Tag Archives: Tom Bihn

What’s in my Tom Bihn Synapse 19 + Side Effect

Hi guys! Last week was a lesson in rolling with it when plans change unexpectedly. Chet and I were planning on spending a few days in his hometown in Louisiana (I could almost taste the poboys and frozen daiquiris) before he presented at a conference at the local university. Unfortunately, the weather had other plans.

We got to the airport with plenty of time to spare (and even bought new books at the airport bookstore for our journey!) But after delays at the gate, delays on the tarmac, and delays on the phone as we tried to figure out if there was any possible way we could get to Louisiana…we ended up in a Lyft headed back to our apartment. *DOH!*

Even though we didn’t make it to our destination, I thought it would be fun to give you a peek into my travel bags anyways. I felt like my one-bag packing mojo was pretty spot-on this time around and I’d kinda like to have a post to reference the next time I’m traveling for¬†2-3 days by plane. And maybe it will be useful to you as well!

[CLICK HERE TO HAVE MY ONE BAG TRAVEL CHEAT SHEET SENT TO YOUR INBOX!!]

As always, I’m a forever devotee of my Tom Bihn Synapse 19. The newest member of my packing accouterments entourage is the Tom Bihn Side Effect, an awesome place to store all the little things you might need access to without having to sling a backpack off your back (See also: purse). It’s a great, little companion for my Synapse. ūüôā

So without further ado, here’s what I packed for a 2-day (+travel days) trip to Louisiana by plane…

In my Tom Bihn Side Effect 

Large Compartment

  • Wallet
  • Phone
  • Small notebook
  • Headphones
  • Plane Tickets

Front Compartment

  • Keys
  • Pen
  • Chapstick

In my Tom Bihn Synapse 19

* click HERE for a break-down of the Synapse 19 pockets *

Main Compartment

Deep Center Pocket 

  • Liquids bag –
    • body wash
    • perfume
    • face wash
    • toothpaste
    • and BB cream
  • Deodorant

Shallow Center Pocket

  • Lara Bar x2
  • Kindle charger
  • Advil

Bottom Compartment

  • Sandals

Left Pocket

  • A ziploc bag full of trail-mix
  • Phone charger
  • Pen, Sharpie pen, Sharpie

Right Pocket

  • Tom Bihn stuff sack
    • feminine products
    • tweezers
    • razor
    • and hair ties +¬†bobby pins
  • tooth brush
  • and a ziploc bag with 4 face wipes

Now that you know my travel essentials for a weekend away by plane, maybe it’s time for you to start planning a trip of your own!! If you’ve got something in the works, or are just feeling especially wanderlust-y, go ahead and CLICK HERE! I’ll send you a little cheat sheet of the info above (a bit¬†more generalized, of course) so you can keep your bag light without forgetting a thing. Print it off whenever you need to take to the skies, and cross off the items as they get tucked in your pack. Happy travels!

[CLICK HERE TO HAVE MY ONE BAG TRAVEL CHEAT SHEET SENT TO YOUR INBOX!!]

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mid-week round-up

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Happy Wednesday! I can’t believe it is already March. Did the month come in like a lion where you’re at? I hope you have a great day, whatever you’re up to, and here are a few links to explore (or bookmark for later)…

Rachel Dolezal was exposed as a white woman who had deceived almost everyone she knew. Why did she do it?

15 beautiful illustrations perfectly capture how it feels to be in love.

As automation reduces the need for human labor, some Silicon Valley executives think
a universal income will be the answer — and the beta test is happening in Kenya.

Tucking this podcast away for a rainy day.

A go-to meal for any time of day — but especially yummy at breakfast.

Everyday carry with the Tom Bihn Side Effect. (I totally want one now!)

Related: 3 Ways to Pack Your Tom Bihn Synapse 19

A shirt for those who dream big and hustle hard.

Related: Don’t Hide Your Hustle: Katie KelseyLatasha

10 days along the border.

I’m considering starting a Whole 30 this month and this cookbook came highly recommended.

The enduring portrait of Myspace Tom, the Mona Lisa of profile pictures.

When a woman deletes a man’s comments online.
“It is no surprise to me that online debate has become the international sport of cis white men. Those who are least likely to be negatively impacted by the outcomes of discussions regarding the rights of marginalized people, who are driven by little more than ego and the risk of slight discomfort if society is made more equal, can gleefully jump from post to post, forum to forum, challenging the heartfelt pleas of those most at risk. ‚ÄúWell actuallys‚ÄĚ are flung at those working for justice and equality like drive-bys of apathy. And those who are fighting for their lives are then forced to battle each challenger bearing advanced degrees in Google and entitlement in order to prevent the outright dismissal of their lived experience.”

Long-distance Uber & Lyft drivers’ crazy commutes, marathon days, and big paychecks.

P.S. A few Finding Delight posts you may have missed — 10 Ways to Take a Time Out and Practice Self Care and I Stopped Paying Women Compliments On Their Appearance and Here’s What Happened.

