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Friday, August 24, 2012

Mothers of two (plus)...help the intimidated new Mom (of two). Thankyousomuch.

Not a ton of things intimidate me. I'm kind of a bring it on type of gal. But there are some things, definitely that do intimidate me a little.

I don't prefer crowds, but if it's for a good time, I'll still go and brave a big crowd. I get a little nervous around new people, but give me a few minutes and I'll be telling my best stories and hopefully we'll be fast friends. I'm not really into talking in front of my peers. Children? Teenagers, even? Sure. No problem. I was a teacher. But in front of my peers? Cue shaky voice and often tears (especially if it's to talk about something, well, emotional). 

Those things intimidate me.

Most other things...? Not really.

Oh. Wait. I forgot one.

A newfound intimidation.

Going out with two children. Alone.

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I wish, so badly, that I was super cool about all this mom of two stuff, but I'm still not that great at it. I'm still learning it. 

I'm not even a tiny bit sure of what the heck I would do if suddenly my newborn was screaming in hunger, my toddler was melting down, and I had a cart full of things still to be purchased. Leave my cart abandoned? Grab my children and run for the hills? Die of embarrassment?

I just don't know. 

Prior to having two kids, I joked about when the baby got here, that I'd probably never leave my house. Well that little joke has somewhat become my reality. Because, dude, it is MUCH SAFER in the four walls of my home than out in public. Where scary ish happens. Where my kids can be crazies. Where toddlers can run out in parking lots. And moms can have heart attacks because, OH THE ANXIETY. And I ONLY HAVE TWO HANDS. 

Don't get me completely wrong, I've gone out with two kids alone to safe places. I've done the dance of trying to get out the door and down the steps (stinkin' townhome) with a newborn who just pooped up her back and needs a new diaper and outfit change, and the toddler who's walking out the door with food on her face that I forgot to wipe, shoes on the wrong feet, and then who suddenly decides to take her skirt off, just because. I've done the juggle of infant seat hanging off my arm, with larger than life diaper bag, all while holding a toddlers hand so she doesn't run out in the street and trying to shoo my dog away so he doesn't run for the hills causing me to look like even more of a lunatic than I already do. I've dropped my keys while trying to get the door locked behind me, almost got stung by bees, practically thrown out my back, have had both kids safely in the car, and then realized I forgot my sunglasses on the brightest.day.ever. 

Getting out the door, alone, with two kids? I can do that. Even though I look like I ran a marathon by the time I get in the car myself.

I can even go to safe places. Safe places= drive thru's (where children do not leave the car, ever), my parents house (because, again, safety of a home--and grandparents! yay! and extra hands for help! and a big yard to run!), Declan's parents house (again, safety of a home)....etc. 

With Declan? We can basically do everything. Because, one parent for each child. Right? Makes sense. Restaurants, shopping, normal'ish errands. 

But just me? I wish I felt like I could take on the world with this one, but I just don't.

I know exactly what I need to do.

I need to just do it. Then keep practicing. I need to do things that feel unsafe and figure out the right way to go about it. Do I wear the baby in the wrap? Strap the toddler in the cart? Bring the double stroller? Hide in a dressing room to nurse the baby if I have to? Bring the iPad for backup when those situations arise? 

I know. I know this seems silly--and to be honest, I hate to admit this intimidates me as much as it does. But it does. And one day I hope I look back and laugh at myself. I really do. But right now, it's kind of real--and it's kind of intimidating.

So there.

Now, quick! Give me all your tips, tricks, ideas and how you overcame this, so I don't become a decrepit hermit locked up in my townhouse all week with two children. Mmmk? Thanks :)

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42 comments:

  1. I'm no pro by any means, but the only way the grocery store worked was the cart with the car attached for Ty. He sat there so infant seat could go in the seat of the cart.

    That's all I got. Can't wait to read other tips!

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  2. Good Morning! I am Mom to 4 (almost 5) ages 6 and under...bring the double stroller and leave the little one in the car seat..that way if you need to make a quick exit you don't need to worry about strapping and unstrapping a cart or a baby sling. For nursing in a bind, go back to the car. Not the most comfortable, but you won't have to worry about E running around or getting into anything. Keep a small bag of toys or books to entertain her while you are occupied. You can do it!

