A Mom’s Mini Emergency Kit

When my kids were small, I had a variety of diaper bags – ranging from small, to medium, to large; colorful to plain; fancy to formal –  with everything I needed for outings with them. I struggled to carry a purse and diaper bag and eventually gave up on the purse altogether. Then I switched to carrying a large purse of some sort that was secretly a diaper bag with a small corner for myself, so that I could look a little more put together.

Having to lug around all the stuff that a baby or toddler requires was no fun. I often had marks on my shoulders from carrying a heavy bag that never got lighter. Sometimes I would remove something I felt wasn’t needed, only to need that exact item later that day (and it was never needed when I had it).

I was so happy that as my kids got older I could carry less stuff. No longer do I need to carry diapers, extra clothes, toys, bottles, blankets, etc. I can take all three of them anywhere with the clothes they are wearing, and perhaps a bottle of water, or something to occupy them with, depending on our destination.

The only permanent item I carry is a small emergency kit.

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I bought a small, transparent toiletry bag that measures 6 1/2″ long x 5″ wide x 3 1/2″ deep, and in it I keep several small items I always need when out with the kids. I chose to put them all in a small bag so that I can transfer it to whichever purse or shoulder bag I’m carrying that day. These are basic items that often end up in your purse anyway, but tend to get lost in the mess and can be hard to grab at a moments notice.

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Here is what I carry (from left to right):

  1. Tissues – always handy.
  2. Disinfectant hand wash – for those times when there is no water but they are hungry and need a snack “right now”.
  3. Antiseptic cream – for minor cuts and scrapes.
  4. Wet wipes – useful for everything from wiping dirty faces and hands to cleaning scrapes, or getting food off of clothes.
  5. Mosquito repellant – needed most of the year, though I usually have the spray instead of the cream.
  6. Bandaids – I use these a lot.
  7. Crocin tablets – for me. If I am able to curb a headache when out, things go much smoother.

There are plenty of other items I could carry, but these 7 are the must-haves that I can’t go without. Outings have been easier since I put this together.

Do you carry something like this? What would you add to it?

Getting Scarlett to Sleep In Her Own Bed

Little Miss Independent wants to do everything herself.

In my last post on Scarlett’s weaning I mentioned I’d be working on getting her to sleep in her own bed and that I’d let you know how it went. This is me letting you know. Ha.

Truthfully, it was easier than I expected. Her crib is right next to my bed. That was to make it easy for night time feeds. I could just reach in and take her out and I often did so in my sleep. When I made the decision to wean, I also started not taking her out of the crib when she woke for water. I’d give her a drink and a hug and then tell her to lie down.

I think it was only two or three nights that she made a fuss, and after that it has been no problem. To help her get more used to sleeping on her own, I also put her in her bed both at nap time and night, instead of patting her to sleep on my bed as I had been doing. She actually reached a point where she didn’t want me to pat her and if she was on my bed, she would get up and try to run, so confinement to the crib worked.

I honestly don’t know the exact length of time this took, but I believe it was only a few days. Now, at nap I put her in her bed and stay in the room for the few minutes it takes her to fall asleep (unless she had already nodded off in the highchair). At night, into the crib she goes and I stay until she is asleep. When she stands up, I remind her to lie down, sometimes a few times, but she is usually asleep in about 5 minutes or so.

During the night now, she wakes once. I give her the sippy cup, she drinks alone and sometimes falls asleep with it in her arms. Lately I wake to find the cup thrown on my bed or the floor, so at some point she wakes again, drinks and throws it out. Ha. At least I’m getting more sleep these days.

Now to work on keeping the other two in their beds all night. Again! Hopefully it will be easier this year.

Random Tips That Can Make Life Easier

Here are a few random tips that you may find useful, things that have come to me and been “wow” moments of learning. I’ll post more as they come to me.

– Always put a bib on your child when feeding them banana or tomato-based foods. While most stains are removable, these stain permanently. To be on the safe side, always use a bib.

– Lock doors you don’t want your baby or toddler getting into. (Works for older kids too, if you keep the key somewhere safe. I lock the cupboard in my kids’ room to keep my oldest from getting into stuff I don’t want him to have on his own.)

– Does your child have one of those shirts that has a head hole that is just a bit too small? To get it on, stretch the hole as far as it will go, then first pull it over the crown of the head and it should easily slip over the rest. (Don’t force it if it is really too small.)

– When dressing your toddler, put the underwear inside the pants or shorts and have them step through both at the same time. It saves time putting clothes on. Works with skirts too.

– Keep a notebook on hand for all those random ideas that come to your mind throughout the day. That way you can jot down what you are thinking about and then go back to whatever you were doing without worrying that you will forget that great idea you just got.

– Keep a paper or dry-erase board on your fridge so that you can note down things you need to buy as you see they are getting low or you are out of them. Then when you are ready to go shopping, your list is ready.

Tips from Facebook readers:

– Get enough excercise yourself because it gives you the energy to keep up with them (your kids)!

– Sleep! If I don’t sleep I want to rip my hair out! I couldn’t stress this enough!

Please feel free to leave your own random tips in the comments. If it is something that you do that makes your life easier, than let us know about it so we can all learn something new.

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