Friday, May 30, 2008

The "Big Kid" Bag

Like most posts, this one is dually inspired.

Last week, Shannon of Rocks In My Dryer renown posted a comprehensive catalog of items unearthed from her family van. This week, the multiples mom blog How Do You Do It? has a post up wherein mamas of wee twins are chiming in and sharing the inventory of their double-service diaper bags. Reading through the responses evoked both nostalgia and motivation.

Now that Darren and Sarah are "big," I haven't necessarily abandoned the idea of toting a huge sack with strategically selected items to make our collective outings more pleasurable...for ourselves and those we encounter. Since diapers and their affiliated periphery are no longer needed (cue the Doxology), the space they once filled has been usurped by assorted items -- logical and illogical. So in true confessional fashion, here are the honest-to-goodness contents of our bag, as of this morning:
The bag du jour. Jackie O's eyebrows make her look a bit sinister here because of the way the sack is sagging along the browline, but it's one of Warhol's iconic silkscreen images of her that I love, and when suspended from my shoulder, she looks lovely.

First item out: My Toshiba laptop. Sure, a BlackBerry or other notebook might weigh less, but along with the nappies, we retired the upper-arm defining Graco Duo Glider. For a Mama genetically predisposed to batwings, a little extra arm work never hurts. (FYI: The laptop is NOT always in tow; it's an occasional resident in the bag.)

Mama's necessities. Not pictured, but normally in the bag, my Burt's Bees lip balm (in Raisin) and the Olympus Camedia (being used to take the picture).

Paperstuffs of all kinds. The receipts, business cards and candy wrappers are an ever-present. While I adore magazines to distraction, I rarely have one in the bag. This magazine is a new one to our area and the cover gal is an incredible artist and friend, Caryl Burtner. (Actually, her work confronts and documents things in transition...this particular blog entry would likely please her!)

Darn that "I want to go to Friendly's" catchy commercial tune! Within Friendly's placemat folded kids' menu resides a 4-pack of crayons and a mini-journal. Two kids, six little notebooks...looks like we've been thrice since bag acquisition. (and no, I didn't get the bag three days ago!) The cloth rolled item at top left in my opinion is hands-down one of the best mama-inventions ever. Lovingly called "the crayon roll-up" by Darren and Sarah, it unrolls and reveals two columns of crayons, each in their own narrow pocket. [It was given to me as review fodder for and we've used it happily and regularly ever since. End of unsolicited commercial endorsement!]

The next few items are fairly self explanatory:

[Yes, that's a coffee stirrer amongst the similarly shaped writing implements.]

Get ready. The contents are about to take a turn toward the more eclectic...

The kids and I had a dental appointment Monday. Clearly I forgot about my new toothbrush and floss sample. (No cavities!)

What? You don't carry around a DVD with archival footage on the early Christian resistance to the Hitler regime?

C'mon! You never know when you will pass a pool and your kids will want to swim. (Even though you don't have towels or swimsuits with you, apparently goggles are more important.)

Memorial Day block party pinata spoils, times two. This mass of booty (not massive booty, for those of us jarred by swimsuit shopping season) had taken residence all along the bottom and corners of the formerly illustrated canvas sack. A mysterious white powder, which I trust is the result of pulverized Smarties, not Anthrax, also covered the bag's bottom.

Now that the tote's momentarily empty, think I'll do a quickie evaluation to see which items are granted return entry. Goodness knows, whatever space we "free up," we'll manage to fill in short order.

Do tell...what's the most "unusual" item in your diaper bag and/or purse?
(And yes, if you're reading this Tracey, I did remove the 3-hole punch from my bag!)


kelsey said...

Well I know carry around one of those icepacks that turn cold when you open them ever since the twins turned two haha

Michael C said...

This was a great and revealing post. I forgot how much we all had in common until I read the comment you left me. My bag made a bag that the girls now help her carry whenever they are out and about, which is often.

Have a great weekend!!

TONYA said...

ha ha, yes I posted my list on How Do You Do It and if I do say so myself my list was the mother of all lists :). I don't think I have anything too unusual in there though.

Laura's Husband said...

You betcha goggles are important!!! Gotta have goggles - how else will you see who else forgot their swim suit?

Tracey said...

Oh of course I am reading this and loving every minute of it! As I am just beginning the "what to pack in the diaper bag phase of life", it's perfect timing. I too will leave out the three hole punch...for now at least since Van seems more interested in Cheerios and his cool new sunglasses!!

Laura said...

Oh my....I am laughing so hard right now. You could have described this and it still would have been good, but the pictures make this post priceless. (I did a similar post about my purse, and a few of the comments DEMANDED pictures...I did not come through for them- but it would definitely have raised the entertainment factor.)
You, like me, could have gone on Let's Make a Deal and won every time when Monty asked who's got a wingnut in thier purse-for 50 dollars? 100 bucks for a DVD on Hitler Resistance!!! See?