Previous baby gear posts:
I'm continuing on and talking about the diaper bag today. In the beginning, anytime we left the house -- our diaper bag was bursting at the seams. I'll be totally honest, I never really knew what to pack so I opted for being over-prepared. But eventually, I refined what was in the bag and narrowed down the contents to what I felt I actually used and needed while away from home. I also always think about the fact that I'm never too far away from a major store... and I could always just buy what I needed in a pinch. I will say that I didn't include any food/milk/water in this round-up. That's really up to your baby and what your baby is eating before 12 months. Javi didn't eat much and he really lived off formula (which I always brought with me), water, and cheerios. He's a much better eater now, thankfully. But here is what I do always bring:
diaper bag - This is our go-to diaper bag. It's the one we used from day one and it's nice because it's cute but not too flashy so Sean doesn't mind carrying it around too. I like all the pockets and a lot of stuff does fit inside. I will say that when the side pockets are full, not much fits in the center, main part of the bag. But I think that's probably common.
diaper bag - This is our go-to bag for traveling. I bought it when Javi was under 3 months old and we travelled on a plane for the first time. It was SO worth it. I love that it's a backpack, it has so many pockets, a designated spot for wipes, cooler packs on the side for bottles -- it's pretty intense. The more I think about it, the more I think I should use it more often!
wet bags - So I know these are generally for people who use cloth diapers but I use these for outfits. There are 2 zipper compartments so I keep the clean clothes in one and dirty clothes in the other. And when I get home, I throw the whole thing in the wash. Easy.
diapers - It's a diaper bag so clearly it needs to hold some diapers. "They" say you should have 1 diaper for every hour you're away from home. I don't know if that's true and maybe it was in the very beginning. Now I just make sure I have 3 or 4. Unless I'm gone all day or something (which is never). I guess it depends how frequently you change diapers! I do keep extra diapers in our car though. And the places Javi spends a lot of time at, like my parents house, has its own diaper stash.
changing pad - (similar) I got it as a gift and I like it. I think if I had picked it out I would have chosen a changing pad that has a wipes holder and a head rest -- the possibilities are endless. But it's compact and useful so I never saw the need to replace it.
pee pads - No, but really. I buy puppy pee pads and I always pack a few in the diaper bag. Why? Well, it makes it really easy to change a diaper in a place that is disgusting to start with. One time I had to change Javi on the floor in a public bathroom. They didn't have a changing table. I didn't want to put my cute changing pad on the nasty floor... enter puppy pee pads. I threw one of those down on the floor in the bathroom stall and then put the changing pad on top of it. I even use them to put all my stuff down on while I change him. After, you just throw everything away. They're the best.
travel wipes - You need wipes like you need diapers.
arm & hammer bags - These are the best. Sometimes they aren't necessary... like if you're somewhere that has an appropriate trash bin for diapers. But if you're anywhere else, the general public or the people who are hosting you at their house, will thank you for putting a dirty diaper in one of these bags before tossing it in their trash.
outfit - In the beginning I used to carry around an entire wardrobe for Javi. But I try to just have 2 full outfits now. Sometimes... it's not enough and sometimes it's way too much. I'm still learning there. But I think 2 outfits is a good rule of thumb.
blanket - I always try to have at least 1 blanket in the diaper bag and usually I keep a heavier one in the car. When he was really little, blankets could be used to block the sun, keep him warm, or to put down for him to lay on and play on. Now it's basically just to keep him warm or play peek-a-boo.
lysol wipes - I use these to wipe down surfaces like restaurant tables and highchairs. I also use wet ones to wipe down my hands. I typically have SO many different type of wipes in the diaper bag. If he's sick I have boogie wipes, I use the Johnson and Johnson wipes to wipe down his face and hands before and after he eats. I have diaper wipes. In the beginning, Sean used to complain that he didn't know what each pack of wipes was for. Now... I think he knows. :)
hand sanitizer - I love this one. It leaves your hands feeling smooth and not dried out. I think it's worth the price.
toys and books - You always want to make sure you have stuff to keep them occupied. Or else they want your phone and that's no good for anyone. :)