In the years since having children, the change bag, and now what I refer to as my ‘bag of tricks’ has been both my saviour in times of need and my archenemy – on a daily basis! I am convinced I have begun to shrink under the sheer weight of the thing. As I leave anywhere I have a check list: child 1 – check; child 2 – check; child 3, check; child 4, check; bag of tricks – check … and good to go!
Over the years I have used a range of bags for this purpose – largely because we seem to outgrow them! After drink spillages and food mishaps, the interiors of most of my bags are in a pretty unfortunate state so I rotate them fairly frequently. At one point I had a monstrosity of a bag which was a former weekend bag that I wheeled out after the zip went on the former beach bag I had been using.
In the early days, the then ‘nappy bag’ was fairly straightforward to pack: nappies, wipes, disposal bags, a change of clothes….scrap that, at least three changes of clothes, a bottle of milk when I stopped breastfeeding, and a couple of teething toys would suffice. After my second child was born, I had all that stuff for him plus spare clothes for my then toddler, snacks for her and usually a drink and a couple of books too.
I could never have anticipated how out of control this would get as the years passed by…and I had more children.
My bag of tricks motto has become quite simply – be prepared for anything! This is the reason I am like a modern-day version of Mary Poppins, just less well kept and more haphazard than she was.
These days the children seem to require the equivalent of a small toy shop to get out the door. Plus now my daughter has started to want to take a hand bag…sorry suitcase out with her to be just like Mummy. Oh the trauma of just trying to get out of the door! I now need the big kid supplies and the baby supplies, which includes two different sizes of nappies.
Despite carrying everything but the kitchen sink around with me at all times, you can be certain I will not have packed something ‘essential’.