20 Tricks, Items And Life Hacks That Make Life Easier With New Twins

This is NOT a sponsored post, I just really like these items
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Twins nursery-90 cribs names

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1. Use toy straps to assign each car seat.  I always loved using the the Pippalily Toy Strap with my older kids to keep Sophie in place but I attached different straps to each car seat before our girls were born.  Thankfully I did!  Our girls are fraternal twins and completely different lengths which means their car seat straps are at different levels and they can’t swap car seats.

2. Get a high chair that you can tilt back.  I’ve always started using our Peg Perego Prima Pappa Diner high chair way before our babies were ready to eat solids.  I have found it so handy to put our twins in their’s reclined so they can watch me while I prepare meals in our kitchen.

3. Invest in a twin size diaper bag.  I had a very hard time convincing my husband that we needed to replace our standard size diaper bag with a larger one made for twins while I was pregnant with our girls.  Thankfully my incredible mommy friends pitched in and bought me the Patunia Pickle Bottom Abundance Boxy Backpack – my dream diaper bag!  We don’t know what we would do without a bigger bag today!  Don’t worry there are also some more budget friendly options too, like the Skip Hop Dual Double Diaper Bag.

4. The squeaky wheel gets the grease.  This is a rule in our home.  Whoever is crying gets the attention first.  Because you are not an octopus and don’t have eight arms there will be many times you have to see to one twin while the other one waits.  Pick whoever is fussiest to see to them first.  Twins tend to be very patient babies because they learn to wait their turn from a very early age.

5. Assign cribs with each twin’s name.  While pregnant with our twins I debated if I should add  each twin’s initial or name to the decor over their crib and in the end decided to go for a pretty decal.  Although I did it for aesthetic reasons at first, it sure has come in handy.  Not only is it helpful for others to know who goes where but on more than one occasion I have sleepily almost put a twin in the wrong crib only to look up to read the name and remember which baby I was holding before correcting myself… oh sleep deprivation, the mean games you play on me!

6. A Blender Bottle makes for great formula storage.  You know those protein shake Blender Bottles that are collecting dust in your cupboard because you don’t have time to work out anymore?  Well thanks to my husband’s genius idea (yes honey I am giving you credit) they are great for pre-making a batch of baby formula to have stored in your fridge.  We will make up two jugs the night before and it saves so much time the next day.

7. Use a pacifier that will stay put.  I am a pacifier believer.  When our twin’s pacifiers kept falling out when they were teeny tiny I found it was very frustrating putting them back in all the time because I was having to do it twice as much.  Solution: WubbaNub pacifiers.  They have a stuffed animal on the end that weighs it down and you can tuck into under their swaddler blanket to hold it in place.IMG_1509

8. Use a small white board to let people know what they can help with.  We initially had a white board in our kitchen to record the twin’s feedings but I quickly added a section with a list of chores that family members and guests could help with.  You will probably have so many visitors wanting to pitch in and help, but when you are so busy and sleep deprived it can be a little hard to delegate.  Take a minute each day to write a list on the board and just direct your guests to that list.  For example: empty the dishwasher, play with the older kids, fold baby’s laundry, walk the dog etc…

9.  Only do baths every few days and sponge baths in between.  Bathing 2 babies is an exhausting and time consuming task.  Don’t worry about bathing them every day.  Today I still only give our six month old twins baths every 3 or 4 days.  I get a wet warm cloth and soap and wash their faces, necks and hands every day (bottoms are cleaned every diaper change) and then give them a full bath a couple times a week.  Trust me, your back will thank you.

10. Buy two Boppy Pillows.  When you have twins Boppy Pillows quickly become that extra set of arms you don’t have.  They can help hold a baby when tandem feeding, assist your little ones when learning to sit and even help with tummy time.

11. MamaRoos, better than a nanny.  When we had our older kids we used those massive swings that were battery operated.  One day I watched in awe as my friend placed her swaddled newborn into this pod-like machine from the future.  The MamaRoo is almost a better helper than your husband… I said ALMOST!  They are sleek, can be reclined or sit up-right, you can plug your iPod into it to play your music, or you can listed to the sound machine built in.  You can set the speed or type of motion, like a car-ride for example.  It also has a small foot print and plugs into the wall for power so no worrying about replacing the batteries… amazing!

12. Assign a colour to each twin.  Before our twins were born I started to sort out who would get what and I found it very helpful to assign a colour to each of them.  Things like pacifiers and pacifier clips would typically come in packs of purple and pink, so Everly got purple and Mia got pink.  It even worked well with the toy straps identifying their car seats.  This would also work well for boys with green and blue.

