What is essential and what gets cut?

I realized today that in a little over two weeks I will be headed on a plane to the other side of the world for two years. How do you pack for two years in two suitcases and one carry on? I know that I need at least the bare essentials–peanut butter, some clothes, and my computer–but what other stuff do you bring? What makes it to the “pack” list and what gets left behind?

It’s been an interesting experience going through all my things deciding what I “need” and what I can leave behind. It’s amazing the things that seem important when you first get them, but when you only have limited space, lose their importance.  When I first packed up my room and did my first round of packing, I still ended up with a closet full of stuff. As I am going through the stuff again what I thought was “essential” I am realizing most of it really isn’t. 

 I am coming to the conclusion that less is more. Thankfully there will be a lot of things that I can get there–toothpaste, shampoo, soap, etc. But some things you just can’t live without. Pictures of family and friends. Books. Boots. Peanut butter. Maybe I really will end up with more than I think. Hopefully I can get it all to fit. We will see…