One of the first things to do when getting started with a new D diagnosis is get organized. I started off with the travel pack they gave us at the Endocrinologist office, but our supplies rapidly started outgrowing it, not to mention how inconvenient some of those pockets are at 2am. So I headed out and picked up a few things and ordered online a TON of stuff.
The first and BEST thing I could've initially purchased is the clear acrylic organizer by Caboodles. There are a bunch of different ones by that company, as well as I'm sure competitors, but this one just fits our D stuff so well. This one was about $16 at Target in the Beauty/Health section.
In that organizer you will find:
- Pen needles & 3/10 syringes.
- Glucose meter, strips, and Calorie King nutritional book.
- Alcohol swabs, box of FastClix lancets, box of Precision Xtra blood ketone strips and meter.
- In the individual cubbies are: Lantus (in a green koozie), Humalog Luxura pen; FastClix Lancing device; Sharpie; Humalog bottle koozie; Ketostix; glucose meter control solution. Not exactly lipsticks but what can you do?
The other must haves were: (Shown in Top Picture)
- Sharps container (free pick up/drop off in my county at the local health department/fire stations)
- A by-HOUR daily calendar (b/c the log books they give you just don't leave a lot of room for writing; found on clearance at Target for $5)
- Food scale with tare and g/oz/lb/kg options (EatSmart Precision Pro Digital; $25, Amazon.com)
- The aforementioned insulin koozies which will save you easy money b/c dropping 1 vial of insulin is EXPENSIVE (Securitee Blanket Vial Protectors, $7/each at Amazon.com)
- The aforementioned CalorieKing Calorie, Fat & Carbohydrate Counter is a MUST, MUST for proper D care. I received one free from the Endo but purchased others for babysitter/grandma, grandma #2, main car, etc. ($5, Amazon.com)
Eventually our daily needs stash was pared down, so I went on to the next find: IKEA
Ikealand was kind enough to make these kitchen accessories that are sort of perfect for D supplies. The little steel organizer bar allows you to pick the perfect containers to hang, which I selected two flatware caddies and a flat bottom wire basket. Caddy #1 gets alcohol pads; Caddy #2 (usually) holds a fast acting gel, pens/sharpies, Crystal Light liquid and anti-itch cream if we need it after a site change. The wire basket is a catch-all with lancets, blood meter supplies, calculator, insulin, ketone strips, pump clips, etc. It freed up the counter to throw the food scale and logbook underneath it. Nice, neat, organized, and ACCESSIBLE.
Other Important Items:
- 3 tier plastic bin for the extra items like swabs, lancets, blood glucose strips, instruction manuals, extra meters/lancing devices, needles, etc. (I did the snap-by-layer kind but the drawer kind could also work for you; I liked mine b/c the top layer had multiple compartments to organize the smaller stuff, and I didn't have to worry about items getting stuck/jammed in the drawers.). Once we started accumulating things, this went into a kitchen cabinet along with the gobs of pump and CGM supplies.
- Small Cooler (Ours is the Icy Diamond Small Insulated Tote; $21 at Amazon.com)
- Binder for all the D-paperwork. I used clear plastic sleeves to easily flip through them. It's got everything from the Doctor's info to the free foods (under 5g) that she is allowed, to insurance letters and RX info. I decorated mine with some snazzy scrapbooking paper and glitter letters I had already on hand.
Vacation worries were solved when I stumbled across the Joy Mangano XL Beauty case. This thing is like the Cadillac of organizers. I did a test run with things still in boxes and ended up with room to spare. The large section had 6+ Dexcom (dexcom.com) sensors alone (hard to see) and I could've added plenty on top. When we took a cross-country trip to L.A., I was able to use this perfectly at the airport because the sections velcro on/off. Non-scannable items in one packet to hand to security, one packet had food/drink for plane ride, and the other 2 were for scannable medical supplies. It folds into around 12"x6"x6" with a handle and since it would be all medical supplies within it, does not count towards your carry-on luggage tally.
|Joy Mangano XL Beauty case|
Found this adorable toddler backpack by Skip Hop, which the teacher would keep. A Vera Bradley ID case on a carbinder is perfect for Dexcom receivers. The middle section has a pencil holder with her Glucagon, jellybeans, fast acting gel, glucose tablets, juice, etc. The front pocket holds her meter kit, pump remote, ketone meter/strips, and her data phone. Side pocket holds a water bottle (even the tall reusable Contigo's).
So there you have it, a bit of insight into how we started out organizing, and what we do now that we are years into it. Disclaimer: Aside from being a Dexcom Warrior, none of the aforementioned products are affiliated with me/this blog in any way.