Friday, 24 March 2017

What's In My Changing Bag?

Although I have a few different changing bags, this is the one that I use most of the time. It's a Jem and Bea Amber in black, comes in the softest leather and hangs easily from my pram. The separators mean that everything is easy to get to, which is important when a poonami strikes somewhere other than the safety of your own home. Nobody wants to go fishing for a baby wipe during that kind of emergency. After a few weeks of taking enough nappies and wipes to run a nursery every time I left the house and getting an aching shoulder from the weight of it all, I now just carry the basics for our everyday adventures. Here's what I pack...

1. One large muslin
I always pack one extra large muslin, in fact, I think this one is officially a swaddle. Rather than carry several small ones I just throw a large one in the bag which can be used as a muslin, a feeding cover, a swaddle and even a blanket. I prefer designs that are simple and go with anything because I spend a lot of time with one slung over my shoulder. Quality-wise, you get what you pay for with muslins and it's worth spending a bit more for super-soft fabric. This grey star muslin is by Aden and Anais, find out more here.

2. Hat
I always have a hat in my bag because I can't always be relied upon to remember to put one on her in my mad dash out of the house. My mum crocheted her this one from a pattern that she made up using some wool that we bought from Aldi. So clever. 

3. Spare vests
There are some things that it's worth spending extra on, vests are not one of those things. They are the first line of defence against a poonami and are sometimes so stained that they appear to have been tie-dyed. I buy them in bulk from Primark for a few pounds and always keep two in my bag for emergencies. 

4. Coconut Oil
This natural oil is having a bit of a moment right now and it's easy to see why, it has so many uses for baby, as a cleanser, moisturiser, massage oil and nappy cream and I have even been known to use it as a lip balm (and nip balm). The other great joy of this oil is that it's a solid, until warmed up in your hands so limited risk of in-bag spills. We use Kokoso baby, find out more here.   

5. Bibs
G goes through around four bibs a day, she's often sick after a feed and I don't like to leave a wet one around her neck. This pretty tie back one was mine and is thirty years old but the ones with velcro are easier to apply to a furiously hungry baby's neck so I usually have a few of those in the bag too. 

6. Squash
For me, not her. I need to drink lots of water, I really think it impacts on my milk supply if I don't but I'm just not very good at drinking it plain so I keep one of these tiny bottles of flavouring in my bag to jazz it up and make me drink more (I keep this in an Ikea ziplock bag to reduce my spill risk). 

7. Hair bow
This child of mine is often dressed head to toe in blue, which means she's regularly mistaken for a boy. This is fine but sometimes it's just easier if we don't have to have that awkward 'actually it's a she' conversation. And there is no cuter way to identify her as a pink one than a blue bow. Hair bow by Evie Michelle, find out more here.

8. Cleansing water
This product is perfect for a quick freshen up, you don't need to wash it off and it has a very light, fresh fragrance. I use this around her neck where the milk that she didn't fancy seems to collect, the odour is shocking if it's not cleaned off pronto. Find out more about Mustela no-rinse cleansing water here.

9. Nappy sacks 
For nappies, for baby wipes and bringing home poo stained babygrows. It's polite to bag it when you're putting a poo in someone else's bin!

10. Spare clothes 
For my everyday changing bag I just pack one sleepsuit, if her day clothes get ruined, by one bodily fluid or another she goes straight into her PJs, whatever time of day. It means that I only have to remember one thing and it's less bulk for the bag than full spare outfits. This one is from Mamas & Papas.

11. Nappy cream
I don't apply it every time, but at the first sign of redness this stuff blitzes nappy rash. You'll find these tiny tubes in the free pregnancy/mum-to-be packs and they're just the perfect size for the changing bag. 

12. Dummy
Yes, we use a dummy, and it's the greatest sanity saver. At first I was almost ashamed that she needed it, I still try to remove it for photos...if she'll let me. We keep it on a clip so we always know where it is and I always carry at least one spare. We use the Avent ones in the day as they come with a handy keep clean cover. 

13. Wipes
I'm not fussy when it comes to wipes, I use whatever is on special offer, but I like to keep these mini Pampers travel packs in the changing bag. I'm all about the tiny portions because the bag and the baby are heavy enough without adding a weighty 58 pack of wipes to the equation. You can buy them from Superdrug.

14. Nipple cream
I love a product that has multiple uses, this works wonders as a nipple balm, but also a lip balm and any dry skin, it's 100% lanolin (the wax from sheeps' wool) so you can use it on baby's dry bits too. I use Medela purelan and again, I keep the mini version in my bag. Find out more here.

15. Cotton wool
In all its formats, which I keep in a ziplock bag for everything including but not exclusive to cleaning around the neck to thwart her plans of starting a camembert factory. 

16. Nappies
Three is usually plenty for our regular day out. We're currently using Aldi size 3 which at £3.49 for 56 work out at 6p per nappy. 

17. Antibacterial wipes
For public changing stations and everything else.

18. My stuff
A purse and phone is pretty much all I take with me. I also keep a lipstick in my pocket to detract from tired eyes. It makes me wonder what I've been carrying around in my handbag up until I had a small person's things to cart about. I try to make sure that I always have small change for car parks and £1 for the trolley because there are no quick dashes with a baby in tow. 

Our kit is all packed in to a Jem and Bea Amber bag (find it here) and laid out on our Molly and Moo quilted play mat, (find it here).

I'd love to know what you pack in yours, tell me in the comments below?


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