Roasted Tomato and Garlic Soup
Hands down my favorite thing to do with my armloads of summer tomatoes.
I think that I heard on NPR once that Oregon gets a ton of money from its tourism industry – but a lot of that tourism is Oregonians visiting other places in Oregon! I believe it.
We are so lucky to live in such an awesome state, surrounded by so many other awesome states! Great road trip destinations are as little as an hour away, or as far as a couple of days’ drive. And within that radius, there’s desert, ocean, mountains, wine country, hiking, water sports… you name it. If you haven’t planned at least one great road trip, you’re doing the Pacific Northwest wrong! We’ve already done one this year, an epic trip over Memorial Day weekend where we covered lots of Eastern Oregon (we did sleep in Idaho one night), and came back via Walla Walla and Red Mountain wine country.
With all the great travel opportunities coming up this summer, I thought it would be fun to share some of my road trip essentials. I’m a little particular – that I’ll admit (and I’m one of those people who lays everything out, see above, before packing). I put a high priority on packing decent snacks ahead of time, so I’m not stuck choosing from granola bars and beef jerky at the gas station. I also keep a few wellbeing essentials with me at all time – check it out:
Adorable Tote Bag! Obviously, to start the whole packing process off right, an adorable tote bag is a must-have. This one is from ban.do.
Lip balm and lipstick. Lip balm almost goes without saying. If I forgot one, I would buy one at my first opportunity. But I think that a quick swipe of a bold lipstick is the quickest way appear as if you are wearing full makeup. I love YSL lipstick – It was the first time I ever spent $30 on a tube of lipstick and it is worth every. single. penny.
Ray Bans. It ain’t a road trip without your best sunnies.
Broad Spectrum Sunscreen: You never know where your road trip might take you, so I try to be prepared. Putting broad spectrum sunscreen on my face every day is my most important beauty regimen item outside of brushing my teeth. When traveling, I like to take a big tube of “sport” sunscreen as well so I don’t put the more expensive “face” sunscreen all over my surface area. I just feel really strongly about sunscreen – I might be pale for the rest of my life, but I will be pale and free of skin cancer and premature wrinkles!
Journal and pen: I go nowhere without something to scribble down ideas in. Besides being a creative outlet, if you think of something you want to remember, writing it down immediately removes the stress of trying to remember things. And what is a vacation, if not time to remove stress?
Bon Appetit: I am subscribed to several major food mags, and I always bring one or two with me in the car!
A good book: Right now I’m reading Heather Arndt Anderson’s Portland: A Food Biography.
Actual Food (the most important part, right??):
Klean Kanteen: Whether it be keeping coffee hot for untold numbers of hours, or just holding water, this insulated bottle goes where I go. It is simply the best quality vessel for liquid that I have ever owned. And I’ve been doing sports or working out 3x per week for more than 15 years. I have owned LOTS of water bottles.
IZZE Sodas: Compact, effervescent and many-flavored! These little colorful cans are easy to transport and a lighter, fruitier, lower calorie and better serving size refresher than the mass market sodas that are so plentiful at gas stations.
Fresh fruit: On the road, you may or may not be close to [desirable] fresh fruit when it’s time for a snack. I love to bring some along – fruit will keep for a day or so outside the fridge and the freshness always seems even fresher after hours in the car or compared to the selection at a rest stop.
Trail Mix: You’ve gotta have a salty snack to balance out the sweet fruit! I pack my own because I think the bagged ones (especially in the middle of nowhere) taste quite stale. Plus, then you can put all your favorite things in there! I like to buy nicer bulk dried fruit, and load up on cashews.
Terra Chips: One of my favorite healthier snack foods – I love Terra Veggie Chips! But they are another item to buy before you leave town. Find them in healthy/gourmet groceries.
Jacobsen Salt Tin. I have at least 3 of these handy slider tins in various bags. I use them to season the lunches I pack for myself at work. I’ve got one in my tote just in case a roadside produce stand picnic suddenly breaks out. And I’ve used a quick sprinkle when a less-than-perfect food situation needs a little pick-me-up. You never know when you’re going to need some truly excellent finishing salt.
Fancy chocolate bars: As if that needs an explanation! Theo bars are my current favorites.
And with that, you’re ready to go! What are your road trip essentials? Tell me in the comments!
This post was sponsored by IZZE Soda. All opinoins are my own!