It feels like wherever you go with your baby you need to pack for ever eventuality, meaning that you end up leaving the house with everything but the kitchen sink. It was ridiculous the amount of things we had to try and squeeze into Eric's changing bag when he was a newborn. Now that he is getting that little bit older we don't tend to take as much, but it still amazes me how much we need to carry with us.
Eric actually has two changing bags now. The first is by Babymoov and is the one we take with us on most outings if we know we are going to be out a long time. The other is a little baby-size backpack with an attached rein. And this is what we now take if we are going on a short trip or to a local baby class. It's a downsized version of the main bag and I tend to pack it according to what time of day it is and how being out will fit in with Eric's schedule.
So let's say we are planning to be out and about for a full day....here is what we would pack in Eric's baby bag -
Changing - Eric has outgrown (touch wood) major poonamis now so I only tend to pack one set of spare clothes for a full day. However I make sure I squeeze in as many nappies and nappy sacks as I can because I never want to be caught out. I still have my box in the car where I keep a stash of emergency supplies, but if a really messy incident should happen or he is feeling unwell, it's a bit of a hassle to have to run out to the car to fetch something. Another staple is a tube of Metanium or Bepanthon because we have a baby with really sensitive skin and unfortunately nappy rash is a frequent visitor.
Food - You know the Very Hungry Caterpillar story? Well that's Eric. He loves his food and could probably eat for England if you let him. And when he's hungry boy do you know about it! Snacks, jars, a beaker of water and of course bottles and ready milks comprise a huge amount of what we take in the changing bag because you never want to be caught out. Thankfully Eric is at an age now where he can normally have something from the children's menu if we are going out to lunch or dinner, but it is always best to be as prepared as you can because you never know when hunger is going to strike.
Entertainment - We are getting to that stage with Eric where if you're not careful he will get bored easily. He isn't quite walking yet but he is very mobile and doesn't really like being clipped into the pushchair if he is fully awake because he just wants to be out and exploring everything around him. So having a couple of toys or a book he can look at is vital for a trip out where he can't get out and crawl. Ones with rings at the top that you can clip onto things are really handy to have in dining situation too because you can secure them onto a highchair and (finger crossed) this means you can almost eat a small portion of your meal undisturbed.
Misc - Eric is a baby who does have a dummy. He will put it in and out of his mouth as and when he wants it but there will undoubtedly be time when he drops it on the floor, we misplace it in the car or is just gets lost so we always need to have a couple of spares with us....just in case. He also snuggles a muslin cloth when he's tired and wants to go to sleep. So again we take a few of these because they do come in handy in a number of different scenarios and I don't really want Eric to be cosying up to a soaking wet muslin cloth.
And finally....the changing bag would not be complete without my purse and keys. Sometimes I take my own bag out, but for ease I just tend to throw what I need in there because I don't want to be lumbered with pushing him around and carrying two different bags as well....I just don't have enough hands.
Fellow mummies - what do you pack in your baby's bag?