I try so hard to be that put-together person who runs on time and has everything you could possibly need in her bag. But the truth is, 80% of the time I'm dashing out the door at the last possible minute and forgetting at least one thing if not half a dozen. :) It's my own fault. The nights I prepare ahead for the next day always go better - you would think I would learn.
I've always been a bit of a procrastinator - in college I wrote many a paper the night before it was due. Over the years, I've realized the value of planning ahead but that doesn't mean it always happens. But it's just so much better to have the extra shorts and underwear in the bag or in the car (right, Jenny S.? :)) and to always have snacks and drinks just in case, to carry extra napkins, hand sanitizer, and a plastic bag just in case of wet things, sickness, or whatever... I try to pack a bag that stays in the van with fun things to fill time and I try to keep the necessities close at hand but sometimes the supply gets depleted and sometimes I forget to re-stock and sometimes it accidentally comes inside. The days I have it together are the best - maybe I should shoot for 80% of those kind of days...who am I kidding, I'll try for 50% and go from there. :)
Are you a plan ahead, always prepared or a let's hurry, we're running late kind of person? When I am prepared and together, this is my list of essentials in a bag for toddlers:
clean set of clothes
clean underwear or diapers & wipes (depending on stage)
Shout wipes, Tide-to-go pen, and/or bleach pen (I like Shout the best!)
plastic bag (or two)
2-4 pre-packaged snacks (granola bar, dried fruit, trail mix, crackers etc.)
2 cups w/lids or 2 juice boxes
1 bottle water
1st aid kit (bandaids, triplebiotic, cleansing pad, gauze)
a few small books
2-4 matchbox cars or trucks
writing utensil or small pack of crayons
hat per kid
It's alot but it will all fit in one diaper bag, tote bag, or backpack and I find if I have this list of things, I'm rarely frustrated by situations. It's what I need to be prepared. Oh and I try to always keep a couple of jackets or sweatshirts in the car just in case. We don't often need all of the above but I think we've used every single thing on the list at some point. It pays to be prepared. Note to self: follow your own advice. :) I'm off to update our bags and put them in the van...