I am always looking for ways to avoid checked
That means I'm always trying to figure out a way to carry on
what I need: a small-ish rolling suitcase, a backpack filled with
my journalistic accoutrements (laptop, still camera, video camera,
notebooks, pens) and a purse.
The PUP has zippered compartments and
several outside pockets
to hold and organize all the things we moms carry.
Trouble is, the carry-on limit is two items (a suitcase and
"small personal item such as a purse or backpack" - not a purse AND
I have tried several ways to solve this problem. I have
flattened my purse and crammed it into the suitcase only to have it
arrive at my destination completely mishapen. I have stuffed it
into a crevice in the backpack, only to have the zippers strain to
close. I have left my purse at home and put the essentials (wallet,
sunglasses, cell phone and Advil) in the backpack, then been forced
to carry the backpack everywhere I went once I arrived at my
Now I may have found a solution, thanks to Jean Newell.
She is a former realtor who found herself juggling five
electronic gadgets. She needed a "professional tool belt" that
would hold her stuff. After months of looking for something, she
finally gave up and invented one (clearly she is more motivated
than I am, since I never got further than complaining about my
She sent me the PUP (personal utlity pouch) in
black and the giZmo in vanilla cream (off white). Each has zippered
compartments and several outside pockets to hold and organize all
the things we moms carry. They're bascially the same, except that
the giZmo is a little bigger, the fabric is different - the PUP is
made of soft luggage material and the giZmo is microfiber -
and the giZmo has a "lockable zipper" to ward off pickpockets. Both
can be worn as messenger bags, fanny packs or purses.
And both will lay flat to be packed in a suitcase or backpack,
then used as a purse once you reach your destination. The PUP sells
for $19.95 and the giZmo sells for $24.95.
Cindy Richards is the mom of two who gets her muse from traveling the world, usually with kids in tow. She also writes for TravelingMom.com, where she also serves as editor.
See more of Cindy's stories here.
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