3 Ways to Pack Your Tom Bihn Synapse 19

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As you may have guessed from previous posts (like this one and this one), I’m low-key obsessed with my Tom Bihn backpack. I could regale you for hours with info about all it’s features. It is just so. dang. packable. But the proof, as they say, is in the pudding…

So, instead of tell you about all the versatile pockets and roomy compartments, I’m gonna walk you through a few of my favorite ways to pack the Tom Bihn Synapse 19.

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The Pockets:

1. Main Compartment

2. Shallow Center Pocket

3. Deep Center Pocket 

4. Left Pocket

5. Right Pocket

6. Bottom Compartment

For 1 Bag Air Travel:

1. You’ll be amazed at how many clothes will fit in the Tom Bihn Synapse 19 with the help of a packing cube (or two). The double-sided packing cubes are genius if you want to keep your clothes organized (think: tops on one side¬†/ bottoms on the other OR day clothes on one side¬†/ loungewear on the other) or separate dirty and clean.

Your laptop or tablet will fit comfortably in this compartment as well.

2. This is the perfect space for all the small bits you may need readily available while up in the air. Tuck in your earbuds, your favorite lip balm, and a snack.

3. Slide your toiletry bag down in this front pocket and you’ll have no qualms about pulling it out when you go through TSA. This one from Tom Bihn has clear sides and was designed as a 3-1-1 toiletries bag for air travel. There’s plenty of room inside for all your essentials.

4. This side pocket has a space for your writing implements so you might want to tuck in a little notebook as well. It’s also a great place to stow a small flashlight, your sunglasses, and a collapsible bag.

5. Think of this as your electronics pocket! There’s plenty of room for a camera¬†and there’s¬†an additional pocket along the lining that’s perfectly sized for a phone. Clip¬†a clear organizer pouch¬†to the O-ring inside and fill it with your various chargers. No need to frantically search for cables that have made their way to the bottom of your bag!

6. Finally, the bottom compartment will hold a pair of sandals or flat shoes, a pashmina to keep you cozy when the plane gets cold, and a collapsible poncho if you’re headed to a rainy climate.

For Working On-the-Go:

1. As this is the largest compartment, this is where your bulkiest items will go. If you’re working on-the-go this probably means your laptop as well as any notebooks, folders, and books you may need.

2. Slip in a pair of earbuds that will cancel out any annoying noises you may encounter. You could also keep a stockpile of business cards tucked in a fancy holder.

3. Amazingly enough, this pocket was designed by the folks at Tom Bihn as the perfect place to hold a water bottle. This is great for keeping weight distribution even and totally cuts down on spills. You could go with a classic or class it up.

4. Store your pens, memory cards, and a wireless mouse in this convenient side pocket.

5. The other side is perfect for all your chargers. Again – one of the clear organizer pouches would be perfect for corralling them all. And don’t forget to throw in a snack bar or two! It’s hard to work when ¬†you’re hungry!

6. Finally, the bottom compartment is a convenient location for your wallet. And it’s wide enough that it will accommodate a billfold style design. Don’t need that much space for your wallet? This is a great place to store an umbrella, as well!

For Having Outdoor Adventures:

1. Whether you’re hiking, biking, or just urban exploring; you’ll want to have a few essentials in your Tom Bihn Synapse 19! The main compartment is a great place to store an extra layer of clothing, in case it gets cold, and any equipment you may need to bring along. (Think: camera or video gear, tools, DRONES!)

2. Safety first! Don’t forget to bring a small first aid kit. Buy one or make your own out of an Altoid can. Making your own allows you to really customize the contents for your particular adventure.

3. Again, the Deep Center Pocket is the perfect place for your water bottle. Toss in a bandana, too. They have SO MANY uses. (Here are 25.)

4. This is a great place to keep sunscreen and bug spray close at hand. You might also want to toss in a multi-tool or your eating utensils. Spork? Chopsticks? 3-piece cutlery? Your choice.

5. If you’re venturing away from civilization, it may behoove you to reserve this pocket for “I can pee anywhere!” materials. Think: tissues, wet-wipes, anti-bac, etc. Of course, these could come in handy for other purposes, too!

6. Finally, pack a lunch! This bottom compartment will ensure your sandwich won’t get squished amidst all your other equipment and it’s spacious enough to accommodate an adventurer’s appetite! The menu, of course, is up to you.

Where would you take your Tom Bihn backpack? Do you have a favorite travel accessory you recommend to anyone who will listen? Tell me about it below! 

P.S. A Tom Bihn-accompanied trip — Festivals Acadiens in Lafayette, LA

Our Favorite Music Festival

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Last Saturday and Sunday, Chet and I grabbed our Tom Bihn‘s and a couple of camp chairs and headed out into the sunshine for a healthy dose of¬†Cajun music (and food). Festivals Acadiens is a music, food, and craft festival held each year at Girard Park in Lafayette, and celebrates the rich culture of south Louisiana. It is our favorite festival by far.

