Fellow father of twins Brian writes in and mentions that they are going to be moving from infant carrier car seats, the kind that you can take in and out of the car easily, to the car seats that stay in the car. He asks, “How do I take my two boys out of the car seats and into the house by myself?” He is uncomfortable transporting one twin at a time and leaving the other unattended, even for a little moment.
Leaving One Twin in the Car
I totally understand not wanting to leave your twins alone in the car. There are safety factors involved from strangers around, but also if it is really hot or really cold, temperatures can wreak havoc on your poor little babies. I can understand not wanting to leave them alone in the car.
That being said, we had a good system for moving the twins into the house when I was alone. I would take one twin out of the car, run them into the house and quickly put them in a safe place, like a pack and play or in the crib, and then I would go back out and quickly get the other.
This meant that I would leave one child in the car for a few moments in the garage upon arriving home. However, in public places like a grocery store, or the mall or running errands, I would not do this method. But when I am home, in the driveway or in the garage, I would run one twin in at a time.
Use a Child Carrier
If you definitely do not want to do that, there are some options you could consider if you do not want to leave one of the twins alone in the car. First, you can take one twin out of the car seat and strap him into a child carrier harness like a Baby Bjorn. You can then walk around to the other side of the car, remove the other twin, and carry both inside. If you are not familiar with the Baby Bjorn, it is a front carrier that your baby can sit in on your chest.
Use the Car
Another option is that you can take the non-wiggly twin out of the car seat, lay him on the floor of the car, and then unbuckle the other twin. Scoop them both up and walk into the house. This I have also done many times. Typically, if you give the first twin out of the car seat a toy, they will keep themselves busy on the floor as you go unbuckle the other.
Use the Stroller
Another option is to take one twin out of the car, buckle him into the double stroller, then grab the other twin and repeat the process. Or just push the stroller and carry the other into the house.
All of these methods involve using something else to restrain or hold a twin while you unbuckle the other. It may be a carrier, it may be a car seat, it may be sitting them on the floor. Perhaps you can think of other creative methods to accomplish this same thing.
What method have you found most effective at getting your twins into your house when you’re caring for them by yourself? Let us know in the comments.
This topic was originally addressed on the Dad’s Guide to Twins Podcast Episode 80: Weaning One Twin, Carrying Twins Solo, Your Other Child.
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Picture by Russell Harrison
12 thoughts on “Getting Twins From the Car to the House by Yourself”
Just do it. No choice. For the second or 2 there is no choice
@Bill – just do it. Good advice. As twin parents, we always seem to find a way, right?
I do the dash into the house, leaving on in the car. It’s only a few moments and it would probably take that long to unbuckle and remove the other if someone was planning an abduction! On the scale of all things to worry about, abduction from the car in the garage is pretty low on the list.
I too was writing about the car transplant this week (in a slightly silly way)…
@Twin Pickle – I’m glad to hear you’ve found something that works!
I kept a pack & play right next to the front door. Open door to put twin 1 in pack & play without having to step inside, go get twin 2 out of car. Nobody unattended. Everybody contained.
@Sam – this is brilliant in simplicity and practicality!
We have a wagon sitting on our front porch where one twin sits while the other is being put in/taken out of the car. At the babysitter’s house, I run one twin inside while locking the other into the car.
@Melissa – sounds like a great system too.
My twins turned 2 in July. I still use the run one at a time method because we live on a busy street and I am terrified that one won’t stay put while I unbuckle the other. What was scarier for me was dropping off at their preschool. I have to park and walk them in, so I got those backpacks with the leashes. I undo one, slip the backpack on, block him in the corner while I do the same for her, and then bring them inside. I always swore I would never put my kid on a leash but when I think of the alternative if they were to run into traffic, it is definitely the preferable option. BTW, I loop the leashes on my wrists but take their hands. They aren’t being walked like a dog. It’s just some reassurance for me!
@Amy – you have to put your kids’ safety first. Good call. We’ve used leashes too.
you could also always single stroller. I liked to carry one in an ergo, and put one in a single stroller, easier on me to not having to always lug around my giant bob double, esp if I’m in a smaller car. For carrying into the house, I’d carry one in an ergo (i basically wore it constantly), and carry in the infant bucket seat. As they got older, I sometimes wore one on the front (ergo) and one on the back (ergo). Sometimes even one of the front (ergo) and one on my shoulders.
@tk – that’s a great system! Thanks for sharing.