Tuesday, August 16, 2011

The Challenges of Having Two

My little one hit the four week mark yesterday. It's been a complete blur to me. That partly could be attributed to moving into our house in the middle of the four weeks. It is hard to believe we've been in our house for two weeks already!

The biggest challenge I've felt with having two is having to choose which boy will wait for his needs to be met. For example, I can't feed the baby and get my toddler his breakfast, snack, or lunch at the same time. One of them has to cry or whine while I attend to the needs of the other. That causes me to feel flustered and guilty that I can't keep both of them happy. I don't know how people with twins can get through without a nanny!

Sometimes, the older one is ready for his nap while the baby wants to eat. That makes me fly through his 'routine' of reading a book and singing a song. And then there's the fact that I've read a book to the baby only a handful of times in his short life...I read to my older son a lot more when he was a newborn. That also makes me feel bad that my baby isn't receiving the same stimulation my toddler did as a newborn.

But I know every mom faces these same challenges of meeting all her children's needs at once, no matter how many children she has.

These challenges don't even include the needs of a household with a newborn's tons of laundry (both his and ours!). Luckily, I have a laundry room to hide the many laundry baskets containing these piles of laundry. The only household chore (besides kitchen cleanliness) that I've managed since moving in has been vacuuming.

I didn't even have any household cleaners until today when I finally made it to the store sans kids, leaving me enough room in my cart to purchase something other than food.

Grocery shopping is another challenging adventure. It's hard to fit any groceries into the cart after I get both of them in the cart. Plus, the toddler has started grabbing things at the checkout counter (I'm surprised he's waited this long to do so...)

I think what I need to do is make a cleaning, grocery shopping, and laundry schedule for myself, so I don't feel overwhelmed or compelled to clean the whole house in a day. One load of laundry a day is enough; I don't need to have everyone's drawers full at the same time. I need to remember that it's ok to clean the bathroom mirrors one day, the vanity the next,'s great having two boys, but meeting both their needs, cooking, plus the needs of a new house is still a learning process for me.

I also have to confess that every post on this blog showing any type of craft or sewing project was scheduled prior to having the baby and moving. I still have some more scheduled, but I have no idea how I'm ever going to start sewing again! I felt the same way after I had my oldest child, and things worked out just fine. I have plenty of ideas, just not the motivation, organization, time, or nerve to begin any of them!


  1. i'm thankful to hear that you've taken a (sort of) rest from your sewing. i was wondering how you were doing it all. when i had two, and the babe was about 2m old- i started having him in the carrier (bjorn like/ergo) and the older in the cart. made for much more room. i'm clueless how to do it with four, though. i'm not a huge fan of giant eagle, but maybe use the childcare for the big kids? i dunno. i tend to shop outside of the hours for that thing. hmmm... sorry- just type-thinking here.
    so glad to hear about your house! i have a friend who built (you guys did that, right?) and she's having lots of problems. plants dying, floorboards popping out, garbage disposal going ka-put. hope it's been a smooth transition!

  2. Oh, Mama, take heart--you will figure this out. The adjustment phase can be frustrating. Before I had baby #2, I invested in a special prize stash (cheap books, videos, coloring books, stickers, etc.) for those times when #1 felt neglected. Also, I started doing laundry after dinner. Folding happened on the couch after the kids were asleep. In the morning, all I had to do was put stuff away. Also, like Kristin (comment above), I wore #2 pretty much everywhere outside the house. She loved being close and I loved that people didn't want to touch her while I was wearing her. As for the baby not getting the same stimulation, that's OK b/c he's getting a kind of stimulation that Big Brother didn't have: he gets to watch & listen to Big Brother. If you think about it, that's pretty rich! Hope it all evens out soon.

  3. Thanks for the encouragement! I guess the little guy is getting lots of stimulation from the older one. And our house is great. My husband worked really hard getting us unpacked and settled. I did some unpacking and organizing, but he even has most of our things hung on the walls. My sewing machine is unpacked but not set up. I have so many ideas, it's so hard to let it sit. But I just have no time right now. Soon. Once I get more than 5 hours of sleep a night for a few nights in a row and can get both of them to nap at once, I'll get a new project done:)

  4. Best wishes to you, Jennifer! I'm sure you are an INCREDIBLE mom!! :)

  5. hang in there! My daughter had twins six months ago - what was planned as their third child actually made four little ones aged under four years - I am constantly amazed at how she manages, and the comment you made about not reading as much to the second baby are so like how she is thinking - "I did this so much better when..." In fact, she is doing her very best, and doing a grand job, and I reckon you probably are, too! All we can ever do is our level best - try to relax a little, just love being who you are at this moment, with these treasures of children. xxx


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