Life's Sweet Journey: Getting Road Trip Ready and Easy At-Home Teeth Whitening

Wednesday, November 1, 2017

Getting Road Trip Ready and Easy At-Home Teeth Whitening

It continues to be a little chaotic around here, so I've been a little MIA from the blog for a week or two, but I wanted to share a little bit about how we are preparing for life on the road! 

Here is how we have been doing on our "Get-Ready-for-Road-Life" mission... 

We're TRYING to Become Minimalists 

Ok, this is only partially true, considering we have been keeping WAY too much to really be able to call ourselves minimalists. However, the desire in my heart to really work on it is strong. We have been purging so much stuff and with every box that we take out the door my heart feels lighter and so much more free! 

Packing for Full Time TV Life

We Garage-Saled Like Pros

We had a huge garage sale! I have had many a garage sale; I have done one for my parents, for myself, with a friend, and every time I finish one I say I am never doing another... and then, of course, I do. Well this time I finally got smart! Y'all?! Indoor garage sales are the WAY TO GO! We don't actually have a garage, as it was converted into a living room at some point before we bought our home. So, we were having to set up outdoors. I would try my best to get everything as set as possible, so that I could just haul tables out the morning of, but it never worked well. This time we just set everything up inside, in the first two rooms of the house (closed off everything else), and opened up the doors. Magical, I tell ya! 

Reasons to have an indoor garage sale: 
- You can set everything up the night before! That way you don't have to wake up SUPER early! 
- Especially in Florida, the added bonus of a.c. makes a huge difference. People would actually look, linger and pretty much everyone bought something. Anytime I did an outdoor sale, people would come and skim and then walk off without fully looking. 
- There is an intrigue factor when people get to come inside; they commented on the brick work, the spent time asking about the house and seemed more open in general to ask questions about items for sale. 
- If a freak rain shower tries to dampen your parade it's not an issue! First thing in the morning it started pouring, it did postpone us putting signs up for a few minutes, but people were actually knocking on the door before we even set them out. The first person knocked at 7:50 (the sale wasn't supposed to start until 8). Definitely put your sale on Craigslist!! If you post it, they will come! 

We've Prioritized 

One of the biggest things we've learned through this process is how we both choose to prioritize. True to form, he wants to keep all the practical items, while I want to keep all the books. We both seem to have a hard time parting with keepsakes, but we know we can't keep every single one. So, we have prioritized what we aren't willing to part with and then "had a moment" with the things we could before choosing to either pitch them or put them in the donate pile. We've realized it's ok to feel sentimental and a bit sad when you have to let something that holds a memory go, but it doesn't mean the memory has to go with it. Somethings we were ok parting with, we still grabbed a picture of just so we had a least some way to view it. We still have a pretty decent size pile of boxes that will be going to my parents, plus our renters are going to be gracious enough to let us keep a few things here, but I think we have still done a decent job of letting go of things we no longer need. 

We've Gotten our Smiles Road Trip Ready

Smile Brilliant At-Home Teeth Whitening Review
Smile Brilliant At-Home Teeth Whitening Review

While we have been stuck home, working hard on getting all this stuff packed and ready, we have also been multitasking with our Smile Brilliant teeth whitening kits. When Smile Brilliant reached out about partnering, I honestly was hesitant. I have tried teeth whitening systems in the past, but they have made my teeth sensitive or just plain didn't work. However, with all the coffee and red wine we have been consuming these days to keep us fueled for this endeavor, I figured we would give it a try. 

My favorite pictures with Babe happen to be our road-trip selfies, because riding shot-gun next to him while we pull the camper somewhere new is one of my absolute favorite places to be! I figured it couldn't hurt to try Smile Brilliant and give our smiles a little shine! And I am so glad I said, "yes"! I received a kit to try out and we used a great coupon to grab a kit for Babe as well. 

Using Smile Brilliant was super easy! They send you the kits, you make a mold of your teeth, send it back in a paid envelope and then they send you custom trays so you can get to whitening. I had never done a whitening kit with custom fitted trays and it made a huge difference. There was no gunky gel feeling and I could still talk and go about my business without feeling inconvenienced. We simply kept right on working while Smile Brilliant was going to town on our teeth! Here are our results: 

Smile Brilliant Before and After PhotosSmile Brilliant Before and After Results
*These are the results after just 10 uses! They recommend 12 uses initially (more for harder stains), with touch ups afterwards. We still have plenty of product left and can't wait to see where they are in just a few more weeks. 

If you are looking to try a teeth whitening kit, Smile Brilliant is a great option! Not only are they a lot cheaper than going to the dentist, but their results also did not leave me with much sensitivity (Babe felt none). The one night I did feel some teeth sensitivity, I used the desensitizing gel they have for those with sensitive teeth and it helped tremendously! You can try out Smile Brilliant for yourself, for free, by entering the giveaway below! Don't want to wait to see if you won?! They are also offering an awesome discount to my readers with the coupon code- lifessweet10! By using that code you will save 10% off the kit of your choice. 

We're Preparing our Hearts 

The closer we get to leaving the more I am preparing my heart for the goodbyes. Our families have known this was a possibility for a while and are all very excited for us, but I think the reality of it actually happening (and happening soon) is beginning to sink in. Neither of us has ever lived more than 20 minutes away from our families. We currently live a bike ride away from my parents and between 10-30 minutes from Babe's mom and siblings. His dad lives in Tampa, but that is still an easy drive for a visit. We were both born and raised in Orlando and (with the exception of the 4 months I lived in off-campus housing near UCF) have pretty much lived within a 5 mile radius of the spot we were first brought home, as babies, our entire lives. We spend holidays together, watch our nieces and nephews grow up and we love our "sleep over" time with them. The kids I have nannied for the last 13 years are like family to me as well, so when one of them says to me "well that doesn't really give us something to be grateful for" after telling him we leave right after Thanksgiving, it pulls at my heartstrings like nothing else. I think the hardest adjustment will definitely be not having the ability to see them all in person so easily! So, I am stocking up on snail mail and we have plans to send out postcards along the way! We are already convincing people to come join us on adventures and have big plans for "Camp Melanie/ Aunt Mel"- as we are calling it. Any tips from anyone who lives far from loved ones?! What do you do to stay connected?! 

Well, that's how we are getting ready to roll out! 
Has anyone else moved far from home or downsized? 
Advice is very appreciated! 

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  1. I love my teeth whitening kit!! I do admit that I don't use it as often as I should but it def works!

    1. I am the same way! But yes, it works wonderfully. We have been super happy with the results!

  2. The results are great and congrats on transitioning to minimalism. You will find it very freeing to live without the clutter. Best of luck to you guys and blessings for your journey.

  3. Your teeth look great! I love teeth whitening! We are always trying to declutter at our house. I really need to do a major purge before the holidays!

  4. We are all for minimalism, we all have too much crap nowadays!

  5. We are trying to consume less but I feel like its an uphill battle. Every day we seem to have a big bag of garbage.

  6. Nicely written, crafted and organized. The pictures are very cool and resonate nicely with the readers. The post is definetly a must read for all.

  7. The two main concerns of travelers - heat and monsoon rains have been addressed in recent years. Modern accommodations and transportation with air conditioning are prevalent and many Vietnam travelers have decided to brave the inclement weather of the monsoons to enjoy some of the benefits the rains - mainly better "beach" weather when the rains of the day have passed.

  8. Nice ideas as everyone wants to have white teeth all the time.


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