I am a total bag lady. I have always loved having a variety handbags to wear and accessorize my outfits with. So I was pretty excited to start shopping for diaper bags when the time came, but there were so many options I was feeling a bit overwhelmed. So naturally I didn't choose just one, but three... ok, four. I decided to review them all and share my thoughts here for anyone in the market for a new diaper bag.
L O U I S V U I T T O N - T O T A L L Y M M
When I was a teenager, I fell in love with Louis Vuitton bags. I saved up for so long in college to buy my first Speedy bag that I still have today (I was a long time nanny to a family that is near and dear to my heart to this day). They are my favorite bags and I wanted to find a way to make one work as a diaper bag so I could stay true to my style. I found the "Totally MM" style, that had pockets on the sides like a diaper bag and decided to invest in buying it. The great thing about these bags are that the quality of them is amazing - I spill on them, throw my tennis racquet in them, etc and they still look and hold up great. I actually like them when they are a big more weathered.
When I am running a quick errand with Parker where we'll be out for just a little bit, I like to use my Totally MM bag. An LV bag can honestly go with any outfit and is so classic. But, this style of bag isn't big enough to fit all of the things that I need if we are going out for several hours. It doesn't come with a changing pad, and the pockets on the side are definitely not as functional as I thought they would be. The Como Tomo bottles don't fit into them all that well. If I had to do it over again, I probably would've stuck with the oversized Neverfull (which I had originally but returned for this style).
Final Thoughts: A beautiful handbag, but not the most functional as a diaper bag. I'd do the Neverfull if you want to carry an LV bag.
P O T T E R Y B A R N K I D S
Then, when I was registering for my baby shower I came across this cute monogrammed diaper bag with a grey herringbone print (that is SO me!). It was like love at first sight, I am such a sucker for monogrammed things and this was the perfect diaper bag for a little boy. I got it as a present for my shower and couldn't wait to use it, too.
The PBK bag is super cute and comes with all the bells and whistles, lots of pockets, a changing pad, a cross body strap, etc. However it is really big and bulky. It didn't fit underneath my Bugaboo stroller, which was a bummer too. I used it as my hospital bag and it worked out perfectly. We also go to the lake on the weekends in the summer and it's THE perfect weekender bag for Parker. It fits all of his things in it with room to spare. I got a ton of use out of it this summer.
Final Thoughts: Get it for short trips, or long outings where you need to pack a lot of things. I'd pass on it as an everyday diaper bag though.
H A P P
Right before Parker arrived, I came across another bag that I loved (shocker!) which was the Happ Vivienne Satchel. It was so cute and looked exactly like a bag I would normally carry, and was designed as a diaper bag so it had all of the pockets and accessories I was looking for. I was lucky enough to team up with them for my blog, and they sent me one to try out.
I carried the Happ Vivienne Satchel on a regular basis after Parker was born because I love how lightweight it is, how much space there is and the flexibility to wear it cross body or hang it over my shoulder or the stroller. It has a changing pad and the navy color goes well with almost all of my outfits. The material is a quilted material (although it looks leather) which makes it extra lightweight too, which is important since I am lugging around so much stuff all the time. I'd definitely recommend this bag! I would maybe check out the backpack style next time around though, which brings you to my next recommendation below. If you are interested in this bag you can use the code LINDSAY15 to save 15% on yours on their website!
Final Thoughts: a great everyday diaper bag.
M I S S F O N G B A C K P A C K
I didn't realize how much I truly needed a backpack design until I saw one of my other mama friends carrying a Fawn Design bag. I had already spent a good chunk of change on diaper bags, so I couldn't justify buying one, but always kept my eyes out for sales. Then one day, a blogger I follow shared this Miss Fong Backback diaper bag that is almost an exact duplicate of the Fawn bag, and it's only like $60. So, I decided to go for it and try it out to see how I liked it.
