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Leaving the house with a well-stocked changing bag can make the difference between a fabulous and a frustrating day out, says our expert blogger
When you become a mum, your handbag gets replaced with a changing bag, and that changing bag becomes your lifeline. It's what keeps you together and feeling like an organised mum, even on the days when things are all going a bit wrong. I always feel a well-packed change bag makes the difference between a good trip out and a potentially bad one. Getting caught short without something you really need is so frustrating, so here are the essentials...
Carry a day's supply of about four or six (more in the early days), even if you're only popping out for an hour or so... better to be safe than sorry.
You can use wipes for cleaning up a baby for a nappy change, but they also clean up messy, snack-covered fingers and faces, high chairs and tables when you're out and about, and muddy prams before they go in the car or your home.
Muslin cloths are a mum's best friend. They're cheap, don't take up much room and have a multitude of uses. As well as being useful as a burp cloth, to protect your clothes from inevitable milky-sick incidents, they can be used as a blanket to keep baby warm, as a clean place to sit or to lay your baby down on the floor, as a bib when folded into a triangle and tucked round your baby's neck, as a sun shade... who knew a square of fabric could be so useful?
Because children are unpredictable. Accidents happen. And a trip can be spoilt by a suddenly wet/dirty/generally unwearable outfit, and nothing clean to replace it with in your changing bag.
Your camera phone
I love taking photos when we're out and about on adventures so that I can remember what we got up to. And flicking back through those old photos is a great distraction for a bored child in a long queue at the supermarket.
By Lucy Roberts, blogger at Dear Beautiful Boy