Stuff Rant

It was a gorgeous day for the zoo. Lots of young families.  Lots of strollers.  Big strollers.  Double-wide strollers.  Holding lots of stuff.  I guess the world has changed but when Baby and I went out and about, I used a narrow umbrella stroller, put a couple of diapers and a ziplock w/ some wipes in my purse, filled up a sippy cup and off we went.

Apparently these days you need considerably more to venture out into the world: multiples sippy cups (and strollers have sippy cup holders built in now), bags of animal crackers, apple slices, cookies, cheerios, large containers of wipes, massive numbers of diapers, toys, towels, changes of clothing for the little ones. I’m sure there is more needed, but this is just what I saw with my own eyes.  And that’s just the stuff for the kids. Parents need bottles and cup holders and snacks as well.

On a busy day, all these strollers full of stuff take up a LOT of room at places like the zoo. I wholeheartedly encourage  families with young kids to enjoy places like the zoo, but do they really need so much STUFF?

What kind of of stuff do you need for an outing?

47 thoughts on “Stuff Rant”

  1. I was at a restaurant once and overheard some young women at the next table talking about their purses. One woman had a rather large satchel-style purse that was well filled, and she was insisting to her friends that she needed everything in it. She started pulling items out and naming them. “Phone…comb…lip balm…sunglasses…sunscreen…nail file…coin purse…credit cards…bus card…tape measure…Tylenol…” She went on for a bit and then pulled out a long red paper sleeve and said “Emergency chopsticks…”

    I love the idea of emergency chopsticks.

    Liked by 7 people

    1. I have kind of a love-hate relationship with my purse. I do use it but anytime I can get away without it, that’s the way I go. And I don’t understand women who have multiple purses and change their stuff in and out of it on a daily or weekly basis. I have one purse; I use it until it literally falls apart and then I get another one.

      Liked by 1 person

    2. I’m struggling to figure out what “emergency chopsticks” would be needed for?

      Years ago I switched to a small purse. My back simply couldn’t support all the stuff I hauled around in bigger purses.

      Liked by 2 people

  2. Ironically, what popped into my head as read your above post, vs, was the misery of the children (and adults) held in the border detention camps. No diapers, no soap, not toothbrushes, no clean water to drink, no beds, no human consideration and comfort.

    I know this is not the type of thing we discuss here, and I know this will make some baboons uncomfortable, but how the hell do we stop this madness? Every new day it’s some new outrage, and I just feel overwhelmed and heartsick. What can we do? What must we do?

    Liked by 4 people

    1. I think about this a lot too PJ. And when I am feeling overwhelmed and hopeless, I try to think about what I can do in my little world to make it kinder, nicer, better. And in my Pollyanna moments I like to think and hope that if I can make my small nub of world better that the benefits will spread out like ripples of water. It’s not very global fix but it’s the only thing that keeps me going these days.

      Liked by 2 people

    2. Rise and Shine, Baboons,

      As I get older, I take less and less stuff with me. But now a water bottle accompanies most places, thus I am now leaving a trail of lost water bottles. I cannot keep them in my possession. VS, I also had the simple stroller. But my parents’ generation had very large strollers and buggies. My mother kept all kinds of stuff in a buggy to accompany the baby and everyone else. It seems to be a mixture of someone’s personality and what is available merchandise that affects this.

      Last week on the trip to NYC I took one small suitcase and a tote. Thankfully, our hotel had a laundry which reduced what we carried with us.

      My mother’s family has a few hoarders—the really bad kind. As children, when we gave her trouble about cleaning up and throwing things away, she took us to visit her aunt who was a Hoarder worthy of the TV show. We were horrified at the conditions she lived in. After that I was much more willing to throw away or donate unneeded items and to keep things clean. There is no magic to “stuff.”

