Oh boy, do I remember the days not so long ago when Nolan was a newborn. I’d purchased [what I thought was] an admirably practical, versatile, attractive, functional, inexpensive diaper bag that I was so excited to use and get all decked out with baby’s stuff. Things went the way that they do: that precious bag soon proved highly inadequate and I resorted to using a favourite old tote. Same old song, sung by mothers everywhere.
Over time I decided that I’d go ahead and design the perfect diaper bag, and I did. It’s still on paper, but I designed it, man…right before The Honest Company came out with theirs. Naturally. Since it’s a lot easier to buy theirs than to make my own, and since theirs was much more practical than our diaper bag or my big ol tote, that’s what we’re rolling with.
While we were traveling last year we decided that a backpack style bag would be best for getting through the airport, being on planes, and walking around all day. We were looking for something not-monstrously-sized, relatively lightweight, durable, and with great accessibility. So while I’d
kill LOVE to have this bag for everyday use, this backpack has been fantastic, particularly for traveling and days out. We got it with our bundle, so it was 25% off. Not bad for a great-quality diaper bag! Kyle doesn’t mind carrying it around either, since it’s a neutral color and doesn’t look too much like a lady-bag 🙂
– We love the zippered pocket on the back of this backpack. It makes accessing the changing pad SO easy. We keep the changer stocked with travel wipes (usually in the wipes dispenser because it makes life a lot easier) and one diaper.
– Diapers and an extra pack of travel wipes because you juuuuust never know. We can keep four of Nolan’s diapers in one of the interior pockets, and a decent number of newborn diapers.
– I try to always have a spare outfit for Nolan in our bag. He was a spitter as a baby and now he’s an adventurer. And a boy. So yes, extra clothes.
– A spare pacifier. Nolan usually only has his while he’s sleeping, but sometimes we miss nap time at home, or he starts feeling out of sorts, and the pacifier just makes life easier on everyone! He’s also addicted to it. Which is unfortunate. But works in our favor when we have to leave Mimi’s house and would prefer to do so without a full-blown tantrum.
– A bib. Self-explanatory. I also carry stain spray (see below), but I don’t like creating situations where I’ll have to use it.
– Nolan’s cup of water. We’re loving these Kleen Kanteen sippys and anticipate accumulating many of them over time. When the sippy lid is no longer appropriate, the 12-oz. bottle can be used with any other Kleen Kanteen lid.
– We have a couple reusable liquids bags similar to this that, naturally, we planned to just use for traveling. But then this one time we got back from a trip and I never unpacked the bag from the diaper bag, and it’s one of the best parenting hacks that my laziness has ever helped me find. You could use any small bag for this, or even just a quart-size baggie. Ours has had stuff spilled all in it and hasn’t leaked at all! Which is incredible! In it we keep:
1. A small spray bottle of stain remover: This is a LIFESAVER. You should steal this idea if you don’t have one already.
2. Hand sanitizer: because typical soaps turn my boy’s hands red, because I’d rather him zap the playground off of his hands before eating with them, and because sometimes it’s just easier and quicker than actually washing my own hands post diaper change or whatnot.
3. Organic healing balm: to use for everything…diaper rash, chapped baby lips, dry skin, cuts, burns, and anything else in the whole wide world.
4. A small spray bottle of surface/multi-purpose cleaner or vinegar water: to wipe down restaurant tables before we pull the high chair up to them, or to clean toys that he’s sneezed over before we infect other children with our excellent sharing skills, or to scrub down particularly grotty shopping carts. I’m all about building immune systems, but I’m less about actual grime and spreading whatever germs we’re already in possession of.
5. A container of chamomilla: because it’s magic. Calms my boy down and turns him into, at worst, a manageable crisis, and at best, a freaking angel.
– I keep the second reusable liquids bag stocked with snacks, because, while we do eat at really regular times and limit snacks in between, a hungry growing toddler is not something to mess with. We usually have small jars/containers of raisins, Annie’s organic cheddar bunnies, a couple Kind bars (because a hungry mama isn’t anything to mess with either), and some trail mix (because a hungry daddy is the worst of all beasts).
– And a third quart-size-equivalent bag of small toys, crayons and a tiny notepad, and other small entertaining things, including toy straps because they make life easier.
– MAMA’S BAG: This is where I’ve condensed pretty much the entirety of what I used to carry in a whole pre-children purse. Turns out, I didn’t need the vast majority of that stuff! Everything I actually need just for me fits in a small, probably-intended-for-cosmetics bag, which is red and white striped with a twirly pattern on the inside because things should be pretty. I keep all of this in there:
1. Phone charger and battery-powered phone charger (yes…two phone chargers…in addition to the cord in my car…stop judging me…), bound with twist ties
2. A small clip-top bag that I got in Paris (again, pretty things) with bobbi pins, hair ties, an extra set of earrings for when I want to feel like a grown-up but don’t realise that before I leave home, and lip balm.
3. A travel-size first aid kit picked up at Target for $1.19 with bandaids, Advil, q-tips, sanitising wipes, and a gauze dressing. The bandaids get used surprisingly frequently. I expect this to change a bit pretty soon as I learn about more natural first aid options and how to keep those close at hand. And actually, to be completely straight up, I may have added the Advil myself…can’t remember, it’s one of the travel-size canisters that holds like nine tablets.
4. Feminine hygiene products.
5. Pens…because pens.
Obviously I also carry my phone, wallet, and keys as well, but they often end up in coat pockets.
Once Baby Girl arrives, we’ll add the following for her:
- Newborn diapers (including one in the changer, along with her brother’s much larger diaper)
- A change of clothes
- An extra pacifier and leash
- A compact swaddling blanket
- Nursing pads
- A couple burp rags, if she’s anything like her brother 😉
Any brilliant additions to your diaper bag that you’re willing to pass on? I’d love to hear them!