Save Vs Splurge 3
Whether you’re having twins or expecting your children in quick succession, having two children in less than two years is a beautiful whirlwind. Our first two children are 14 months apart, and our third came along under the three year mark, so I definitely understand the chaos of having multiple minis underfoot, but, like everything, it’s easier when you’re prepared. So here’s my list of essentials for two-under-two.
Firstly, look on the bright side. One can’t plan having twins, and often if a second pregnancy comes along while the first baby is still in the newborn stage, it was a surprise, but having your children this close can be wonderful. Your children will always have a built-in best friend and teammate. Sure they can team up against you, but let’s not focus on that! With minimal (if any) space between your children, they’re really a peer group, which comes with plenty of benefits.
- You won’t have to store hand-me-downs for long. Yay for more storage space!
- Your kids can share toys and books, as they’ll be in the same developmental stage and likely be interested in the same things. This means having less stuff as you have more kids. Magic!
- You’ll be finished with the challenging stages of childrearing faster than if your children were more spread out. I do not miss the sleepless nights of newborns!
- Your children can be together, or at least overlap one another for day care, play groups, sports, music, and school. Transitions have been made all the smoother knowing a sibling is along for the journey.
- As a parent, you are already in the trenches of parenting a newborn, so by some logic, it makes sense to stay there for another year, rather than come completely out, only to jump back in a few years later. I often said if we had our kids further apart, I would have lost my nerve after our first!
Practically speaking, having several tiny humans in your care requires more than a positive attitude. Luckily, there are a lot of things to prepare your home, your nursery, and yourself for the pending chaos.
For twins or siblings who are both under two years, a double stroller is a must. Because I use my stroller every day for errands and in lieu of a car, I prefer the tandem seating as opposed to side-by-side. My favourite double strollers are the UPPAbaby VISTA and the Baby Jogger City Select, as they can both be used as a single stroller, and accommodate up to three kids.
If you have multiples, you need to consider if your vehicle can handle the car seats required. If you don’t have a minivan, this is particularly important. We have three children but don’t own a minivan, meaning we needed to fit three car seats across the back of our mid-sized SUV. The Diono Radian birth-to-booster car seats are designed to do just that, and so we promptly bought three. If you’re only considering car seats for two children, you can be more flexible. An infant car seat doesn’t expire for at least six years (depending on manufacturer) in Canada, which means it can easily be handed down to a second sibling, but if your children are twins or very close in age, you may find yourself buying two.
If your children will be sharing a room, consider that they can share practically everything. Even with twins, you’ll only need one activity mat, one dresser, one changing table, one diaper bag, one glider, etc. At a time where it probably feels like you need to buy double of everything, this is a relief! Many parents of twins even prefer to keep their twins in the same crib until they begin to roll over and require more space.
As a mom of three-under-three, I can honestly say I wouldn’t have it any other way. You might find yourself going through linens and diapers like crazy for a few years (did I mention that you should stock up on those?), and sure, you’ll be short on sleep for a while, but your children will always have someone to walk beside, and that’s pretty special.
Emily is a Montreal-based writer and blogger, but most importantly, a mom of three littles (age five and under). She geeks out over cloth diapers, lattes, and will do just about anything to travel. You can find her on Instagram @emmorrice where she profusely overgrams pictures of her meals, kids and city.
There once was a time where I thought cloth diapers went out of ‘style’ (use) in the 80s. Like when my mom used them on me. This is me a couple of years ago: anytime I have ever seen a baby in a diaper, ever, that I remember, it’s been a disposable one. Then my friends were drinking the baby Kool Aid and all of a sudden tons of them were pregnant. One mom specifically requested gift certificates to a small local baby boutique. When I inquired why so specific, she said she was going to cloth diaper. I was so surprised that I didn’t even know what to say next. But I did it, I got her the gift certificate, and then I never heard any more about it. And then I started working at Snuggle Bugz. One of the first projects on my plate was a contest for a diaper cake made out of $1000 of AppleCheeks diapers. It would then take an entire year for me to know EXACTLY HOW BIG OF A DEAL THAT WAS. Anyway, I started to realize that this cloth diapering was NOT my mother’s cloth diapering. No plastic pants or pins here, folks! And so we’re going to do it – we’re going to cloth diaper, which is something I NEVER thought I would say, and here are the things that convinced me.
