So I promised I would pack and post a funny blog about all the drama but the truth is there hasn't been much drama. I few bruised toes from dropping lotion bottles, a broken nail as a reminder of my victory in battle against the stubborn zipper, but other than that surprisingly little to report. I will post pictures though, if for no other reason than so that you can all comment and tell me what an amazing and resourceful packer I am. This is a picture of my pile of junk that I plan to take with me (minus a few small things I still need to pick up):

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And here is a picture of my two bags fully packed and zipped up:

bags packed for Togo

I captured the bottom of the chair in both pictures as a size reference. No magic was used in this process though I scraped a few knuckles cramming it all in.

And since I'm sure you're all so anxious to hear all of the goodies in those bags I'll fill in the details. My packing list consisted of:

5 skirts (longer than knee length as Togo is more concerned with modesty than we are)
7 shirts (some button down, some tees and some dressier)
6 sports bras (anything with an under wire dies quickly in Africa)
3 bottles of sunscreen
2 bottles of aloe (for the inevitable sunburns)
2 bottles of lotion (which like all my beauty products is not animal tested)
2 bottles of face moisturizer
3 bottles of 3-in-1 shampoo, body wash and conditioner
1 tube antibiotic ointment
2 bottles mentholated alcohol
tweezers, nail clippers, nail files, etc
yoga mat
travel embroidery case
spare embroidery hoop
7 books (which added probably 15 pounds but is more than worth it to me)
Case of fruit stripes gum (I'm told it's the PC equivalent of cigarettes)
Several bandannas and scarves for tying up my hair
A plethora of pony tail holders and clips
Case of citronella candles
Gallon of unsweetened applesauce (don't judge me...I'll need the vitamins over there)
Quick cooking barley and oats
Dried Fruit
2 washcloths
1 towel
Lots and lots of water flavor packets

I also packed a beautiful windchime to hang at my new house because it makes me happy :)

I have one more small bag for my envelopes and stationary, last minute items, etc. This list is mostly to help others who are searching for packing lists to help them make their own (which is exactly what I did). I'm sure once I'm over in Togo I'll think of a million things I wish I had made room for and I'll whine about each one of them but on the whole I'm pretty freaking proud of what I've gotten ready.

I'm heading to a Peace Corps dinner in B'ham on the 22nd. The regional director for the southeast will be there as will the head of the RPCVs Dan Fredrick. There will also be RPCVs (Returned Peace Corps Volunteers for those not in the loop) and other nominees waiting to head off to training so my next post will likely be all about our fun times at the Mellow Mushroom.