This is the bag I now carry every day and would 100% recommend to new mamas - but I would urge you to go for the Fawn if it's within your budget, ONLY because of the way the bottom straps connect to the bag. On the Fawn they connect to the sides, but on the Miss Fong they connect at the bottom of the back panel and dig into my back at times. That is the only downfall about this bag, otherwise I absolutely love everything about it! Carrying everything on your back frees up both of your hands and then the bag doesn't swing down and get in the way. This bag came with a changing pad, pockets that keep your bottle warm (if you need that), several interior and exterior pockets, and a strap that let's you wear it cross-body or over the shoulder, or as a backpack. Plus is comes in my favorite color, grey!
Final thoughts: My number 1 pick!
If you stuck around to read all of this, thank you! :) Sorry it was a long post!
I had always assumed we would start feeding Parker oatmeal/purées when he was around 6 months, so I was surprised when we went into our doctor for Parker's 4 month visit and he strongly encouraged us to start introducing food to him sooner rather than later. I really like and trust our doctor, so we went ahead and started to experiment around 4.5 months. One morning shortly after that, I was making gluten-free oatmeal for breakfast and had made a little too much, so I decided to add breastmilk to it and purée it so P could have a taste. At first he was confused, like what is this? and wasn't really sure how to swallow it, but he was definitely interested in it. After a few days of feeding him a little bit of oatmeal, I moved on to making my own homemade food - bananas + breastmilk, sweet potatoes, peaches, avocados, prunes and a few others. All fresh and homemade. He was doing a really great job eating all of these foods, but then some days I wasn't feeding him food because I didn't have any made already, so I tried buying Gerber baby food to have on hand for when I didn't have homemade purées ready. Right around that same time, Parker was pretty sick. He had a bad bout of croup and was also cutting his first tooth and had a bad fever. During the week he was sick, he lost ALL interest in food. So, I'm not sure whether he didn't like the pre-made purées, the way the Gerber ones tasted, or just the varieties I had chosen, but he would have 1-2 bites and would just cry. He was not into it at all. Luckily, the past three weeks we were able to re-introduce foods after taking a two week break.
Right around that same time, I was really excited because Little Spoon contacted me to try out their homemade baby food. I absolutely LOVE this concept - homemade, organic babyblends with unique flavor combinations, that are packed with superfoods and healthy fats.... delivered right to your door. And the packaging and branding is so perfect. This is exactly the type of thing I wanted to make at home for him, but was having a hard time finding the time. We received our shipment which had 8 different varieties, all of which had 3-5 healthy ingredients. (I noticed on their website that they have single-ingredient varieties as well.) When I tried out the sweet potato, apple, blueberry and flax purée with Parker he had a few bites, but didn't go crazy for it, but this is also a time where we've literally had to start all over with very basic varieties to get Parker interested in food again. Because of this unique circumstance, I decided to freeze all of the different containers (not sure if you're supposed to or not, but I did) so I could save them for a later date to try once he's liking more than just bananas and peaches again. So while the first taste wasn't a total hit with P, this company and their concept is something I totally love. I am going to try ordering the 1-2 ingredient varieties that have which are geared more toward Parker's age and see how that goes. If you are interested in homemade, organic babyblends packed with healthy ingredients for your little, I would definitely recommend checking it out.
As for P, I am hoping this reintroduction to food happens quickly, I am so bummed that we lost all that traction we had before he got sick/cut that first tooth. With persistence, and numerous attempts I have been able to get him to try about 5 different things now without him acting completely uninterested. Hoping we can try out those other Little Spoon varieties soon. We have also liked using the BeechNut purées. Would love to know what foods your littles like and how its going!
MY FAVORITE BABY FOOD ACCESSORIES
One of my closest girlfriends is having a baby boy this fall. So a few her good girlfriends got together to plan a shower that played to her style, and incorporated several personal touches, too. I absolutely LOVE this kind of stuff (like to the point I think about being a party planner...a lot), so I gathered several different inspirational pictures from Instagram and Pinterest and we decided on a botanical shower theme. This is a style that Jess loves and is so simple, yet beautiful. I am not a huge fan of overly blue or pink showers, so I got really excited to take this shower from conception to execution.