There are several stages scattered throughout the park, each featuring a different stomp-your-feet-along-with-the-music Cajun band, and even a jam tent for those musicians flying solo who still want to get in on the fun. Bonus? Admission to the festival is completely free. And better yet? Even the food and (flowing) booze aren’t too high-priced. And can we talk about the food! I mean, HELLO!¬†Crawfish etouffee stuffed potatoes, boudin sliders, beignets, spicy sausage po-boys…the list goes on and on.

As we drooled over our latest food selection and musicians crooned en francais in the background, Chet confessed, “I want to come to this festival every single year for the rest of our lives. We can be one those old couples who wears bucket hats with collectors pins from each year pinned on the side!” Me too, Mr. Breaux. Me too.

While¬†our collectors pin count now only stands at 2…I’m sure it’ll be time to invest in a bucket hat soon enough!

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Above: The afore-mentioned Tom Bihn backpacks. (Perfect for any adventure.)

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Above: The afore-mentioned crawfish potato.¬†(Which I manage to have for my birthday even when we aren’t in Louisiana.)

Below: The afore-mentioned foot-stomping, Cajun music. (We LOVE Lost Bayou Ramblers and included a few of their tunes on our wedding reception play-list!)

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P.S. Check out our 2014 Festivals Acadiens experience HERE.

Packing for a Weekend Away in the Tom Bihn Synapse 19

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In honor of the looming weekend, I thought it would be fun to show you how I pack for a weekend away in my Tom Bihn Synapse 19. As you may or may not be able to tell from the photo above, this bag is pretty much the size of your run-of-the-mill book-sack. With a volume of just 19 liters, it’s genius lies in the design. It is a carefully calculated, supremely organized backpack. Fully capable of fitting in everything you could need for a weekend jaunt some place fun. Here’s how I pack mine!

Let’s start with the outside pockets…

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First up, I tucked in a deck of cards for classic entertainment, an easy-to-grab snack for the road (this sweet treat from my Graze Box will keep me from the gas station candy aisle), and my jewelry/hair accessories; including…

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two pairs of earrings, a herkimer diamond necklace, hair tie, barrette, and a bobby pin (in case things get hairy, PUN INTENDED!).

The next outside pocket is one of my favorite features of this backpack. It is deep enough to hold a one liter bottle of water and is expertly designed so that the water bottle is perfectly centered amongst the weight of your load. I’m sorry, what?! If you’ve ever carried around a weirdly lopsided bag in the name of hydration before…you’ll get why this is a god-send. Not to mention, it makes your water super accessible, which I find to be a really big plus when traveling.

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Full disclosure: This water bottle is Chet’s and I don’t particularly love it but I couldn’t find the top to the one I would typically use. Whoops!

On to the side pockets!

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Note: I would normally clip my keys (they’re on a carabiner) to the O-ring in this pocket but I forgot to do that.

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Another snack and more writing implements than I would ever need. And in the other side…

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Earbud headphones, ANOTHER snack (notice how many pockets I managed to cram snacks into. Priorities!), and a BAGGU reusable shopping bag. Finally, I threw a pair of strappy sandals into the bottom pocket. I’ve also fit a pair of sneakers into this pocket (For reference: I wear a size 6.) and an umbrella.

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Here’s everything from the outside pockets…

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Now we’ll explore the main pocket!

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To illustrate¬†just how Mary Poppins-like this bag really is, I threw my purse in on top. Truly one bag travel! Here’s everything that was hanging out below my purse in that never-ending pit…

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Two Amazon Basics packing cubes and a library book.

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Inside¬†my¬†brightly colored, thrifted purse is my phone and charger, chapstick, compact, tissues and hand sanitizer (AKA: my “I can pee anywhere” kit), and a coin purse to hold my license, debit card, a Starbucks gift card and a few dollars in quarters (they always seem to come in handy).

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Inside the smaller of the two packing cubes are two pairs of underwear, a pair of socks, a cosmetic bag, and a Tom Bihn travel stuff sack. (Note: there was still plenty enough room in this cube for a bra or a bathing suit, had I wanted to include them.)

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With everything out of the inner bags there’s¬†BB cream, face wash, deodorant, body wash, a comb, moisturizer, perfume, toothbrush, razor, toothpaste, rosebud salve, mascara, and a little pill box for a stash of Advil and Magnesium supplements.

Inside the larger packing cube are all my clothes; including two shirts, jeans, a dress, and pajama top and bottom. All rolled of course! The dress is not needed but it offers a nice option in case I had fun dinner plans upon arrival on Friday and wanted to change out of my travel ensemble. Seems kind of extravagant to have so many outfit options for a one-bag, one-weekend trip, eh? Just another reason to love my Tom Bihn!

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And here’s my whole haul–everything¬†I could possibly¬†need for an awesome weekend trip…

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Time to load this bag¬†back up and set off someplace fabulous! Now, all that’s left is to decide where to go!!! Happy travels!

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If you have any questions about my packing process, this lovely backpack, or want to share a few tips & tricks from your own one-bag travels…LEAVE ‘EM BELOW!¬†