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I can hardly believe that my twins are going to be one in less than 2 months. How time has flown! When I was pregnant with the twins, I felt like I was having my first baby all over again with shopping for baby gear. Even items we had saved for the Goof I sometimes needed to buy more of. Or I thought I did. Truth is, there were a lot of items I bought two of, or thought about buying two of, that I didn’t need to. There were also a lot of items that I found just weren’t necessary at all.
I am lucky enough that I have met a lot of awesome moms of multiples since having my twins (and some I knew before having them) so I sent out to facebook and asked them to help me make a list of what items were must haves and what items were just nice to have. What did they need two of, and what did they realize they could have done with only one. It seemed like a lot of us repeated the same items, so I am going to share them with you and then at the bottom, I will link you to some of these awesome twin (or triplet) moms blogs if they have one.
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Now, please forgive me if I overshare some pictures of my twins. With their first birthday fast approaching, I am getting a little sentimental. But I figure, if you are expecting twins, you probably would enjoy looking at pictures of twins, right?
Do I Need Two Of Everything?
NO! You do not need two of everything. In fact, that was what most of us M.O.M.s (moms of multiples) agreed on. Several items you do not need two of. For instance-
- Swings. You only need one, especially until you know if your babies even like swings. Yep, that is right, some babies do not like swings. One of my twins lived in the swing (especially until we found out he had both reflux and a milk allergy) but the other could care less if he ever went in the swing. I am so glad I did not buy two swings.
- Bouncers. This one, the M.O.M.s I polled were about half and half. Some say they needed two bouncers, while others did not. We actually have rarely used a bouncer with any of our babies. However, we have one on hand. It doesn’t take up any room though because our swing detaches to become a bouncer. (When you have twins, items like this are awesome!) You can find the swing we got here. And yes, it plugs in but can also take batteries.
- Exersaucers/Jumparoos. You don’t need two of these. Rotate which baby is in there. This is great for giving each baby one on one time while still keeping the other baby entertained. Now, I am talking about the free standing jumparoos. The M.O.M.s I polled all except a few said that they really loved having two of the Johnny Jumpers (door way jumpers)
- Entertainment Mats. Those little mats that have the bars across the top and hanging toys, or mats with kick pads on them. Only get one. Both babies can fit under them usually, and all those items just take up a lot of floor space. Again, rotate what each baby is using.
- Baby Bath Tubs. Until our babies were ready to just sit in the regular tub, we just used one baby tub and rotated who was taking a bath. It is too hard to try and bathe two babies at once that can’t sit on their own when they are that little anyways.
What Will I Need Two Of?
Not many big items off the bat. But you will need two of a few important items.
- Car Seats. For ease, I suggest buying two of the same seat. Maybe not the same pattern, but the same seat. Especially if you will be using bucket/infant seats. That way, you do not have to make sure a specific seat goes on the correct base. Some M.O.M.s do not even designate a specific seat for a specific kid, but our twins have never been the same size and even a half pound or an inch of height made enough difference on the strap adjustment, it was much easier to designate a specific seat to each child. We just labeled them.
- Cribs (or place to sleep). Unless you plan on bed sharing, you will most likely need two cribs. Now, our twins shared a crib, sleeping on opposite sides, until they were 4 months old. By that time they were scooting around enough, even swaddled, to get close enough to kick each other and wake the other up. They were in our room also until this point as well. We then moved them to two cribs. There is some debate on letting twins share a crib, but a lot of M.O.M.s start them together, but even then, need to move them to separate cribs by around 4 to 5 months. The same goes for Pack N Plays or Rock N Sleepers. And the Pack N Plays with the twin bassinets, most M.O.M.s I have talked to have found those are only good for the first month or so.
- High Chairs. This is a little further down the line, but eventually, you will need two high chairs- whatever kind you choose (space savers are popular among M.O.M.s) if you ever plan to eat together as a family before the twins are old enough to sit in a regular chair.
