Friday, July 18, 2008

Twin Gear List

A friend is expecting twins this fall/winter and asked my advice on what was a MUST HAVE for the first few months. They live in an apt in NYC so space is a premium (as it is at my house. actually, I have little sympathy as I have a feeling they have more usable sq footage than we do, but I digress). She asked me about BF and cloth diapering and I know would appreciate feedback on that as well.

Here's what I came up with, but I'm sure I forgot a few things. Actually, I just thought of something to add and have since forgotten what the hell it was. Please send help. or ginko biloba. or gin. perhaps all three.

Here’s what you need bare bones:

A place to sleep

  • We had only one crib at first that I pushed up next to the bed. I got it used. I couldn't see buying a co-sleeper or double bassinet that might only be used for a few months. They slept together until they were 9 or 10 months old. They are still in our bedroom. No, I do not want to discuss that ;)
  • 4 sets of crib sheets – put 2 on at a time. That way if there’s a mess, there’s a clean sheet underneath. Saves time in the middle of the night when someone explodes. I never do this and always hate myself.
  • 2 waterproof sheets to go underneath each crib sheet (see above)
  • Sheet saver – this nifty little thing looks like a tiny changing pad with 4 strings. You put it under where their heads are and if they spit up you don’t have to change the whole crib. Major time saver. Before I had that, I stuck cloth diapers under their heads (where pillows would go)
  • 2 bouncy seats and/or swings. Ones that vibrate, play music and bouncy with your foot. The girls napped in these as the crib was made of lava. Also good staging area for the baby waiting to eat (tandem nursing was never fun for me). If it weren’t for the graco travel swings (the ones that the carseats snap into) they would have never slept and I would have jumped off the newburgh beacon bridge.
  • (edit: I remeber now what I forgot before... the baby sling. the one I had to have overnight shipped so that C would sleep and I could pee or eat something or pick my nose. the child continues to be a marsupial. how could I have forgotten the sling??!?)

    A place to eat

  • Double nursing pillow
  • Regular boppy – this is good to prop one baby up while waiting to be fed or after being fed to reduce the vomiting. Also better to take out with you during the day for nursing.
  • Nursing cover – It saved my sanity by letting me leave the house with two babies and not be arrested for indecent exposure ;)
  • Rocking chair or glider. You absolutely NEED a comfortable place to sit with arm rests that rocks. Splurge on this. Your ass will be the shape of this seat.
  • ? Highchairs – we have the ones that strap to your dining room chairs and turn into toddler booster seats. H would sit them in these (they recline for infants) so he could give them bottles in the middle of the night.
  • Starter pack of bottles – don’t buy too many. You don’t know what they will like. I’d start with born free. They have anti-gas valves and they are PBA free or whatever the hell that chemical is. We used Dr. Browns, but the girls didn’t take many bottles. Two a night until 6 months and then 2 a week until last month when they decided boobies were passé and now drink 24oz of cow’s milk from their bottles. Argh.

    A place to change your nasty diaper
  • We have a changing table in the bedroom. It is also a dresser that I smash all their clothes into. On my dresser next to it is a basket that I have the cloth diapers, wipes and some assortment of butt creams in.
  • Diaper pail – ours is from the diaper service. It is just a plastic garbage can with a lid. Very high tech. ;)
  • Washcloths – tiny newborns have mad sensitive skin and even the “sensitive” wipes are too harsh. Get a stock of cheap-ass washcloths and a small plastic bowl. Wet the washcloth with warm water, plop in bowl, wipe butt, rinse, throw in hamper or if not pooped on (and you are like me and sick of doing one million loads of laundry), rinse out in really hot water and hang to dry for next time. Repeat for second baby with new washcloth. We made Zoe patterned washcloths and Chloe was solids.
  • Cloth diapers – If you don’t get a diaper service, I recommend buying a starter kit of cloth from kissaluvs or stacinator. These are both all-in-one diapers that you put on just like disposables. When you are done, you throw them in a diaper pail and wash them yourself.

    I will now wax poetic about diapers. You DO NOT want to wash your own if you don’t have a washing machine. You will be doing 2-3 loads of laundry a day in the beginning. Trust me. Get diaper service for at least the first 6 months. Then you can re-assess your free time (or lack thereof). My diaper service is absurdly cheap since they operate out of Kingston. It may seem expensive, but the cost of disposables is atrocious. The girls also have an allergy to that gel stuff in ‘sposies. It pulls all the moisture out of their skin and turns them into red lizard butted creatures who scream at you. Awesome and disgusting. Also, they have new fasteners for the cloth. No more pins. If H can cloth diaper anyone can. He was very resistant in the beginning. Good thing I never listen to him.

    For all your cloth diapering queries, go to This is where I buy all my covers. They are used, but cheaper. It’s a whole site of cloth freaks and they are chatting about everything diaper related. Some of these people are nutty. But mostly everyone is really nice and helpful.

.... so what did I leave off? or what did I include that you feel wasn't truly necessary? Also, like I said, she's checking in so any feedback would be appreciated. Like links to sites that are chock full o' info, freebies, etc. These are her first so she still has free time to surf the web and make lists.

On the home front, we appear to be sleeping pretty regularly through the night. you would think this would improve my memory. HA!


Jeanne said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jeanne said...

Thanks for all the help Jeanne. It seems like all the layette suggestions you find at Toys'R Us, Target etc. are miles long, and filled with tons of stuff I probably don't need. But being a panicky twin-mom-to-be, I was convinced by those evil geniuses that I needed an electric nose-goo sucker, baby wipes warmer, and 4 sets of $500 a piece crib bedding for my little peanuts. Thanks for being the voice or reason and experience.
-Jeanne (the other one)

The Anonymous Platypus and sidekicks said...

no prob. all you really need is a place to plop them and some earmuffs. :)

Kristy said...

My saving grace with my twins was The Miracle Blanket. It is a swaddling blanket that I dubbed "the straight jacket"! (I think you can only get it online.) Using those, along with the book Baby Wise, I think I was able to acheive a great schedule with good sleeping babies!!