Negotiating Twin Daycare Costs with Matthew Mills – Podcast 257

Joe Rawlinson by Joe Rawlinson - April 5, 2023

Negotiating Twin Daycare Costs

Episode 257 of the Dad’s Guide to Twins Podcast Show Notes

Today we continue our father of twins interview series with Matthew Mills, father of three including twin boys. Listen as we explore his twin parenting journey, including:

  • Twins close to talking 
  • Using baby sign language to communicate
  • Twin pregnancy vs singleton – more morning sickness, aches and pains
  • Preparing the sibling for twins’ arrival
  • Potential complications of mono/di twins vs. reality
  • Scheduled c-section
  • Managing time off work after birth
  • Nighttime routine with twins
  • Day in the life of 18 month old twins
  • Negotiating day care costs

Connect with Matt via email.

Podcast Transcript

This is auto-generated so please forgive any mistakes.

Joe 0:00
Yes, your twin pregnancy can go smoothly and you can have an amazing delivery with no NICU time for twins. Sometimes it’s important remember that that is an option. Today we’re chatting with another twin dad about his adventures as a father of twins. Plus he shares some great tips about negotiating daycare costs for your twins.

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Intro 0:17
Welcome to the Dad’s Guide to Twins Podcast, the podcast that will help you survive and thrive as a father of twins Now, here’s your host, the author of the book, the Dad’s Guide to Twins, Joe Rawlinson.

Joe 0:32
Hey everybody. Welcome to the 257th episode of the Dad’s Guide to Twins podcast. This is Joe Rawlinson. As always, you can find me on the web at, where you can also listen to all previous podcast episodes. Today we are continuing our father of twins interview series with the father of twin boys. But before we jump into the interview, I want to let you know that today’s show is brought to you by my second book for dads. It’s called “Dad’s Guide to Raising Twins: How to thrive as a father of twins”, you can pick up your own copy of this book over at Once again, that’s Today we’d like to welcome to the show father of twins, Matthew Mills, welcome to the show, Matthew.

(RELATED: Still expecting twins? Will you be having two boys, two girls, or boy/girl twins? Answer these quick questions to see what several old wives’ tales claim you’ll be having….)

Matthew 1:08
Hey, thanks for having me.

Joe 1:09
So Matt, how old are your kids right now? And what is something exciting about this age?

Matthew 1:15
So my the twins are 18 months old. We do have a single who was born back in 2017. And he’s almost four and a half now. The twins, I would say with spars what’s exciting about them right now is ours are very, very close to, to starting to be able to talk they they certainly think they’re talking when they mumble and when they have a lot of gibberish coming out. And they point right they do very hilarious hand gestures when they have like a question, right? They’ll put their hands up as like the kind of like, I don’t know, hand gesture. And so that’s hilarious to watch them do that. And it’s funny because you can see the frustration when they when they believe they’ve told you something and you’re like, I don’t know, man, I don’t know what you’re talking about. But yeah, we’re pretty excited for them to be able to talk we do a little bit of sign language with them. So hand motions for like all done water, things like that. So they they they’ve been able to communicate with us for a little bit on very simple things. But for them to be able to talk will be will be so game changing.

Joe 2:29
Absolutely. Do you have two boys? Two girls?

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Matthew 2:32
Yeah, I have all boys. So yeah, our our twins were mono/di. And, and then our oldest son, obviously, like I said he was he was just just by himself in 2017. And then he got two brothers that he didn’t know he wanted. So

Joe 2:47
did you do the baby sign language with your older son as well?

(RELATED: Check out the Dad's Guide to Twins Youtube channel for additional helpful twin tips and tricks videos.)

Matthew 2:52
A little bit. Yeah. And he was, he was very good at it. It was something that we we didn’t know we were going to do it. Um, but but our our daycare facility sort of started it. And then once we talked to them about it, we were like, Oh, well, we can reinforce that at home and, and learn a little bit ourselves about how to how to say, you know, some of those things. So it’s something that they they’ve just picked because they’re all the same. They’re all at the same facility. So it’s the same sort of program that they’re going through. And they they’ve just continued to do it. So yeah, it’s one of those things that like I’d have probably read about or heard about before I had kids, but like until you see them do it. It’s I don’t know, I just don’t know that I believed how much of it they were able to grasp or how much they understood. But they they absolutely get it they totally when they ask us for water or when they when they tell us that they need their diaper changed right there. They’re pointing and very much expecting us to understand. So it’s very cool.

