Ok, so, packing nappy bags are one of a long list of non-glamorous things you need to learn to do as a parent. Carrying around an ungainly, bulging bag that’s spilling over with baby wipes, bottles and god knows what else is beyond annoying. I can hardly remember what I need to put in my own handbag (wallet, keys, phone) at the best of times, so this is a challenge!
I’m always really envious of parents who manage to look put together, miraculously and inexplicably able to whip out whatever it is their baby needs from a pocket of their bag in a millisecond like some kind of nappy bag ninja. I figured, if I’m going to have to keep carrying around all this extra baby stuff, I might as well do it well.
There are only 2 steps, so, let’s start with step 1 of ninja training…
- Pick Your Contents Wisely
This principle applies no matter what you’re packing or where you’re going. Packing light for a for a city break or romantic weekend (remember those?) seems easier than looking into your crystal ball to predict if your little one will actually need that sun hat, extra nappy, second favourite toy or orange segments.
What you pack obviously depends on how old your baby is, but, generally, you can’t go wrong with these essential items.
These are the essentials you shouldn’t leave the house without...
You need baby wipes, well, because, babies. Need we really say any more? From food splashes to changing, don’t leave the house without them!
Portable changing mat (one that folds up or rolls into a small space)
Wherever you are, your baby will have a comfortable and hygienic surface to be changed on. Often they will be incorporated into your nappy bag.
No explanation needed.
These can be used for all kinds of occasions. For blankets if it gets cold, as a playmat, a giant tissue, a bib, a comforter, baby burping shield (no sick on my shoulder, thanks!)… the list goes on.
Babies love putting things in their mouths, especially as soon as they start - and throughout teething. Give this to your baby to occupy their mouths! We, of course, recommend the Matchstick Monkey teether, a solid teether with no holes and made from food grade silicone that you can also medicate with!
Food & Snacks
Take whatever is age appropriate for your baby. Personally, I do like packing myself a little snack along with baby’s food too, being hangry is not helpful when trying to look after a child.
Taking a bottle of water and/or milk with you is essential to make sure your baby isn’t thirsty. If you’re breastfeeding make sure you have some water in there for yourself.
Small toys and Books
If your baby is feeling tired, irritable or just bored, small toys and books can be a saviour and a necessary distraction i.e when visiting the doctor for injection)!
Change of Clothes
Babies are experts at getting themselves messy. Packing an extra couple of white cotton baby grows or a change of clothes is always a good idea.
- Choosing Your Nappy Bag
The most important thing with a nappy bag is that it’s spacious and easy to get into.
There are some brilliant nappy bags out there but one of my favourites are PacaPod. They’ve got some genuinely stylish designs that don’t scream I AM A NAPPY BAG, whilst still being incredibly practical. Their leather versions look like the most stylish weekend getaway bags, or like they belong on the arm of the put-together person I imagine I could be!
The bags come with smaller wipeable, washable “feeder” or “changer” pods designed to carry the items you and your baby need through the day. Genius! There’s also a load of other handy features.