We spend so much of our time and energy recycling and composting things, but then when it comes to diapers, many families treat the thousands of disposable diapers that your baby will use as a necessary evil. I’m so glad Snuggle Bugz helped me realize that isn’t true. I’ve seen so many recycle-happy families use disposables because that’s just what you do and they didn’t really think there was another option. Disposable diapers are responsible for 3% of all (all!) waste in Canada. If I wasn’t on board before, this would have swayed me in that direction:Also, in my city you get ONE bag of garbage per week. You can’t put diapers in the green bin (I checked – you can do that some places) and it takes them hundreds of years to break down (seriously). You can jump through a hoop or two and get some “exception” stickers to put on extra bags of garbage but I’m not really interested in that. I’d rather just reduce the waste altogether.
Also, we’re all like falling all over ourselves to wash out our cans and jars and yogurt containers and then contribute a pile like this of diapers without even a hesitation. Just because many people don’t know better.
You can see in the graphic that they have costs there, and you’ll see the cost comparison everywhere, all stating slightly different numbers. The cost that is generally shown is for one child, in diapers for 2.5 years. I’ll give you my own costs here with actual dollar amounts from actual stores. Using the graphic as a reference, 3,800 diapers (give or take) are used on one child in a year. On average. So if I go down the street to El Wal Marto, and get the ECONO PACK of diapers, it will cost me $49.97 for 222 diapers (varies by size). Accounting for 3,800 per year, that’s costing us $855.34 per year. We’ll say Junior is half potty trained at 2.5, we’re looking at $2138 total and then an additional $200 for night time and nap time diapers to last until full potty training. So I’m looking at $2338.00 for our first child, one assumes double that and add a bit for inflation for our second child, and we’re running up a $5,000 bill, assuming of course that we don’t have more than two. I realize that’s dished out over a long time and in small, manageable pieces, but I’m looking at the big picture here. We don’t make tons of money so a long term cost like that is really startling to me. If we use cloth diapers, I’m going to say AppleCheeks, we can buy a Full Time Kit for $849.99 which contains everything we need to get off the ground running. I’ll factor in an extra $500 over the time of your first child for updates on colours and additions to your cloth diaper collection (depending on when you want to do laundry), and it’s a savings from just one child of $988, double that for the second one. I have friends who have used AppleCheeks on going on 4 kids and they’re still going strong.
But what about the laundry cost? And the time? Well that’s certainly something to take into account. According to this calculator, to wash a load of laundry for 2 hours at off-peak times will cost me $0.07. Washing (exclusively diapers) every three days will cost me $8.50 a year. Let’s say I do ALL of my washing at peak times, even then I’m looking at $17 per year for electricity, then added in the cost of water, let’s say that it costs me an extra $50 per year, that’s still only $67.
Ok, so the cost thing is settled in my mind.
This was strange to me at first when I happened upon the MASSIVE cloth diapering community that is out there, but now it’s a regular part of my day. Specifically, if you search your fave cloth diaper brand on Facebook, there are pages and groups full of parents (generally moms) who are not only using the same brand as you, but who also are interested in the same types of things. It’s a great way to meet others online who you can get advice from on things other than just cloth diapering.
But most of all I just think that cloth is “for us.”
Oh, and you want to know what brand we’ll be using? Well we’ll be using AppleCheeks of course
What about you? Do you use cloth/have you tried it and decided against it? Comment and let me know!
Welcome to this charming green and brown nursery. Here are two ways to decorate – and how you can get the look for less!
- Ubbi Diaper Pail – $79.99
- Dwell Rug – $599.99
- Forest Friends Mobile – $74.99
- Mommy Bear – $39.99
- Leander Crib – $1749.99
- Dwell Owls Sky Blanket – $99.99
- Boon Nightlight $89.99
- Rockin Robin Hamper – $54.99
- Coco Go Bouncer – $229.99
- Dekor Diaper Pail – $54.99
- 3 Sprouts Mobile – $24.99
- Natart Bella Crib – $959.00
- Cuddly Cub – $29.99
- Kids Line Sweet Songs Rug – $54.99
- Ingenuity Bouncer – $79.99
- Munchkin Hamper – $44.99
- Mobi Glomate – $26.99
- Skip Hop Treetop Friends Blanket – $34.99
Which one do you like better?
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