Our first review of the Ju Ju Be Mini Be was in January 2008 by Amy Barseghian, Pink Lady and Diaper Bagaholic. I was just mentioning to Felicia, one of our fellow diaper bag junkies that this would be the perfect toddler bag and it's definitely a bag worth revisiting. Here's why, first take a look at the inside:
The pocket closes with a "smart magnet" which will easily close without having to match up the magnets like on a typical magnetic closure. A word of caution, since the magnets are so strong they can effect electronics with magnetic hard drives such as smart phones, ipods, PDAs, etc if you get them close to the magnets so make sure to store them in a different section of your bag and you won't have any problems. (I personally haven't heard of any actual issues but better to be safe than sorry.)
Behind the pocket is the double zippers that open up the main compartment. The zippers unzip all the way down to the bottom of the bag with more gussets so that you have full access without anything falling out. Also, as with all Ju-Ju-Be's, the inner lining is light colored so you won't get a "black hole" effect. There is one small mesh pocket that hangs near the back of the main compartment where you can put your cell phone, a couple of binkies, or even a small wallet. I love having this mesh pocket for stashing things that I don't want to fall to the bottom of my bag.
The rest of the main compartment is open so you can organize it how it works best for you. The main compartment can hold a lot more than it seems that it could. I mostly use my Mini Be for a purse for myself and can fit a 20oz water bottle, my wallet, a make up bag, a be quick (another great ju-ju-be product) filled with wipes, toiletries, etc., a purse sized brush, my glasses case, sunglasses, and still have room left over.
On both sides of the bag you'll notice a bottle/sippie pocket that can hold most types of bottles, although the pockets are smaller than on the other bags and are a tight fit. Behind the zippers to the main compartment is another pocket that which closes with a zipper and opens up to the snack compartment lined with a plastic waterproof material and can keep snacks safe for taking on the go. If something spills or leaks it can be wiped right out or rinsed out if needed.
The back of the Mini Be is a mesh fabric which breaths very nicely and is comfortable when wearing the bag for long periods of time. As mentioned before, the straps are great and the top half that hits your shoulder is padded with memory foam and is lined with the same mesh that is on the backside of the bag, making the bag even more comfortable to carry. As is true with all of the bags in the Ju Ju Be line the Mini Be is machine washable (upside down and open) and air dry which makes clean up a breeze.