Nowadays, we wouldn’t even leave the house without it: the changing bag! Some parents cannot imagine leaving the house with a big bag full of necessities. This basic phenomenon can be particularly daunting for new parents as they feel insecure and don’t know yet what to expect from day to day life with their new offspring. They feel pressured to take everything they can in order to anticipate every possible scenario.

Let us investigate what can be found in a changing bag:

For each baby/toddler:

2-3 nappies (dependent on how long you go out for)
nappy wipes
nappy bags
a changing mat
nappy rash cream
1-2 bottles of water
the equivalence of milk powder in a dispenser for 1-2 bottles
a jar
some fruit (fresh & dried)
some snacks like rice cake or cookies
a spoon
a bib
breast pads (if breastfeeding)
a spare bra and top for mum (if breastfeeding)
a blanket
some toys
2 dummies
a book
spare clothes in case of accident
a portable potty
anti-bacterial handwash/wipes
a mini first aid kit
ppropriate outdoor clothing (coat, hat, gloves in winter, sunhat and sun cream in summer)

This list depends on whether you breastfeed, the age of your child and his developmental stage.

By the time we get home there seems to be even more in our bag: everything needs to be sorted and a new bag packed for the next day.

It is a steep learning curve to start cutting down on things we take out. Eventually, the frustration of having to run around the house in order to find all the things to pack, the weight of the bag and the chances of missing your appointment are increased by 150%! This makes parents start to think about the changing bag again. Do we need all this? Can we survive going out for an hour without anything but a drink? The answer is: yes, of course! We have to learn it though. Over time we get to know our little ones better and understand their needs so that we can adjust accordingly. Planning our trips around our baby’s routine can help reduce the size of the bag significantly.

As the saying goes: “Little people, little problems – big people, big problems”. New parents tend to make little peoples’ problems too big!