Updated: Jul 27, 2022
In my short year of being the primary care giver to my son, I wanted to share with my readers my top ten parenting items I like to make sure I have on a daily basis. These items make it so my day does not go too far off the tracks. Take a read and hopefully you find something good on here to help you out!
1. Disposable Place Mat
Going out to eat at a restaurant can be quite stressful with little ones--almost to the point of never being going out! However, a disposable place mat can take one stress off your plate by literally not having to worry about your toddler tossing his plate. It's easy to set up a disposable place mat at a restaurant by removing the sticky strip covers on the disposable place mat and placing it down in front of your kid. (Tip: Put the mat slightly close to you and also leave a little so to cover the edge a tad bit. You know the kiddo will end up on your lap sooner or later.) These mats make eating less strenuous, and the clean up is easy. Your server will undoubtedly appreciate it too. Just put the food in the middle and peel up the mat and cringle it into a ball. All done!
2. Current Size Diaper
Children grow fast. I have seen the aftermath of a too small diaper on a poopy bottom. I have heard stories of parents cutting the kids outfit and just tossing out the whole article of clothing. You will have blow outs for sure, but do not test your luck. Stay up-to-date with your child's current diaper size and make sure they are in your diaper bag!
3. Snacks That Can Take Temperature Changes
Sometimes as a parent, you never know how the days going to go. Some days, the kids are great and are excited to go with the flow. A good boy scout is always prepared! If you get the opportunity to get to the bottom of your to-do list and day's agenda, your going need snacks. You will not be happy opening your diaper bag to find expired food or even worse--no snacks! My go-to, temperature change proof snacks are peanut butter crackers and fish crackers. Unless you are refreshing your diaper bag multiple times a week with new snacks, I would not keep fruit or veggies. The possibility of mold is just gross, and I also recommend that you make sure it’s a snack you're going to enjoy too! With kids, being productive adult is a rarity. Be sure to capitalize on it when opportunity shows itself!
4. Butt Paste
Rashes are preventable. If you are diligent with diaper changes you will rarely see one. However, things happen and accidents will occur. My boy recently had one, and it caused him pain. I felt so much guilt, but I decided to not sulk in that feeling for too long. If you are a parent with a child in diapers, you know that, at one point or another, we all eventually make that mistake (and it could happen on its own too). If it does happen you and your child, you will want to be prepared by starting the healing process ASAP. Always keep the butt paste near and hope you'll never have to use it!
My boy and I both have fair skin (with ginger hair too!). This means we must be more diligent about sunscreen application, but everyone should protect themselves from harmful sun rays and over exposure. For some days, the trip to the park might go longer than originally planned or your sun exposure might end up being a lot more than expected. I absolutely carry sunscreen with me to protect me and my son from the sun. There are an abundance of kid’s sunscreen on the market today, and there are even some that are reef save if you life in an area of the world where that is a concern. You might not need a minimum of SPF 50 like me and my son, but keep some sunscreen in your bag just in case. Your baby’s skin is new and gentle. Let’s keep it healthy as long as possible!
6. Extra Bottle
Healthy habits start off young. I always fill a cup of water for my son to-go. I avoid any other drinks because there is a good chance I will end up buying a juice or tea for my kid. Trust me, the cleaning process is easier with water. A good habit to form is to keep extra bottle in your bag. Recently, I got to see my kid drinking pineapple juice for the first time. It was uneventful, but it was still a great sight to see as a parent nonetheless. To easily serve him the pineapple juice, I just dumped out the water in my diaper bag bottle and filled it with the juice instead. Easy!
7. Butt wipes
It’s a no brainer. Just make sure you do not run out or let the wipes dry out. If they do dry out, utilize some the water from a handy water bottle or sink to freshen them up. Trust me, if you have an encounter with a dirty butt and no wipes, it will be last time you will allow that to happen.
I rotate a few of his favorite toys in and out my diaper bag, and keeping your toy stash fresh is super important. It sucks handing him a toy with which he is instantly board when you just need a few minutes to think. A good distraction goes along way. Whether you’re needing to make a call or just planning out dinner, when the little ones want your attention, it’s hard to break away. Hopefully you have a good assortment to the kiddo’s liking, or you will find out how fun it is for you to pick up the toy off the floor over and over again.
9. Extra Outfit
I recently went to the park with my son, and when we got there, they had the water features on that shoot water out of the ground (similar to a splash pad). As turns out, my son is a water baby, and when he saw the water features, his eyes lit up like a Christmas tree. Now, I did not have the perfect water-friendly outfit for him. However, I definitely wanted him to have fun, and turning around was now not an option. I had dry clothes with me so I said, “What the heck! Let's goooooo!" Once he was done, I got him cleaned up and dry with a fresh outfit on. Ready for a nap in the car!
10. Water Bottle
For you, parent! Stay hydrated. It’s a simple thing to keep on you. You will never regret having some extra water around. You will find a use for it almost daily.
What do you think of my top ten list? What’s on your list I’m missing? Leave a comment!