Big news, backpacks and a tiny bit of bragging

Hey Everyone! Big news! Brittany and I have finally bought our plane tickets to Dublin! Our trip will be about 50 days and it’s starting to truly seem real!

That being said, I need to start getting serious about preparing for the trip. One of the most important things I need to buy is a backpack!! Since Brittany and I will be moving all around the UK, I will be using a backpack because it is easier than hauling a suitcase around. While I was home for spring break I went to a local outdoor adventure store to do some browsing.  There actually is a lot of information that you need to consider when buying your backpack.  So much so, that I still am doing more research before I decide to buy!

The backpack that I’m considering is an Osprey Kestrel 32 pack. I never thought that a backpack could be so comfortable!! That is something very important about the backpack you choose to use.  There are different sizes for backpacks, so be sure to get fitted.  Since I’m 5′ 8″ I consider myself tall and assumed that I would need at least a medium-sized pack, maybe even a large! Turns out that I actually fit a small.  I guess its my long legs that make me tall! 😉

Here are some qualities about the Kestrel that I like, which you should consider when looking for a bag:

  • Back panel features ridge-molded foam with channels covered in mesh to allow airflow
  • Hip belt features 2 zippered pockets for stashing my camera and snacks
  • Side compression straps you can pull to bring the bag closer to your body so the weight of the bag is more central
  • Integrated rain cover that pulls out in a flash to protect contents from sudden downpours

A great website I found, Her Packing List, shares women’s reviews of various different backpacks among other travel information. I would definitely suggest looking at their reviews and posts.

Here are some tips to finding the perfect bag for you:

  • Consider how much you want to spend on your bag.  My bag is priced around $130 which is perfect for me.
  • If you are going on a long trip, comfort is something to seriously consider.
  • Take a good look at your bag before you buy it.  While it may be convenient to order offline, you can look at every nook and cranny of your bag when you’re at a store.  The store I stopped at had a great salesman who was specially certified to talk about all the bags they carried.  He was able to talk to me about pockets inside which can separate clean and dirty laundry and a side zipper which lets you access what’s inside rather than taking everything out from the top.  Those things may seem trivial, but it can save you from some minor aggravation.

Lets recap: when looking for a backpack go in person, know your price range, get fitted, make sure the bag is comfortable and look at every feature of the bag.

Now for a tiny bit of bragging! I held an event, “Girls Got Jokes” on my campus this past week, as part of my women’s studies class final project.  Myself, five other students and one staff member from our campus each did a standup comedy routine or improv for ten minutes.  A professional comedian also came and performed as well. It was a great success, everyone was hilarious and I didn’t pass out on stage from nerves! Check out my set (which my fabulous sister filmed for me) below and have some laughs!

Kelly’s Standup Comedy Routine

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