Top Five Tips for International Travel

My first international flight was when I was seven and my family moved from Virginia to Singapore. My sister and I drank lots of Sprite on the flight, and our number one packing priority was our favorite Beanie Baby cats, who sat on the armrest between us the whole way. Needless to say, my priorities have changed a bit since then :) After living abroad for 11 years, I’ve acquired a few tips and tricks on making international flights/trips a little easier. I didn’t get a chance to write this post before our honeymoon, but since I know many of y’all are planning summer adventures, I hope it comes in handy!

Something Pretty Travel TipsIn the Milan airport via Instagram! Sources: weekender bag, lemon purse (on sale till midnight!), shoes

1. Travel without checking a bag as often as possible. It will save so much time and hassle! If you plan your outfits strategically (see tip #2), you should be able to get at least a week’s worth of clothes into a carry on-sized suitcase or large weekender bag. If you do need to check a bag though, take pictures of your bag before you drop it off, make note of the brand, and be sure your luggage tag is up to date. And never, ever, ever check anything that is irreplaceable or particularly valuable.

2. Decide on all of your outfits ahead of time. To do this, check the weather at your destination, have an idea of what activities you’ll be doing each day, and plan accordingly. I love outfit planning, so this usually works well for me, but if you prefer to have options, stick to a style or color scheme so that you can mix and match a select few pieces, instead of bringing tons of choices. One quick tip to save some space: wear your bulkiest shoes on the plane!

3. Pack some in-flight essentials. For international plane trips, here’s what I always pack: headphones, a neck pillow (a little embarrassing, I know, but so worth it on overnight flights), an eye mask (again, worth it–these ones are so pretty!), a book, snacks (usually a big bag of trail mix and some granola bars), a water bottle, chapstick, Dramamine (just in case), socks, Crest Wisps, glasses (plus a contact case and mini solution if I’m wearing my contacts when I get on the plane), a pashmina scarf, and Caudalie Beauty Elixir (it feels heavenly after a long flight!).

4. Get some cash in your destination’s currency before you leave. There is nothing worse than being in a foreign country and realizing your credit card won’t work somewhere (let your credit card company know about your trip ahead of time to help avoid this!), your taxi only takes cash, or any other number of things that could happen. Avoid changing money at an airport if you can–they have the worst exchange rates. Inquire at your local bank a few weeks before your trip, and they’ll either be able to exchange money for you on the spot or order it in for you.

5. Print out your itinerary, all confirmation emails (flights, hotels, any tickets, etc.), maps, train schedules, etc. before you leave. Better safe than sorry! Dave did this for our honeymoon and kept everything in a manila folder in his carry-on, so we could find and reference it super easily.

Is there anything you’d add to this list? Do you have any big trips coming up? I’d love to hear!

We’re Married!!

Hi friends!! I can’t believe this is my first post as a married gal! Thank you all SO much for your sweet comments and prayers over the last few weeks. I promise you, they were very much felt and Dave and I are so grateful!

dave-and-lisa-kirkLove this picture from Instagram by my friend Morgan!

Our wedding day was everything we had prayed for and more. The weather was perfect, our vendors were incredible, and most of all, we were so, so happy! I think we said “We’re so lucky” about a million times that day and I have barely stopped thinking about it since. I know we will carry those memories of being surrounded and supported by our loved ones as we became husband and wife with us forever.

While we’ll have to wait awhile before I can share more about the wedding, I have lots of honeymoon stories and pictures to share over the next few weeks! I’m also doing some brainstorming about what Something Pretty is going to look like post-wedding, so if there are any features/posts/anything you want to see/see more of, let me know :)

Happy to be back as Lisa Kirk!

LJO to LJK: I’m Getting Married!!