Joe 3:57
That’s fantastic. We did some sign language too, with our kids. And it really helped cut down on that frustration of their inability to talk like, like you mentioned, your twins are right at that age, or they can’t quite talk yet. And sign language kind of bridge that gap where you can cover some of the basics and cut down on their, and their frustration and your frustration as a parent. So that’s great. That’s great. You have it in your toolkit. So let’s rewind back to when you found out that you were going to be having twins you obviously had one son already. How was the news that you were having twins received?

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Matthew 4:31
So I guess from our perspective, right, we were one of those parents, our first kid was just so easy. I mean, he slept fine from the time he was like six or eight months old till I mean even now some days but he slept like you know, 10-12 hours a night. took naps, three or four hour naps a day every day. I mean, he was just so easy. He ate everything. You know and you have a couple of obviously hiccups or bumps Along the way, in terms of like behavioral things, right, we had to sort of teach him you know, early on daycare was like, he kind of hits a little bit, right. So those were, there were some things that, you know, I’m not, I don’t want to, like, paint him as like completely perfect, but he’s just one of those kids that makes you go, I could do another one that wouldn’t be that big a deal. So we started trying again. And then we went for just the one of the first visits where you listen for the heartbeat, right? And we’re in the we were in a, an office, right, and they have the, the monitor on my wife’s belly, and we were trying to find the heartbeat. And probably about five minutes go by, and we couldn’t hear anything. So you start to get a little nervous, right? And they’re like, Well, we’re just gonna walk you down the hall to the ultrasound machine. And we’ll, we’ll do it that way. And so they bring us down the ultrasound machine, it’s a totally different room, like I said, and you’re just kind of in there, and we can see one of the kids right, and he looks really fine and healthy, you can see his heartbeat, right. And then there’s this shadow that just kind of reaches out from behind him. And it’s a whole nother hand. And, and it’s very obvious, even to somebody who’s not an ultrasound tech, that that’s like a, that’s a fifth limb, right? There’s, that’s, there’s more than something, you know, like eyeshadow or whatever. And so she moves the little thing over, and there’s a whole nother kid and, and then she pulled, she pulled the the probe off. She’s like, you know, I’m not really certified. So I’m gonna go get the tech that’s certified in this. And my wife and I were like, there’s no need, like, we all know what we just saw. Right. And so, I was kind of dumbstruck a little bit, I guess I would say at first, I didn’t quite understand what we were talking about. But my wife I could tell was in full panic mode. And so, you know, they bring in this other tech, who was who just happened to be the woman who helped deliver our first kid. She’s going, Hey, guys, what’s going on today? And so, you know, she runs the probe over and sure enough, absolutely two kids, she can tell that they’re mono/di, she can tell that they’re each, you know, sharing the placenta, but they have their own individual sack, and then they start going like, right on till, you know, do you want to do this? Do you want to, you know, so for testing and whatnot. And, you know, we’re talking to him. And one of the I remember, one of the nurses there was just like, you know, back in my day, you know, when we found out we were having twins, we you know, we just sort of, we just sort of managed you’ll find a way. And in my head, I was like, Yeah, cuz back in your day, like college was like a couple $100 a semester, right? These kids are going to be lucky if they get to go to a trade school. And so, you know, it was definitely a full day or to have panic mode. How are we going to pay for this? How, where, where were they even live? Or, you know, what room in the house that they’re going to be in? Do we have anything to be prepared for this at all, both my wife and I would say, I don’t know that we thought when we were younger, that kids were even going to be a part of our future, until we connected and so it just was a huge, huge shock to our, to our system. And then the number of people that I had, who told me? Oh, yeah, I just had twins, or I, myself am a twin, or I my best friend has twins. Like all of a sudden these people just came out of the woodwork. And it was it was nice that people were like sharing their stories. And I had a number of like, people that I even worked with one guy had had twins, I think like, maybe a year right before we had ours and so he has all this stuff. He’s just like, you know, perfectly happy to you know, if you let me know what you need, I’ll you know, we can we can work it out. And so it’s it was it was really interesting the outpouring of like support that we got from like, just people we knew. But then obviously, we I joined the like a couple couple support groups online and my wife does a support group that’s local here in Maine. And like, I joined one for dads she joined one for for moms. And I would I would highly encourage that people do that. Because it’s just nice. At the very least you get to see that there are other people going through what you’re going through. And I have friends who have multiple kids, but they don’t have twins. And I feel like a lot of times they they just don’t get it like this just there’s a there’s a difference when you’re raising two at the same time versus you know, an individual.