13. Designate a laundry area.  There’s a good chance that you will never again have every piece of laundry washed, folded and put away.  Or at least not in the near future.  I have sacrificed our dining room table for our laundry area.  This way it is all in one spot and not on the floor in piles.  When you have a family member wanting to pitch in and help fold laundry you can direct them to that area and let them get to work.

14. Wake the sleeping baby.  Contradictory to the rule don’t wake a sleeping baby, when you have two you have to throw that rule out the window.  I would recommend waking the sleeping baby at night so you can get everyone fed at once.  Any night I haven’t done that I am kicking myself an hour later when I am up once again.  I let our girls nap off of each other’s schedules during the day but get them back onto the same schedule for nighttime.

15. Get a small portable bottle cooler.  Anytime we know we are going to be out longer than a quick trip to the store, I pack two large full bottles in the diaper bag  and then one of the Blender Bottles in the cooler for refills.  This works very well instead of packing six separate bottles. The JJ Cole Collections cooler is a great option.

16. Use cloth bibs to reduce your laundry.  We have been blessed with four spitter-uppers… insert sarcasm.  I swap out dirty cloth bibs every couple hours instead of getting into the big process of changing them constantly.  This also reduces my dirty laundry pile significantly.

17. Keep an open buttonless sweater where you nurse your twins at night.  Because it is a lot easier to tandem nurse while topless it is nice to have sweater to throw on to stay warm.  A comfortable knit that is open at the front is a perfect option.  Try to find one that is buttonless so you are not having to worry about hard buttons pressing against your little one’s faces.  This open front sweater from Old Navy would be an ideal option.

18.  Call ahead to organize parking arrangements.  It is daunting enough trying to get out of the house with your newborn twins without help and the last thing you need is to arrive at your friend’s house and realize there is no room in their driveway or no parking spot close to their home.  Call ahead and ask them to leave a space for you and to help you bring everyone and everything in.  That little phone call makes a HUGE difference.

19. Set up a second change station near your kitchen.  If your twin’s nursery is upstairs it makes life so much easier to set up a second change station near the busiest part of your home: the kitchen.  Keep some extra outfits, bibs and lots of diapers there.  This is a sanity saver.

20. Don’t forget, your twins can help soothe each other.  Right from day one I have noticed a special bond between our girls.  If one is being a little fussy try laying her/him down right next to her/his brother/sister with their bodies touching.  You may be surprised.  Their breathing slows and they become very peaceful.


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Baby Registry Picks and Skips – Part 2: Diapering

You caught me!  Guilty as charged.  I have only ever used disposable diapers.  I had a couple of stressful moments during my first pregnancy and the last thing I could face when my son was born was cloth diapers.  Once our wonderful surprise baby girl arrived soon after while Holden was having MAJOR separation anxiety I was in full survival mode. With that being said, my hat is off to parents who have chosen to use cloth diapers but it is not for everyone.  I have broken down my picks and skips for both parents using disposable and cloth diapers with the help of two “green baby” experts.  1: my wonderful sister-in-law, Meghan Fowler and 2: Simply Green Baby in Oakville, Ontario www.simplygreenbaby.com

Cloth Diapers

I asked Meghan to describe her experience with cloth diapers first hand to help parents to understand the rewards that come with going the cloth diaper route:

Our reasons for deciding to go cloth on Ethan’s bum were several, with the main ones being: 1) We think they are an more environmentally-conscious choice; yes, yes, they use more water, but water is largely a renewable resource, and I (the one in charge of washing the diapers) try to be clever about wash loads so as to minimize water usage. I’m personally more concerned about filling landfills and about the byproducts of synthetic diaper production than I am about water usage. 2) I’ve heard that most babies get less rashes in cloth diapers than in disposables (plus, Marcus and I like the idea of our little dude’s tush being covered by natural fibers) and 3) despite a big investment up-front, we are saving a whole lot of money long term (like… over the course of, say, 2 kids’ diaper-lives, we will save thousands of dollars. Seriously, thousand with an “s”!)

Based on my research, going cloth was going to be thumbs up on (nearly) all fronts. How did all that theory fare in the real world of poop and pee?

Ethan is 4 months old now, and has been sporting cloth diapers for about 3 months… and our idealism has been richly rewarded! Though not without its hitches, our cloth diaper journey has been a largely positive one. I attribute that mainly to excellent advice from friends and vendors, and excellent diapers. Marcus and I use a combination of Bumgenius 4.0 diapers (amazing for our heavy-wetter at nighttime when stuffed with the microfiber inserts and 1 extra hemp soaker), and AMP diapers (one size and AIO, used mostly with bamboo or hemp trifolds and boosters).

