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20 + Tips from Real Moms on What to Do when You have a Newborn and a Toddler

We are having our second child in March and will be bringing home our new little addition to the family while having a 20 month old running around. I am excited, nervous, and a little scared. Scared of the unknown of a life with two under two. Nervous about the demands of a toddler while having a new baby. Excited to hear what tips other moms might have for me.

Thankfully, I am not the first woman who will experience the life of a mom with a newborn and a toddler. If you’re like me and scouring the Internet for tips, hacks and advice on how to survive as a new mom for the SECOND time, then look no further.

While I have mixed feelings about being what some might call a “Modern Mom” or a “millennial parent,” I without a doubt and grateful for the over 11,000 moms whose support I have in an awesome online mom group. I’ve seen these women post day in and day out with questions and concerns about how to survive with a newborn and not pull your hair out with a toddler.

So when I started worry about what this chapter of my life was going to be like, I knew I needed to hear the realness of this adventure straight from the horse’s mouth. Mamas, I give you to you REAL advice from REAL moms about how to navigate the life of having a newborn and a toddler. Here are there top tips for us new moms!

 

Read more for tips on brining home baby while having a toddler. Quick tips and reminders for mom with two under two.

Erin said: “My youngest two are 16 months apart. Best advice- GRACE. give yourself lots of grace. It gets better, but it will be super rough at times. Don’t stress about little stuff, just take it a day at a time (sometimes an hour at a time.”

Sarah said: “Grace. Lots of grace for yourself and for both kids. Mine are 17 months apart and here are a couple things that helped me.
-a “nursing basket” with special toys for the toddler while you nurse
-have your toddler do room time during one of the feedings
-get out of the house and don’t feel guilty about it!
-go to bed when baby does until night time sleep gets better because you can’t really rest much.
-ask for help with the toddler (wish I did more of this)
-when they’re both crying, determine the highest need and go wth that one first 😉
-let baby sleep in the swing or in the carrier the first 6 weeks!
-start “sleep training” week 6-12.
Grace. Everyone needs it. And if you cry, that’s ok!”

Kerry said: “If you’re a perfectionist like I am, lower your expectations for yourself a little. I expected to nail it, and was disappointed in myself over and over. Now I don’t pretend to have it all together, and it’s so much more freeing. And when things go bad, I’m like, whatever, that’s life. And when things go good I’m like yaaaaa!”

Claire said: “Let your older one say that he does not like his brother/sister or even horrible stuff. Do not yell at him for that. Just explain him/her that you love them both, that you are listening to his/her frustration and you will protect and love each of them the same way. Do not say that the older one will help you. He/she is not the parent.”


Kiah said: “Schedule a pedicure/massage/hair app whatever makes you happy before baby is born, have a plan and stick with it. It’s crucial to take care of yourself. Also schedule realistic date nights even if youngest baby tags along.
-Meal plan/freezer meals if possible, see if someone knows of a college girl or maid service that’s inexpensive.
-Purge the house of stuff you don’t want now and organize the rest. There are lots of videos on YouTube about how to organize on a budget.
-I used lots of positive affirmation with my boys preparing for baby #2 and #3
You’re going to be such a good big brother!
Are you going to hug and kiss baby when he’s born?
Baby loves you sooo much! Look how he smiles at you!
Anytime there was a misguided comment about how jealous they would get etc I would politely turn it around.

Ashley said: “Mine are 13 months apart with no family nearby😳😂
I really tried to make the toddler a part of the newborns care- not only did I keep my daughter busy, but I really believe that they are pretty close now because of it, it also taught her how to be kind and caring towards a baby. While I would nurse the newborn, the toddler and I would have special conversations or songs that we would only sing while I was nursing.
-And when I was caring for baby, I was constantly talking to both of them about what I was doing. ” Ok, mama’s gotta change brothers clothes…again”😜
-I pretty much lived down on the ground with them reading and playing. I would put his jungle gym down on the floor and lay some books out for her, and a lot of the time I could cook and clean with no issues! They both really enjoyed music too!
-I praised my 13 month old so much for being nice to her brother. To this day she gives him so many kisses, hugs, and brings him all of his favorite toys. Now, they are to the point where he is mobile and they chase each other and play all day – it’s great! they are 22, and 9 months- looking back, I wouldn’t have done it any other way!”

Elisha said: “Be kind to yourself. Take one day at a time and don’t try and do everything ask for help!”

Dara said: “Don’t be afraid to live completely in survival mode for the first 6 to 12 weeks or as long as you have to. And also, on the other hand, don’t be afraid to go out of the house whenever you need to keep things normal.
-The best advice I have received so far, is to use the toddler as your flex point. By this I mean if you need both kids to nap at the same time with the toddler down for their nap earlier or later based on whatever the baby schedule might be. The same thing goes for bedtime. If all hell is breaking loose and you need to tend to the baby you can put the Toddler down a little bit later and they will be just fine.”