Joe 9:21
I know I had the same concerns right away, like how are we gonna afford this? Where’s everybody gonna fit? And it’s it’s a bit overwhelming, for sure. So I’m glad you’re able to find some friends and some local resources to help you. You’re spot on with that advice of getting, getting some help from other twin parents. How did the pregnancy compare to that of your singleton your firstborn?

(RELATED: Love podcasts? Check out the entire Dad's Guide to Twins Podcast archive for additional twin tips and interviews with twin dads.)

Matthew 9:43
In hindsight, right, everything looks a little different, but my wife had significantly more morning sickness. She had a lot more just like aches and pains. A lot more trouble, like at night trying to fall asleep and things like that. So you know, think like supporting pillows like body pillows and things like that she used a lot. She used them in the first pregnancy too. But she needed absolutely needed them for the second, second pregnancy. So as I said, they were mono/di. We went to a local hospital here. In that’s actually in Portland, it’s kind of like right on the right on the ocean, it’s really, it’s a great place to have a kid but it’s a, it’s just one of the they have the views out of the hospital or purchase great. And obviously, if you’re there for a couple days, you might as well have a nice view. But so mana die is typically pretty risky. They they talked to us very early on many, many doctors, and people just saying like, you know, it’s it’s pretty unrealistic to think that you’ll make it to 37 weeks. And if you don’t make it to 37 weeks, then then you’ll have to go to the other hospital that’s also local, because they’re the only ones that have a NICU. And it’s very common, right. It’s very common in twin pregnancies to end up in the NICU for at least part of the time depending on when they’re born. And so yeah, again, just all the different things that you can have with mono/di twins, including twin the twin transfer syndrome, right was the big one that they they warned us about and we talked about a lot. You know, I got I remember sitting in little tiny rooms with doctors, and they’re very, very like dryly or stoically trying to explain, essentially a condition that’s very dangerous. So it’s a little bit weird how calm everyone is when they talk about it. But But yeah, we went through the whole pregnancy again, she had morning sickness almost almost all the way to the end, which didn’t, you know, stay just in the morning, there were there was morning sickness, like all hours of the day. And, and her her level of discomfort in the second pregnancy was just so much more dramatically, just dramatically more.

Joe 11:53
So did she work all the way up to delivery?

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Matthew 11:55
She did she did. We at that time? You know, because our our kids were born, or they were conceived right before COVID. But they were born during COVID. So we had both transitioned to working from home, we were able to convert a space in the basement and a space. One of the extra bedrooms is now both an office and a bedroom. So we had two offices that were or two office spaces, I guess, that we were able to convert. So yeah, she worked all the way up till essentially that last week. And yeah, we went got to got to deliver where we wanted to deliver with the providers, we wanted to to be there for our delivery. It was a scheduled C section and they had happened I think a day or two ahead of the 37 week mark. And so both of our kids spent zero time in the NICU, one of our children did have a little bit of trouble like regulating body temperature, he was a little bit lower in weight by almost a full pound. So they they kind of just kept him underneath the the heat lamp that’s in the room there a little bit. But I mean, in terms of the potential complications for mana die pregnancies, this was as least complicated as it could be. And the surgeon actually who who performed the C section came back later that day. And she said that this was the first set of model di twins that the hospital was ever able to deliver without having to send to the NICU. Which I thought was kind of wild. I don’t know how we got that lucky. But we did somehow. So

Joe 13:39
that’s impressive to think give you like a plaque to hang up in the hospital?

Matthew 13:42
Yeah, right. It should have gotten some kind of an award. But But yeah, and so right. We one of them being born slightly less, right. He he had a couple of things that they were testing for, right that because he was he was about five pounds, 15 ounces. He kept failing the carseat test for oxygen level. But he would fail it at like the 45 minute mark. And we’re like, we don’t even live 15 minutes away, like is it? Is this a huge risk or whatever. And so they had to, we had to have this like, like horizontal lay down car seat instead of the one we had planned on bringing with us. Yeah, they, they, they just they just kept saying like now he’s just not you can either stay an extra night or you can, you know, we were like we’re not staying an extra night. Get us out of here about you know, By the third day. When you’re in there. You just want to be home and you just want to get try to get some kind of a routine. So yeah.

