There comes a time in every multiple mothers’ life when she braves going out. For me the twins were a few weeks old and still on three hourly feeding cycles before we ventured anywhere beyond our local river walks or relations homes. A twin changing bag is essential and yet you will still have the bag crammed with stuff for those “just in case scenarios “, Poonamis are always, ALWAYS going to happen when you go outside . So take my advice here and when you think you have packed enough wipes, clothes, nappies, go ahead and pack more.
Let’s go back to the beginning .
The twins hospital bag
I remember the first bag packing for the hospital, even though the babies spent some time in NICU as they were healthy and needed just a few days to plump up, we were able to dress them in their own clothes so the bag for the new born twin arrivals consisted of the following
Bibs lots of bibs
10 sets of mittens
2 different “going home” outfit choices per child
4 cellular blankets which were never used in the hospital
Dodies, Dodies, Dodies (Had I known nearly 3 years later the hold those feckin things would have on the kids I never would have packed them)
Nappies and wipes were supplied by the NICU unit thankfully because a second suitcase would definitely have been needed if we had to pack them.
I think the hospital thought I was never going to check out with the amount of “luggage” I had in my room. Given there was a second case for me and all the lovely post pregnancy glamorous must haves from those lovely huge knickers to go over your section scar, to breast pads, nipple creams and nursing pjs to mention a few items.
When we left the hospital eventually with the kids I thought the packing issues were left behind but that was only the beginning.
The first time you venture outside the house with the twins for a few hours
Fifty million muslin cloths and bibs for those lovely reflux spews
Breast pump, storage bottles & icebag ( remember to take home the milk from your relations fridge)
3 outfit changes per child – One for vomit change . Two for a Poonami change and three for the second Poonami change
Antiseptic wipes (because everything that could possibly touch your baby needs wiping down)
Medicine and Thermometer, even though they are in perfect health, but you never know.
In the time it has taken you to pack this bag you are due another feed so your trip is delayed slightly and eventually you get out the door 1.5 hours later. This means of course there is only 1.5 hours now before the next cycle begin and you have to cut your plans in half!
As the kids move to prescription formula your bag is now loaded down with flasks of hot water and small tubs of carefully measured out formula, these add to that niggle in your back that is developing since early pregnancy and the joys of SPD.
You are also now indulging in dressing them up in cute little outfits so instead of six babygros and six vests you are now packing six complete outfits in your twin changing bag, which coincidentally is beginning to burst at the seams.
Solids time ……..
Your bag now has to make room for baby flasks which contain lovingly homemade food your child may or may not eat. Water beakers are probably now fighting for room too. Full sleeved bibs are also squeezed in to the last remaining tight spots.
How’s that back pain coming along?
The first holiday
And then it’s the first holiday time – the memory actually makes me shudder, when you think you have prepared everything you need to bring with you, don’t trust your judgement and leave packing the car to the morning you are due to go off . Unless you want to end up like us it , mid afternoon after naptime before you leave. That car journey was great crack.
It does not matter whether you are going away for one night or five, the car will ALWAYS be your enemy from here on in. Watching himself pack that car (which since we upgraded last year has improved) is not a job I envy.
Outside of the 100 outfit changes due to our lovely countries inability to have consistent weather in a week, a gazillion nappies (normal and swim ones) and wipes for your four day break, you now need to load the car with the following ;
2 travel cots and travel mattresses (because you don’t trust the hotel ones)
Baby camera monitor
Enough medicine to survive any possible minor illness (because chemists don’t exist where you are travelling to)
Baby cutlery and plates, beakers, bottles, food flasks.
Tubs of prescription formula because you can’t buy them down the country (yet you still run out)
Black out blinds so you pray they sleep and don’t fall out of routine in a strange room
Swimming vests – who knew how bulky they were!
Toys – you cannot go away without bringing a few favourites to try trick the babies they are still at home.
Ipad ( yes BabyTV came in handy a few times on that trip)
Microwave steriliser, then upon realising the room/home doesn’t have a microwave you have to traipse to the supermarket for Milton tabs and fill every available sink with water for the fifty million bottles you need daily.
And then you stand back, look yourself up and down and do an old Ryanair on it and decide to layer clothing on, because there isn’t an inch left for you or himself to pack a case. Deciding that hasn’t worked that well you do the three hour trip with a suitcase on your lap, and are more peed off that your kids have umpteen outfit changes and you have had to share a case with your husband.
As the kids get older packing takes on new forms of torture, food isn’t required thankfully as you only have to say restaurant to my two and they break out in huge smiles. Bottles are a thing long of the past and all the paraphernalia that comes with feeding is gone for good. However clothing in this country continues to be an issue. You now have to pack wellies, wet gear, rain coats, light coats, summer clothes etc. Bikes and their awkwardness take up space and even though you don’t use the buggy once, that somehow ends up in the boot too. Luckily this time we get a case each so things are on the up!
I do wonder why like suitcases kid related items can’t be shaped squarely. Why do things need to be the most awkward shape possible? Items appear to be determined to stab you in the eye when they pop back out at you from the small cavity you had tried to desperately shove it into moments earlier.
I predict many fun times ahead as we all get older and the needs of what the boot has to hold come holiday time changes. I did mention that packing the car shall and always will remain the task of the other half didn’t I !