Monday, June 11, 2012

6 month survival kit!

Now that I have been doing this twin mom thing for 6 months I have really seen what baby gear was helpful for us and what was a waste of money.  Every family is different and I listened to everyone I could on what was used in thier parenting journey and what wasn't.  So what made the Baby Boyd cut for the most needed and used things you ask....Well here are the thing we couldn't live without for the 1st 6 months.
1.  Halo Swaddle Sleep Sack-   They gave each of the girls a swaddle sleep sack in the hospital and that was the first thing they wore after their initial bath.  We saw how much they were calmed by being so tightly wrapped I purchased 2 more form the hospital and ordered a few more from Amazon.  They wore those for the first 3 months to bed and in the 1st month we would put them in the sacks whenever they got cranky!  They were lifesavers!!!  They would whine and struggle at first for a minute or two but then they would become so relaxed.  It did take a few days to transition them to just regular sleep sacks but once they started rolling we knew it was time to get rid of them. 
2.  Boppy's-  We use the boppys for everything!!!!  Feeding, playing and just lounging.  Right now if I have to feed both girls at one I put a boppy on either side of me with a girl in each and feed them.  We are also using them to help the girls learn to sit.  In my opinion these were very essential and still are.
3. Baby Einstein-   Yes, we do entertain the girls with TV.  Baby Einstein is a series of videos playing classical music and is all educational.  I use it in the morning when we all first wake up so they are entertained while I get going for the day.  It even lets me shower!  We also have a specific one for bedtime which we have incorporated into their bedtime routine while we feed them the last bottle of the evening.  It also helps when I am dealing with a cranky girl and can't entertain the non crying girl.  Judge us all you want but we do what works and keeps us all sane! 
4. Arm's Reach CoSleeper- When we first brought the girls home I had set up the pack and play in our room.  It has a bassinet attachment so it was easy for me to pick them up however after the first night of constant  pacifier spit outs, I knew the pack and play wasn't going to work.  I ordered a cosleeper the next day and had it overnighted!  BEST DECISION EVER!  Clipped right up to my side of the bed so anytime a pacifier was spat out and the screaming started I just had to move my arm to pop it back in instead of getting out of bed to do it.  Also if I woke up in the middle of the night and wanted to make sure the girls were still breathing I just had to lay my hand on them to feel movement.
5. Soothie Pacifiers-  They give this brand out in the hospitals and before I had kids I purchased these for every babyshower I went to.  I would always get the same response from people...Our kid only used the pacifiers you gave us.  So I had a feeling that we would be using this brand.  I had a few different kinds but in the end soothie was the only kind they would take and like socks they would get lost so easily so I would purchase a pack or two whenever I went out.  Now Livy is the only one that uses them and just for bedtime.  Aria unfortunately has found her thumb.  She only seems to suck it at bedtime or when she is really over tired.
6. Activity Centers-  I really thought these wouldn't be necessary but we use the floor activity center and the bouncy activity center every day!  I switch the girls on and off so one will be on the floor one and the other will be sitting in the bouncy one.  They LOVE them! 
7.  Bouncy Seats-  We have used the bouncy seats every single day since the day we brought the girls home from the hospital!  They are sitting in them right now!  LIFESAVERS for us!  I give them toys or they play with the hanging toys that came with the seats.  We don't really turn on the vibration anymore but it's a safe place to put the girls down when I need to shower or do something in a different room.  Livy seems to want to roll everywhere now so it keeps her contained. 
8. Sound Machine-  I feel that this is one reason that the girls stay asleep in the evenings and during naptime.  It drowns out all other noises and I sleep with one as well.  One night we lost power and they wouldn't stay asleep, every noise woke them up so I down loaded an app on my Ipad and played it until we got power back.  They were alseep in minutes and stayed asleep.
9. Skip Hop Duo Diaper Bag-  For the first 3 months I used a carters diaper bag and HATED it!  A friend brought over her diaper bag and I feel in love and bought one that day!  It fits all of the girls stuff and has 11 pockets so I don't have to pull everything out to get one item.  I them got a good deal on the skip hop double which is bigger but the pockets are not as convenient so  I went back to the duo.

So there are a few things we used but either not for long or they were nice to have but not necessary.
1.  Moby Wrap-  We used these for a few weeks and I loved them.  However we didn't use them long enough and they were a bit of a pain to wrap with twins.  I think if we had one I would use it a lot.  We did use it a lot for about 2 weeks and the girls we small enough to go in together and it did help some really cranky times so I give it a B+. 
2. Crib Soothers/MobilesThere was a period of about 3 weeks when we really liked the crib soother when we transitioned the girls to the crib.  We borrowed 2 different kinds.  The ocean one was defiantly the one the girls enjoyed most.  It is in Liv's crib and she will hit the button sometimes and watch it but we don't play it for them any more.  They have the bedtime thing down pat without entertainment.  Another item that was nice to have for the transition but wasn't 100% necessary. The mobiles served the same purpose.  We used them religiously during the transition but haven't turned them on in about a month and a half and I am probably going to take them down this week because they make changing the sheets a pain!

Here are some things I used maybe a few times or not at all and wouldn't buy again.
1. Baby Towels-  while the hoods were good on them I found the towels to be rough and thin.  I started to used my smaller towels when the girls were a month and a half and they worked a lot better for us.
2. Baby Hand Mittens-  They always were way to big and would fall off and my girls were soothed by their hand on their faces, heck they came into the world with their hands on their face.  If we ever covered their hands it was the kind built into the outfit and flipped over the hands.
3. Baby Gowns-  I think if the girls were born in the summer I would probably have used these but we used sleep and plays all the time to keep the girls warm and it was easy to change them.  We still use sleep and plays when we are home.
4. Baby Powder- I have bottles and bottles of brand new powder and never used any.  My girls had rashes but we always used cream.
5. Bumbo Seats- I have surprisingly have only used them a handful of times.  I was so probumbo before I had kids but I really have hardly used them.  I think again if I had just one I would have used it more but I really wouldn't have missed them if I didn't have them.
6. Swing-  I had heard from a lot of twin moms that if you bought 2 of something the bouncy seat won over the swing and  I am in full agreement.  I purchased one swing just in case our girls were swing girls and boy they were not.  I think they swung in it maybe 6 times. 
7. Tummy Time Mats- I have 2 different kinds and they have both been used once or twice.  My girls were not fans at all.  The are just collecting dust in the closet next to the swing.
8. Baby Shoes- while they are adorable they don't fit right and just get kicked off within seconds.  I never tried the robeez which I hear are great but are also pricy if you have 2 babies.  We have socks that look like shoes that are super cute.

Thats all I can think of at the moment but stay tuned for The Boyd Family Necessities month 6-12.  I might even do a part 2 if I realized I forgot a bunch of things which I probably did.  I found that no one gave me a perfect list.  What one family put on their unnecessary list another can't live without it. Its trial and error to find what works for you child.  However I found reading everyones list and advice very helpful in planning for my two princesses. 

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