jujubeIt continues to amaze me how my diaper bag necessities keep dwindling in number as my son gets older. Pretty soon I may even be able to get away with *gasp* a big purse!?! Who am I kidding, I have another one on the way. I will be into diaper bags for a few more years at least.

So here are five items that I find to still be a necessity for a toddler:

  1. Small cars – I keep about 4 cars in a zippered pouch at all times. I will add other small toys to the diaper bag depending on his interests or where we are going at the time but the cars remain. They will always be a fun easy distraction. Why 4? Because he always makes friends wherever he goes and this allows him to share so they both have one for each hand.
  2. Antibacterial wipes – I run out of these CONSTANTLY! Boys are messy and when you add sand, dirt or peanut butter and jelly to the mix it’s exponential! Most of the time there isn’t a faucet and soap on hand so these work in a pinch.
  3. Healthy snacks – Getting stuck with a hungry toddler is almost as bad as getting stuck with a hungry pregnant woman (ok mainly me!). I can’t tell you how many times I have had to make lunch out of snacks I found in the diaper bag because we ended up staying too late at the park, couldn’t find a place to eat that had chicken nuggets or a number of other reasons. That’s why I usually have a few fruit/veggie squeeze pouches, nuts, raisins (they keep for a good long time), some type of crackers and, when I am really on the ball, freeze-dried veggies or fruit. Yes it’s not a balanced diet but it’s better than buying overpriced junk food from a vendor or machine.
  4. Change of clothes – As I said before boys get MESSY! And let’s be honest do we really want all that wet caked on dirt in our car seats? Heck no! I have been caught at too many places that felt putting sand/dirt and water together was a good idea which is why I usually keep an extra shirt and shorts or pants on hand.
  5. Wet/Dry Bag - Which leads me to my final item, a bag to put all those dirty items in. I like to have a small bag with separated out wet and dry compartments. I keep the new clothes in the dry compartment and it all folds nicely up in my diaper bag to be pulled out when necessary. You could also use those disposable diaper bags as they roll up real small and don’t take up much room.

So what items do you find helpful for your little ones?


The featured diaper bag is the Ju-Ju-Be B.F.F. Diaper Bag.


Kate Wilkinson is a wife to an amazing man who loves to cook (yes she knows she’s lucky!) and is blessed to be a stay at home mom to her two very active boys, Little Man and Punkin. Come join her adventure to maintain sanity while she juggles VERY energetic boys, housework that never seems to end, and the occasional date night that isn’t thwarted by falling asleep in the movie theatre. When mommy brain allows Kate blogs at RetroModernMom.com about family, faith and the funny things in between. It may be hard living in LA but she’s a modern mom doing it the old-fashioned way.

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2 Responses to Five diaper bag essentials for toddlers

  1. CatherineM says:

    I couldn’t agree more with snacks and a wet bag. Snacks are a must, hungry kids get cranky fast. We cloth diaper so we always have a wet bag in the diaper bag for dirty diapers but you never know when clothes will get messy and a good wet bag is so handy.

  2. Completely agree. I actually felt like such a hypocrite the other day. As this post was going live I found myself stuck somewhere longer than anticipated and I had not packed my diaper bag with snacks so I had nothing to feed him. Needless to say I attempted to bolt as quick as I could with Little Man whining the whole way. GEESH! I need to take sme f my own advice. ;)

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