“8 Second Diaper Changes…
and other sanity saving tips for raising multiples”
By Troy White - father of Hailey and Katrina
8 SECOND DIAPER CHANGES: Make sure everything is ready when you go to change a diaper – diaper, wipes, cream, powder, clothes, etc. If you have to turn your back to get something you are asking for trouble. For diaper changes, put one clean diaper laid down underneath the one they have on – change the dirty one then the clean one is right there- chances of avoiding a mess are better. And make it a game! I pretended I had 8 seconds to change a diaper so my routine was a mad panic to get the diapers, out, the wipes out, cleaned up, dirty diaper in the pail, clean one on and fastened – ALL in 8 seconds ! No wonder the girls thought this was so funny to see their dad acting like this. It became a ritual that all of us enjoyed. I got done quicker, and they got entertained !
BABYPROOFING: Remember – they are not 3 feet tall – they are 6 foot tall combined! And they will figure out how to leverage each other to get into spots they never would be able to if they were alone. Try everything from the level of lying on your stomach on the floor while crawling around the floor to crawling on your knees to walking around – anything at all three levels is fair game for them. Keeping these two toddlers safe is a 24/7 battle. Twins are very powerful. They learn early to fool you. One will distract you, while the other goes for whatever they want, they will use each other to push each other over baby gates, if one tastes that Windex, the other one is sure to follow. Never underestimate your twin’s abilities.
BATHTIME: Baths are much easier with two people to look after the tough parts – but that is not always possible. Especially when they are young you have to worry about them standing, slipping, drowning while your back is turned – it keeps going on. Make sure your towels, clothes, toys and soap are all ready before you start the bath. And never ever leave those little ones alone in the bath.
BEDS: When it comes to moving them from the cribs to beds…my thoughts are to delay it as long as possible. We were lucky that they knew they could crawl out of their cribs if they wanted to but they never tried. Eventually at about 2.5 years their trampoline practice got the best of the cribs and one of them busted. So off to the store we go for some beds. The way we did the transition is to keep both cribs and beds in their room at the same time…yes it was absolutely cramped…but it gave us some ammunition to get them to stay in their beds. You see new beds are a major step in their world…freedom! Freedom to destroy whatever lies in their path in their room, freedom to play together for hours after they would normally be in bed. After awhile we would threaten that we would take their beds away and put them in the cribs. This horrified them so they would finally calm down and sleep in their beds.
The best thing you can do is find ways to tire them out more than usual before bedtime…or suck it up and let them play in their room…they will get bored of it eventually.
Try removing everything out of their rooms also for this transition. We didn’t initially do this and were constantly putting their clothes back in drawers etc. We finally ended up stripping the entire room – pictures, toys etc. You think they would get bored but in honesty, they still entertain themselves for hours after we put them to bed.
BOUNCY CHAIRS: Our girls loved their bouncy chairs – they practically lived in these and slept in them also as babies. Any form of swings and bouncing can be a godsend for some peace.
BRIBERY: Okay – bad word. But, it works. We will tell the girls to put their toys away and then they can have a cookie. It usually works. Treats are a popular and happy word in our house!
BRUSHING TEETH: Start at an early age start brushing your teeth in front of them. I have one of those electric ones and they love it when I brush my teeth in front of them and let them hold the handle while I brush and it buzzes around in their hands. This makes it much easier for them to enjoy brushing when they have to brush their own teeth. To them it is now a game and a daily ritual.
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