Joe 14:38
So where was your three year old during this time during the delivery in the hospital stay?

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Matthew 14:43
So he was here at our house. My wife’s parents came and stayed and they stayed with him. And yeah, he that was really I think one of the first times that we were away from him for an extended period of time. cuz we we obviously came the morning of, and then we were at the hospital for for basically three full days. And we’d left him with, you know, grandparents or whatever, like one one or two nights maybe at most. But yeah, so he called us on like the second or third day when we were in the hospital I think was the second day. And, you know, I talked to him over the phone, it was just like one of the hardest conversations ever, because he’s he was very young at that point, he didn’t quite understand why we were gone. And he just kept saying, like, where are you? And when are you coming back? And it was, it was, again, from from my dad’s perspective, it’s just like, Look, buddy, I wish I could be there. I I can’t leave your mom and your two brothers. Your two brothers are here. Right? So like, we’re trying to get them excited for that. And when we did finally bring them home, he just, he just latched on to them. So so strong, he loves being a big brother. He loves them very much. It’s it’s, again, something that we were a little worried about was introducing him to them, would he be jealous? Would he be upset, we’ve heard horror stories from other parents who are like that, you know, they don’t want anything to do with them. They don’t want them in the same room. They don’t understand why mom’s spending so much time with them. But he has literally never felt, as far as we know, never felt any amount of jealousy or anything towards them. He just loves them very much, which is amazing. Again, very lucky to have that be the case. I know that that’s not always the case for for new kids.

Joe 16:25
Did you do anything in particular to help prepare him for their arrival?

Matthew 16:30
We talked about it a lot. And we you know, and obviously, my wife got very large, she’s a she’s a rather small petite woman anyway. And so to have twins. She She just got her belly stuck out very far. And so he he could very much see obviously the that she was changing and her body was changing. And so just sort of talking to him about that. And you know, there’s, there’s not one baby in there. There’s two babies in there. And again, and again, he was just kind of like, just learning numbers at that point. Anyway, so the concept of what is one versus two right was probably a little ambiguous, but I mean, I think we it was just a more of a every time he had a question or whatever, or asked about it, we would just sort of remind him, right? Yeah. Okay, gotta be careful, mom, she has two babies in there. Right? And so, um, yeah, I don’t think we did anything particularly special. Other than just sort of talking about it.

Joe 17:27
How much time did y’all get off of work? After the birth?

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Matthew 17:31
Yeah, so my wife, she got want to say she got 16 or 17 weeks off, which you took all of I, I had the option of up to six weeks. I believe I remember, I took all six weeks of it. You know, again, I I set expectations with people at work and with my boss very early on. You know, it’s not this isn’t like when everyone has like a kid. And sometimes, you know, dads are back to work. I mean, sometimes they’re back to work like that afternoon, sometimes they’re back to work. And only two weeks, I was like I’m taking the full time again, to get used to what, what our life’s gonna be like and how to deal with this and take care of these two kids. So thankfully, my employer is great. I have a great amount of support from not only my boss, but my peers.

Joe 18:28
That’s great. Sounds like a good arrangement. You make a good point there about when you are setting expectations with your boss and your co workers that most of them had no idea what your he as a twin dad or getting yourself into. So yeah, it’s like you do do require a little extra flexibility, a little extra patience. Because even when you go back to work, the sleep deprive state continues after that. How did you manage that transition of you’re still taking care of twins at night, got very active toddler, and work once you get back to work?

