier.