The Control Freak’s Guide to packing your diaper bag

I have definitely been in the position to bum diapers off strangers in the past. Accidents happen, of course they do. But to be prepared for the next rookie mom adventure, I need to channel my inner control freak (who am I kidding? that part of me is always very near the surface) and offer some strategies.

Allow me to suggest a two-pronged approach for the very best ready-to-meet-every-challenge diaper bag packing:

First: Pack the diaper bag with only the essentials

I use a very small packing cube tossed in the bottom of my stroller stuffed with the items I’m 79% likely to need on any given outing. It can fit around my wrist when I’m doing a quick change and takes up very little space when it is not in use. Not to mention, it is gender-neutral so my husband doesn’t mind carrying it (I don’t take chances carrying a floral bag that my parenting partner won’t touch).

  1. Two super soft diapers for (like these Touch of Cloth by Seventh Generation)
  2. Small pack of wipes
  3. Hand sanitizer and mini sunscreen
  4. Thin but soft baby blanket that can double as a changing pad
  5. Cozy pajamas that pack up small in case of an — umm — outfit breach
  6. Small toy or two with linky-doos for connecting to stroller or carrier
  7. Non-leaking sippy cup with water
  8. (Optional) pacifier with leash (yes, two of my babies used a paci)

Second: Have a staging area ready to go for back-up!

You can keep an organizing bin with these baby essentials in your car trunk or front hall closet. My friend Sandy keeps her stash at the foot of the baby car seat — clever.

  1. Six more diapers ready to go. Or the full pack if you have space.
  2. Full-size pack of wipes for hands, faces, and baby tushes
  3. Even more hand sanitizer (confession: mine lives in the minivan cupholder)
  4. Snacks for you and the babe
  5. Change of shirt for you if the baby is at that projectile poop/vomit age

During those most excellent baby naps, replenish your go-bag so it is prepped for your next adventure. I know you want to collapse into the couch and rewatch the Gilmore Girls right about now, but you’ll thank me later.

Because, ready or not, go time is coming soon!

Related Control Freak’s Guides:

  • to grocery shopping with a baby
  • to potty training
  • to moving to a toddler bed from a crib



[Photos of the cute baby by our friend, Anna Azimi; the diaper package provided by Seventh Generation. All rights reserved]

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