Mommy Mondays: Mommy Emergency Pack

Hmmm. The title makes it sound like I am discussing a first aid kit. Or a six pack of beer. I am writing about neither, sorry to disappoint. Today it’s all about “how to entertain your kids when you are stuck somewhere and you don’t want them to scream, cry and/or embarrass the heck out of you.” What are the magic things to have in your pack? I am sure some of these things just go for my kids but hopefully still give y’all some ideas.

  • Something New: Last weekend I was at a friend’s daughter’s birthday and I could see that the toys were slowly taking over the room as she opened them. I whispered a confession to my friend in consolation: I hide toys from Christmas and birthdays so that I have some “new” things to pack in a diaper bag or for a looooong car ride. We all know how new toys can entertain for a longer amount of time, so these are great for Mommy emergencies.
  • Bribery Candy: Call me a weak and maybe a little desperate Mommy but lollipops, jellybeans and/or any kind of candy that won’t melt all over the bottom of your diaper bag works wonders. Last week, my little guy had to go through a 45 minute eye exam complete with eye drops and lots of lights shining in his eye. The next day, we had to try on about 30 different pairs of miniature glasses to pick the right pair. Jelly Belly jelly beans are the only way we got through. Thank goodness. We have also used Pez in this capacity- a toy and candy all in one!
  • Stickers: you can get $1 packs at the Dollar Store, Target $1 section as well as A.C. Moore. Stickers save my Mommy butt all the time.
  • New Books: My son goes nuts for characters that are new to him. Throwing some new reads from the library in the pack also help in the distraction game.
  • Little Figurines: Little animals, people,etc (Think Smurfs from the 80’s) are great for pretend play anywhere. Hiding or stealing toys from Happy Meals (not that I buy them:) also works here!
  • GORP: If you need a snack, good old raisins and peanuts, seeds, goldfish, etc assures that you have a nutritious, crunchy, satisfying, shareable snack.

So, if Shortcut Girl has done you right, you just pack your emergency pack, show up to your un-kid -friendly location and resist the urge to show your kid “I’m Elmo and I know it” on your phone 12 times. Or you run through all contents of said emergency pack in the first 8 minutes and prolong the Elmo marathon at least!

…and if you are a Mom who read this post and said to herself, “Why does this chick need all this stuff? How bad is her kid?” Oh, How I envy you Mom-with-a-calm-child. Just make sure you give some sympathetic looks to the Mom in the mall whose kid runs out of the play area with no shoes on and straight into a store. Actually, help her out and make sure she hasn’t left her other child behind when she chased after him!