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  3. You are exactly right. You just have to keep trying it and it'll get easier (and then sometimes a disaster trip will get stuck in there too, but that's okay!)

    I just had my third - he's a month old - and I've taken all 3 out a few times. The key is to plan ahead as much as possible. Have everything ready to go and packed up in the car before you nurse. Then, you can hit the road right when baby is done eating to maximize your time. The first few times I only ventured out in 2 hour increments so I could nurse in the comfort of home. But things happen and I've totally sat in a clothing store dressing room breastfeeding with my other two monkeys opening and closing the curtain and dying of boredom. Fun! (notsomuch)

    With a little extra planning (and a purse full of Wet Wipes), you'll get the hang of outings with 2. Good luck!

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  4. Hi! I have two boys, 4 and almost 3. They are 17 and a half months apart. Those first months (year) after my second was born was..tough. I invested in a Moby wrap and never left home without it. Later, a Boba. My older son would play my phone, we didn't have an ipad at the time, and the baby would mostly sleep in the wrap through errands. Pretty soon it'll ease up. But I'm pretty sure I still look like I've run a marathon by the time I have both of them strapped in and ready to go.

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  5. Mama- you know I'm already anxious about this. We can be hermits together or at each others houses and hopefully some other mamas give us good ideas :)

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  6. Ok, I'm a 26-year-old mom of three now (my son is 7 weeks old), so I'm a pro, right? ;)

    First all, give yourself time! It's hard when they are little. I always stick at home for the first fewish months just because I find it easier for breastfeeding.

    When you are ready for venture out (aka losing your mind), just pick somewhere close, pack lots of snacks for the older, and choose a good time of day.

    Biggest keys: 1) Be willing to leave if you have to. Sometimes, all your planning and best intentions just don't matter. Kids are kids. 2) Be relaxed. Things always seem to go wrong if I'm tense and stressed and expecting them to act out. It's like they can sense my stress and it makes them stressed too.

    It will get better, I promise! Now, I don't like going anywhere without the two of them together, because they entertain each other! :)

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  7. Just start with short, "easy" things at first. And know that you can handle, er survive, whatever the kiddos throw your way. I once had to run an errand at Hobby Lobby one night with my 12-month old twins and potty training 28-month old with no stroller. I had to use their obscenely small carts which almost toppled multiple times. Then because it was way past dinner, I had the bright idea to stop and eat (inside!) Wendy's. Of course, once we were all eating, my toddler had to go to the bathroom. What was I to do? I considered asking the guy at another table to "keep an eye" on the twins in their high chairs. But quickly ruled that out, after seeing a headline flash (Twins kidnapped, etc - use your imagination - after mom leaves them with stranger). I also didn't want them to be crawling around a bathroom floor (didn't walk yet). So I carried one highchair halfway down the hallway to the bathroom, then got the other highchair and propped the bathroom door open with it. That way I could see both babies while I was helping my toddler go potty. Really this happened. I won't even go into what chaos it was to get them in the car, after that. Needless to say, we used drive-thrus for quite awhile after that. But I managed, and you will too (perhaps with an indulgence with wine or ice cream, after you get home and get them in bed, to destress). Good luck!

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  8. I feel the exact same way, except...I only have ONE child! I have a almost 5 month old baby boy and I have rarely taken him out by myself. He is so needy and demanding that it's just too difficult. So do not feel silly for being intimidated, because I STILL am and it doesn't seem to be getting any better. :/ Hang in there!