      Liked by 4 people

    3. It is an outrage, PJ, especially when we live in a world of too much stuff and affluence. We don’t discuss this a lot here, but I do find it an outrage. I think the answer is to write letters to legislators, bring it up as an issue at town meetings, and continue to state that this is unacceptable. It will be a slow correction though. #45 will fight even the moneys sent by recent legislation which he signed.

      The PTSD suffered by those children and created by our government, will cost us. Treatment, lack of productivity, behavioral problems will visit those victims for the course of their lives. And it is all preventable.

      Liked by 4 people

  3. Husband travels to the rez every Tuesday. He comes home Thursday night. He has a furnished double wide trailer there, and since his fridge works (it didn’t in the last place he lived) he doesn’t need to bring a cooler. He still brings some food, plus his c-pap machine, a crate of books for work and pleasure reading, lap top computer, file folders, brief case, suitcase with enough clothes for a week, and any amount of other things. I think he brings way too much stuff every week. Last week he forgot his C-pap machine up there. The week before he forgot his computer. He has too much stuff and too many places to haul it from.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Yesterday husband headed up to Will Steger’s homestead for a couple of weeks.

      He has prepared for this for weeks. He went so far as to purchase a couple of “wholegrain Danish pumpernickel” bread at Denny’s bakery in Bloomington to take with him. After bringing the bread home he discovered it wasn’t, in fact, wholegrain, so he drove back to the bakery to exchange it. As it turned out, they didn’t have any “wholegrain” bread in stock, so he got credit for one loaf, and decided he’d eat the other. He then stopped at Ikea and bought a couple of their very good whole grain rye bread mixture. He baked them, and was all set for his venture up north.

      Last night as I was getting ready to cook my dinner I discovered that he had left his bread in the fridge. Guess who’s going to be eating all of that whole grain bread.

      Liked by 3 people

        1. He was incredulous when I talked with him last night. “Are your sure”? he said. When I confirmed, that yes, his bread was in fact in our refrigerator, he was not a happy camper. He’ll muddle through, somehow, and I’ll be hosting some Danish open face sandwich gigs.

          Liked by 2 people

        1. No, Steve, this is pumpernickel bread with whole grain, not your average whole grain bread. It is delicious, dense and pretty much a prerequisite for smørrebrød, and I love it. I feel bad that Hans doesn’t have it to enjoy, but considering that he took apart our entire stereo system to take the speakers and the radio/amplifier with him, without asking if I minded, I can live with it. I’ll be eating smørrebrød while he’s listening to music of his choosing; seems like a fair trade to me.

          Liked by 3 people

  4. I agree, Renee, and If I didn’t have another radio, I’d agree. I don’t really use that radio/amplifier that much, but the whole notion that he disassembled it without even asking, pissed me off. The bread deal just seems just deserts.

    Liked by 2 people

      1. Well, with the kitchen it was a different deal. He was trying to fix a hole in the wall that had resulted from trying to find a broken pipe. But you’re right in recalling that one thing lead to another.

        In this case however, he was merely disconnecting the radio/amp and the speakers from the whole system, while also making sure I could still watch Jeopardy! with some sound. He’ll hook them back up when he returns with them. Still, I thought it quite inconsiderate to do that without asking.


  5. Morning-

    I tend to pack light, then always feel like I didn’t pack enough shirts.
    No matter how many times I count out shirts and pack both T-shirts or a ‘dress’ shirt and comfy shirts, about the last day I don’t have the shirt I want.
    I’ve stopped bringing magazines that I never get too. I only pack a notebook if I’ll be gone more than a week.

    Day trips we always have water bottles. If it’s a long day of driving we get road snacks (usually Grape pop and pringles chips).
    I tend to keep a bag of hard candies in all my vehicles tractors included.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. In my much younger days I didn’t worry about how much stuff I dragged along on any outing or trip. But now I have done a compete 180 degree. In my ideal world, I would never carry a purse. But since there are some essentials I do need, I take the smallest purse possible and try to keep it as light as possible. My shoulders thank me for this. When traveling internationally with my usual group of friends, I usually have the lightest suitcase – try to keep it at under 35 pounds. Being small and having tiny feet does help as my clothes and shoes don’t take up too much room. I have learned many packing tips over the decades and utilize every one of them whenever I travel. A great motivator for packing light is knowing that at the end of any trip I will have to carry my luggage up 15 stairs!

