As your child grows, his or her needs will change and what you need to carry in the diaper bag will change as well. I know of five simple things that you will want to have with you in your diaper bag at all times. Keeping these diaper bag essentials fully stocked will help minimize meltdowns (both toddler’s and mommy’s) since you will have what you need on hand.
- Snack (including a drink, or at least a cup) – this can be something easy like goldfish or crackers or sliced cheese, or it can be a bit more involved, depending on where you will be heading, but always have something for your toddler to snack on. Bringing along a sippy cup is also a good idea. #babyD is frequently thirsty and, though he is capable of drinking out of a cup with a straw, that usually ends up with a mess, even with supervision. Having a sippy cup along will help minimize the mess, especially if your toddler winds up needing a drink while you’re in the car.
- Diapers/pull-ups/underwear – depending on where you are in the potty-training process, you will need to make sure you have at least one of these readily available. You may also need some of each.
- Extra set of clothes – whether you’re in the midst of potty training or just have a toddler like mine who likes to make a mess with his drinks especially, an extra set of clothes is wonderful to have. You won’t want your little one to be cold and suffer too much after he spills his drink in his lap, right?
- A book or toy – you get bonus points if you also have a book or toy that is specific to the car. Keeping your toddler entertained can be challenging and I don’t think I’m the only mother who would prefer to keep YouTube videos of Dora or Barney as a last resort. Bringing either your child’s favorite toy or one he or she doesn’t get to play with often will help keep his or her attention.
- Wipes – they are necessary both for cleaning bottoms and cleaning hands. There is no good reason to be without wipes ever! In fact, you may just want to go ahead and keep an extra pack in the car for emergencies.
Do you have any other diaper bag essentials for toddlers that you carry with you? Do you have outing or car-specific toys or books for your little one?