I’ve been a parent for almost FIVE YEARS. Wow. I can hardly believe it’s been that long already! And my diaper bag is forever evolving to meet the needs of the stage I’m in. For three years straight it was all baby, all the time. Formula, bottles, two different sized diapers, snacks up the wazoo, all the gadgets and toys and crap I didn’t really need.
Five years later I think I’ve finally mastered the diaper bag. I now have a preschooler, a toddler and a baby. I wanted to share what’s in my diaper bag when you have three different ages to think about (the older they get the less crap you need!):
1 // diapers
It’s a lot easier to carry one set of diapers than it ever was carrying two different sizes of them. Thank the Lord that time has passed. Obviously, I’ll be carrying diapers around for another year, so I’m always fully stocked on those.
2 // baby wipes
Even when I have no more diapers to change, these wipes will forever be part of the stuff I carry when I leave the house (at least for the several years to come!). You never know what kind of messes you’re going to encounter when you’re out and about.
3 // Gerber Snacks – Puffs, Yogurt Bites and Lil’ Crunchies
Honestly, I can probably figure out a makeshift diaper if I need to, however, the most important thing I ALWAYS have in my diaper bag — SNACKS. So many snacks. Not only are babies and toddlers snacking all day (especially mine), but it’s the single easiest way to get their nutrition in (little ones from 8-24 months get about 25-30% of their daily calories from snacks!) and continue promoting self feeding. We pack our bag with Gerber Puffs, Yogurt Bites or Lil’ Crunchies as much as we can fit in. They have always been a favorite of ours. They’re easy to store, easy to hand out when baby or toddler needs a quick something to eat and I can feel good about the whole grains, real fruit and yogurt, with no added bad stuff (no artificial flavors or synthetic colors). I recently read that 1/3 of 8-24 month olds are not eating whole grains on a given day. So it’s as simple as passing some snacks to them as I’m grocery shopping or dropping off a bill payment. They are life savers and I never leave the house without being fully stocked on a vast array of Gerber Snacks.
4 // wet bag + changing pad
Never leave the house without a wet bag…. you never know when you’re going to have a blow out or someone is gonna accidentally pee their pants. Seriously. And I always have the changing pad for when I need to change a diaper on the go or when in a public restroom because YUCK.
5 // extra undies and socks
Socks because I often am running out of the house so quick and forget to put socks on the baby! And if we go to our gym they have to be wearing socks, so I started keeping an extra pair in the bag for when I forget. And undies…. because accidents happen!
6 // plasticware
When we go out to eat, restaurants rarely have kids plasticware. I always like to have an extra set on hand in case I need them for baby boo. I got this set at Ikea for a pretty reasonable price.
7 // toys + boredom packs
I like to keep a small stash of toys and what I call “boredom packs” for when we’re out somewhere and I need to entertain them for few minutes i.e. waiting rooms, doctor offices, restaurants, grocery store lines, etc. The “boredom packs” come with crayons, coloring pages and stickers. They’re always a hit and stash them back in the bag when we’re done to use for next time.
8 // hand sanitizer and sanitizing wipes
When we’re out in public and need to use a public restroom, I just simply can’t assist 2 small humans washing their hands while holding a baby. So I’ve resorted to having hand sanitizer and sanitizing wipes on standby for those situations. Plus, they’re good to have when we’re out to eat and everyone needs to clean up their hands before eating.
9 // baby face wipes
I always keep a pack of baby face wipes in here because they’re great for runny noses and particularly are more gentle on faces than the baby wipes are.
10 // mom essentials
I always keep a snack for myself (usually a protein bar), some lip gloss and hairspray just in case I need to freshen up (or fix the boys hair so they don’t look like total crazies before we walk into church or something). I rarely carry a purse anymore, so I stash my wallet and some essentials into my diaper bag to eliminate having to carry another bag or purse around.
And that’s it! What’s in your diaper bag? Do you carry anything that I don’t carry in mine? Let me know in the comments below!