Packing


The Ultimate Missions Packing Guide: What To Bring On Your Trip.

“The Ultimate Mission Trip Packing Guide.” – tips and tricks from Praying Pelican Missions missionaries on how to be best prepared for your mission trip and how to take the pressure off of packing your suitcase for a new culture, climate and lifestyle. Our heart is to remove the anxiety and focus from timeless questions like: “How much is too much?” and give you a few tips that we’ve learned throughout the years. Ultimately, we pray that these posts would be a resource for you as you prepare for your trip. We want to provide you with a few tools that can help you as you prepare for your trip of a lifetime.

All throughout the Bible we are told to “prepare, prepare, prepare…” We are told to prepare our fields by sowing seed, told to prepare our lives for when the Lord returns, etc. We see so many stories of people trusting in God and preparing for things that they have never seen or experienced. In Hebrews 11:7 we read, “By Faith Noah, when warned about things not yet seen, in holy fear built an ark to save his family. By his faith he condemned the world and became an heir of the righteousness that comes by faith.” Noah had never seen rain or a boat but he trusted in God and believed that if God told him to prepare for something he had never experienced then it would happen. Whether this is your 1st or 2nd or 134th mission trip, God has called you to go, and because of that he has also called you to prepare for the trip. You may know what to expect and you may not. In this blog post, I’ll be highlighting a couple things that I think are good to make sure to bring with you so that you are (hopefully) prepared for a trip that is going to stretch and challenge you.

Because I have a fascination with all things medical and have a desire to return to school to become a nurse, I’m going to start off by talking about all the things related to your immediate health that I think are important to bring with you on your trip. One thing that I usually keep with me at all times is a handy dandy first aid kit. I always make sure it’s fully stocked just in case something comes up. Trust me, random scratches and cuts happen all the time so it’s nice to know you are covered. In addition to a first aid kit, I always have a small toiletry bag of some sort that has things like Immodium, Pepto Bismol, Tylenol or Ibuprofen, Cipro (this would be something a doctor would have to get you a prescription for but its unbelievable when dealing with stomach issues), Multi-Symptom Cold Medicine and Benadryl.

Some other toiletry items that I find quite handy are ponytail holders, thin or thick headbands and bobby pins. They work wonders if you want a to do something simple yet awesome with your hair. Also having to do with hair, I recommend some dry shampoo or baby powder. Of course if you use baby powder you need to make sure you don’t end up looking like a grandma but definitely pack some. It works wonders when you are sweaty and want to feel fresh and dry. I recommend packing some germ x and maybe roll of toilet paper or a pack of tissues. You never know when you will need them and what for. Baby Wipes! Those too, pack some of those. A great way to wipe off some sweat and grime in the afternoon so you feel fresh even if its only for 10 minutes. Chapstick with sunscreen is also something you might want to consider packing. Sunscreen and either Aloe or After Sun Lotion is something that I also highly recommend. Lastly, don’t forget the bug spray but make sure that it doesn’t have a high deet content. Higher is not always better. Trust me.

To help you keep cool, I suggest bringing some sort of mister or there are some water bottles now with a built in mister (O2 Cool Water Bottle). I have also seen some people invest in a Frogg Togg and bring it with them on their trip. Other things that may come in handy would be things like a hat, preferably one with a brim of some sort, is essential. Sunglasses always come in handy and if I were you, I would go somewhere and just get a cheap pair that way if something happens and they get ruined, its not a big deal. When you are packing for your trip in general I would suggest you steer clear of really nice clothes in case they get ruined. But when thinking about clothes, I would pack either a tide pen or a small package of Laundry detergent just in case.

Some last things to bring would of course be your Bible (or if you own a rather large one, pick up a travel Bible), some journals ( I HIGHLY recommend you journal every day so you don’t forget things that happened and who you meet), pens, and finally if you are going to a country that doesn’t speak your native language, throw either a dictionary or make some notecards with important phrases on them or key words so you are able to have conversation with people you meet.

I hope these tips help you in your packing and allow you the opportunity to focus on the goodness of God and the blessing it is to serve him rather than on the details of what you should pack.

 

Check Out The Other Posts In Our Packing Series:

What Not To Pack

The Good Ole USA

Family Pack

Wet Hair, Don’t Care II

Travel Beauty Tips

Who Says It Has To Be Itsy Bitsy

I Love Sleep


The Ultimate Missions Packing Guide: I love Sleep.

“The Ultimate Mission Trip Packing Guide.” – tips and tricks from Praying Pelican Missions missionaries on how to be best prepared for your mission trip and how to take the pressure off of packing your suitcase for a new culture, climate and lifestyle. Our heart is to remove the anxiety and focus from timeless questions like: “How much is too much?” and give you a few tips that we’ve learned throughout the years. Ultimately, we pray that these posts would be a resource for you as you prepare for your trip. We want to provide you with a few tools that can help you as you prepare for your trip of a lifetime.