Matthew 19:00
Our son stayed home with us for a few weeks. Our older son when we had the twins and initially the first couple of days you know COVID rates were very low. So it wasn’t a big deal to have parents. grandparents come and help out. They came especially on the weekends. You know, because most of them were working full time still as well. I thankfully I had both my mom and my wife’s mom had retired the year before from teaching. And so actually then there her dad my wife’s dad retired like a year or so after that. So my my in laws are completely retired. They just are busy building a house at age is like 65 but we stayed home. Like I said with my son and then he started going to daycare. So about I think it was about two weeks after the twins were born. He started going back to daycare. He was extreme excited to go back to tell everybody about the kids and whatnot. My wife and I sort of had an arrangement where, after my six weeks, right, I had to go back to work. And so I came down by I went up to the office and, and worked while she took care of the kids. And again, setting the expectation with an employer to say, you know, yes, I’m back to work. But I also have twins that are right downstairs, and I can hear them and I can hear my wife, and you know, she might need a break, periodically, she might want to go take a shower, at some point today, things like that. So like, between meetings and between heads down work, you know, I’ll be I’ll be able to be available, you know, as much as I can, but I also will want to help out as much as I can, as well. And so there’s a balance there that you try to try to strike. But it’s, it’s, again, thankfully, something they were able to work with me on. And some of the work that I do requires, like nighttime, like maintenance windows to do it in. So, you know, I would volunteer for stuff like that, that didn’t require that I left the house, but I was able to do the work, you know, from the chair, so to speak. And yeah, as far as our nighttime routine, we tried many, many different things. I think what ultimately, we settled on was if, if one of the twins wakes up, we wake the other one up, right. So at nighttime, they typically were in the very beginning anyway, they had at least two feedings a night. And my wife was pumping, but we were also supplementing with with formula because we had to, she just wasn’t producing enough for two kids, which is, again, that’s pretty common. So we would wake them up, change the diapers, right, and the other person would go downstairs get the formula or the bar the bottle ready heated up, right. And then we were both kind of sit in the room feeding them. And then we alternated nights after that. So we fed them, sometimes they would just crash immediately. Other times, it would take 20 minutes, half an hour for them to go back to sleep. And so at least one person would leave the room once the feeding was done. And we could we could work on trying to have some kind of a sleep rotation that that worked for both of us. Again, they were they were pretty good sleepers, they were not as good as our first kid. And they certainly aren’t not even still. But that worked out pretty well, they that that routine of waking them both up was definitely the key. Because it just keeps the two of them on the same schedule as long as possible. And, and again, the big thing is for us is routine, we try to keep times and bad times wake up times, things like that, we try to keep them very much the same every day. I’ve actually found myself like, it noticeably bothers me when we’re sort of outside of our routine. And that’s like one of the things that I have to just let go and deal with. But but the routine of, of settling into like this is when the feeding happens, this is when they should be back asleep. But wake them up again in like, you know, three hours or whatever if they wake up earlier, but again, waking them up together was the thing that finally seemed to work out the best.

Joe 23:11
Yeah, that worked great for us. It’s kind of the magic wand to get them to sync up with each other. When one wakes up , wake the other one up.

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Matthew 23:19
By the time the first one wakes up. The other one’s probably pretty close to ready anyway. So yeah, I made a big made a big difference once we sort of figured that out. But with that, you know, at the very first we tried, like, well, we’ll only wake them up when they wake up. And then we realized that that made it so that we were awake almost the whole night. And it’s just not possible to keep going on that kind of schedule. So now that

Joe 23:39
they’re about 18 months old, what’s the typical day in the life of schedules as far as wakeups, naps, feeding times?

