We’ve all been there…you pack up all the kids and the baby and check the house three times to make sure you have everything before you head out for the day, only to remember that you forgot to pack the baby’s toys, your toddler’s special snack and your oldest one’s bathing suit because you’re going to the water park. Ugh! As a busy mom, it’s nearly impossible to remember to pack everything all the time. Things that you don’t need seem to find their way into your diaper bag and the items you really DO need, never seem to make their way back in. While it would be nice to be organized and have two or three spare bags all lined up and ready to go at a moment’s notice, chances are…it’s not going to happen.
Now, when I know I’m going to be out the whole day, I pack the diaper bag the night before and make a mental note of the top five items the baby and kids will need while we’re gone. It helps to cut down on last minute stress and forgetting essential items like diapers and wipes because you know if you don’t pack them, they will inevitably need them. Here’s a quick checklist of my favorite essentials that keep baby happy (and mom too) so everyone can enjoy their time away from home.
Diapers are probably the most important item with which to keep your bag stocked. I also keep my car stocked with them as a backup, just in case I didn’t restock my bag. After my first baby, I decided that one can never have too many stacks of diapers because chances are, they will eventually get used. However, one thing I don’t like, is leaky diapers that move as the baby moves. If she shimmies too much in her car seat, it can create a leaky diaper and leaves a whole new mess for us to clean up on our big days out. That’s why I’m loving the new Huggies Snug & Dry Diapers
because they hug her shape without being too tight and prevent unnecessary leaks. In fact, last time we went to the store, I bought a whole pack just to leave in the car because you never know when nature will call. Don’t forget to pack the wipes too!
So sometimes there is a little mishap with the diaper situation (especially with newborn babies), a spare change of clothes is always in order. For girls, the best thing is to carry a spare pair of leggings and a t-shirt and for boys, a onesie and pants will get you through the rest of the day. I carry my spare clothes in a Itzy Ritzy Wet Happened Bag
, $18.99, so I can immediately put the wet clothes in the bag and seal it so it doesn’t get the other items in the diaper bag wet. It also keeps the dry clothes free from crumbs and crayon marks while in the diaper bag. The Wet Happened bag is also great for bathing suits and other items that may get wet while you’re out.
Babies, toddlers and kids can’t seem to go anywhere without being hungry. I think sitting in the car reminds them that they want a snack. And another snack…and another. My kids are constantly eating so therefore, we don’t leave the house without a diaper bag full of snacks. While newborn babies need to have either mom close by with her Hooter Hider
, $30.44, or their bottles and formula packed in the diaper bag, babies and toddlers that are older can snack on other snack items to get them through to their next meal. I’m a huge fan of the pouch trend and throw several in the diaper bag to get us through a long day. The baby’s favorite is Ella’s Kitchen
, $11.52 for a 7 pack, which mixes everything from pumpkin and parsnips to apples and pears together in one pouch. Along with the pouches, don’t forget to bring one of the handy click-on spoons for easy eating on the go, Munchkin Click Lock Food Pouch Spoon
, $4.49. Once finger foods are introduced, a Munchkin Snack Catcher
, $7.49 for a 4 pack, is essential to avoid Cheerios and Goldfish crackers all over your car floor.
There have been plenty of times where the only toys available for me to give the baby were not really toys. My lipgloss, a pouch of Kleenex, my wallet or my iPhone. I learned my lesson after the last episode that required me to clean smeared lipgloss and baby drool off my precious iPhone. Now I try to keep a few toys and books in the diaper bag for entertainment. My favorite item to bring for babies and toddlers are the Jellycat Soft Books
, $16, which are readable, touchable and fun. They are also easily packable because you can bend and fold them if you need to. For teething babies, you can’t go wrong with the Sophie the Giraffe Teething Ring
, $14.50, and music is always soothing for babies and toddlers with the Baby Einstein Take Along Tunes
, $8.99. As your baby grows, you’ll definitely find that they have toys they prefer to take with them more than others which is fine as long as it still fits in your bag.
Of course, you can’t be prepared for every situation but as a busy mom on-the-go, you can sure try your best. Just be sure that you’re actually able to carry your diaper bag and the baby without hurting your back because then nobody will be going anywhere!
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