TWO UNDER TWO
As my boys are 22 months apart in age, I have been navigating raising two kids under two years old these past few weeks. Having more than one child brings both its challenges and blessings. Obviously the more children, the more work is involved; but seeing my toddler interact with his newborn brother makes this mama swoon!
This is what I have learned so far on my very brief journey of having two under two.
1. BABY WEARING
Baby wearing is a lifesaver! Being hands free enables me to accomplish tasks all while having a very happy and content baby. The first three months of a baby’s life are sometimes referred to as the “fourth trimester.” Baby wearing mimics the womb so naturally they love it! Usually Kyler will be lulled to sleep in no time. Currently I have been using the Sakura Bloom ring sling and I have also purchased the Solly Baby Wrap. I will write a comparative review soon.
2. DOUBLE NAPTIME
Whenever possible, I’ll try to time my toddler’s naps with my newborn's so that I get a mini break in the middle of the day. Naptime keeps me refreshed and sane!
3. GET TO BED EARLY
When I had my son Dylan I was told to, “Sleep when the baby sleeps.” With one child that is great, but with two this no longer applies. My husband and I regularly go to bed before 10 PM so that we can still somewhat function with interrupted sleep and early mornings.
4. OUTINGS & ACTIVITIES
The saying, “Variety is the spice of life,” is so relevant for those of us in the mom jungle. I love my life as a SAHM, but it can be mundane at times. Even something as simple as going to a coffee shop or the grocery store provides a change of pace that boosts our mood.
Since it’s the middle of winter, there are days when it is too blustery to leave the house. On these days, I have special activities ready-to-go for my toddler. Currently colouring, baking, reading in the tee-pee and playing with Play-Doh are very popular at my house. An indoor picnic can be loads of fun too! Come the warmer months, I take advantage of the outdoors… hurry up spring!
5. RE-EVALUATE YOUR HOME SET UP
With two kids it's a good idea to re-evaluate your home set up. My home has two floors so I now have a diaper changing station on both levels. I also have been doing my makeup on the main level these days while my newborn naps in the bouncer seat and my toddler plays with his toys. I find that aside from Dylan's naps, staying in the same general vicinity keeps things running smoother.
6. THE GOLDEN RULE
One solid piece of advice I received was to not always keep my older child waiting. As my husband works out of the home, I am alone during the day with my sons. The reality is that sometimes both boys will be crying at the same time. The natural tendency is to tend to the newborn first, however; this can send the wrong message to my eldest. I’ve been intentional to sometimes keep my newborn waiting in order to first meet the needs of my toddler. I want him to know that I love him just as much as the baby. He hasn’t been demoted to second place.
I find being strategic and exercising common sense is the golden rule. If Dylan wants a certain toy and Kyler wants to nurse, I’ll placate Dylan quickly allowing me to nurse my baby peacefully afterwards.
I will admit that having two under two is busy! There is no sugar coating that. However; with my boys being so close in age, I hope that they will be close friends!