About a year and a half ago, a little prematurely, I abandoned my beautiful Mia Bossi diaper bag for a regular purse. Okay, not a regular purse – a Prada Gauffre black patent leather purse that I purchased impulsively on a rare shopping trip with my dear friend Marcie. I LOVE my Prada bag and have used it every single day since. It’s chic, it’s roomy, and it has endured being put down in the most unsavory places: the floors of public restrooms (yuck), the sticky concrete floor while waiting in a line at the fair, the floor of a Metro station in Paris. And it still looks gorgeous. Until you peek inside. You see, its posh patent exterior conceals a multitude of sins. Have I mentioned before that I tend to be, ahem, a slob. And even though I have my house under control (usually), my purse and my car have exploded with junk.
A long time ago, when I was an editor at a fashion magazine, we did a piece on celebrity purses and what they keep in them, and it was called Purse & Personality. Here’s my own, far less glamorous take on that story. For the first time ever, I am about to reveal the contents of a very messy mommy’s very full, very functional purse. Please don’t judge me too harshly. I am a work in progress, and part of this whole organizational thing has motivated me to tackle the unseen corners of my life, including my Prada. Next step? I plan to buy clear cosmetic cases to corral all the loose items, from toys to snacks to makeup, that seem to multiply in the dark recesses of my bag. But no more stalling. Here’s proof that I need organizational help, and quickly!
My poor, abused bag, which has held soiled diapers, dirty clothes, crumbly Goldfish crackers, a moldy cheese sandwich, and unwrapped lollipops.
A peek into the crazy, colorful (but blessed!) life of a messy mommy.
Treat bags from various Halloween parties, and two old cupcakes that my sister made that were sadly forgotten.
The black Gucci wallet that blends in with the interior of my bag so well that I can never find it!
Two adorable necklaces from La Marelle that I bought the girls at Bon Marche in Paris. I planned to put these on en route to a birthday party, but that never happened. The girls still haven’t seen them.
There is always one electronic toy in my bag, usually more. This is Eva’s current favorite!
Assorted necessities, including a cute case of bandages, a half eaten box of raisins, cash, old store flyers and receipts, gum, Eva’s favorite little Tinkerbell electronic toy, my Judith Leiber sunglasses, and a box of crayons from Friendly’s.
Sunscreen wipes are a purse staple. So handy for quick reapplications at the park!
A metro ticket from our trip to Paris. We returned 2 1/2 months ago.
This little Crayola crayon is the handiest little thing to have in your bag. It makes waiting rooms and restaurants much more tolerable.
Birthday party favors are great for entertaining restless toddlers.
So, now that I am cleaning up my act, a little, I will reveal the items I actually consider useful to have in a mom’s purse. This does not include the basics, like makeup, sunglasses, and your phone.
1. A small bag of toys, including crayons, bubbles, stickers, party favors, anything new… An electronic toy is also a pretty safe bet. Eva currently loves the IPod that we bought for them to play games on. My girls also love flash cards or playing cards (I buy ones with ABCs and 123s on them) as well as tiny notebooks with pens attached. Pens and paper can keep them entertained for an amazingly long time!
2. Snacks and treats: I always have a couple of lollipops (organic Yummy Earth lollies are the best!), and a few snack bags (raisins, crackers, Goldfish, etc.).
3. Bandaids, wipes, all purpose antibacterial wipes for surfaces, sunscreen wipes, a little thing of lotion, antibacterial hand gel
Since I’m on this before and after kick, and you’ve seen the embarassing contents of my bag before I straighten it up, maybe I will find those clear makeup bags I’ve been talking about, organize it, and post another pic. I also need to do a before and after for my beloved home-away-from-home, my car!
But tomorrow, I will finally do my long awaited (wink wink) blog on being a Good Enough Housewife. I will discuss the many shortcuts that make life as a busy mom a lot more manageable, and I’d love to hear some of your own ideas for how you make life easier. Then next week, I’ll abandon cleaning and organizing to go back to what I do best – shopping! I’ll be featuring a week of gift guides right here on Beautymommy! Bonne nuit!