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  9. Ha oh boy do I feel the same way right now. Imagining every awful thing that can go wrong with more kids than I have hands for. What I've found helps me is to make Shiloh my right hand man. Every child is different so not every kid likes to help, but lucky for me he wants his hand in everything. I can ask him to carry things, pick up things I've forgotten or dropped and he is eager. It helps in a small but huuuuge way. Also in parking lots I usually don't have a free hand and sometimes I don't want to lug a stroller around so I make him hold my skirt or the shopping cart. I tell him he needs to obey bc mommy is protecting him. He seems to understand, but forgets on occasion. Like you said, it'll take going out to figure it out. You'll find your own things that work for your family and your child's tendencies. <3

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  10. Obviously you are not alone :) I am a mother of 3 (7, 5, and3) It will get better. I started out by going to target to grab like 2 things and then patted myself on the back when I made it out with the 2 things plus all my kiddos. Don't be afraid to abandon your cart. We have all done it. You have to do what you have to do. Plan ahead if you can. I try to park next to the place where you return carts so I can grab one and put the kids in the cart before I went in the store. Then they were all contained. You got this.

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  11. I have two boys - currently 2.5 and 1 year old. It takes time to manage two out alone, but you'll get the hang of it. I think the biggest thing is to have patience and not worry about what other people are thinking or what kind of crazy looks they are giving you when all h*ll breaks loose...because sometimes it just will. But sometimes I don't give mine enough credit...they are pretty good most of the time but I limit the errands to 1 or 2 at a time so we aren't out all day. I would try and leave Lucy in the infant seat as much as possible...in the stroller, shopping cart, etc. Looking back it was actually easier then than now since currently my boys are always trying to climb out of the stroller or shopping cart. Hang in there...you'll be a pro in no time!

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  12. Don't worry, you'll be a pro at going out in no time!
    When I just had two, I'd Do the grocery store like this...Alex in the front seat of the cart and Lily in her pumpkin seat in the basket of the cart. You can't fill the cart with a ton of stuff but then when you get out to the car, you can strap the older one in and not worry about the baby getting anywhere. I tried doing it with the baby in a carrier but then I had a minor freak out when I was strapping the baby in to her seat and Alex decided to stand up in the seat of the cart. (and you'll be amazed at how much food you can stick all around the pumpkin seat and on the bottom of the cart.)
    For other errands or outings, the double stroller was (and is) my best friend. Always strap the older one in so he or she can't run away!
    For those times that you have 2 crying babies and people are staring??? Well, F' em! (sorry!) seriously, if people can't handle a little noise, it's their problem! If the kids are strapped in to their seats, then they can't get hurt while you pay and get out of the store.
    It's happened to all of us, and more often than not, you'll see another mom in the same exact position and the two of you will share a glance and just know...
    Good luck!!

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  13. Had my 3rd 4 months ago. I don't go out much to begin with (we're a farming family and I have a huge garden/house/etc that needs taken care of plus I like being a hermit :)) so it wasn't a big deal for me. But when I DO have to go away, i choose a good time of day (everyone well rested/fed) and will sometimes give the four- and two-year-old a pep talk. Kids respond well when they know what is happening and what is expected of them. (I do this before church, too...we don't use the nursery or toddler church as we expect the kids to sit quietly and color or draw.)

    Anyway, I also steer clear of bringing along too many things to distract them. If they know that you have fun things that you pull out when they misbehave/get antsy, they will definitely misbehave.

    And, as others said, try to relax. The more relaxed you are, the better they'll be. Give yourself plenty of time and just go slowly. You'll get it! We all do eventually :)

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  14. Give yourself and Eme more credit.. You *think* there might be this mega meltdown and "what if what if" and in all honesty? I've taken the boys out together a TON of times (read: at least 10?) and not once has Carter or the baby melted down. It's all about knowing their limits- after I feed Maclane, I know I have EXACTLY two hours before he needs to eat again. So, it might take an hour to leave the house but the LAST thing I do? Is feed the baby. Into
    the car goes C.. then Mac.. I make sure to bring snacks and the iPad for Carter, god forbid, we end up in a bind... or TRAFFIC! (god forsaken traffic..) But like you said- just do it and do it and do it again. I was scared shitless the first few times I did it.. but the more you do it? It's becomes the new normal.. And when all else fails? You drop everything and run back to your car. Or bribe your toddler with fruit snacks ;)

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  15. there will times that you literally wanna pull your hair out/die of embarrassment/apologize profusely/want to cry/want to scream/wonder why in the world you left home.

