Anyone who has had to take a small human into public knows it’s not as simple as hauling them around in your arms. The amount of stuff you have to take with you can get ridiculous, and it’s hard to know what you might really need, and what is just taking up space. I was recently asked what were the things I used the most and so I’ve made a list of the 5 things I have used a lot in the hopes it will help cut down on the unnecessary ‘stuff’.
1. A good pram
I have 2 prams I love. A Baby Jogger, City Select for farm and long distances when a bit of suspension and a higher handle for me is needed. It’s perfect for exercise and has big wheels and an adjustable hand bar for me, but it’s wider frame make it less than ideal for town. My City Mini, also by Baby Jogger has now been through 5 children (it was secondhand when I bought it and has been lent to friends too), and it is still going strong. I love it because it is light and fits everywhere (unlike most prams). It’s been to New Zealand with us and up and down WA. It lays flat for a new born and fits a 4 yr old in it when they grow up (it happens faster than you expect!). I’m luck to have the luxury to 2 prams that I love because a good, manoeuvrable pram is a must.
2. A baby carrier
Yes I just mentioned a pram, but there will be days that you need to keep bub close. Maybe they are whingy, maybe you are going into lots of little shops, or maybe it’s just nice to have them close. I had a Baby Bjorn for Moo, and use a Ergo Baby carrier still for Charlie and it is amazing. From when Charlie was a tiny baby I would strap him to my front when he needed to be held, but I still needed to have my hands free. I used it at the shops, when going to events like shows and even at home when I had to cook or hang washing but he wasn’t going to let me put him down. I highly recommend getting a carrier that allows front, back and front facing carrying because as your bub grows you want to be able to carry them in different ways. Charlie is now 2 and I still use my Ergo on my back when I need to.
3. A nappy wallet
A nappy bag is all well and good, and I have a great one, but one thing I absolutely love is my nappy wallet. I bought mine from an Etsy shop (just search Nappy Wallet) and I use it constantly. I don’t always want to take my whole nappy bag into a shop with me, and I’ve found that the nappy bag on the back of some prams makes them tip, so a little nappy wallet with a onesie, a few nappies, a pack of wipes, plastic bag for the dirty nappy (or outfit) and a disposable change mat is perfect. I even fit a tiny tube of nappy cream and some hand sanitiser in mine! It fits in my basket or handbag, under the pram or can be simply chucked in a trolley when we go shopping.
4. A cloth or swaddle
A thin muslin cloth is super handy. From something to mop up messes, a breastfeeding cover, sunshade, baby wrap, even a cloth nappy in emergencies, the simply muslin square is a thing of many uses! I try to keep one in my nappy bag, a smaller one in my nappy wallet and a back up in my car, and all of them have had to be pulled out on occasion!
5. A spare outfit (for both of you)
Let me set the scene, we are 45 minutes down a dirt road on the way to a family get together on a farm an hour away. Tiny Hunter is in his capsule and has just started to squeak in his 5 week old voice as he wakes up. I wasn’t able to breastfeed him and my milk had dried up 2 weeks prior, so I had stopped wearing breast pads. Suddenly I felt wet patches on my tummy, looking down I found my previously Sahara desert boobs had decided my baby (that couldn’t drink my milk without being sick) needed my milk. I had not thought to bring a spare top and I had massive milk tracks down my top, I looked like I was impersonating a fountain, it was awful. Since that day I carry a spare top for myself and a few outfits for bub just in case, and its surprising just how often I’ve had to use them!
Are you expecting or an old hand at this baby business? Do you have any ‘must haves’ for a new baby when you need to take them out and about?