You're having twins. Congratulations! Once you're able to pick yourself up off the floor from the utter shock, you might find yourself attempting to navigate the infinite choices for gear. Bouncy chairs, bottles and diaper bags abound. I remember, around 6 months pregnant with my twins, wandering aimlessly through the baby aisles of department stores thinking, "Do I really need a diaper lotion warmer?" The answer is no. When deciding on what to purchase, or add to a registry, and get the most bang for your (or someone else's) dollar, here are the can't-live-without items for newborn twins:
  • Housekeeper - Take it from someone who's lived to tell the tale; you'll look back on your first few months with your twins fondly and with a clouded memory. It's a marathon, between the feedings and the changing and the laundry and the not sleeping for you and the not sleeping for them and so on. If you can wring a few bucks from the budget, or if someone is looking to give that perfect gift, get a housekeeper. Even if a few months is all you can afford, stumbling zombie-like through a clean house is much more enjoyable than the alternative.
  • Sturdy, Versatile Stroller or Travel System - It is imperative you see some sunshine on a regular basis when in the throes of newborn twindom. And that means taking the kids with you sometimes. In the early days when they're sleeping more times than not, having a stroller to wheel them around the neighborhood or some other locale (our favorite was Target) makes the outing a bit easier. When you can transfer sleeping babies from car to stroller to car to home without a peep? Even better.
  • Swaddle Blankets - Babies love sleeping in the security of a good, tight swaddle. Likely, your twins will be a bit on the preemie side, and will need more comfort than a full-term baby. Enter the swaddle blanket. Available at most any department store, these miracle inventions allow even those of us who are iffy on the swaddle to give our babies a good wrap.
  • Bouncy chairs - These glorious machines can serve as makeshift sleeping areas, scream-stoppers thanks to a little vibration, feeding chairs, the possibilities are truly endless.
  • Tall changing space - Clear a space in the nursery to setup changing station shop. If possible, make it on a piece of furniture tall enough so you don't have to bend over each time you change a baby. Which happens many, many, many times daily. Believe me, your back will thank me later.
  • Thick skin - It's a rough road, those first few months with twin babies, and between the sleep depravation, the assorted comments in public that make you feel already self-conscious, and the stress of doing just about everything twice, you'll need to give yourself a break. Try not to take too much to heart. I promise, it gets better, easier and much more fun. Soon you'll be a pro and before long, you'll wish for those early days back.