I guess I already knew how heavy the bags are that I carry to every client’s house. I just don’t really think about it unless someone asks me. It wasn’t until I injured my knee and needed to think about carrying large tote bags into a client’s house that I really needed to stop and think about what I have in those bags and whether I could lighten my load a bit.
What’s funny though, is that as I started to do a mental run-through of what I carry in my bags, I wasn’t sure if there was a whole lot I could take out!
You see- similar to my car (see the post “Toys“) my bags are filled to the brim with supplies that I need for my sessions. I travel to clients’ houses remember, so whatever I need has to come with me!
I actually have two bags. Both on them have the Brain Fit logo proudly displayed on the side. I was given them by Pam Formosa when I was first hired as a coach. Both came with “goodies” to get me started as a coach.
One of the bags is a lighter weight cotton tote bag. In that bag, one of the things I carry are my client folders. The folders are where we have contact information, session notes and where we track progress. In addition to my client folders, I carry other materials needed for sessions in that bag. Mainly, materials that I need to facilitate a session- markers/pencils/pens/sticky notes, my large experiential version of “The Learning Loop“, copies of my Brain Gym® and Primitive Reflex manuals, a large binder, as well as a few other things.
The binder itself is filled with tons of resources that I use on a regular basis. I have copies of the movement posters. I have laminated “agenda” pages that span all ages of kids. I have stickers with the Brain Fit movements on them that I give for “homework”. I have resources and articles. I have pages that help teach breathing exercises and I have favorite examples of Brain Gym® “Double Doodle” and “Lazy 8s” pictures that clients have made for me, as well as a host of other things.
Yeah, I know. It’s a lot. You’re probably thinking that surely, I could take some things out? Well, maybe.
But first, let me tell you about my other bag. The other bag is much larger, and a heavy canvas material. It still, of course, proudly displays the Brain Fit logo on the side. This bag is what I call my toy bag. I’m sure you can figure out why I call it my toy bag. After all, I have to get those toys from my car and into the client’s house somehow!!
However, I don’t just carry toys in that bag. I also carry my large pad of sketch paper- perfect for the making of those Double Doodle and Lazy 8s pictures I mentioned above.
I also carry a whiteboard that I use for various purposes. I keep the whiteboard markers in my other bag- in a pencil case that looks like a real taco and that the kids think is awesome- lol.
In addition to the whiteboard and sketch paper, I also carry a clock (to keep track of the session time) and my Lazy 8s marble board- a wooden toy that is in the shape of an 8 and has a track for a marble to go around it. You’d be surprised the myriad of ways that you can use one of those simple toys- it might even need its own blog post at some point!
The other favorite (of my client’s) is my “Heavy Pink Ball”. You might even say that Heavy Pink Ball is like a sister or cousin to the “Big Green Ball“.
Heavy Pink Ball is one of those workout balls that some people call a “medicine ball”. Why they are called that- I have no idea, maybe someone can enlighten me on that one?
Anyway- it’s a heavy, weighted ball- 6 pounds I believe- filled with sand. So right there- with that one ball I’m carrying around 6 pounds right off the bat. But I’m not taking it out. You know why I’m not taking it out of my toy bag? Because so many clients request it during “rest time”.
So many kids love to have that ball rolled down their arms and legs because it provides deep pressure into the muscles and joints and they love it!! So nope- can’t take that out either!
And then, also in my toy bag are an assortment of other toys and materials- some organized by the primitive reflex that I pair them with. And others, just separated into smaller bags so that it’s easier to find what I need and keep things together.
So now I come back to my original dilemma. Can I take some things out of my bags in order to make them easier for me to carry with my sore knee? Could I? Yes. Will I? Probably not.
I like knowing what I have in my bags. I like having a variety of items and resources to help me during my sessions. I like having options for toys and I like finding things in my bag that I might have forgotten about and remembering how much I like using them.
And besides- if I start taking things out of my bags, it’s almost inevitable that I’ll need the very thing I removed from my bag.
Isn’t that always how it works? You take something out of your bag or purse and next thing you know it’s exactly what you need and it’s no longer there? Of course it is!
I can’t have that. So nope- I think I’ll just keep carrying my heavy bags.
Please- wish me luck, won’t you?