    Liked by 3 people

  7. I am constantly amazed at how much my purse weighs – it’s a smallish one (that’s already had the strap sewn back on once) and it seems like I have nothing in it. But when I clean it out I realize there are all the usual suspects, plus a small swiss army knife in the bottom (that I try to remove before flying).

    A few things also “live” in my bike basket – small water bottle, lock, and a reusable bag for groceries if I should stop on the way home. I have several cloth bags designated for recurring activities packed with the necessities for each – one for t’ai chi, co-op shopping, band practice, visits to friend W, and my Mom bag…


  8. Son, Dil, and grandson will be here tonight on their way back from the West Coast. They will pack up their Westie and all his accoutrements and head back to Brookings tomorrow.

    Baxter has a wire kennel in which he sleeps, allergy pills he takes every day for skin allergies, medicated pads for hot spots on his skin, a collar, a harness, two leashes, a bag of treats, a bag of dogfood, two bowls for food and water, a mat to protect the floor from his food and water bowls, dog toys, three blankets for inside his kennel, a blanket to cover his kennel at night when he sleeps, replacement poop bags for the dispenser on his leash, and a special tether for securing him safely when he rides in the car.

    Liked by 3 people

  9. Glad you could accommodate all of his needs. As a pet owner, I know how important it is to hand off your pet to someone you’re confident will take good care of them. I can recommend Bill as an excellent dog sitter.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I loved my time with Daisy. She was a sweet dog. Right now, however, we have inherited my daughter’s adult cat, who has never lived with dogs and would hide in the basement should a dog visit. My dog sitting may be curtailed for the present.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Glad to know that, Bill. I’ll be sure to plan future trips to include bringing Bernie along. He’s a good traveler, so that shouldn’t be a problem, but we sure appreciated you taking such good care of Daisy. And yes, she was a sweetie. Ironically, our friends who abandoned her to move to Australia have just moved back to the Twin Cities. Daisy, of course, is long gone.


  10. I pack lightly, always have. When I set out on my bicycle trip from Basel to Copenhagen, which ended up taking a good three weeks because I did a lot of backtracking, I had two small saddle bags of gear for the duration. Of course, things like soap, and toothpaste, and pretty much anything else needed could be purchased along the way.

    Husband, is another story. He brings along his pillow! He just can’t get comfortable with any random pillow. I used to take an interest in what he brings along, I no longer do, although I have learned to check to make sure he’s brought his blood pressure meds. It’s not pretty when he forgets it.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. That’s funny, Jacque. I was sitting in my favorite chair, and watching while he was fiddling around with the stereo and the speakers. He even had a headlamp on, so he could see what was what in the dark corners, I’m so used to him futzing with this, that and the other thing that I didn’t really think much of it. It didn’t really register with me that something was weird until I saw him carting off one of the speakers. The conversation that ensued was pretty bizarre, too. I’m glad he’s gone for a couple of weeks, I needed a break and he probably does too,


    1. The notion of “a break” from living together would have sounded odd to me once, but now I’ve seen many variations on that theme. Some couples do well living in separate homes. Some need to take occasional moments apart from each other, and they might find that a few weeks of living apart helps them enjoy being together again. My erstwife met a woman who lived with two husbands, staying a year with one, then staying a year with the other. And some couples are miserable any time they are apart. The older I get, the less it seems there is only one right way to do anything.

      Liked by 1 person

  12. I hope to one day become someone who packs very lightly and gets over their OCD of having every little thing with them for that “just incase” scenario. I honestly envy those people around me who are so content with packing lightly as well because I know if I were to pack lightly I would be so bothered and constantly feel anxious about missing something. Sigh*


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