To add some personal touches to the shower, we had cookies made by the Cookie Creative (Cori is SO talented and her cookies are not only beautiful, but taste amazing too) that incorporated her new home city, Chicago. Cori and I brainstormed several ideas and landed on Cubs onesies that said Baby Shultz on the back, cookies with the Chicago skyline, and also the famous "Bean" in Chicago that said "It's a boy". I have a smart TV too, so we were able to play a slideshow on my TV - that was filled with pictures of both Jess and her husband as babies, playing along to some of their favorite songs. We also played her favorite baby shower game where you get cut up pieces of both the mom and dads faces and put together what you think baby will look like. Sooo good and so funny. :)
Below are some of the pictures from her special day. I love how everything came together, and more importantly, she loved it. She's been such an amazing friend to me ever since middle school, so I wanted to make sure her day was as special as possible. I am SO excited to meet her little guy and journey down this path of motherhood together.
Thanks for reading! I've linked as many of the products as I could at the bottom of the post.
I think an invite says a lot about a shower! I was bummed that I couldn't find a botanical invite that I liked from Minted because I use them for everything, but I did find this one on Zazzle. They don't address the invites, so it gave me the opportunity to practice my hand-lettering.
I hand created all of the eucalyptus garland. I ordered 8 bundles and picked them apart for the best pieces and to create the shapes I wanted and wired them together using floral wire.
The quiche and croissants were from Patrick's.
Adding in touches of baby's hometown, Chicago.
BABY S - for Baby Shultz
These crates help add different heights to the things you want to display. I bought these and spray painted them white for a whitewash effect.
I always see pretty floral / picture walls on Pinterest and thought it would be so cute to create one on our brick wall to take pictures against, and to add more greenery to the scene. I handmade all of the garland based on the bundles of eucalyptus I bought. (I bought 8 bundles total to make everything at the shower - for you local ladies, I bought them along with the centerpiece and crown here.
For the big balloons, I hand-picked and wired together eucalyptus to create the "tails" on the balloons.
The prettiest mama to be!
Handmade balloon garland. Thanks to my hubby for blowing up all of these balloons! I knew I wanted to make one, but had no idea where to put it when all was said and done so I put it in the lower level of our home where we played games and opened gifts. The tutorial I followed was here.
The game where you cut up pieces of both the mom and dad's baby pictures and piece together what baby may look like. :)
There was a bunch of the eucalyptus that I bought that was just too perfect to go into a garland so I put it in a vase instead. I just LOVE silver dollar eucalyptus. So pretty!
The hostesses with the mama to be!
20 years of friendship
SHOP THE POST
I was so happy to finish off our lower level when we updated our home, so we enjoy this space and get some good use out of it! My husband had demo-ed it before we met and it was that way for a few years, so we never got to take advantage of this space. Once we finished off this space, we were lucky enough to inherit some furniture from family to fill it, but the walls have been bare and the decor has been lacking. When I saw Emily Jackson's gallery wall I knew I wanted to recreate this somewhere in my house. I knew this lower level space was the perfect place to do it. However, when I went to use Framebridge, the company from Emily's post, I was shocked at how expensive it was. Don't get me wrong, they are absolutely beautiful frames and everything is pretty much done for you but it was going to cost over $1K to do this wall, which was just unrealistic for us right now. So I set out to do this on a budget of $300 or less, and I did it! I used Mpix to print my pictures (and you get free shipping on your first order), and found my frames here - each for under $30!
I love the way it turned out! And thanks to everyone who responded to both of my inspiration pictures in my stories. I was leaning toward the other option, but am SO happy with how this one turned out!
There's a new post on the eat + drink tab of my blog featuring this delicious Raspberry Champagne Cocktail in partnership with Driscoll's. Plus for those of you local to Minneapolis they have a sweepstakes going on right now where you could win a 4 night stay up at Madden's! Click here to read more about it and learn how to enter.
I'm Lindsay, a new mama to our little boy, Parker, after journeying through infertility. I started my blog as a way to channel my creativity and document our life happenings. I love to share my style for entertaining, home & for my little guy.