The first time I saw Dave after three years apart, I stood outside the Syracuse airport and thought to myself, “These are the last few moments of my life before everything changes.” I knew he was the one, even then, and I knew that once we saw each other for the first time in three years, at the perfect time in both of our lives to enter into a new relationship, my life would never be the same. Now, a little over two years later, I can hardly believe that this Saturday, the man I stood outside the airport waiting for is going to become my husband. That same line keeps playing in my head–these are the last few days before everything changes, but again, in the best possible way. I know that marriage is going to turn my world as I know it upside down, and I know that this is going to be the biggest adventure of my life. I’m a little bit stressed out finishing up our wedding plans, and I’m a little bit nervous about how everything is going to come together this weekend, but most of all, I know I’m ready for this. We’re ready for this. I would be truly grateful for your prayers in these last few days of our engagement–for peace, the grace to focus on the sacrament we are going to receive, and for beautiful weather :)

 Lisa Olson and Dave KirkRyan Ray

Thank you, sweet friends, for following along with our planning journey and for all of your love and support along the way. I am taking off of blogging for the next three weeks or so, but I’ll be back at the end of May with a new husband, a new last name, and wedding, honeymoon, and marriage stories to share :) Much love to all!

LJO to LJK: Ten Days to Go!!!

Over the weekend, I got to see one of my best friends from college get married. I’ve always known that she would be a beautiful bride someday, and every single moment of her wedding day was so incredibly sweet. It was a joy to see her marry the love of her life, and it was also such a blessing to Dave and I to witness, especially so close to our wedding. It is SO easy to get distracted when planning a wedding, and I’ve learned that those distractions often come with the best of intentions–wanting to take care of your guests, wanting your wedding to be meaningful, and so on and so forth. And those are all really good things! But even they can distract from the fact all that really matters is that you’re getting married. That’s been a hard lesson for me to try to learn over the last year and a half, and I’m definitely not done learning it yet. Sarah and Scott’s wedding was the best reminder I could have asked for that my wedding day will be about Dave and me becoming husband and wife. Everything else is just really lovely extras. :)

spring bride and groomRylee Hitchner via Once Wed

Completed in the last two and a half weeks:

  • Figured out my wedding jewelry, once and for all!
  • Finished the text for our programs and have them made.
  • Dave built our escort card display.
  • Finished collecting family photos.
  • Went to my second dress fitting.
  • Picked up my dress!
  • Followed up with guests who didn’t send in their RSVPs.
  • Sent our calligrapher our guests’ names for escort cards.
  • Bought gifts for our parents and each other.
  • Gathered a few more small reception details.
  • Sent thank you notes for bridal shower gifts.
  • Made (and remade) our seating chart.
  • Picked up our wedding rings!
  • Wrote wedding day letters for some special people.
  • I started writing out a super detailed list for our venue coordinator.
  • My sisters made a getting ready playlist (thanks, D+K!))
  • Got our marriage license.
  • Sent invitations to our rehearsal dinner.

On our list for the next ten days:

  • Write intercessions for our ceremony.
  • Finish our playlist details for the DJ.
  • Practice our first dance.
  • Practice our vows!
  • Write letters to each other.
  • Finish our timeline and send it to all relevant parties.
  • Finish our details list and send it to our venue coordinator.
  • Finish nailing down the week-of logistics.
  • Assemble our escort card board.
  • Assemble our programs.
  • Finalize and gather all details and attire.
  • Pack for our honeymoon!
  • Go to our rehearsal and rehearsal dinner!
  • Get married!!!

LJO to LJK: My New York Bridal Shower

Exactly a week after my first bridal shower in Texas, I got to enjoy another shower–this time in Syracuse (where there was still snow on the ground!), with my soon-to-be in-laws! My future mother-in-law, sisters-in-law, and even nieces worked together to plan this celebration at the adorable Sherwood Inn. While my Texas shower guests were mostly my family and people I’ve known for years, this shower was mostly people I barely know yet. This made it feel different, but it was so special, since everyone there knows and loves Dave, and it meant the world to me to feel so welcomed. The entire afternoon, I felt overwhelmingly thankful to be marrying into this wonderful family!

Here’s a look at this lovely afternoon–did I mention it was Something Pretty-themed? :)

Sherwood Inn - Something PrettyLisa NY bridal shower - Something PrettyBridal shower drinks - Something PrettyLisa bridal shower photo display - Something PrettyLisa bridal shower cake - Something PrettyTeacup arrangement - Something PrettyLisa NY bridal shower gifts - Something PrettyLisa Liz and Mrs Kirk - Something PrettyLisa and Dave - Something PrettyKirk sisters - Something PrettyBridal shower favor - Something Pretty