Thoughts about Minimalism with Twins

Wednesday, October 4, 2017

I have been thinking a lot about how our life is going to change once these twins are born.  I have a feeling a lot of it is going to need an overhaul, and things are going to be quite different.  One of the things I am hopeful about, is that we will still be be able to maintain minimalism in our home.

Right now, minimalism is hard for me, because we are living on top of someone else's stuff (my in-laws furniture, appliances, books and regular household stuff), so I can't keep things quite as simple as I would like, but one area that I can completely control is the baby department in our home.

With Fox, we did some modifications to make our closet work for him, and tried to buy as little as possible up front.  This worked out really well, and I felt like we didn't end up with a bunch of baby stuff that only got used for a few months.

This time around, we will probably do the same.  If I get totally desperate for some baby item, I can always pick it up at the Target down the street or have it shipped via Amazon, so I like getting stuff once you need them, rather than trying to anticipate every need that we might have.


A few things I do need to buy/I have bought include:

- another car seat (or possibly two new ones, depending on how big our babies are when they are born).
- a full-sized crib (a nice neighbor actually gave us one that we will use for them both at first).
- several crib sheets (My friends from Texas own Copper Pearl, and generously sent me this one and this one, which look darling in the crib!).
- diapers.  Running out of these in snowy December doesn't sound like any fun, so I will probably buy 2 packs of newborn, and a few packs of size 1.
- a breast pump cord.  Our first day in France two years ago, I decided to pump, completely forgot that I needed a power adaptor, not just a plug adaptor, and frazzled the cord (thankfully the pump still works).  I borrowed one from a friend who wasn't pregnant last time, so I finally bought one, because I am going to try to breast feed for as long as makes sense.

A few things I want to buy:

- prints from WildShip.  I like having a cute space for my babies, and while I don't go all out, I am sorely tempted to get three of these prints to hang above their crib.

- a glider.  I kept wishing I had a glider after we had Fox, but they are typically expensive, and I don't think I can fit me and two babies in one, so I might hold off on this one.

- a full bath set from Tubby Todd.  I am not a fan of bubble bath, but I am dying to try their lotion, shampoo and other baby bath products.  I have some of their all-over ointment, and it is working miracles right now with Fox's dry skin, so I am almost ready to take the plunge and order some more.

Things I am waiting on:

- A swing or bouncers.  I hate the idea of how much space they take up (although we currently have room for them), and they are typically kind of expensive.  So for now, we are going to wait.  We didn't use them for Fox, but he didn't have a 2 1/2 year old older brother that will potentially love on him excessively, and need to be off the floor.

- More clothes.  I actually have a lot of newborn clothes.  I think these are people's favorites to buy, because they are so tiny, so I have quite a collection, but we will see how far they will actually go once they are clothing two babies.  Also, I might end up needing some preemie stuff, if they are really little.  Again, time will tell.  I really wish I could spend lots of our money on darling matching baby pajamas and stuff, but my frugality just won't let me.  Thankfully, we should be just fine without my spending urges.

Any suggestions for a minimalist parent of twins?  Things I should consider getting, or things that I can do without?


20 comments

  1. This is so exciting! Are you going to do cloth diapers with the twins?

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    1. Thanks! Good question... short answer is mostly likely no... I currently still need to potty train Fox, and I just can't think about trying to keep up with 20+ diapers a day. That sounds insane. I would be nursing and doing laundry all day long. So for now, I will probably just do disposable. I also didn't love cloth diapers. They leaked a lot and made clothes fit strangely (although I must say it was good padding for a new walker!).

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  2. I really loved my glider that I had for both of my babies. My friend's mom who came to Utah to help me after I had Jay actually bought it off of craigslist for us for $40 when she came, and then Derek and I just sold it for $50 when we moved here. And yes, I feel like an awful person for selling it for more than we got it for... Derek doesn't ;)

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    1. Derek sounds like Adam :) I might look on FB marketplace or KSL to see if I can find one, but I am a little terrified of bringing bed bugs into the house (we had a friend who had that happen after a Craigslist find). Anyway, maybe I will just get a wooden one, and replace the seats or something.

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  3. I got a stroller frame that would fit the two car seats but ended up not using it very much. It was just hard to leave the house when they were newborns and when we did, it was for things like the doctor, church or visiting someone else's home and I always had someone else with me to to help. I purchased an umbrella stroller and began using that as soon as the twins were big enough for it. Now they are almost three and we still use the same one for going to the zoo, museum, etc. I got the cheapest one from Amazon, but the sunshades and reclining seats are not that great. I recommend getting a better one than I did. Also, it fits into the trunk of our car without taking up a ton of space.

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    1. My sister gave us her old double stroller, and I have debated on getting car seats that fit it (we already have one car seat that doesn't fit it), or just waiting to use it much until they are old enough to sit in it. I have three infant baby buckle carriers and I was thinking I could wear one and then buy one car seat that does work on the stroller, and use the other stroller seat for Fox... They are being born in the winter, so it isn't like we will be going on lots of walks or anything, so I have also debated on how necessary a double stroller with two infant seats is... Thanks for your insight!