What Else Should I Get?
There are a ton of other items to consider when you are having multiples that may have been on your list for one baby anyways, but you need something that is built for two (or more) babies now.
- Stroller. Probably one of the hardest items to shop for as a M.O.M. is a stroller. When you are a new mom of a singleton, you get to just buy a travel system and be done. Not so much when you are having two babies. Most M.O.M.s find a snap n go type stroller to be a must have. It makes doctors visits and quick errands so much easier. There are two brands that make double Snap N Go strollers that fit multiple brands of car seats. The first is the Baby Trend brand. It has both car seats sit the same way, one raised slightly higher. This stroller has more of a sling type holder for the seats. The other, which is the one I purchased is the Joovy brand. This one has different attachments that come with it, you put on the one for your car seat. It also seats the car seats sideways facing opposite directions, which can be both a curse and a blessing. The babies can see each other if the handles and canopies are not in the way. The thing I liked about mine is that our seats actually snapped in like they do in the bases and it was shorter than the Baby Trend brand. It also helped I found a like-new one on craigslist for half what I would have paid new. You may find double strollers that have seats and can connect your car seat, but I still recommend purchasing one of the snap n go strollers if possible. The weight of the car seat, on top of the already heavy double stroller with seats, plus your babies….those things are a beast to push around. This is absolutely the biggest item I suggest to those expecting twins. I am actually sad that my twins are about to move out of their bucket seats, and so I will no longer be able to use this stroller.
For a stroller after the snap n go (6 months+) I strongly suggest investing in a GOOD stroller. You will use your stroller a lot more than you would with a singleton. There are a lot of nice ones out there, but the majority of M.O.M.s I know have either a City Select with extra seat or a City Mini Double Stroller. I personally have the second (the GT version) and love it. The City Mini is a side by side, but it is very easy to push and steer. Both are great strollers by the same company. You will just have to decide if you want a side by side, or a one in front of the other. (BTW- my City Mini fits through almost every doorway I have come to, but it is a tight fit in aisles between clothing, etc at the store.) Don’t let the price of these strollers scare you, they hold their value as long as they are not abused by the owner.
- Nursing Pillow. If you plan on nursing your twins, a twin nursing pillow is a must. I had the My Brest Friend Twin nursing pillow and loved it! While I mostly pumped, this pillow was also excellent for feeding bottles at the same time while the twins were really little.
- Baby Carriers. Baby wearing will help you get more done. There are so many different kind of carriers out there, I am going to share with you the three I use(d) most and the one I am hoping to get soon. For the first 6-8 weeks my wrap carrier was amazing. It allowed me to wear both babies at once until they got to big. Look up twin carries using a wrap (I prefer woven wraps) on YouTube and you will find a ton of great tutorials. My most favorite during the first 4-5 months was my Maya Wrap Ring Sling. This is the only way I could get mid-week shopping trips done during a time when Mike was working crazy hours (like 70 hours a week). I would put one baby in the sling, the other in his car seat in the back of the cart (you should NEVER put a car seat in the seat part of the cart/buggy) and then have my five year old either walk, or sit in the seat of the cart. Now that the babies are heavier, I am back to using my trusty Ergo carrier. I love it, and it really saves my back while still allowing me to wear my baby. Finally, now that my babies are big enough and old enough for a back carry, and I am feeling a bit more adventurous on outtings I would love to have a twin soft structured carrier like the TwinGo. This is a double carrier when needed, but can split to be two separate SSC carriers so each parent can wear one child.
How Many Should I Buy Of Other Items (Clothes, Sleepers, etc)
If twins are your first, or if it has been a while since you have had babies, you might be wondering how many you should buy of things like sleepers, onesies, diapers, and so on. This is a rough estimate of what you will most likely need. A lot of this will depend on your personal style of parenting, etc.
