When I was pregnant with our first son, Asher, I spent hours pouring over the internet for the best diaper bag. When it was all said and done I didn’t even buy a bag. We ended up making an emergency trip to Nashville when Asher was two months and think, for some reason, that I had to have a diaper bag, I dashed out to Target. I ended up buying this hideous gray monstrosity of a thing that I hated it then and I hate it to this day. It’s very large and I filled it with pointless items that have never been used once, yet, I carried it around for months.

 

CHOOSING LESS OVER MORE

One of my goals in 2017 is to live more simply. I want to more intentional about removing unnecessary items from my life so I have more time to spend with my children, focus more clearly on conversations with my husband (clutter really distracts me), remove excuses for not having devotions, work out and grow my photography business. How do I plan on doing this? By removing extra decisions in my life on what clothes to wear, getting rid of items that are not necessary, hauling less stuff around with my children etc. Before I start taking on some of the major projects like our closet, basement, garage etc. I’m starting small with my purse. Please note: I keep a backup diapers and a change of clothes in the trunk of the car on the off chance I might need something beyond what I have in my bag.  I don’t feel it’s necessary to haul extra items all around every single time we go somewhere in my purse for every “just in case” scenario. We keep a bucket of toys in our car next to our two-year-olds seat. He get’s to typically pick one or two toys to take into a restaurant or church to play with, when we return to the car they go back in the bucket, this also cuts down on what I’m hauling around in my bag to keep him occupied.

 

BEING INTENTIONAL

Every item in my bag/purse now serves a purpose and gets used regularly. Not everything is fashionable but it’s functional and works for me. Once again I spent hours looking over the internet for the perfect bag. I ended up choosing a bag from FashionABLE because it was skinnier yet deep which is something I like with how I use my bag. FashionABLE is also a great company all their goods are made by women locally & globally who have overcome extraordinary circumstances… from addiction to depression to prostitution. Check out their wonderful site here.

 

MY ALL TIME FAVORITE BABY ITEM

I had a friend who got me a receiving blanket from Aden + Anais after Asher was born and I used it basically every day. It’s a very large receiving/swaddling blanket that has lightweight breathable fabric. I used it as a nursing cover, a burp cloth, and swaddling blanket. The fact that they are so large makes it very versatile for all of your needs. I now purchase one for every new mother I know.

 

SIMPLIFYING DIAPER CHANGES

I hate changing diapers in public  A LOT! Having to figure out where to hang a large diaper bag and pull the necessary items out is a huge pain in a public restroom. Now, when I have to do a dreaded diaper change in a public place, it’s a lot easier. Everything is located in my JuJuBe bag. I chose these bags specifically because they’re easy to clean if they get dirty and are even washable. There are 4 newborn diapers, 2 size 5 diapers, wipes (forgot to pull them out, they’re in there and they fit, I promise). My favorite kind of changing mat is a Luvdbaby,  it’s waterproof, the perfect size for a two-year-old or infant and folds up small. I also carry a roll of diaper disposal bags for the times I actually have to carry a dirty diaper around in my bag…it happens! If we’re at a restaurant and Jerry is with me I don’t even have to take my whole purse I just grab the one bag and take it with me to the restroom– so simple!

CARRYING WHAT I NEED WHEN IT’S JUST ME

Who knew that going to the grocery store alone would turn into a treat? When I’m able to fly solo, I ditch the bag altogether and just carry my wallet. I love this wallet which is also from FashionABLE. It has room for everything, even our “envelope” cash system that we use for finances. It’s big enough to hold my iPhone 6 and still snap up.

THE MISCELLANEOUS ITEMS

We all have the items we can’t live without. Living in Colorado requires having a chapstick close at hand always, mascara and lipstick for when I need a little extra boost of confidence, some perfume when I get ambitious to run errands after a workout, and the cheapest sunglasses you ever did see! I also carry my “kids bag” which has a binky, fruit snacks and a few backup toys for emergencies. I also carry a burp cloth for the newborn, Judah, a bib for messy meals for Asher, and a change of clothes for Judah who is prone to blowouts at this stage.

WHAT DO YOU CARRY?

I’d love to hear what you can’t live without in your bag. What’s your go-to baby item? I love how being a parent is always an evolving process and what we think is important with one child often changes with the next.

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COMMENTS

Sarah, I love this! Especially after our trip with two kids – there has got to be a lighter way to travel, I do believe all those hair bows have added 10lbs to our load. This is similar to how I try to do diaper bags but since having another NB I’ve kind of lost sight of it and feel like my bag weighs more than the car seat I lug around. I am a huge fan of putting little bags into the big one to keep things organized. But I love the bags you chose and how they zip! And the toy bucket in the car is genius – we will be doing that. We have books but a toy bucket makes so much sense. All the things that come with the baby and toddler territory are crazy and we are all about simplifying. Go to baby item is definitely the swaddler/burp rag/nursing cover! I too have found that one works for all that. And keeping emergency gear in the trunk saves so much space in the bag! Thanks for all the tips and tricks (and helping mama’s keep style in life with a baby and toddler!) would love more blogs like this. I’m always looking for a way to keep things organized and not look like the kid runs the show (in the home and everywhere else).