Why Does My Kid Carry All of Her Clean Panties In Her “Purse”?

I know full well that there will come a day when I won’t have the liberty to blog about my kids and their lives.  When that day comes, I will shut my trap and give them their privacy because (1) that’s what good mommies do, and (2) they could kill me in my sleep.

Until that day comes, I can blog about anything I want because they can’t read and they have to keep me alive because I am the only one who knows where the chocolate is hidden.

So, I need to talk about Sadie’s purse fetish.  She has slowly co-opted about 5 of my (now) former purses, and I am not talking about straw-ass handbags from Target; I am talking about real leather, animals-died-for-this purses that I used in my former life in the corporate world.  (Think: Furla, Kenneth Cole, and some imported Florentine handbags.)  She loves them, and because she uses them in her imaginative play, I justify letting her have them because fostering her imagination is important (and it gets her out of my hair so I can pin new shit on Pinterest).

Yesterday, however, she was walking from room to room with a giant trash bag.  (You may see a suffocation hazard, but I see hours of developmentally appropriate imaginative play.)

My kid's "purse"

My kid’s “purse”

“Sadie, what’s in that garbage bag?” I asked her because I like to engage with her while my Facebook page is loading.

“It’s not a garbage bag, it’s my purse.” She answered, as she slung it over her shoulder like Meryl Streep in Devil Wears Prada.


I try not to judge other people’s fashion failures choices, but when it comes to my kid, there’s only so much white trash I can endure. It just hits a little too close to home, when it’s actually in my home. To console myself about the fall from Burberry to a Costco trash bag, I decided that the trash-bag-as-purse was most likely her ironic commentary on the consumerism of our society or her subtle hint that most of the stuff in my purse is garbage.

“Damn, she’s a genius. I bet she ends up writing polemical essays for The Nation or BUST,” I smugly said to myself as I emptied her “purse” when she was napping (because I needed it to shove a bunch of Jeff’s crap trash in it for an upcoming trip to Goodwill).

Here’s what I found in Sadie’s “purse”:

1. Pink jersey sheet from her bed

Does your toddler carry her linens around?

Does your toddler carry her linens around?

2. Recipe booklet

A must-have for every purse: A recipe booklet

A must-have for every tot’s purse: A recipe booklet

3. All of her clean underwear

12 pairs of princess underwear

12 pairs of princess underwear because “you never know….”

4. A spare pair of leggings

Fresh leggings straight out of Pippi Longstocking's wardrobe

Fresh leggings straight out of Pippi Longstocking’s wardrobe

Upon review of her inventory, I wonder if Sadie is planning to run away from home and ride the rails like a hobo, which would explain the clean underwear and the recipe book. Maybe she’s considering a life “off the grid.”

Maybe she has confused “junk drawer” with “purse,” which is understandable considering what she has seen me put in my purse (boogery tissues, the ever-exotic tampons she can’t figure out, and half-eaten snacks from months ago).  Most likely, as always when it comes to my kids, I have no f*cking idea what she’s thinking, and I should make peace with never, ever knowing.

So, what’s in your toddler’s purse? And more importantly, what does your toddler use as a purse?


20 thoughts on “Why Does My Kid Carry All of Her Clean Panties In Her “Purse”?

  1. My kids are obsessed with their backpacks. Yesterday, in preparation for our trip out to his grandparents house, he packed ten matchbox cars, cheerios (loose) and a toy dustbuster (hopefully to clean up the cheerios). I have NO idea what goes through these kids heads.

    PS – can we talk about how funny this post is? Can we talk about how, days later, I’m still spent from that Yeah Write link-up (the post itself could have killed me and then there were the amazing comments, the reading, the commenting on others). I’m so impressed you are back on the horse and killing it.

  2. My daughter is 3 and in her Hello Kitty purse (pink!) she currently has: three plastic bead necklaces (pink, blue, and purple), a pink iCarly compact mirror (from a birthday party), a Little People paramedic, a pink Little People picnic basket (I guess in case the paramedic gets hungry), and a pretend pink lipstick. Think she likes pink? I have no idea where she got her girliness. I carry a purse only because I got tired of carrying crap around in my pockets.

  3. Clearly the 4th of July holiday sharpened your wittiness. Brilliant, hilarious post! Laughing out loud on the train to work. Thank you. I needed that. Xoxo

  4. My daughter just loves purses, backpacks, bags of any description. She spends hours each day wandering around the house and garden picking up anything in her path to put in her various bags.

    • It’s so funny to see. Sadie has been doing that since she could walk (at 10 mos) and she’s still at it 2 years later. My little hunter and gatherer.

  5. My son goes through stages where he carries a black backpack everywhere. He puts “things that I might need to survive” in there. You will find a compass, Annie’s fruit snacks, binoculars, a lone fork, paper, and a small piece of rope. When we take it somewhere, he usually carries it and then it becomes my responsibility. I loved the leggings that were recovered from the purse 😉

    • I love that your son has a compass. How funny are these kids? They crack me up. And binoculars? Is he a birder? It’s too damn cute. I love those leggings too, but Sadie doesn’t love them, which is why it’s a little odd she carries them around. Maybe I should stop thinking and just enjoy!

  6. My youngest is in this stage right now and she is constantly putting diapers and wipes (thankfully unused on both counts, although wouldn’t put it past her), she also has a calculator she uses as a phone. Don’t try taking those things away from her say, if you need to change a diaper or need to balance the checkbook. I will get a, “my pur, my pur” from her.

  7. I have 3 boys so no purses, just backpacks, bags, lunchboxes, shopping bags. And filled with cars. Or trains. And now random amounts of change that my 6 yr old finds around the house and immediately confiscates because he’s saving up for some Ninja themed toy.

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