    BUT, you'll be still proud of yourself and glad that you did it. [and then there will probably be times that you wished you didn't]. but as they get older and you get more comfortable [and it's literally LIFE-CHANGING when your little one can finally hold her head up and you can put her on your hip and not worry about her getting baby-whiplash] going out it will get easier!

    then they'll start peeing in the playgrounds at mcdonald's and running away from you on purpose. and then you'll have something else to worry about. sigh. :]

    hang in there! it will get easier.

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  16. Okay I just needed to read this today, because I'm about to take both kids to the grocery store for the first time! (I usually wait until Josh is home) Not gonna lie--I'm nervous! So far I've only taken both of them to safe places like Sonic, grandparents, and one time to Target (which went fine).

    One thing I've figured out is to get the everything ready ahead of time. I get the car all stocked with everything I need- loaded diaper bag, snack and water for Ellie Kate, wipes, my makeup bag (I keep mine in the car because the only time I wear any is if I go out of the house). We have a garage so I will even start the car and get the movie going on the DVD player, then I put Ellie in her seat, then I go back in and get Foster in his carseat and bring him out. He prefers to be in a moving car so this way we can get right on the road without him crying, then once we get to our destination I park and put my makeup on. Exhausted yet? :) I know you have a town home and can't do all that running up and down the stairs and leave Emme in the car, etc. So maybe if you know you are going somewhere the next day- stock the car the night before when Declan is home? That way you can just get both girls in and go. One thing that helps us keep the peace in the car is our portable sound machine. Target has a $9 battery operated baseball-sized white noise machine and I turn that on and stick it in Foster's car seat if he's going to sleep- that way his loud big sis doesn't wake him up. I've also found that it helps me to be less frazzled if I get our "morning things" ready the night before. I set out my coffee cup with my spoon and Splenda already in it so all I have to do is pour the coffee. I set out mine and Ellie's bowls and pour in our oatmeal packets so that I can just add water and microwave. I even pick out Ellie and fosters clothes the night before. This is the longest comment ever but I hope it helps!

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  17. Girl I hear ya! I've been really struggling with anxiety as I get closer to adding a third and I often feel like I'm going to pull my hair out with just the two! What's really been helping me is remembering Galations 5. I try to wake up every morning and say ok God, I feel overwhelmed and stressed and out of control but you promise that if I let your spirit work in me, then the fruit of that will be PEACE, self-control, joy, patience, love, etc. you get it....I know I can't do three kids three and under well on my own so I'm realizing I'm going to have to be doing a lot of praying this year!
    That being said, my advice for two? Do whatever you're comfortable with for now and take it easy on yourself. Those first few weeks are always insanity as you're trying to figure out a newborns quirks and preferences and schedule all while dealing with hormones that are going crazy. With time Lucy will really settle into a schedule and you'll know when the "safe" times are to go out. And then? Start small. Try to prepare as much as you can ahead of time (snacks, change of clothes, distractions) and be ready to laugh at yourself and the chaos that may happen. But probably? It won't be as bad as you can imagine. :)

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  18. JJ has been my only child for 4 years now so I'm guessing adding a 2nd to the mix will be quite an adjustment. With my 2nd due in November I am grateful for all these tips and that I have others I can learn from!

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  19. The one thing I always did was park next to a cart corral. That way you can get out of the car and grab a cart real quick and one/both kids go directly into the cart. No holding their hand hoping they don't decide to run out into the street before you can find a stray cart. I say? Just jump in with both feet. If you have to leave, you have to leave. We've all had to do it. You aren't alone. :) Good luck!!

