So you've been using cloth nappies at home for a while now and are feeling confident to do it out and about but not sure exactly what you need? Let's take a look, break it down and make it less daunting.
This is part two of a two-part series. If you haven't read the first one When the poo hits the nappy: Home edition check that out quickly to catch up. Ok, done? Now you have your list of everything you could possibly want to make a nappy change run smoothly let's talk about what you actually need when you're out and about. Obviously, this comes with the disclaimer everything about children should have, this is what works for me. Take what you want, leave what you want. These are all just ideas. That said, let's dive in.
When changing bub out of the house where you are going to be will make a huge difference in what you pack. Do you have access to water for wipes and hand washing? Can you bring your big nappy bag or do you need to pack light? Does your friend also cloth and have a change table set up for it? When you pack your nappy bag for your outing try to think about where you'll do the actual changing. If you own an SUV or similar that has a flat boot at the back they're actually amazing for changes, it's contained and it means you can even leave your bag in the car if it's close to the cafe/park/etc. (Of course make sure you're safe to do this, not on busy roads).
Changing nappies whether you're at home or not, using single-use or reusable nappies all have the same golden rule: have everything in arm’s reach. Babies move and roll and you don’t want to leave them to grab something. So when you're out and about taking the minute or two to get everything set up around you instead of digging into your bag mid-change. It will pay off I promise. So what are these things you should take with you?
Change mats are pretty simple. They're made from PUL or minky fabrics and come in beautiful prints. They're lovely and soft to lay bub down on and know they don't have to touch anything gross. Or for that matter, they don't get anything gross on your friend's carpet!
This should include anything you need to put the nappy together like Snappis, liners or covers. If you're using modern cloth nappies that's obviously a little easier you just need your nappy snapped together. If you're going more traditional set yourself up for success before you even leave the house by making nappy "bundles". Fold a prefold/flat/fitted and pop it inside a cover (include a liner if you're using them) and then put it into your nappy bag as a little ready-to-go bundle.
Cloth wipes do require planning but aren't hard to use out of the house. You can pre-wet them, wring them out and put them in a mini wetbag. If you are going to be in a shopping centre or friend's home where access to water is simple you can take them dry. You can also use a water bottle to wet them when you're out. But one of the easiest catch-all methods for using cloth wipes is to use them with our Foamy Wipes Wash. It is portable and can easily be used straight on a dry wipe.
If you're using disposable wipes, this is a bit easier just make sure your packet is full.
Not all babies require nappy creams but most do at some point. You can use whatever you'd like on your cloth nappies, with a good wash routine that includes mainstream detergent and warm or hot water all nappy creams should wash out. At Bubblebubs we make our own nappy cream by hand and with love called Botty Balm. Botty Balm is a natural, soothing and protective baby balm that comes in five amazing scents. Botty Balm is a great thing to always have in your bag for cuts and scrapes, dry skin, lip balm. It's one of those great multi-taskers to have on hand.
Let’s be real we don’t all use this every single time we change a nappy. But when you're out and about getting to a sink isn't always possible or practical. Just be careful to keep it out of reach of older children so they don’t ingest it.
Somewhere to put the dirty nappy
When you're out this will be a wetbag. Pee nappies are easy, you just chuck them in the wetbag. Poo nappies it depends on your bub. If they have "ploppable" poos and you have close access to a toilet (like you're changing in a disabled bathroom) you can dispose of that simply then and there. If you're not in that stage close your nappy up, pop it in your wetbag and deal with it when you get home. A good quality wetbag will contain smells well, don't worry.
See! Not that hard! Or that different to doing it at home. It just seems daunting but dive right in and you won't be able to remember what you were even worried about. And if you forget something don't beat yourself up we all do it... all the time. It's what being a mum is about, trying our best.
Bonus Tip! Emergency nappy kit that lives in the car
Assuming you have a car and this is regularly how you and bub go places a backup nappy kit in the car is a great idea. You keep a nappy, a couple of wipes, maybe a change mat inside an actual wetbag. This means if you forget your bag, just don't bring enough nappies or have some other kind of disaster you have a backup change kit in the car ready to go. Recently, after a swimming lesson I went to dress my son and couldn't find his nappy anywhere, the one he came in was drenched so I put him back in his track pants sans nappy. A dangerous proposition I tell you. I got to the car and thanked God that I had, in fact, had a backup nappy kit in the car and the day was saved. Back at home, I found the nappy I had meant to take to swimming on the garage floor ... of course.
Bonus Bonus Tip! Emergency change of clothes that live in the car
This isn't nappy related but people should know this tip. A sage piece of advice I received while pregnant was to keep backup clothes for bub, you and your partner in the car. Pick out an outfit for each of you that you don't particularly like, look in your donate pile even and keep that in the car in a bag. Make sure you update bub's regularly while they grow. That way should the worst happen you are always prepared.