Matthew 23:45
Oh, yeah, so they’re, they’re totally on solid foods now. They wake up anywhere between six and seven. You know, we obviously appreciate the days when, when it’s closer to seven, but there are days when it’s like 530 Right. And so those those days, you hear just kind of in bed, you’re like, oh, man, come on, just give me 15 more minutes, buddy. It’s almost six o’clock. Like, we’re almost there. But I mean, they’re, they’re pretty good. They’ll come downstairs after we’ve gotten them change and dress, they’ll eat like a banana or some sort of a infant breakfast bar type thing, milk, something like that. And then if they’re home, right, we just sort of let them kind of play. They can. They can kind of pull out whatever toys they can reach. And sometimes they ask for certain things right? They’ll point to something that’s a little bit higher on the shelf or, or like they’ll ask, again, through pointing right they’ll want you to do something that you sort of have to figure it out as they go along. You know, we we kind of give them a snack or something like that around 930 and then lunch is close to you know 1130 12 They go down for a nap We hope that it’s two hours, right? So by 1215, they’re down for nap, we hope they wake up at, like 230. Right? Oftentimes, they’re up just a little bit before two, they’re just not during the day that we’ve found they’re just not as long a sleeper as our, as our older son was kind of do the same thing, right, they can have a snack, water, juice, whatever, not really juice, I guess. And if it is, it’s watered down anyway. But definitely snacks and things like that when they wake up. Dinner time is probably around five or 515, it just depends on the day. And then they’re up to and, you know, we do bath time, twice a week, we do, like whatever they can roam around, they can watch a little TV or something like that. And then in the evening as especially, and then naptime, or bedtime, rather, starts at seven. So we take them upstairs, they have teeth now obviously. So they we we’ve sort of tried to get them into a routine where they brush their teeth. Oftentimes, they end up just chewing on the toothbrush. And so I let him do that for like, you know, 10 seconds, 15 seconds, and then I sort of take over, I’m like that Oh, buddy, come on, you gotta move it back and forth. That’s a little hard, right? One and a half year old trying to brush his teeth, not really a realistic thing. So but then right into bed, we read him a couple books. And they’re in they’re in cribs, they’re in their individual cribs, right. So there’s one on one side of the room and one on the other side of the room, they’re very close, one of them specifically is very close to figuring out that he can crawl out if you lift himself up. And so we’re trying to, we’re trying to like discourage that as much as possible. So far, he’s never he hasn’t done it. But it’s really only a matter of time. And then once one of them does it, the other one will see and he’ll start doing it. So we’re close to trying to change our routine a little bit. But that’s kind of where it is. Now. They’re They’re definitely asleep by like 737 40 or so. And sometimes we have to go back and soothe them a little bit like they’ll they’ll kind of whine a little bit or fast, you can sort of hear him on the baby monitor. And so you just kind of kind of go up. And usually what my wife does, and I picked up from her is you just kind of like, like hover over them a little bit. And I just put my hand on his back, like on his lower back and just sort of sit there for a little bit. And for whatever reason that weight or that presence is just enough to like, finally let them like, relax and fall asleep. But it varies by night, right? We’ve had nights where they, they’re teething or they’re sick. And you know, they’re up till nine o’clock, almost 10 o’clock. Just kind of crying because they don’t feel good or crying because they’re teething. So. But for the most part, that’s our routine. They’re up by six or seven, they’re asleep by six, by well by seven 730. That’s what that’s our hope anyway.

Joe 27:38
It’s pretty good schedule. How does the bedtime routine work with your older son as well as about the same time? Or is it staggered?

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Matthew 27:44
he goes to bed a little bit later, he gets like we start his routine at 730 Just so that there’s like some separation. You know, he’s not up there trying to brush his teeth at the same time or do do his routine. And so he gets a little bit of leeway there. It’s also he’s he wouldn’t be ready to go to sleep quite as early as them. So we start his routine. And then he goes into his room with one of us, right. And again, it’s we alternate everything. So you know, there are certain nights where it’s my night with the twins to put them to bed and it’s my wife’s night to put our older son to bed. And then the next night that would rotate, I would get my older son, my wife gets the twins. Um, just so that it’s not like the same challenge for us every single night. And so we go in with him. He’s sort of starting to appreciate some longer, longer books, but we also have some activities we can do in the room with him right? He’s got some, you know, like Matchbox cars and things like that, that he really likes. He’s very very like like a lot of four year olds he’s very into like dinosaurs and things like that. There’s some there we got like a wall poster that he can color. He very much thinks that’s that’s like a very, very cool thing. I feel like a part of it is too because he feels like he’s coloring on the wall, which we’ve obviously said, you’re not allowed to do that. And so yeah, he he typically is asleep. I wouldn’t say asleep, but he’s in bed with at least with the lights off by like eight 810 815. Again, it just sort of depends on the night. And whether he falls asleep right away or not. We’re not too concerned with as long as he’s in the bed quiet and not making noise,

Joe 29:24
Are all three of them in the same daycare facility?

Matthew 29:28
They are Yeah, they all go to the same one. So drop off, right? Is anytime after seven and pick them up. I typically pick them up before five o’clock. Just to to make sure that we’re not late, right. A lot of daycares have those kind of insane policies of like every minute is so many dollars and so just to avoid that altogether. I’m I try to pick up early

Joe 29:55
did you have any trouble getting the twins in the same facility or did they have room?