Sleep. Something we all need yet sometimes we don’t get enough of. When we were little we used to fight it when we were told to go to bed or take naps but when we get older we understand it’s true value. I love sleep. I love taking naps. Sometimes I dream about taking naps or going to bed. The dictionary defines sleep as ” the natural periodic suspension of consciousness during which the powers of the body are restored,” or you could use the word rest. We all need sleep and a time to restore our bodies each day to continue to do what we need to do. God showed us it was important in Genesis 2:2-3, ” By the seventh day God had finished the work he had been doing; so on the seventh day he rested from all his work. And God blessed the seventh day and made it holy, because on it he rested from all the work of creating that he had done.” We need rest, God

So, if you are going on a mission trip the question becomes, “How can I get the best possible sleep while i’m there?” Have no fear, that’s why I’m here! I’ll do my best in the following paragraphs to give you tips that I have learned and/or heard in order to give you the best night of sleep you can while you are out in the field.

First up, the mattress. There are so many different things you can use. It all depends on how you like it. Some like an air mattress that’s 10 feet high while other people like almost non-existent pads of foam on the ground. I, however, have begun to use my handy dandy always faithful Eno Hammock. It’s lightweight, doesn’t complain too much and provides an awesome night of sleep, the only downside to having an Eno is that it is sometimes hard to find a place to hang it up, so I recommend making sure there is sufficient places to hang up your hammock before you commit to only bringing it. In most teams that I encounter everyone brings a simple air mattress and they bring 1 or 2 pumps to share among everyone. If you don’t have room for an air mattress or want to pack as light as possible there is also the option of bringing a sleeping pad which is surprisingly very comfortable as well.

Secondly, the covering. Do you bring sheets? Do you not bring sheets? A towel maybe? This also depends solely on your sleeping patterns. If you are traveling somewhere hot then I wouldn’t necessarily pack a down comforter but I would bring at least a sheet. I usually bring a bottom and a top sheet if only for the sole reason that under the bottom sheet I throw a couple dryer sheets. Did you know they keep mosquitoes away while you are sleeping so you don’t have to douse yourself in bug spray before you climb into bed? Well, they do so I would suggest bringing both a bottom and a top sheet to keep you nice and comfy and mosquito free during your trip. And in addition to the pillow case that you will probably through on your pillow, I’d bring an extra one of those as well and make it double as a laundry bag!

Last but not least, the accessories. There are several things that I find personally useful to have near me while I am sleeping.

  • Mosquito Net: I personally do not use one of these but I do know that some people appreciate having something that keeps every bug known to man on the outside of wherever they are sleeping. I have seen them come in all sorts of shapes and sizes from big ole tents to ones they just throw over top of them.
  • Ear Plugs: There are usually noises galore whether it’s dogs barking, people yelling, your neighbor snoring or a random bug that takes up residence right next to where you are sleeping. Ear plugs are essential. Trust me.
  • Flashlight (or other lightsource): also essential. Nothing is more ridiculous then waking up in the middle of the night having to go to the bathroom which is outside to the left and 5 houses down (maybe a bit of an exaggeration but i’m sticking to it!) and not having a flashlight or some way for you to see where you are going to get there.
  • Water Bottle: This is another thing that I highly recommend you have by your bedside. When you are on a mission trip in another country, especially a hot one, we always encourage that you drink lots of water and so I always keep a bottle by my bed and try to drink half of it before I get out of bed to ensure I am getting hydrated before I even start my day.
  • Eye Mask: Some people find this to be a useful item to have. Whether it’s because you don’t want the sun shining in your face early in the morning or because they need complete darkness while they sleep.
  • Personal Fan: I highly recommend this! Whether its a small two D battery fan or my personal favorite 8 D battery fan (I know, I know but I make other sacrifices so this baby can fit in) I tell everyone who is floor sleeping to think about bringing one or sharing one with a friend. You aren’t always promised a fan and it can make all the difference in the world.
  •  Dryer Sheets: These are important. I not only put a few under my sheet before I put it on the bed but I also stick a few in my pillowcase and sometimes just leave a few near my bed to make sure those mosquitoes know they aren’t welcome near me.

I hope that these little tidbits, although not much, have given you some idea on you can pack and think about your sleeping arrangement while you are somewhere other than your bed at home. We want you to be super comfy while you serve and be able to get all the rest you need as we know that God is going to use you in BIG BIG ways.

 

Check Out The Other Posts In Our Packing Series:

What Not To Pack

The Good Ole USA

Family Pack

Wet Hair, Don’t Care II

Travel Beauty Tips