Top row L-R: KAOS foldable changing mat and zip pouch, included with Ransel Changing Bag; Kid + Kind "It's Good To Be Me" Sweatshirt; Rapha x Liberty Essentials Case.
Middle row L-R: Pinch Toys Natural Wooden Helicopter and Plane Set; Apple iPad Pro 9.7"; Apple iPhone 6s Plus.
Bottom Row L-R: KAOS Ransel Changing Bag in Black; Dwell Studios Touch and Feel Town; Design Letters Arne Jacobsen A-Z Melamine Cup; Design Letters Drinking Lid in Black; Bloom and Blossom Nip and Lip Soothing Balm; aden + anais Twinkle Musy.
Whose Bag Is It Anyway?
I've found myself asking this many times over the years, as I pop my hand into my bag and find raisins stuck to designer purses and lego men grasping onto my keys. It's been apparent that even my most personal space has been taken over by kiddy mess.
So, I resolved some time ago to treat my bag the Me & Buddy way. Kid-friendly but with style, and staying organised with storage compartments for everything.
Read on for the details of what I keep in my bag now and join the discussion - please use the comments section below to share your top everyday packing tips.
The Bag itself: KAOS Ransel in Black
Like the lyrics from the Savage Garden song "I knew I loved you before I met you", I fell in love with the KAOS Ransel before I met it. The clean Scandinavian lines, the many pockets, the accompanying changing mat and nappy/wipes pouch, the backpack straps as well as the shoulder strap...the list goes on. I love bags and I'm quite fickle, but my love affair with this one is the real thing.
The Extra Layer
Now that Cillian is a bit older, I'm so glad not to have to pack mountains of spare babygros. An extra layer is a must, though, particularly at this time of year when the weather is so changeable. My favourite is this sweatshirt from Kid + Kind as it's both cosy and hard-wearing. I just wish they made it in adult sizes.
Being from Cambridge, I was practically born on a bike. The love of two wheels has never left me, although cycling in London is more akin to an extreme sport than a mode of transport. My purse is a limited edition "Essentials Case" from the collaboration between the cycling brand Rapha and Liberty in 2015. It reminds me of my freewheeling days, hair blowing in the wind...
The Toy is the first tool of distraction that I call on when Cillian decides that whatever we're doing is way too boring. I love these sets from Pinch Toys because they're light, they're tactile and they look lovely. They also come in a nice cotton pouch which can hold other bits and bobs that Cillian might sneak into my bag.
The Book is the second tool of distraction. This one from Dwell Studios is really engaging and has touch elements on each page for small ones to explore. Despite trying to raise my kids in a gender-neutral way, Cillian has still ended up being obsessed with transport. Hence The Book and The Toy fulfil this desire.
The Tools of the Trade
I love Apple products and I use the iPad Pro 9.7" and the iPhone 6s Plus as my everyday, everywhere tools. I could write a whole post on the many uses I have for these two but for now I'll just say that these help me to run Me & Buddy on the go and double up as the final tools of distraction for the kids when everything else fails.
The Design Letters A-Z Melamine Cup, coupled with one of the matching lids, wins my award for the most stylish beaker in the world. It seems lots of our customers agree, as these are the most frequently purchased items from Me & Buddy. I tend to keep this in one of the outside pockets of my bag as it's not completely leak-proof. If you're looking for a truly leak-proof beaker that can go upside down in your bag and not leak, then go for the Anywayup Cow Beaker or Cow Cup.
The Lip Balm
I've tried a lot of lip balms over the years and I've finally found one that works in the harshest of weathers. The Nip and Lip Soothing Balm from Bloom and Blossom is made from lanolin and includes coconut oil and passion flower oil. It was originally created to heal and protect sore nipples, but it's also the perfect conditioning lip balm.
The kids might be beyond the baby stage but there's always a place for an aden + anais muslin in our family. Don't want to remember to pack a bib? Use the muslin. Snotty noses? Use the muslin. Snuggly comforter for Cillian? Don't pack the teddy, use the muslin. Need I say more?
I hope you've enjoyed having a sneaky peek into my bag. Please join in and share your tips below for what to pack when out and about with the kids - we'd love to hear from you.