Sarah said: “Crying has never killed anyone. If baby has to cry while you care for your toddler, they will be fine. If you have a toddler screaming at your feet while you feed baby don’t let that stress you. If you have to leave BOTH kids wailing to take care of your own needs, do it. This only lasts for such a short time. They do get the hang of sharing you! You are super woman, but you’re not God. You don’t have endless untapped energy and you can’t be everywhere at once.”

MORE POPULAR TIPS FROM THESE MOMS:
*Hire someone inexpensive to help clean or cook and if they can, be with the toddler for a little bit.
*Don’t freak out about everyone crying. Prioritize who needs attending first. Oh, and don’t be afraid to cry yourself!
*Get outside and exercise when you can! This may mean investing in a double stroller.
*Freezer meals AND snacks you know your toddler will eat without much complaint.
*Don’t be afraid to ask someone to set up a “Take Them a Meal” system.
*Have second baby’s room set up as much as you can before second baby arrives.
*Get those busy bags ready and only pull them out for the toddler during specific times. Thank God for Pinterest. Also, check out my 45 Daily Activities to do with a PreToddler for quick, free, and easy tips.
*Make sure and take care of yourself!!!
*Try to keep a date night to connect with your spouse!
*Let others help you!

WHAT ABOUT YOU MAMAS? What else would you like to add? Let us know in the comments below!
As always, cheers!,
Glo

One Item You Need to Transition Baby from the Swaddle

I don’t know why we think we need to hurry and get our babies out of their swaddles. There’s this annoying urgency about the process I think us moms feel. Personally, I just got tired of messing with it and when we had someone else watching the baby, it’s a pain to make sure they swaddle correctly. Although, I will say, I loved the swaddle we used for Bubby and I didn’t want to fix something that wasn’t broken, so Asher was in his swaddle for a little while.

The time did come though when we wanted to drop the swaddle and transition him without it. I am someone who likes to research and figure out how to make that process as smooth as possible. Enter the Zipadeezip. I came across this nifty little suit during my Google searches and the prints are adorable, so I ordered me one.

The company, Sleeping Baby, are really nice people when it comes to customer service. I had ordered a couple more during one of their flash sales and ended up not liking the material for the “summer” one, and they very promptly sent me a different one after I returned the one I didn’t want. Once we got the one we wanted, I realized just how cute Bubs looked in it.ziippywithname2

 

WHY I LOVED THIS THING

*I feel like the Zipadeezip still gave Bubby the feeling of being covered and cozy, but the freedom to move around when he wanted. Seriously, they can crawl and roll freely in this puppy.
*Asher stilled liked to rip his face off or suck on his hands FOREVER. The covered hands keep this problem to a minimum.
*Ohhhhh the prints! I LOVE their selections.
*They have great flash sales.
*Great to have that extra warmth when needed.
*Great options for different material choices.
*His Zipadeezip became his lovey for sleeping, really.
*Made transitioning to sleeping with nothing really easy too!

SIZING

Lots of folks ask about sizing for the Zippy. You can see here that at two months, the small was a little big on him. His feet came out of the pockets but that didn’t matter really. His hands stayed in it pretty well, which was nice since Asher was a serious hand sucker! Their site lays out the sizing really well I think. If you have a taller baby, the feet will fit just fine too.

We had our size small until he was about seven months. Then he just got huge and we went to the medium. I have heard of people having the small forever before they go to the medium. Once we got the medium, the small seemed tiny! I definitely think there is a big size difference, but one thing that’s great about the Zippy is that it still works really well until the baby “grows” into it.

DIFFERENT MATERIALS:

I was excited to see that they had different materials to choose from! We have all four seasons around here so we needed a little variety. The summer blend works well, but I wasn’t a fan of the hint of polyester feel it had to it. So we do the cotton for spring through fall and then had an UH-mazing fleece one for winter. I loved the fleece. I seriously wanted one for myself.

MOM HACK for the this product:

I needed to be outside as much as possible to fight off postpartum depression. I don’t know about you, but i needed to figure out how to keep my kid warm so I could run when it was pretty cold out. Enter the fleece Zipadeezip.
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That’s right. The Zipadeezip fits loverly while baby is strapped in the seat. You’re welcome.

PRINTS:

I can’t get over the variety of prints they have. I love them all! They have lots of good gender neutral ones too so you can reuse them for more than one baby. This moon and stars one is my favorite! By the way, I have no idea how I was able to snap a pic of him while he was asleep. This kid is a LIGHT SLEEPER like his momma. Lord help us.
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PRICING:

OK, so they aren’t super cheap. At least not to me. However, I say it over and over, sometimes the peace of mind is worth it. AND if you can use it on more than one baby then I think you definitely get your money’s worth. One of the great things about Sleeping Baby is that they have all sorts of sales when you sign up on their site. Sometimes it’s $10 off a Zipadeezip or free shipping or buy two, get one free, kind of stuff.

So there you have it. My must have for transitioning from the swaddle! What about you? Do you have a tip to add? Grab a cup of coffee and let us know 🙂
Cheers,
Glo

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