I looked at all of the different tips, advice, and tricks that I’ve recommended, and boiled it down to five things I think are most important.
No. 1: Be Ready for Newborns
Make sure you get everything in place that you’ll need to take care of newborn babies. Focus on what you’ll need for them to eat, sleep, be clean, and stay warm. Taking care of these basic needs is going to be your top priority when you bring the twins home from the hospital.
Some things you are going to need before the twins are born. These include things like car seats for save driving. They won’t let you leave the hospital without them. You’ll need a place for your twins to sleep safely; ideally this would be in cribs or Pack ‘N’ Plays, or however you decide to have your children sleep.
You want some newborn clothing for them and burp cloths, a stash of diapers, formula or bottles if you’ll be bottle feeding, and supplies to wash and bathe your babies.
So in organizing yourselves think through a typical day that you’re going to have with twins and all the things you’re going to have to do for them and with them. And then think about when the baby is here what you’ll need to support that.
These are all things that you can add to your twins’ baby registry if you have one of those, or ask for gifts from friends and family, or you can go out and purchase them yourselves.
No. 2: Get Some Help
The second thing is that you should line up friends and family to come and help you with your newborn twins. I’ve said this before and it’s worth repeating. Having an extra set of hands for as long as you can have them in your home will be a lifesaver for you, for your wife, and for the babies, because it will enable you to take turns to get the rest that you need as a parent and still provide the care that you need for your newborns.
So as you make your preparations and get organized, reach out to your friends and family and recruit them to come and help you after the twins are born. And stretch that time out as long as possible.
No. 3: Plan For Dinner
The third thing that I would recommend is that you stock up your freezer and your refrigerator with easy-to prepare meals that you can eat after the twins arrive. One idea that I love is that of having a baby shower for freezer meals where instead of people bringing typical gifts they bring freezer meals that they can give to you and you put in your freezer and then you can pull out an eat at a later time.
At the very end of the twin pregnancy, perhaps you might get some bed rest and things are going crazy and definitely after the twins arrive you’re not going to have a lot of time to take care of yourself and other members of your family besides the twins. So having a freezer full of food that you can pull out, put in the oven, or put in the microwave is going to be a huge benefit to you. And you’ll find yourself reaching for those every day; because if you don’t eat you’re not going to be able to take care of yourself, and ultimately you can become more worn down than you already are.
(RELATED: Your twins will need a lot of gear. Here's the complete twins baby registry checklist to get ready for your twins' arrival.
No. 4: Set Expectations
Definitely lower expectations in what you can and cannot do after the babies arrive. This includes all of your known associates: your spouse, your friends, your family, even your coworkers and your boss at work. You are going to be sleep deprived, you are going to be distracted, and you are not going to function properly like you used to before the twins arrived. And so part of the way that you can organize yourself before they get here is to start lowering expectations of those around you.
Now they may not actually know what you’re talking about or even know what to expect, but at least you’ve warned them. And so when the time comes they’ll recognize, oh yeah, you did tell me about that. And they’ll remember the discussion that you had.
No. 5: Get the Full List of Tips
I highly recommend that you check out my book, Dad’s Guide to Twins, for a more comprehensive list of things that you can prepare and do to get ready for your twins.
This topic was originally addressed on the Dad’s Guide to Twins Podcast Episode 64: Organizing Preparations, Other Children, Biting.
Picture by Nayelli Rodriguez