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  20. Wow.. I have felt the exact same way!! My poor husband has been totally neglected on the real food front bc it overwhelms me to even think about going to the grocery store! I finally did it yesterday and it was fine! I wore Cade (4 mo and HATES the Carseat) and Connor (2) rode in the car part of the cart. It went well! I always make sure I have every single thing I need in the car before putting the kids in. That always seems to help. When I go to target, I do the same thing in preparation and make sure I have the iPod for Connor in case he gets anxious and especially if I think any dressing room nursing might be happening. I mainly wear cade, because like I said he hates the Carseat! I have found that it is so much easier now that we are in a definite eating schedule. At one month like Lucy? Not so much. So don't beat yourself up. And if you just feel like you need to get out? Do it! She might cry. Heck, they both might cry, but you will have gotten out and that should be considered a success!! Plus, by the time you get back home it will be just that much closer to daddy being home, too!

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  21. I haven't done it a lot yet, but I am making a point to get myself out with both a few times a week because I need practice. Here are my tips: Go at Eme's best time of the day. Don't push close to nap/meal time if possible. Start by running errands that are meaningless. I.e. Go to target just to browse, not because YOU NEED to get food to feed your starving family (that way, if it all goes to shit, you turn around and walk back to the car without feeling stressed over not buying/finishing whatever it is you needed to do). Nurse in the car ... then if Eme is freaking, at least she's in her carseat and only you have to hear her crazy. And for me, the Ergo is my saving grace. Baby in ergo, eva in cart.

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  22. Good luck to you! I'm sure you'll figure it out :-) Makes me glad we only have one car...maybe I'll keep it that way so I won't have to worry about ever going out alone ;-)

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  23. You just gotta do it.

    Here are my tips..

    Get the toddler out first and strapped in the cart then the baby. When getting back in the car the toddler goes first. The baby can't move she he/she is relatively safe. I always put the baby in the big part and the toddler up front which leaves about ZERO room for anything, but sometimes it's just about getting about getting out of the house.

    Don't go around nap time for the toddler for obvious reasons.

    There will be times when the baby is crying, the toddler is whining and you are trying to check out. The only thing you can do is just remain calm, use a soothing voice on the toddler and just let the baby cry for a few minutes. You won't be able to do anything about it so just remain calm and ignore all the judgy eyes. Once you get done you will feel empowered...even if it didn't go well.

    Most people look at me and say WOW, you've got your hands full and are surprised I'm even out of the house...and I like Yep I got this, I'm awesome.

    Make your first trip to Target. They have dollar toys, pretzels and if you have to nurse just do it at the food court, seriously, who cares? Or bring a bottle.

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  24. You want to know the truth coming form this Mom of 2 (19mts apart)? Since I live in a small town and L gets paid weekly, I HAVE to go out and run our errands EVERY TUESDAY. Bank, Wal-Mart, grocery store, and whatever else needs to be done that day...gets done. I can only go once a week since it's a 45min drive there and back. BUT...I had help. And I am truly blessed b/c of it. My MIL would come (STILL comes) with me on my errand days. With her, I didn't have to worry about getting Trey down or having to keep a close eye on him. My MIL has helped me so much. But, you see, when my boys were infants, I have no clue what it was to "baby wear". It's had not become that popular down here yet. ::eye roll:: So I knew that I would not be able to brave these stores w/ out some kind of help. Oh...in the beginning, I never went to stores that did not have the buggy/cart. Wal-Mart and grocery store? Both check. But to have Trey run amok in a place where I cannot keep control of him? No, thank you. Another thing, since I EBF Jackson, I made sure to feed him before I left the house. He would sleep on the way to town. Then I could pretty much go get lunch, bank, and Wal-Mart w/ that feed. Right before I got off at the grocery store, I would nurse him again so I would not have an infant in complete melt-down mode while in line w/ a cart full of groceries that NEED to be purchased. The nursing in the car just worked for me. In the beginning, I was so nervous to NIP...even w/ a cover, if Jackson would cry out of hunger, my heart would start racing and my face would turn beet red. I had no clue why. I was just not used to it...I didn't want to "offend" anyone, and I needed more practice to perfect the NIP move. At home, you just pop the booby out and there ya go. No worries. (For me)...in public, that was just not the case. Took many a-tries. :P

    Getting down and eating lunch by myself w/ the little ones was a no-go for a LONG time. Jackson was a very high maintenance baby...and his screams could make your ears bleed. :| Once he got started, he would not stop. And a paci or bottle could not comfort him. Jackson never took to the bottle. If he used it more than 5x that was too much.

