Three under the age of TWO - Babysense
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Three under the age of TWO

A mom’s story about how she managed to raise 3 under the age of two I love babies and children – always have and my plan was 3 children based on the assumption my husband would negotiate me down to 2 – which I could accept. Never did I believe I would be mom to 3 beautiful boys. Here’s what happened… Finding out you are pregnant with #2 before your 1st baby is one is a little bit of a shock, but hey, who wants a massive age gap anyway right?! My 2nd pregnancy started off so different from my 1st – I wasn’t tired, no morning sickness and I could still drink coffee – warning bells rang in my head so I booked an early scan and told my husband he was coming with me. We never imagined we would be told all was well AND there were TWO and due date was before Max (our first) would be 18months – 3 babies under the age of two in the house – all the nappies, changing, bottles, feeding, crying – it was very over whelming. In order to prepare as best we could we found out the sex of the babies as soon as possible and were delighted it was 2 boys. I had reasoned internally that the twin dynamic and close age gap would be more troublesome if we had a boy/girl set or 2 girls. I stock piled 2nd hand clothes for the twins – any size, any age. I kept all Max’s baby clothes. I bought nappies way in advance. And we started renovating what would become Max’s bedroom so the twins could move into the room next to ours. I also spent as much time with Max as I could – knowing his time as an only child with my undivided attention was limited. I had a textbook perfect twin pregnancy, Max started walking 2 weeks before the twins were born and had just started a morning crèche. Going to hospital with 1 baby and returning with 2 more is quite extraordinary. We had 3 car seats in the back of our trusted Volvo, 2 bouncy chairs in the lounge and the camp cot set up in the dining room (all open plan thank goodness!) I was lucky enough to be able to breastfeed the twins for a few months – and I felt much like a cow as all I ever seem to do was feed one (or two – I attempted double feeding). I fed on demand as I discovered early on, one twin would always fall asleep if I tried to synchronize them which became frustrating. We gratefully accepted meals from friends who popped in to see us – there was no time for making meals except for Max. Bath time was difficult in the beginning – I had 2 bath “slings” so the twins could be in at the same time. As soon as they were sitting properly I bought 2 bath seats and all 3 would spend time in the bath together. I also discovered showering the twins sitting in bath seats worked well and Max loved “showering” his brothers – a win all round. Half an hour of fun play for all 3 and they got cleaned. Time management became difficult – I read Gina Ford and cried because I couldn’t get a routine in place – one of the 3 boys always threw the schedule out somehow. I asked a close friend to help me (she was a Gina Ford guru) and despite her elaborate excel spreadsheet we couldn’t get it to work. So you know what, I let it go. I decided we would go with the flow. It was for a limited time period (I hoped by the time the twins were 2 things would be better) and I stopped trying to put our lives on schedule. It worked. I found it difficult to go out with the twins for the 1st year – and NEVER on my own – I was petrified if both of them started crying and I could only soothe one that people would walk past me tutting and thinking I was a bad mom. So I stayed home and invited other moms over for play dates. I found they were often the best part of my day. I relaxed and the stress of long after 3 babies would be shared between a group of friends – and let’s face it who doesn’t find twins a wee bit exciting and secretly wish (until you see the reality!) that you had also had twins?! I missed out on a lot of the small things with both Max and the twins, exactly when they got their first tooth or what their favourite starter food had been – we didn’t have time. Making sure all 3 were healthy and happy was the most important thing. And despite it all – and a severe lack of sleep for years – we did it. Some tips for moms with multiples or 2 close together: Don’t sweat the small stuff – sandwiches or a bowl of cereal does count as dinner and you can vacuum later Have a shower and get dressed each morning – it will make you feel better about yourself Stock you freezer with ready prepared meals in advance Use bath time as playtime if possible – a great wind down for you and the kids Don’t hibernate – chatting to other moms and seeing how they are coping makes you feel better. You are NOT alone in your worries or woes On week-ends get up and get out – we had very early risers and on week-end would be out the house by 8am – useful as anywhere we went was quiet so perfect for the boys to run around Use a baby carrier if possible – one of the twins was very “needy” and I took to wearing him in a Baby Bjorn carrier many hours a day – it soothed him and meant I could still do things Use nappy changes as one on one time with each baby – it is only a few minutes but it is just you and you baby – treasure the moments and use them Read more about the journey of the 40-something mom of 3 trolls ready to take on the written world in cyber space talking about my 3 wonderful boys and my-our journey
Getting your baby calm before bedtime - Babysense
Category_Advice & Tips