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Honestly, I would not recommend starting a newborn in cloth diapers. Pampers Swaddlers in newborn size are awesome, and seriously, who needs to be troubleshooting cloth diaper leaks with their newborn baby at 1, 3, 5 and 7 in the morning? Not me. Survival and sanity are the name of the game for the first few weeks with baby, and being a die-hard environmentalist at that point would have come at too high of a price. Anxious and overtired moms aren’t serving their babies well staying in that state.

I say starting at one month when sleep is less elusive and the baby is big enough to fit the cloth diapers well is the way to go. When I first attempted putting Ethan in cloth at 3 weeks or so, he leaked everywhere, and the stress of figuring out “what works” for him was tooooo much. He was too small for the diapers, and frankly, I was wayyyyy too tired to be fussing about leaks, so I waited a bit before trying again. Round 2 was a resounding success, however. Well, mostly. Where in the first place the leaks were mostly due to him being too small for the diapers, any leaks after the 1 month mark could generally be traced to the mom and dad variable: we needed to be changing him sooner or stuffing his diaper more full. And we needed to be assuring that the elastic bands were directly against his skin, without any liners peeking through. Once we worked that all out, it became progressively smoother sailing. We are now at the point where we actually feel pretty pumped about the diaper topic, and can change the little squirmer with relative ease (aided by duct tape and bungee cords to keep him flat on the change table……. only kidding!). Leaks are rare and, when they happen, usually very preventable in retrospect (read “our fault”). The only thing that can thwart us now is the infamous baby blow-out. But that is due to no weakness in diaper or parent. No cloth and no disposable can thwart the blow-out: it is a formidable and treacherous foe, destined to yellow many a sleeper (and maybe even leak onto an unsuspecting mom or two….). Sigh.

 Oh, and did I mention that Ethan’s killer bad (bloody!) diaper rash of the first month cleared up right away when we switched to cloth? It did.


Meghan Fowler is an incredibly talented photographer based out of Winnipeg, Manitoba. You can check out her work at www.bluebirdcreative.ca

Some other recommended cloth diapers and products are from Grow Via which can be found at Simply Green Baby.


Disposable Diapers

Ask every parent and they will probably tell you that Pampers Newborn Swaddlers are the best for your newborn, but once your little one gets a bit older you may have to explore different brands depending on gender, size and skin sensitivity.  It all depends on your little one.

Diaper Pails

Regardless of which route you chose to go, one thing you will definitely need is a great diaper pail.  Two fantastic options are the Diaper Dekor Plus and the Ubbi Diaper Pail.


 The Diaper Dekor Plus pail is a great choice for it’s variety of colours and sizes.


The Ubbi diaper pail also comes in a variety of colours as well you can purchase an eco friendly washable liner.

Diaper Cream

My son never had bad diaper rashes but when my daughter Beau was born she would very easily get a diaper rash.  Most of the time my favorite diaper cream, Sudocrem would easily do the trick.  But then every once and a while Beau would get a brutal rash.  I am not talking a rosy tush, I mean a full blown open weeping and bleeding wound!  I tried everything and then a very smart doctor told me to combine Sudocrem and my mother’s choice: cornstarch.  Put the Sudocream on first and then cover it in cornstarch… magic!!!

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Diapering Skip: a wipe warmer.  I don’t want to sound cold, (no pun intended) but it is a nice idea in theory to use nice warm wipes on your newborn, avoiding crying during changing and then BAM, real life hits!  You are enjoying getting out to the shopping mall, your two week old needs to be changed and you are trying to juggle everything in the bathroom when the cold wipe touches her bum and she howls.  Its better to get your wee one used to cold wipes in the comfort of your home so that when you are ready to venture out she isn’t shocked.

I hope this registry picks post helps you navigate the world of poop and pee pee.  Remember, whatever diapering journey you choose to take, just make sure it works for you and your little poop machine!

Baby Registry Picks and Skips – Part 1: Travel

For first time parents the idea of creating a baby registry can seem over whelming with all of the choices out there.  Until you are a parent it is hard to know what you will actually use and what is a waste of money.  When I was pregnant with our son I remember walking into the big box baby store feeling huge, dizzy and exhausted.  I kept scanning the room for a place to curl up into fetal position.  Luckily my husband who hates shopping lives for registering and researching products so I let him take the lead and I gave up a lot of control in order to survive the experience.  In the end he was pretty dead on and we have loved almost every choice we made as first time parents. Now that I have been through the reality that is having an actual living, breathing human test everything out I have learned what I love and what to skip.

In this series I will be breaking a baby registry down into the items to splurge on and pass up.  In each blog post I will be highlighting my favorite items and local shops.  Feel free to email me with any questions you might have regarding creating your own personalized registry at info@nestingstory.ca.  Nesting Story also specializes in registry management.  Please visit our list of services for more information.  In the Travel blog post I sourced almost all of the items from Snuggle Bugz, a wonderful shop with everything baby, located in Milton and Burlington, Ontario.  You can also shop on their website www.snugglebugz.ca.


