In preparation for our house move, I have just cleared out a cupboard that’s situated under the stairs. While doing so, I was reunited with an old friend. Not a human friend, but an old Diaper Dude changing bag that used to travel with me everywhere when Izzy was in nappies.
That bag had sat in the cupboard unused for, what, two and-a-half years, maybe longer? I simply had to open it up and see what, if anything, was lurking inside.
Although largely empty, there were a few items inside the bag. The few items that were in there, they alarmed and amused me in equal measure.
I know that a voyeuristic blog post has massive appeal to most people. So here you go, for your entertainment, here’s what I discovered.
An unposted letter to Thames valley Police
This was an utterly bizarre find and it alarmed me. A lot. The letter was addressed to the Fixed Penalty Support Unit of Thames Valley Police. Why was I writing to these guys, why had it never been posted and was there a warrant out for my arrest?
The letter was almost three years old. It would appear I had been caught speeding but I have absolutely no recollection of this and can’t explain why the letter was languishing in that changing bag.
I have just renewed my driving licence and the entire process took just a few days. Nothing was flagged so I can only assume I dealt with this some other way. At least I hope I did. My licence is clean so I really cannot explain this at all!
Yes, Heidi Klum was in the changing bag. Okay, not really, but a copy of the Times magazine supplement dated 5 May, 2015 was in the bag and Heidi Klum was on the cover.
It was only when I looked closer that I realised the significance of this edition of the supplement. You see the magazine contained an article about men who had given up careers to run the family home. Among them was a certain dad blogger by the name of John Adams.
Yes, along with Izzy, I appeared in that article about ‘Alpha Dads’. Okay, so we were relegated to page 29 while Klum made the cover but still, I remember it being a fun article to contribute to.
It was all the more fun because one reader started a thread on Mumsnet questioning why we were being called Alpha Dads. She had a point. It’s not something I would ever call myself. The words were chosen by a sub-editor at The Times. Regardless, you know you’re doing something right when you end up being discussed on Mumsnet.
It was significant for anther reason. When I travelled up to London for the photoshoto shoot, it was the first time I had taken her out of the house for a significant period of time without wearing a nappy and thankfully, she stayed dry all day. The changing bag almost certainly came with me, just in case it was needed.
Rather like the letter to Thames valley Police, I can’t explain why the supplement was in the bag. I can only assume someone had asked to see the article and it remained in the bag afterwards.
An old style £5 note
Do you get nostalgic for paper bank notes? In this bag was an old-style paper £5 note. It was badly scrunched up and unloved.
This find made we wonder what cash is hidden elsewhere in our house? It’d be great if I could unearth a long-forgotten stash of notes somewhere else.
Some old Frube wrappers and a cup cake case wrapped up in cling film
Okay my friends, we’re now getting into classic changing bag territory. No changing bag is complete without some form of old, discarded food wrappers stuffed deep into a little used pocket. My Diaper Dude was no different.
The only worrying thing is the age of these food wrappers. They’d been there for years and the entire lot smelled rather sweet, a bit like honeysuckle. I dread to think what pathogens have quietly developed among this bundle over the years.
Some dried flowers
This bought a smile to my face. My daughters have a habit of bringing me flowers whenever we go out somewhere. Often they’ll pick some dandelions or daisies. Back in the days when I used a changing bag, I would place the flowers in the bag with the intention of putting them in water when we got home.
I can only assume we’d been out somewhere and Helen and Izzy had picked a few flowers and given them to me. The great thing is, they’d dried and been perfectly preserved.
And the rest….
There was an old drawing, a pen, packets of raisins and an old pen lid. All of these items are classic changing bag detritus.
The bag, however, brought back bitter-sweet memories. Izzy is no longer a nappy-wearing baby or toddler. Those early years are gone.
The days of needing to travel everywhere with a changing bag and baby’s bottle are past. She has grown up to be a wonderful school girl with the most amazing personality.
While essentially obsolete, the future of that changing bag is secure. I’m adding it to a number of items from the kids’ past that I simply can’t throw away, items that hold sentimental value: Favourite cuddly toys, blankets, drawings, that kind of thing. I know it’s possibly a bit daft to get attached to a changing bag but it brings back cherished memories.
I am now going to hand this blog post over to you. Do you have a box of cherished items you simply can’t get rid of? Have you ever stumbled across an old changing bag and taken a good look inside? If you have, I’d be very curious to know what you found. Oh, unless you work for the Road Traffic division of Thames valley Police, in which case I’d politely ask you move along.