park bag for baby!

Heather and I covered what we bring into the parks now, with the youngest kiddo in either family being 7. But what about when you bring a baby to Disney? Little J was only 2 months old the first time we went to Disney with him. Newborns need a lot more than first graders!

2 month old baby J!

Nowadays I usually only carry a fairly small purse into the parks. If I’m in an athletic skirt I can even go without a bag at all (giant pockets FTW!). But when Little J was a baby and a toddler, a backpack was the only way to go. For being such tiny human beings, babies need a LOT of stuff! The best backpack that I found for the baby years was the “$25 with purchase” one that we got in 2010 at Disney. It had a large main compartment, two generous side pockets, and a couple of zippered pockets.

Ginormous bag that was perfect for all our baby needs!

I am thankful that nursing came (relatively) easy for us, not because I was all holier-than-thou about health benefits, but because it made my life easier. We never had to worry about fitting bottles and formula into our park bag. There are different ways to do that, and you’ll know what works best for you. When Big J was a baby (exclusively formula fed – I told you I wasn’t holier-than-thou about it, seeing as I had one on bottles and one on the boob) I liked to add the powder to the empty bottles and then add water when it was time for him to eat. Several of my friends preferred the little formula containers with different compartments so you could have several bottles worth, but already portioned out. Another option is to have the bottles already mixed and carried in a cooler bag.

Another must for babies would be diapers. If you cloth diaper, you’ll want to add a wet bag for carrying soiled diapers. We did cloth diaper with Little J, but not on vacation. Every morning I would stock the backpack with a big stack of diapers in the main compartment, and 1-2 diapers plus the wipes in one of the size pockets. As the day went on we would pull a new diaper out of the main compartment to restock the side pocket. Doing it that way just made it easy for me to grab a diaper and the wipes on the fly as we headed into the bathroom for a change.

When I Disney with a baby, I take everything but the kitchen sink. At least once change of clothes was always a must, in case of spit up or food accidents (with older infants and toddlers) or diaper leaks. We learned by experience to always bring a blanket – once the temperature dropped¬†a lot after an afternoon shower, and not only did we not have a blanket, but we couldn’t find any for sale in the shops. We wound up buying a Mickey beach towel! A lovey or some toys for the “hurry up and wait” times, snacks for the older babies or toddlers, sunblock and first aid with baby sized doses… all things that we carried on a regular basis!

For myself, I would rather haul around a backpack with everything I might need and not have to leave the park. Other people prefer to take midday breaks and go back to the room, so they wouldn’t need to take as much. As with so many other things, it all boils down to personal preference! But if you’re like me and would rather have too much than not enough, look for a large, multi-compartmented backpack.

October 2012 – Baby J was 19 months old, needing less than a newborn but still more than would fit into a purse

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