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Matthew 29:59
um, so We did not actually have trouble getting them in. One of the things that I did really early on when we knew that, that we were having twins is I went right to the daycare provider to the office, and I said, Look, we’re having twins, I need to put them on the, on the schedule or on the, you know, the, the list for future attendance, right, like right now. And then I also need to know, like, what we can do to work together on, on, on negotiating the cost of this because it at the time, it was really close to one of those like decisions you have where it’s like, well, wait a minute, if we’re paying X amount of dollars in daycare, does that make sense? To continue to do daycare, right. And, and it, ultimately, my wife and I have both have both very secure jobs, and we both love our careers. And so we wanted to keep doing that it was important to us. And so working with daycare, and negotiating the cost and, and we went back and forth like three or four times, with with the management at at the facility and ask through email and talking, you know, and ultimately settled on a price that that we thought was reasonable for, for what because we the other thing is when when our oldest son went through all of this, the first like two or three years, their program is really great, right? It teaches a lot. It’s not just childcare, they do a lot of developmental help, they help potty train, they help work on their sleeping during the day, things like that. So we wanted that same experience for the twins, because we really appreciated the help that we got with our older son through through their efforts. And so yeah, just just negotiating with daycare, which a lot of people I’m not sure how many people even think to do that, or know that they can. So yeah, it was really important for us to not be paying the full price, which would have really hurt every every week, it’s still it’s still an insurmountable amount of money. When you look at it on paper, you’re just like, I can’t believe that we pay that much. I mean, that’s mortgage, it’s, it’s more than our mortgage on our house. And so, you know, we look forward to our oldest going to kindergarten and not having to pay at least for one of them. This, like the amount of money that we’re paying right now. But

Joe 32:33
like, what kind of discount we’re able to negotiate like, percentage wise, it’s obviously not three times the cost?

Matthew 32:38
No, no, although, again, on paper, that’s what it initially looked like, right? It was just like one of those one of those things where you’re just like, well, this, this is just a stupid amount of money. I just had a how do people pay this amount of money who aren’t like working professionals. But when we when we went back and forth, ultimately, you know, that they have proposed a few different strategies to, to to like alter the cost, right, they were sort of going to give us the they were going to give us the largest discount on our older son, which was the smallest amount of money, right? Because his as, as he ages and as his, you know, daily, like one on one requirements are lower the cost of him going to the state care facility like like lowers a little bit. But the twins were gonna be, you know, a couple $100 Well, several $100 A piece. And so we, you know, there were a few emails back and forth, where I was like that what you’re proposing doesn’t really make sense. And it doesn’t really help me financially, in the way that you’re presenting it. And so we went back and forth. And ultimately, what the owner of the there’s the like a larger parent organization that owns this daycare facility, that person finally was able to say, like, we can give you 30% off all three kids. And I was like, done, let’s do that, like that, that at least is easy for me to calculate i i can understand where you’re getting your percentages from. Whereas before I had this felt like they were kind of shooting in the dark. And so yeah, 30% off for all three was was the final percentage that we settled on, which I know that there are other facilities in our area that even after a percentage like that they charge they still charge less, but they’re harder to get into. And that I don’t feel like they provide a great program. So you know, again, we’re we were trying to stay where we are and, and and that percentage made it possible for us to say yes to that.

Joe 34:44
That’s good. Yes. The rule of thumb for twin parents is always asked for the discount. Because,

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Matthew 34:50
yeah, I mean, I feel like you just can’t afford not to right.

Joe 34:53
That’s That’s true. That’s true. We need all the help we can get for sure. Yeah. So Matt, as we wrap up today, if listeners want to trying to connect with you. What’s the best way to reach out?

Matthew 35:03
It’s [email protected]. And yeah, I mean, I, I don’t have all the answers, obviously I don’t think anybody does but certainly help in just at least being able to talk to somebody who’s going through the same, the same type of things, right. Like I said that that’s a big huge part of the support group. One of the benefits I feel like, right, it’s again, you just you’re definitely not alone in any feelings for like anxiety, stress, right, all those kind of things. How are we gonna pay for this? Right again, that’s one of the things that comes up a lot So yeah, we’re happy to connect if anybody wants to.

Joe 35:42
Well, thank you. Thanks, again, for sharing your story with us today. We really appreciate it.

Matthew 35:46
Yeah, thank you for having me. I was excited to be here.

Joe 35:48
Hope you enjoyed the conversation with Matt about his adventures as a twin dad, plus one. If you haven’t already, you know, maybe you can go back to your daycare and negotiate some of those costs for your twins or other siblings that you have in the same facility. If you’d like to share your story, like Matt did today on the show, I’d love to hear from you. You can reach out to me on Instagram or Twitter @twindadjoe and I would love to hear from you. Again, today’s show is brought to you by my book “Dad’s Guide to Raising Twins: How to thrive as a father of twins”. You can get a copy for yourself at And that’ll help you through those first several years of raising your twins. Thank you so much for listening, and I’ll see you next time.

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