BabyBoy and BabyGirl are still very young, so we are not far along our disciplining journey yet. However, I stumbled across these wise words from a fellow blogger, which I hope to remember in the days to come:
– Three non-negotiables for disciplining your kids: disobedience, dishonesty, and disrespect.
– Allow your kids to make mistakes and learn from them while the consequences are low. (This is one of my favorite comebacks when busybodies look at me in horror as I let BabyBoy and BabyGirl explore new things.)
– Don’t be afraid that your kids won’t like you. They may not like you now, but they will like you later when they are adults. (Oh, so so true.)
– Side with your children against their disobedience. Use the words “oh no!” to side with your kids. Say, “oh, no, there’s going to be consequences for that,” or “oh no, now you’re going to have to apologize.“ (Love this idea, will be implementing immediately!)
– The disciplining process is about restablishing broken relationships. Ask yourself, how can I discipline my child in order to restore our broken relationship? (A lovely way to look at disciplining as a process rather than simply a punishment.)
Clocks are an oft-overlooked baby essential. When you bring baby home you will find yourself checking the time more than ever before as you note how long baby has been feeding and sleeping. As they get older playtime will also be added into the mix, as will mealtimes, playdate times, ‘have I got time to run to the store before baby is likely to be grouchy’ times….
So put clocks on your pre-baby shopping list; at least one, if not two, in each room. Preferably you need to be able to see a clock without moving at any given point in your home. If you’re tandem-breastfeeding twins moving to check the time during a feed will certainly not be an option.
What about a watch? Well, I very rarely wear one at home nowadays. At the beginning I was too fearful of accidentally bumping a baby with it. Now the idea of a baby bringing up milk (or worse) on an item that cannot be submerged in soapy water and throughly scrubbed just doesn’t bear thinking about.
That first year with babies. It really does get better and better as the year progresses.
A lot is written about ‘nipple confusion’. Breastfeeding mums are warned to stay away from bottles and pacifiers for a few weeks after birth so that baby does not get confused between the different sucking motions needed for breastfeeding and bottle-feeding.
Having read all this, I duly went into hospital to have BabyBoy and BabyGirl armed with a birth plan that said ‘no formula, bottles or pacifiers to be given’, and intending to avoid all of the above for the first month at least.
Due to some issues, BabyBoy and BabyGirl did need to be supplemented while we were in the hospital. Latching was a big problem (often the case with twins as they tend to be born earlier). So we syringe-and-finger fed the babies as necessary. Until the last day of my hospital stay, when a midwife looked me in the eye and said ‘you have twins, you are not going to be able to do that at home’.
She was right, of course. I couldn’t even syringe-and-finger feed one baby on my own. We had two hungry babies. Tandem-feeding is only really possible with bottle or breast, and it is much easier and quicker to bottle feed rather than syringe-and-finger feed. If there was any chance of one of us getting some sleep, it would have to be a bottle. Reluctantly, but with the doctor’s advice, I took the one offered.
And you know what? It made not a blind bit of difference. BabyBoy and BabyGirl (once they got the hang of latching) switched between bottle and breast and pacifier for 6 months with absolutely no issues whatsoever. Continue reading
Nappy sacks. Thin bits of fragranced plastic with tie handles. Ever tried opening one while holding onto a wriggly baby? Much harder than getting plastic bags to open while at the checkout in your local Tescos.
No, when out and about nappy sacks can be a pain. They are even more of a pain when someone needs a change and you’re nowhere near a bin. Putting a full one of those back in the diaper bag always makes me nervous.
But there is hope. Ziplock slider bags. Possible the greatest alternative nappy sack out there. Airtight and watertight – no perfumes or leaks. Easy to open with little slider along the top. Multiple sizes for even more uses – small for a diaper, larger ones for dirty clothes, bibs, shoes etc.
Don’t leave home without them!
It might not be very eco-friendly, but when you’re out and about with babies and someone needs a change, disposable change mats are unbelievably useful.
The only ones I’ve seen, although there must be other similar ones, are made by Pampers and consist of a slightly padded absorbent upper layer with a waterproof underlay. Bigger than the average travel change mat they can be squished into any available space you have, and when you get to public change table (or car, park, wherever) you just shake it open, pop baby down, change and then throw it away with the dirty diaper. Continue reading
It’s a sad sad fact that we just cannot trust my mother-in-law around BabyBoy and BabyGirl.
I thought we were making progress. She was knocking when she came to our front door instead of barging on with her key (which Multidaddy had foolishly given her, but that’s another story), she was asking me what food she could give to the children when we went out for meals together, she would double-check with me if she thought one of them needed changing.
But now that’s all been shattered by one weekend visit.
Regular readers of this blog will know that we have had problems with sleep, especially when it comes to BabyBoy. So I am very very strict when it comes to sleep – and one cardinal rule is to allow the babies time to resettle themselves rather than going in straight away if they make a noise. Knowing that the grandparents find this very difficult to comprehend, we have always and repeatedly said that Multidaddy or I will decide when naptime is over.
So BabyBoy and BabyGirl went down for their lunchtime nap. They are pretty good nappers – at least an hour and a half at lunchtime so I took the opportunity to take a shower. I had the monitor with me. Mother-in-law was watching tv in the living room. Multidaddy was on a call in the study.
Less than a hour after they’d gone down BabyBoy made a few noises. Brushing my hair in the bathroom I kept an eye on the monitor. It was unusual, but BabyBoy was clearly half-asleep. Then, as I watched, the door to the nursery opened and I see mother-in-law creep in. Continue reading
This morning BabyBoy cried and flung himself out of my arms and into Multidaddy’s arms.
In front of both grandmas (including dragon mother-in-law).
Is it wrong that I feel somewhat betrayed by my son right now? Particularly since I’m the one who has been up with him since 5am during the past two nights comforting him through teething…
Recently the question ‘Is bedrest essential during a multiple pregnancy?’ seems to have been asked a lot. It’s a question with divided answers – some doctors have a blanket policy of putting all multiple mummies-to-be on bedrest after a certain point (eg 28 weeks), others take a more relaxed approach. And there are different types of bedrest – ranging from strict (no getting up even for meals) to modified (see below).
Now whether or not you go on bedrest is ultimately a question for you and your doctor – in some cases it is no doubt needed. But strict bedrest is not a fun experience for mum, so I would urge you to talk to your doctor and make sure it is medically justified in your particular circumstances.
What is certain is that multiple pregnancies are very taxing on mum’s body. For me it often felt like my body was just not designed to carry two babies at once. My skin stretched like you wouldn’t believe. My shoulders, knees and back ached from the extra weight. A year on I’m still repairing the damage to muscles and joints.
So with all this happening, plus all the internal changes (extra bloodflow, having to nourish two growing babies etc etc) taking it easy is very important. Whatever you think you can do, half it. Chances are you will get a lot more tired than you think, even if you don’t feel it immediately.
This is a lament. Sorry.
I admit, I’m not completely happy with my body post-babies. Oh things have mostly gone back into place, but I now have a very wrinkly, stretch-marked tummy.
I almost cried when the midwife looked at me and said, ‘Your bikini-wearing days are over’. I was overwhelmed, exhausted, ill….and to top it all off now I couldn’t even wear my own clothes.
I keep telling myself that at least I have the option to cover it up. I did get back into my other pre-pregnancy clothes quickly – I lost a lot of weight in the first trimester so by the time I’d gained it back I could only put on a few more kilos before the babies were born. And virtually all that weight was babies – I deflated once they were born and at my 6-week checkup weighed less than I had before I conceived.