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    2. a kind friend gifted us a double stroller, that we used exactly once. It was too big and bulky and I hated it. So, I always carry one in the carrier and have the other in the stroller. Even 20 months later it works well for us. When they were teeny tiny, I could get both twins in my Moby Wrap (look for a baby wearers international (bwi) group near you - they'll help you figure it out) and I always felt like a super hero.

      You might consider one bouncy/swing/some place to set one baby while you deal with the other baby to keep him off the floor. My big kid was three when my twins came home and it was just easier to have an established baby safe place (also, one of mine looooved the swing more than people so it kind of saved our lives anyway.)

      good luck! twins are amazing and terrifying :)

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  4. I had three kids 18 months apart (and now have a fourth, but not as close as the others) so we had three kids ages 3 and under for an entire year. Our oldest was out of diapers, but I had two in diapers. My recommendations for lots of babies: reusable nursing pads (I leak the entire time I'm nursing, so maybe thats just me. I tried bamboobies from amazon specifically because you can throw them in the washer and dryer just fine and I love them. I have four pairs, which is fine but I have to be on top of laundry, I'd suggest getting a second pack if you buy them from the beginning), aquaphor--I am weird about aquaphor, but I had a redhead in Utah winter and I swear her skin was soooo sensitive to everything, and this was the only thing that worked, and my next three were not nearly so picky but I keep a tiny squeeze bottle of it in my diaper bag and use it for lotion, lip gloss, nipple cream, etc. as well as bum cream! Seriously cuts down on all the tiny items I have to have in my bag!, also I personally would recommend using a double stroller with the carseat. That is how I LIVED with three kids three and under. But--by then I was living in Miami and it was useable every day. ALSO, someone else commented that the places they took it they generally had help already and an extra set of hands. This was never applicable to me as we moved to Miami and had no one around and my husband is in med school and had to take the metro one hour each way so was literally non-existent. Having one baby in the carrier and my older two in the double stroller was a LIFESAVER. With you being in winter, maybe not so much of a deal. I actually never had a glider, I have a very aged sofa chair that rocks and I love--but I actually only nurse in bed and on the couch. I'm just too tired at night to get up out of my bed and nurse in a glider. I grab the baby and stay in bed haha. Utah babies though--my first was one--and I bought the carseat cover that is like a sleeping bag and you just zip it up so they can't kick it off. I would highly recommend that. Makes life so much easier and simple and you never worry about them being warm. That's about it. I'm a true minimalist on baby items just because I use them less and less the more kids I have and I breathe a sigh of relief when my baby has a blow out and I actually happen to have an outfit on hand! Haha! But then, in Florida, you can get away with a diaper child for a day because it's warm enough :)

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    1. You were brave! I like the idea of having kids close to each other in age, but the reality is a little scary! Thanks for all the awesome suggestions!

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    2. Oh and I used a Phil and Teds sport stroller. You can leave off the back seat so it's just the same size as one stroller and so much more maneuverable.

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  5. I think you should do an Amazon wish list and let some of your followers have an informal "internet baby shower" :)

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    1. That is so nice of you to suggest! I hadn't thought of that. Maybe I will consider doing that, although I definitely wouldn't want people to feel obligated!

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    2. I don't think people would feel obligated! we'd like to help!

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  6. I believe they make wider gliders that look like beautiful chairs. The cost up front is higher, but I love that it's a piece you can keep in your home for as long as possible!

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    1. i have thought of doing something like that, but debated on whether or not to invest...

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  7. I love your minimalism post. I am in the process of trying to go through things and make a gradual transition. But I do have a question. How do you deal with the recommendation to have a year's worth of food storage on hand and minimalism?

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    1. Good question... We haven't gotten to the point where we could actually store a year's worth of food, because we have lived in apartments up to now. We have always had functioning 72 hour kits, and tried to have some non-perishable stuff on hand all the time for emergencies (wheat, dried beans, etc). My plan for the future is to slowly build up a year's supply, but make sure it is stuff I actually use (like the wheat and dried beans, and pasta and cans of things we will really eat). We are currently living at my in-laws and they have a ton of food storage. Last week I wanted to grind some wheat into flour, so i went to the basement to grab some, and the boxes they had were from 1992. I don't want to store food that doesn't get used fro 25 years. Granted, it is hard to work some things into the rotation, but that is my goal, that it will never be the supply of food that just sits there, but a year's supply that needs constant replenishing, because I use it so much. I feel like being prepared is a very valuable thing, as long as it is actual something adding value to your life. For me, minimalism is about having the things around that bring you value, and having a usable backup for emergencies and potential loss of income or something totally fits with my ideals. I still don't know how we will store it in a nice way, but we will cross that bridge when we come to it. Hopefully that answers your question... :)

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  8. My identical twin boys turn 7 in December! Congratulations!!! It is a wild and wonderful ride! We used our stroller frame religiously for the first 6 months or so. I could not have survived all those doctors appointments without it. Especially since usually I was on my own. It is so nice to have something lighter than a full double stroller. Those are heavy and harder to maneuver in and out of the car. Having one thing that lightened the already doubly heavy load was really nice. But if you are going to have lots of hands on help you may not need it.

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    1. So good to know! And I love hearing about those identical twins growing up and the mom surviving it ;) Ours is the City Select stroller frame, which I think is a lot lighter than a traditional double. Hopefully it will be helpful!

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