Getting your baby calm before bedtime

The secret to easy bedtimes is to structure your baby’s sensory world in a calming manner. Use the following techniques at bedtime to help your baby shift into the sleep state easily. At the end of a long day we often feel exhausted and wouldn’t it be great if bedtime was a matter of just popping our babies into their cots and leaving the room to go and enjoy the Amazing Race or ER on TV? Unfortunately for many, bedtime dissolves into tears and even a fight as baby and mom have different agenda’s for how this time will pass. At the end of the day we are tired and in need of sleep but we all have to pass from an alert state into a drowsy state before sleep envelopes us. Babies are known for fighting this transition of state and this is why the evening can end in a fight. As your baby gets more tired he may start to rub his face and suck on his hands and before long he is slightly irritable. So when the time comes for separation from mommy and sleep time he becomes distressed and hours of fussing and a lot of effort to get your baby to sleep is the result. The secret to easy bedtimes is to structure his sensory world in a calming manner. The following are sensory calming techniques to use at bedtime to help your baby shift into the sleep state easily: Touch: A warm bath Tight wrapping in a warm towel after bath Swaddling for young babies A firm but gentle baby massage after bath A warm room – around 20 degrees Soft pyjamas A soft or silky comfort object, such as a teddy or Baby Sense Taglet A soothing dummy/ pacifier or sucking on his thumb Smell: Add lavender or chamomile oil to the bath for older babies A lavender oil burner positioned safely in the bedroom A comfort object that smells of mom or baby ie sleep with your Baby’s Taglet and use it the following night in his crib. , Vision: Darken the room with block out lining on blinds and a light dimmer No mobile over the cot No visual stimulation in the cot Do not remove your baby from his room after bath – keep all interactions muted so that he can get nice and drowsy Movement: Once you have fed your baby the last feed of the day. Hold him in your arms and rock him to a drowsy state Don’t rock your baby to sleep but rather watch for his sleepy signals, such as long, slow blinks or drowsy eyes, then put him down drowsy but awake Sounds: White noise, such as radio static, running water, the sound of a humidifier or fan or air conditioner will lull your baby into a sleepy state Soft lullabies Using these sensory techniques, you can look forward to a sleepy baby, who doesn’t fight sleep. Put him down in his cot and walk out of the room and he may well surprise you by falling asleep. By Meg Faure
How to put your newborn baby to sleep - Babysense
Category_Advice & Tips

How to put your newborn baby to sleep

Settling your baby to sleep can present challenges. For older babies and toddlers this is often related to habits and expectations at sleep time. But for younger babies, sleep needs are usually more sensory based – newborns just love contact, soothing sounds and containment to fall asleep and stay settled. The sensory input your newborn seeks may include: Soothing sounds, such as your heartbeat, your voice and white noise. When settling your baby, sing to her, use your voice and use a white noise CD or machine to create soothing sounds Lulling movement, such as rocking. Do not worry if your newborn needs to be held as she falls asleep. Under 9 weeks, babies do not develop habits. A rocking crib, sling or wrap carrier are a great ideas and can be used in the early days. Comforting touch, swaddling, holding and containing helps little ones to fall asleep. Swaddle your baby and try to settle her to sleep. Some babies require more input such as the deep touch of a parent’s hand. If you find that you have to hold your hand on your little one for ages, to help her sleep, a weighted sleepy sac is a great tool. By Meg Faure
5 tips to introduce a newborn to the family - Babysense
Category_Advice & Tips

5 tips to introduce a newborn to the family

The introduction of a new baby can be an emotional time for both mum and babe! The night before your new baby is born you will look at your older child and think that he is so small and is still your baby. But the moment the new baby comes home, your older child looks so big and you will expect so much more from him. Since this transition can be challenging for your older child. Try these 5 tips to smooth the transition for you and your older child: Each day set aside 15 minutes of time with your toddler on his own. Do this when your baby is sleeping or being cared for by someone else. Just 15 minutes of undivided attention will go a long way to help your older ‘baby’ feel really special again. Give your older child a gift from the new baby while you are still in hospital, so that he feels an affinity for the little person who is coming home. Breastfeeding is a very intimate time and your older one may feel excluded and end up exhibiting attention seeking behavior while you are feeding. Take three of his favourite books with you each time you breastfeed. If he plays the fool or becomes needy, ask him to cuddle up to you and read a book with you while you breastfeed. Share the load – dads and grannies are wonderful to distract and care for the older child when you are coping with the basic necessities of the early months. If your toddler is sleeping in your bed try to get him into his own bed or at least onto a mattress on the floor in your room, well before the new baby comes. If you shift him out of your bed days before the new baby arrives, he will feel a sense of loss, losing your attention and the close sleep space. By Meg Faure

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