    You are doing great and it's AWESOME to get tips and tricks from other Mommas! Trial and error for all. :) It just takes time and getting used to. As Lucy gets older, it gets much easier! It really does! When she's sitting up...woot!...no more infant car seat to haul around! When she's eating solid food or if you BLW...less bulky diaper bag. Once Eme's PT...fuhgetaboutit. Haha.

    All I carry in my purse (NOT diaper bag anymore) for a regular errand day is a pull-up for Jackson, and Trey's flush-able wipes. That's it. No sippys, extra clothes, tons of dipes...nada. :) No worries, Momma. You rock! xx

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  25. Being a mom of twins, I actually think I had it a little easier in the beginning. They were both in carriers so I didn't have to worry about one (or both) running off. I could just stick them in the stroller and be on my merry way. I was also mainly pumping so when we were out, they got bottles.

    Now that they are older, semi-mobile and way to heavy for me to carry both of them at the same time I tend to stay home more. Mainly because the mere thought of trying to get us out the door just makes me very, very tired.

    So far, the thing that has worked for me is snacks. Food tends to keep them quiet. ;)

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  26. It's hard in the begining but, once you do it once, you're good to go. I never did the wrap only because my little man always wanted to eat (even if I had literally JUST fed him!h) anytime he was near me so the car seat in the cart and older one in the front seat with food underneath and piled around was how we rolled for quite a while :) You'll get it, just take baby steps, try one little thing at a time, etc.

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  27. Best advice...just do it! Take them both to Target by yourself first, then work your way up to parks and the Zoo. The more you do it, the easier it will be. Promise.

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  28. Remember that post I wrote awhile back, where my toddler was eating through a package of cheese while the baby was naked in the back of the target cart?

    Yeah. An experienced mom of four and I STILL had a total moment of WTF.

    Sometimes you'll have it down. Other times you'll wonder why you left your house. It's okay, though, cause no matter how many kids you have, we ALL have those days.

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  29. I was terrified of this- but I assure you, practice makes perfect. I mean practice makes it so you can be like OH I can't believe I forgot more pull ups- without having a nervous breakdown.

    Take it slow. Go to the store with a list of no more than 5-10 things. That way you aren't stuck with an entire cart if someone flips out, your older one will learn how to act/help at the store, etc. :)

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  30. I have been reading your blog for a few months now and I love it!! You are so cute and funny.

    I love this post and definitely agree with you. I am terrified to leave the house. I have a 14 month old who cannot walk yet and a 6 week old. Exactly 13 months apart. I have tried both the double stroller and single stroller/Moby. I have been to the park, grocery store, and music class at the library.

    What I hate is how I feel like people usually look at me and it seems they are thinking either a) that poor, frazzled woman b) what the F was she thinking. I live in Manhattan which is not very baby friendly. And our carts are tiny and so are the aisles, so I have pushed a double stroller and cart through a crowded supermarket. Big, stupid mistake.

    Two times to the library. First attempt: total failure. Second attempt: semi-total failure. We'll see how the third goes.

    My mindset is just try it and deal with the insane stress as it comes. Once I get home and manage to get both babies sleeping I sink into the couch and think to myself, "What was I thinking?"

    I hope it gets easier as all these experienced moms say...
    Thank you for this post!!

    ~~Lauren

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  31. I don't have any great tips, except that it gets easier. In the first 5 months of my second child's life I think I only took them to non-safe places 2 times. Really. I am that lame! Now Gwen is 9 months and doesn't nurse around the clock, and today I actually took them to the park together by myself!

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  32. I totally get it! Maybe if u go to the mall, confined space with lots of stores. U can walk, give Emeline a snack and nurse. I think the main thing is getting out an not having any real reason to be there, just enjoying being out and getting the hang of it all while spending time our I'd the house.

