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Friday, November 23, 2012

What's In Your Purse?

There was a time I coveted my own Big Sister's purse. Always. Especially when she was toting around all sorts of interesting treasures for her "baby" -- then our family's first small person. I was working then and would have gladly traded my briefcase for a purse filled with fruit snacks, Polly Pockets and other goodies. It wasn't just then that I was interested in my Big Sister's bag. Just like Baby Sister here, I was always snooping through her purse looking for clues about being bigger.

I never really saw the merit of a true "diaper bag" as it always seemed like overkill to have to lug around so much in addition to a baby on my hip. It seemed like giving up and into frump. A giant bag filled with essentials more likely to be needed on a campout than a dash into the grocery store seemed unnecessary. In fact, Biggest Brother wasn't too big when I started tucking wipes, a spare diaper and maybe a change of clothes into a regular purse and was glad about it. I also usually had a stroller or car or both nearby undoubtedly filled with extra spares.

Then without any babies in tow, we moved to the city. Now whatever I can bring with me has to sustain, medicate, entertain, and protect us for the day out in the elements. My bag is now always stocked with a cloth shopping bag, scarf, rain hat, and tiny umbrella. (The kids all carry their own mini umbrellas in their backpacks, too - it is London.) I also keep an Epipen, bandaids, trusty banadana, crayons and a sticker book tucked away. It has to be entertaining, my bag. Mary Poppins' carpet bag has nothing on mine, I tell ya.

Sometimes the girls will request that we "pack" something for our trip to school. And knowing it can make the difference of our leaving on time, I usually agree. Sometimes is it a dolly, a pair of dress up shoes, a bracelet, a favorite book. But I was still surprised when got home the other morning and realized that a faceless Mrs Potato Head did the school run with me.

Note to Baby Sister's Secret Cousin:  She could use a new Mrs P. With accessories.

I have no doubt that all too soon my tote will be once again be pretty dull. I see those days sneaking up on me and turning me into the "helpful" lady with older kids. I was very happy to give a book to a wiggly toddler in a meeting and a banadana to a tiny injured friend this week.

So, Mrs Potato Head can stick around as long as she likes.

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