I never used to carry a bag but walking around with everything you need in your pockets when you’ve got kids is pretty much impossible. Before you know it you don’t even have a dainty handbag, you’re practically wheeling a suitcase around. You’ve probably thought of the things you need like wet wipes, nappies, changes of clothes, your purse, your keys, all that jazz. But what about the unexpected stuff that you didn’t even think to take with you?
Consider these 6 unexpected must-haves that you need in your bag when you go out if you’re a parent.
1. A Powerbank and Charging Cable
One of my worst nightmare’s is now being out and about and my phone being out of charge. It’s a bit weird since I grew up in a time where mobile phones didn’t exist and my mum was quite happy for me to head out for the day with no contact. At the end of the day I’d call her from a pay phone if I needed a lift home. We didn’t even have the internet, which sounds so crazy to me now. But these days, payphones aren’t around and we live in a much more connected time. Don’t get caught out without charge when you need to look up a bus time, contact a relative or simply want to browse the internet because the baby has fallen asleep and you can’t move. Save your sanity, take a powerbank. They’re inexpensive!
I’ve got a competition for you to win a powerbank just in case you don’t already have one. Head down to the bottom of the page.
2. Backup Clothes for YOU
I always hear people taking out stuff for the baby, but do yourself a favour and take a spare top. Even if it’s just a vest or something you can use in an emergency. I have been thrown up on, pooped on, I’ve had a plate of spaghetti pushed over me, I’ve had drinks spilled on me, I’ve fallen over in the mud whilst chasing a toddler and had to wade into a stream to retrieve a toy that had mysteriously made its way into the water. Life is just easier if you have something spare for yourself.
3. Something that smells good
I don’t need to waffle on about the weird smells that come with having kids. Do yourself a favour and carry something that smells nice. For me, I use a lavender spray – much more gentle and natural than perfume. Whatever your favourite thing is, have a small travel bottle of it available.
4. Your kids favourite condiments
No I don’t mean carry an entire bottle of ketchup around with you, but when you’re somewhere that has packets, sneak a few extra to keep in your handbag. There is nothing worse than having kids refusing to eat dinner because they didn’t have any ketchup or mayo. Maybe you have an iron will and crazy discipline and your kids will eat chips without sauces, but mine will literally not eat anything without ketchup on it right now and I’m picking my battles carefully!
5. A set of playing cards
Playing cards are so versatile. From toddlers just playing with them to older kids who can patience alone or gin rummey together, carrying a pack of cards is a universal entertainment that can bridge generations and fill time. Good for doctors waiting rooms, airports, waiting for food or any time you have 5 minutes that would otherwise be filled with inpatient whining. It’s oldschool, but it works!
6. Carabiner Clips
These little clips can be very useful and at under £1 each they won’t break the bank. They were originally made for safety harnesses, but now you can buy them on their own very cheaply. You can clip virtually anything to it, whether it’s a pacifier or a soft toy clipped to the stroller or your car keys clipped to your bag so you don’t lose them. Anything you want in a specific place and not going walkies mysteriously, clip it on!
So those are my six recommended must-have products that you may not have expected. I am confident they will help make your life easier.
Now it’s on to the competition. I’m happy to be offering my readers the chance to win a powerbank from Tech brand Aukey, who offer a wide range of computing, home and auto tech to make your life easier. This 20,000mAH Powerbank has two outputs and two inputs for charging multiple devices and can charge up to 3.4A at once. It contains enough charge to charge most phones 4-5 times, and tablets such as iPads twice, so you don’t need to recharge it every time you use it. If you’re not lucky enough to win it, you can purchase it on Amazon for £22.99!