Nesting Story’s Baby Registry Picks and Skips – Part 1: Travel


My biggest mistake that I made while creating my baby registry was getting caught up in all of the bells and whistles of the fancy single stroller we bought without really thinking about the future.  We thought our kids would be spaced far enough a part that we would not need a double stroller, I didn’t know then that we would be welcoming our daughter we nick named Bad Math Baby, 20 months after our son was born.  We also didn’t think past the image of our son being an infant to him being in the 99th percentile for weight which made our fancy stroller catch on every crack on the side walk.  For these reasons I highly recommend the Baby Jogger “City Select“.


Baby Jogger “City Select” at Snuggle Bugz

The “City Select” comes in a variety of colours as well as attachments.  You can start out with just clicking the infant car seat into the stroller and then eventually purchase one or two seats.  Even if you are only using this stroller for one child initially it is still a great option.  The base is large enough that it won’t become top heavy and it is so light and easy to fold up.  The number of seating combinations in the “City Select” is incredible!


Some stroller accessory picks you may want to pick up would be the stroller tray and parent console… a skip: the cup holder.

An additional inexpensive umbrella stroller is also great to have!!!  Lend out to a Grandparent or leave as a “just in case we need it” in you car, you never know!  I love the Combi “Flare” umbrella stroller, incredibly light yet sturdy and folds in half vertically!

Combi Flare


There is a reason why almost everyone loves and has the Peg Perego “Primo Viaggio” carseat, it is well made,  adaptable to pretty much every stroller, is incredibly safe and has a sleek design… need I say more?


Peg Perego “Primo Viaggio” at Snuggle Bugz

When looking for a carseat once your child has grown out of the infant one, I have found that some of the biggest name brand options have left me disappointed, especially with the buckling systems.  I am very excited about the    “Foonf” carseat by Clek.  Born out of an automotive supplier company and based out of Toronto, they have pretty much thought of everything!  Safety features including an anti-rebound bar for rear facing mode, convenient integrated magnets to hold the harness out of the way while taking your child in and out of the car and Crypton fabric to protect against spills and stains, (previously working in the food and beverage Interior Design field I am a big fan of Crypton fabric and it’s capabilities) just to name a few!


The Clek “Foonf” at Snuggle Bugz

Some car seat accessory picks: if you have a winter baby, a car seat cover like the one by Easy Cover Newborn and for an older child JJ Cole’s “Bundle Me” (be careful to make sure your child’s buckles are pulled tight with this one).  Skip: a puffy infant snow suit, instead use one of these covers and a hat with blankets tucked around your little one… it is much safer because you can tighten the harness more.  The “Carseat Canopy” is also great to protect your little one from the sun.

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Carseat Covers at Snuggle Bugz

Baby Carriers & Wraps

Although I loved my Baby Bjorn carrier for my little ones I did find it was limited with the weight capacity.  Some more comfortable and flexible options for baby carriers are the Cuddly Wrap by Peapod Creations which is easy to use, comfortable and goes to a high weight and the Ergo Baby Carrier that is extremely comfortable and flexible and also goes up to a high weight.

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Carrier Options at Snuggle Bugz

Skip: beware of any hammock-like slings, they have been recalled in the past due to suffocation.

Diaper Bags

I absolutely LOVE Petunia Pickle Bottom’s Diaper bags!  Not only do they have gorgeous prints, they are so well made and my favorite style, the Boxy has such versatile straps either going over the shoulder or back pack straps.  The only down side is they are on the pricey side.  If you are looking for something a little more budget friendly, Skip Hop has some great diaper bags, the most popular styles being the “Versa” and the “Studio bag“.

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Diaper Bags at Snuggle Bugz

If you require a larger bag to carry extra supplies for twins or for an older child as well, the Ju Ju Be “Be Prepared” and the Skip Hop “Duo Double” made made larger and can fit everything including the kitchen sink!

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Diaper Bags at Snuggle Bugz

Diaper bag accessory pick: a great change pad like the Skip Hop “Pronto” change pad.  There is a pocket for your wallet and keys and a strap to attach it to your stroller.  The Jonathan Adler prints are fun, stylish and full of vibrant colours.


Skip Hop Pronto at Snuggle Bugz

Travel skip: a grocery cart cover.  It is a great idea in theory but it can be a hassle putting it in and taking it out while  juggling your little one, especially if you have more than one child.  It is almost easier to give the cart a quick wipe down and be on your way!

Each parent will find that different products work for them, a variety of carriers will fit different body types, and different family plans will require different types of strollers.  Which ever products you choose for your family make sure you ask others what worked for them, they have put those products through the paces and can speak from experience!

Happy registering!