- Sleepers. I find that having at least 5 sleepers per baby when they are newborns is fine. This will have you doing laundry about every four days. If you plan on keeping them in sleepers all day (which if they are winter babies you may find best) then I would probably get a couple extra per a baby. Most M.O.M.s and other moms I talk to have said the same thing.
- Onesies. Everyone always says you can not have too many onesies. My twins’ dresser is proof otherwise. LOL! All of my babies have been spring babies, so during the summer, onesies were very important. During the winter, if we go out and I actually get them dressed, yes, I put onesies under their clothes as well (in case they pee through or have a blow out). So I would say having about 7-10 onesies per a baby is good. I often find if I have more than that, I have a ton that never get worn.
- Other clothing. I think 5-10 shirts, 4-6 pants, and just a bunch of socks for winter months. I have found that I normally have outfits I love for my kids, and so I often dress them in the same ones over and over again to get as much use out of them as possible before they outgrow them (which happens quickly) so there is no need to have much more than this.
- Shoes. Don’t get shoes for newborns. I mean you could. But you don’t need them. As they get a little older shoes do help them keep socks on, for a while. We are at the point our babies wear shoes if it is cold outside so they don’t take their socks off. Now that they are starting to stand and walk, we will be putting shoes on them much more often, but I am glad I didn’t waste money on shoes when they were really little.
- Swaddlers. If you want to use swaddlers such as the miracle blanket, etc. I suggest two per baby. That way one can be washed while the other is in use. They are pretty spendy for the good ones, so I wouldn’t do more than that.
- Diapers. This will depend on your choice of diapers. If you are using disposables, plan on 8-10 diapers per day, per baby for the first 6-8 weeks. The size you need will vary, but most twins will start in size newborn for at least a week or so. If you are cloth diapering, you can plan on 10 diapers per baby per day. I do not like to do diaper laundry daily, but you do not want to go more than 2-3 days without washing so I would say plan on at least 40 diapers. If you plan to use disposables at night (like we do) you can probably make it on 24-30 diapers. We also did not do cloth until our babies could fit in all in one size pocket diapers. It gave me time to heal from my c-section and time for us to adjust to having twins.
- Car Seat Bases. If the babies will mostly travel in the same care, one car seat base per car seat will be plenty. If you have a situation where they will often be dropped off somewhere (like daycare) in one car and picked up in another, I would suggest you get two bases per seat.
- Blankets. I find I use blankets pretty regularly, yet I don’t need as many as people like to make you think you do. For each baby I had 2 muslin swadlers (the really big ones- but I bought the off brand and they were just as good as the spendy ones) 2 warmer fuzzy blankets for winter months in the car seats, and about 4-6 receiving blankets that were used to lay them on during diaper changes, burping or swaddling when holding them, etc. Anything over that, I ended up making into cloth wipes.
- Bottles. If you are planning on breastfeeding, great. However, twins often come early, have a nicu stay, or maybe nursing doesn’t quite work out (or you need a rest). I suggest having at least 2 newborn bottles on hand with a slow flow nipple. If you know you will be pumping and bottle feeding, or formula feeding, plan on at least 2 bottles per baby. If your babies have a NICU stay, most NICUs will get your baby on a 3 hour feeding schedule, so you can feed them and then rinse out a bottle, or wash it, and then use it next feeding, but it is still good to have 2 for each baby if you plan on bottle feeding. Now that our babies are older, we have a 3 pack of large bottles. Each baby uses the same bottle for all for bottle feedings, and it gets washed after each use (or if we are being real, rinsed out with hot water and then washed at night)
This list is a great start. Remember, just like with a singleton, each baby, mom and family is different. Someone else’s must haves may be a pass for you. My biggest suggestion- buy what you know you will need, borrow things you aren’t sure if you will need (until you decide if you will need them) and if you have something you end up not needing, sell it. If you are a mom of multiples (or dad) do you have anything to add? Leave a comment below letting me know.
Be sure to check out these other twin moms that are on social media.
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