minimal travel | tips for nesting on the road

Two years and the same number of lease renewals later, I finally feel acceptably stable in Tampa. Thus, the inevitable musing pops up as I glance around my bedroom and common room and kitchen: What is home, and what are the bare bones of comfort? The concept is still in flux, but traveling has cued further awareness of settlement away from the familiar, even if the trip is just a couple of days. I generally don’t suffer from a crippling longing for home, as my attachment to Tampa is perhaps disproportionate to the comfort of my little two-bedroom, but I still like reminders of the cozy patch awaiting my return.

I attribute my heightened sensual awareness to having practiced yoga regularly for over two years now. Not to say that you have to pretzel into pincha or Standing Compass on the daily to enjoy the smell of lavender or running your fingers through a warm and worn throw blanket. Yoga is just the trigger for my nose and ears and toes and the appreciation for satisfying their respective wants. The nose likes to pinpoint a breeze of floral pillow mist drifting among the stark white aroma of hotel linens. The toes curl happily on the gentle squish of my mat atop a hard floor. Violins sing a lovely tune to my ears.

Fort Lauderdale was my first time wandering with the intention to personalize my hotel space, and I don’t think I’ll steer away from the habit so long as I continue roaming. Nothing I packed was complicated and took up little suitcase room (aside from my yoga mat, but it folds quite neatly) yet the added touches made the foreign, familiar. Minimalist travel need not translate to stretching one pair of underwear over three days (please don’t do that) or foregoing the mascara that accentuates your eyes so much you feel like a new specimen. Minimalism, broadly, means prioritizing. And for me, one compartment of my suitcase & five luxuries isn’t excessive. Take a peak at what I brought, and will continue to bring on further escapades, and other ideas for some inspiration for your own home-away comfort-seeking adventure!

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Olfactory

  1. Candle (one-wick/4 oz) *Note: make sure your hotel/b&b/etc. allows candles
  2. Linen spray
  3. Favorite hand lotion

Visual

  1. Book or magazine
  2. Bouquet of wildflowers (or fake flowers!)

Gustatory

  1. Hard candies or gum. I’m obsessed with Starlight mints: at home I have one every night post-dinner to settle my tummy
  2. Box of your favorite tea or cocoa

Tactile

  1. Favorite hoodie
  2. Bath robe or wrap
  3. Yoga mat *this is literally my home-away-from-home, one rectangle of the room I occupy fully. In a way, the mat is its own special category, or an amalgamation of each.

Auditory

  1. Audiobook
  2. Curated Pandora or Spotify station
  3. Mood sounds (RainyMood & MyNoise are my favorites!)

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Hampton Inn-Cypress Creek // Fort Lauderdale (pizza from Flash Fire)

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Fairfield Inn // Jupiter


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