There is no doubt that as the months of Parenthood progress, the Baby Bag becomes a symbol, a beacon, a veritable Mary Poppins bag in which you could find things that would protect you in event of a natural disaster if necessary. From nappy changing to clothes changing to feeding and playing and carrying: if you need it regularly, the chances are you are carrying it about your person. By which I mean, you are pushing the pushchair which is supporting the colossal weight of the baby bag in which is contained all but the kitchen sink.
So the bliss of not having to carry around a baby bag cannot be underestimated.
Yet putting away the baby change kit, the bibs and the Emergency Carrot Puffs is not the end of it. You still have a small child. You will still be expected to produce snacks when they are hungry, entertainment when they are bored and medicine when they fall over and wound themselves.
I am always amazed how a pre-schooler is able to injure themselves between the front door and the car, or worse, the school and the car. I have, in five years of school runs, had to drop to the floor and deal with a First Aid situation at least once a term whilst parents and other children diverge around me as if I were an island in a stream. So I carry at the bottom of my large handbag a Cuts and Grazes First Aid Kit. It won’t deal with all eventualities, but it will get you out of the public eye and sometimes that is half the battle.
To make your own Cuts and Grazes First Aid Kit, you need:
a small container- I currently use a smart tin but have used a pencil case, small lidded plastic box or even a ziplock bag. This makes it easier to find at the bottom of your bag, but also means you can grab it and put it in a different bag more easily.
a collection of plasters– this is where the money is, but a picture on a plaster can reduce crying times by 50% so totally worth the investment. I also carry a couple of multi-purpose fabric plasters for scraped knees or grown-up injuries
two Nurofen sachets– you could use Calpol instead. I always carry one per child. Putting them in a ziplock bag prevents leakage
teething powder– whilst most used for teething children, this can also be used to calm children down, or for situations that require “fairy powder” to soothe and relax
antiseptic Wipes– grazes never happen in sterile environments. They cause tears but they clean wounds.
chocolate buttons– smarties or similar also work. Every brave soldier needs a reward, and it’s a good distraction from the antiseptic sting
I also keep bite and sting cream during the summer months!
Keep it in the bottom of your handbag for when you need it, but do check expiry dates and restock as needed.