The following post was written by the amazingly gifted Katie Yonke. Katie is an Incredible Infant columnist, focusing on home organization, nursery design, and DIY projects. Get to know her better.
Has this ever happened to you before?
You’re out running errands, when baby feels the urge to empty his tummy of everything he’s ever eaten.
Suddenly you find yourself in the bathroom, searching your bag for something to mop up your baby, yourself, your diaper bag, and the old lady he unloaded on at the grocery store.
At the bottom of the diaper bag, you uncover, like an enthusiastic gold miner, an old yellowing onesie. Who cares that’s it’s size 3-6 and he’s 18 months!
IT. WILL. FIT.
Many times I’ve found myself wishing I had something that was sitting on the kitchen counter at home. Forgotten.
We need a back-up plan, ladies.
4 Reasons Why You Need a Baby Car Kit
Reason #1: Mommy Brain
A million things going on in your brain + very little sleep = a whole lot of forgetfulness!
It’s not uncommon for me to walk out the door to go somewhere only to walk back in because I forgot to pick up my car keys. Or my purse. Or the baby! (Just kidding. Kind of…)
Having extra goods on hand in the car helps make up for all the times I forget something at home.
Reason #2: Oops! I Ran Out!
I thought I had a full supply of wipes on hand, but it turns out there was just one wipe left in the case and that won’t cut when changing a dirty diaper! I need back-up here!
Reason #3: Baby Blow-Out
I’m talking about the kind of explosion that makes its way out of the diaper and onto clothes, blankets, bodies etc. You definitely need a change of clothes for the baby and possibly for you too.
Reason #4: Lost/Damaged/Dirty Goods
That pacifier that rolled down the restaurant floor? You might want a clean one to stick in the baby’s mouth! Or the last diaper in your bag that you’re trying to use when suddenly the baby pees all over it before you can get it on properly? Good thing you have more diapers in the car!
So, let’s get started DIYing this simple car kit. It’s so simple you can build it in 3 easy steps.
Pick Your Storage Solution
Car kits can come in all shapes and sizes. You need to determine what type of container you want to use based on how much you need to hold and how it will fit in your car. Here are a few examples:
Because it’s clear, you can easily see what’s on hand. The plastic material makes it easy to clean out and wipe down occasionally. Also, with a lid, items won’t spill out in case it tipped over.
These are so cute – coming in many colors. You can coordinate with your car if you wanted too. It’s also easy to grab items out of the bin and it fits nicely on the floor of your car.
This is the largest storage option. It works best being kept in the trunk or back section of the car. It’s a perfect option for holding a lot of stuff (in case you’re an over-packer), including large items. It has storage inside and outside of the container, which is handy.
This will keep all items off the floor or seat of your car. It’s a great solution for tight spaces in particular. This organizer works well with travel size items and just the basic necessities. Bonus: it can easily transition to hold toys and snacks for toddlers and kids as your baby gets older.
Shop Your House
Once you have your container, you need to gather all the items you want to place in the container! A little shopping might be necessary for this, but I bet you’ll already have most of the items on hand.
- An amazing multi-use baby blanket like this
- 2-3 diapers
- Small pack of wipes
- Wet bag or plastic bag for diaper disasters
- Antibacterial wipes
- Change of Clothes for Baby
- Extra Pacifier
- Hand sanitizer
- First Aid treatment: band-aids, antiseptic wipes, antibacterial ointment, thermometer, infant tylenol
- A good baby sunscreen
- Baby Washcloth (for those epic blowouts where wipes just don’t cut it)
- Travel size baby wash, lotion, and diaper cream (If you have to do a impromptu “bath” in the sink, you’ll have what you need.)
- Baby Bib
- Bottled water, baby bottle, and small container of formula for an emergency feeding
- Diaper Changing Pad Clutch (see below for some inspiration!)
- Change of clothes for you too!
- Roll of paper towel
- Beach towel
- Stuffed Animal or Toys
- Snacks and Sippy Cup
- Nursing Cover
- Hat and mittens in the winter time
- Burp Cloths
Assemble & Go
This is the easy part. 😉 Just stick everything inside your container, stick it in the car, and you’re good to go!
Just don’t forget to replace items as you use them, otherwise you’ll have an empty Emergency kit – not a pleasant discovery when you’re sitting the Target parking lot.
I usually clean out and restock my kit twice a year – summer and winter. That way I can make sure I have appropriate baby clothes for the season and the right sized diapers.
Example: My Baby Car Kit
For my fellow visual learner, I thought it would be helpful to show the Emergency Baby Car Kit I put together.
I chose a square, open bin. It fits well on the seat or floor of the car (or sometimes I move it to the very back of the car). It holds everything I need without being too bulky.
Speaking of everything I need, here’s what I included…
1. Blanket & Wet Bag for Dirty Clothes or Diapers | 2. Changing Pad Clutch with Diapers | 3. Hand Wipes | 4. Baby Wipes | 5. Bottle of Water | 6. Baby Bottle with 4 oz of Formula | 7. First Aid Kit with Band-Aids, Hand Sanitizer, Sunscreen Stick, Disenfectant Wipes, Thermometer, and Ointment Packets | 8. Kleenex | 9. Change of Clothes and a Bib | 10. Infant Tylenol | 11. Baby Shampoo, Lotion, Diaper Rash Cream, Washcloth, and Pacifier
A hard wipes case like the one shown above is great for storing the first aid kit items. These hold more than you think and keep small items from getting lost down inside your container.
Keeping a bottle and some formula on hand is a good idea (even for nursing moms!). Not only will you have a small back-up supply in case you run out, but someone else could feed your baby if a scary emergency (aka car accident) prevents you from being there to feed/nurse your baby. #safetyfirst
Now that I’ve shown you how easy-peasy-lemon-squeezy it is to DIY your own baby car kit, it’s your turn to make it happen!
Don’t be left crying in the Target bathroom because your baby had a blow-out and you don’t have a change of clothes and it’s -20 degrees outside, so going naked isn’t an option!
Take just a few minutes of time to create an emergency baby car kit, and you can drive easy knowing that no matter where you go, you’re prepared for anything your baby throws your way!
You tell me! Have you created an emergency baby car kit before? What would you include in your car kit? Anything I’ve forgotten that would be useful?
Meet Katie Yonke
Katie is a wife and mother to a toddler boy and baby girl. She loves being a stay-at-home mom and taking care of her family. She’s a self-proclaimed neat-freak and loves organizing! Spending time with family and hanging out with friends are high on the priority list. In her free time, you can catch Katie drinking a warm mug of hot chocolate, browsing Pinterest, and watching Downton Abbey.