It was a bit of a challenge to figure out how to have successful outings with my newborn baby. With so many things to juggle, a whole host of unknowns awaiting me, and no experience anticipating the needs of anyone but grownups, I had my hands full. Fortunately, diaper bag packing is a skill that I acquired with practice, and I’ve accumulated a list of tips and tricks to pass on to other new moms just learning the ins and outs of diaper bags.
A full-sized diaper bag is great to have for day trips and daycare, but it’s also very inconvenient to tote around for quick trips out of the house. When we’re running an errand or going to church, for example, we grab our smaller diaper bag, and it makes the whole juggling act of taking a baby out of the house a lot more manageable.
Keep it stocked
There is nothing more frustrating than trying to get quickly out the door but having to worry about what I’ve forgotten to pack in the diaper bag. Instead, after every trip, I find it helpful to restock the bag. I clean out whatever is dirty and replenish what I’ve used so that I can just grab it on the way out the door.
Make a checklist
Especially when I was first starting to learn the ropes of motherhood, I could never recall all the things I needed to bring with me. I can still remember my mother coaching me through my first diaper-bag-packing experience as we rushed to get my baby out the door to her first doctor’s appointment and realizing how many things I hadn’t known I’d need. Later, I created a checklist that I could reference before leaving to make sure there wasn’t anything I’d forgotten.
You can’t possibly think of everything you’ll need when you’re out of the house, but you can cover a few likely scenarios. In case of a blowout, bring a cloth wet bag or a plastic grocery bag to contain the dirty clothes and diaper. If you’re going somewhere quiet, pack toys that don’t make a lot of noise. Pack in twos: two changes of clothes, two burp cloths, two pacifiers, two toys. This tip has come in especially handy since my baby has decided it’s necessary to throw everything on the floor.
Group smaller items
It can be quite a challenge to fish inside a packed diaper bag for a tiny pair of socks or a pacifier. I’ve found it helpful to keep smaller items grouped together. For example, I have a makeshift First Aid kit of teething tablets, Tylenol, and gas drops in a Ziploc bag that I can easily access and transfer quickly between diaper bags.
More from this mom:
How to Get the Most Out of Your Baby Photography Shoot
How We Managed a Long Car Ride with Our Infant
5 Reason My Baby is Sleeping Through the Night
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