Often, when I'm scrambling to get out the door (especially on a Sunday morning), I'll have the girls help switch purses for me. They know to grab the essentials from one bag and toss them into another, thus helping us pile into the car that much more quickly. At least, that's the goal.
I'm not sure why it took me so long to figure this out, but it finally dawned on me one day that it would be much easier to transfer a whole bag of essentials rather than the individual items (which usually meant that I was bound to forget something). The bag trick also makes it much easier on the girls, should they be the ones helping me with the transfer. (No more, "Did you remember my lipstick? I think it's in the side pouch . . . no, the other side pouch . . .")
When my sister and I were in Slovenia visiting Johnny and Brooke last fall, I found the perfect little bag. It's small enough to fit in most of my purses but large enough to fit the essentials. I'm sure we all have a different list of "essentials," but this is mine: lipstick, pen/pencil, travel Kleenex, hand sanitizer (or "handzitizer," as my niece calls it), lotion, lip balm, Altoids, mirror, keys (for which Aidan fashioned a lovely, Seahawks-inspired rainbow loom ornament) and a few hair pins. That's about it.
So when we're racing out the door and I need to switch purses, I just transfer the bag and my wallet and I'm good to go. (The bag also contains a little card holder in case I want to leave my wallet behind, too.) And, as long as my tea is ready, I just might get to my destination on time.