We All Have Baggage

“Cute bag!”

I love hearing that. It always makes me smile. Don’t you love it when someone says it to you?

I make sure I give the same compliment to others when I spy a beautiful bag. Beautiful color. Beautiful style. Perfect size. A cute bag makes me feel special as does the positive attention that may come with it.

Regardless of how cute a bag is, I always wonder what are they carrying in there? I’m completely curious. I know what I carry around. I know what I can’t be without. However, there is this mystery of what’s in the stylish bag of the person standing next to me. There is a sense of intrigue about the designer bag in the hand of the person walking in front of me, or passing me in the hall.

It’s like the Capital One credit card ad campaigns:  What’s in Your Wallet?

Anyway … I want to know what’s in the big and bold or the small and stately bag just as Capital One wants to know what’s in your wallet. Especially if the bag is small because I don’t understand how someone can live in a bag that’s only big enough to hold cash or lipstick.

So what do I tote around in my bag? The usual or what I think that every woman would take with them:

  • Wallet
  • Planner (may need to consult my schedule)
  • Phone (2 of them … one for work and one personal)
  • Make up bag (might need to freshen up)
  • Comb
  • Digital Recorder (inspiration sometimes strikes in places where paper and pen won’t do)
  • Pens (at least 10, maybe more)
  • Stationery (just in case I have time to jot a note)
  • Notebook (because my planner isn’t for everything)
  • Hat (need to be prepared for rain or snow)
  • Vitamins (for continued hair growth)
  • Sunglasses
  • Gum / mints

Okay, I take an “everything but the kitchen sink” approach to bags and that is not all that I carry. Sadly, my handbag is heavier than I’d like to admit. Still, I can’t help but drag these things around with me. Lug may be a better word for it.

Oh and don’t forget about the multiple bag effect either. You know it and have witnessed it:  the person who has a handbag, computer bag, lunch bag, shopping bag, or plastic grocery store bag (pick a combination). As a culture we keep spreading out, building bigger homes to accommodate the amount of stuff we have. Yet, it’s not enough. We feel the need to take it with us where ever we go. We all have baggage.

And now in the age of the man-bag and messenger bags… curiosity increases. What do men need to carry around with them? Their keys and wallets or their phones? An iPad or eReader?

Consider me inquisitive. Call me a busybody but I am dying to know … what’s your baggage?


  1. i convince myself that i am not a girly-girl and don’t need to carry a personal purse around. instead, i fell into a “teacher bag” habit that carried every possible thing i might need ever. magazines, books, notebooks, paper, pens, note cards, etc. of course, i never USED any of it. then, a wise doctor told me no more heavy bags…so i turned to small, conservative bags to carry a wallet, a pen or two, receipts, and a make-up assortment that is NEVER used (reapply? what’s that?). last year, a sweet friend bought me a lavender bag because she wanted me to be seasonal and just be a girl. it unleashed something in me! i now have a cute butterfly-shaped bag, a blue & white nautical bag, and my handy black bag. i still only carry minimal items (phone, pens, an occasional coupon, maybe a current read, bobby pins that help with this shorter hair-do, and the still never-touched make-up bag). what do the contents of a woman’s bag tell you about her, miss jj?

    • LOL! In your case TLC it tells me you are practical but with a side of adventure. You can pick up at a moment’s notice and hit the road. I would need to catalog my bag to make sure I wasn’t forgetting something I might need.

  2. I actually can say this in one word: Bagellini. That’s it. Light, compact, yet it carries everything I could possibly need, organized, almost indestructible. Can’t ask for more!

  3. I used to own so many bags I didn’t use half of them. I have finally broken myself of the “you can’t have too many bags” habit … Life is easier. I can find what I’m looking for, finally, and the missing item isn’t in the OTHER bag .. if I can remember which other bag!

  4. Oh my goodness… I MUST always carry a big bag/purse around because I carry too much stuff. I am unable to downsize (trust me, I have tried). I usually have my wallet, agenda -which is HUGE-, my iPad, a notebook and my favorite thing which is a purse organizer. It’s this amazing little pouch that hold my phone, a mechanical pencil (and extra leads), 4 pens, sunglasses, gum, hair elastics and bobby pins, hand cream, lip balm, post-its, hand sanitizer and a bunch of other random things. And it keeps everything in one place so I don’t go digging! So maybe I’m a bit crazy, but I have become accustomed to all these things always being around…

    I know my back is going to be angry with me one day… 🙂

  5. Oh my gosh – you caught me. I am an absolute bag-a-holic!!! I have like 20 – maybe more. I love them! I also have an obession for chapsticks and lipsticks – I think that is because I live in Colorado, which is like a desert. I always carry my wallet, sunglasses, notebook, pens, ipad, phone…but sometimes I need an extra bag for meeting materials if the bag is not big enough for that….folders, etc. And I love that bag in the picture – where can I get that? 😉

    • I am a recovering bag-o-holic. LOL! The bag in the picture I’ve had for about 10 years. It was a Franklin & Covey tote that I found and fell in love with because of my burgundy phase. Unfortunately, it’s not big enough to hold everything I drag around. I like totes because I can cram a notebook and files in them. Thanks for sharing.

  6. I read a blog recently where the woman had purchased a vintage bag that had a couple of items from the “past” inside. It makes me think about the life my vintage clothes led before coming to live with me in the here and now. I change bags depending on my outfit but I always have the wallet, lippy, at least one pen my sunnies and the diary(there is a small notebook in the back). Sometimes I have two shades of lippy, my glasses and a notebook plus a mess of other things, like reciepts, an umbrella, scarf, hat, lunch. 🙂

  7. Phil Hanson says:

    Yes Gail. Your bag is always prepared for what life might throw at you. You’ve been known to travel with diapers, bottles, wipes, guys, stray legos, books and always tissues. I get that. But 10 pens? Now I’m curious.

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