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  33. And it's nice to hear so many other moms advice and more for me their empathy and sympathy. Matt always has great advice, but understanding and empathy aren't his stronger traits. I'm freaking out about three kids and it's comforting to hear from the moms who have three or more too. I came back to read more comments.

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  34. Hi!! I am a mamma of 3, 3.5, 17mo and 7 weeks.

    I try to shop in places that are "family friendly" with carts. I hate places with narrow carts... JoAnn Fabric! Target is lovely, not only are their carts wide but they also have the attachment for the big girls to ride behind it. Pain in the rear to steer at times but I have 2 big kids buckled in and baby in carseat in the cart. I can actually shop without worrying about the oldest wandering away.

    I also try to go shopping/errands right after breakfast. It seems to be the best time of day for all of us. The markets aren't too crazy at that point and I feel like the people who are there are more understanding of the chaos my family creates! Feeding baby... well... yea, I do pump so I keep a bottle on hand at all times. It makes life just a smidge easier.

    I am sure you are doing great! Best of luck and just keep doing it and you will be great!!!
    Kate

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  35. More often than not when Simon was a newborn I felt like I deserved a trophy (and a giant glass of wine) when I returned home from a errand running session. My tip is this: be realistic. Don't plan on getting a whole entire list full of grocery items, but maybe just 10 things or so. Do food only, or diapers/house stuff only, etc. Also, if you can get out with just ONE of the kids while the other says with Declan or something, it's actually FUN! :) Sling/Moby was helpful too with the newborn, then you can chase E if/when necessary.

    Miss chatting......hopefully I'll get back into it soon.

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  36. I don't have 2 yet so I can't give you any personal advice, but wear the wrap. You can put it on at home before you even leave so all you have to do when you arrive is put her in it and then take Emeline out and put her in either the stroller or cart.

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  37. i love this post because we have all been there. heck, it took me nearly a year to get my mojo back after going from 2 to 3 kids.
    practice helps. and you have so much great advice from all these awesome girls. i love the wrap/sling suggestsion. my #2 lived in a sling for at least 3 months :)

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  38. Hey Katie! I have a {just turned} 3year old and a 16 month old and a baby due any day now. I remember last summer feeling the exact way you do right now... and I promise, it gets better! Some things I did to get out of the house alone without tradegy happening was...

    fed both kiddos {nursing and a snack} before going out. I had everything already in the car and ready to go and then would feed them and run out the door!

    Avoid going anywhere around Em's nap time. Disater will always happen otherwise ;)

    Part next to the cart holders in the parking lot so you are right there and aren't trying to carry both girls, or carry one and holding hands in the parking lot.

    Baby wear! I wore my youngest always the first 6 months we went out. Hands free is the way to be!

    Snacks for the big kid while shopping. I swore I would never be the mom... but hey, it works!

    Start with just one store at a time and go from there...

    Each age & step has it challenges. Life with two still overwhelms me on a weely basis here and there, and it's been 16 months! {and Lord help me I am about to have a third!} but I promise, overall, it does get easier.

    You're doing a fabulous job, momma! Hang in there!

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  39. It gets easier! I can remember thinking that too, and my 2nd DD is now 7 months old. We go to the mall or Target by ourselves, ... any store, really! I just plan around eating time (for the baby), and we're good to go! I promise you'll be out there soon and feel confident!

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  40. I'm a mom of twins, so I don't know what the age difference challenges bring, but I can fully relate to the craziness of dealing with two! You're right though, practice makes perfect!! And you have to give your self a break! Babies cry and toddlers tantrum, it's a part of life. I go out with two toddlers, almost every errand involves tears of some sort. You just adjust to your new normal :-). You can do this!!

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  41. You just have to do it! Get out there, and do it!

    I have 3, and have dealt with crazy baby screaming and older sisters going crazy. You get used to the stares, because honestly you have to eat and in order to eat, you have to shop and sometimes meltdowns will happen. Nurse in a changing stall, bring the ipad and just figure out as you go.

    Maybe the first couple of times you go, have your mom go with you for support.

    You will only get better and you honestly can't stay in your house ALL the time. You can do this!

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