The juggle is real, if you’ve had twins, or more multiples, or two children- particularly those close in age!
Many parents would have felt the pang of panic for the first solo time bath and bedtime for both your little ones. I had my two girls 19months apart and can clearly remember over thinking the first time I found myself with one pair of hands, a young toddler and a newborn to bath and put to bed myself.
I can confirm organisation is key and once you’ve done it once, you find your own groove for your family.
My top tips for bath time:
Put nappy/pants, vest, PJ's/ babgrows and any body cream etc out ready in a pile for each child ahead of bedtime. I used to use nap time, or set up something for each child to play with while I got everything ready for the evening. This way, you have everything to hand when you need it- and often everyone is tired so it saves a lot of stress!
Bath both together- or one at a time. I find both together easiest personally, with a bath seat, like the Angelcare Bath Support for when the youngest is unable to sit up in the bath. However, many parents prefer to bath one, then get them dressed, while the other has a toy/activity/book next to them while bathing the other.
Baby bouncers are great for keeping small ones comfortable, in the same room, while you bath and dress the older/other child.
If you bath both together, get the youngest out the bath, wrap up in a warm towel while you get the other out.
Take both to the room they will be dressed in- and your clothes piles are ready and waiting!
Dress the youngest first-as they feel the cold quicker- and set the other up with a book/ small toy, or get them to help dress baby with you.
When it comes to getting both to bed, I have always worked on a same/similar bedtime for both my girls, however, you may wish to stagger bedtimes, so you can have some 1:1 time with the eldest, for example, once the youngest is asleep.
If you do the same bedtime, I had my eldest 'help' put the youngest to bed. She went to sleep really easily in her cot, after a quick cuddle and kiss. However if you need to cuddle to sleep for example, I would recommend possibly putting the eldest to bed first. Obviously- this is dependent on tiredness/ awake times before bed so you have to see what works best for you all. Once the youngest was in bed, I would do a story for my eldest before putting her into bed.
If you do stagger bedtimes, some parents do offer 'special' screen time- iPads on the dimmest setting is best ahead of bed-, or a book to look through, while they settle the younger child. It really does depend on you what you find works best in your home.
Either way, bath and bedtime can feel like a military operation, but keeping calm can really help for everyone. As silly as it sounds- I chat non-stop in a really happy tone, about the day and what we're doing tomorrow etc, while I am dressing my girls, to try and keep it light on the days I can feel they are tired or sense an impending melt down and it often works to keep things in check!
Don't forget to fill their tanks with cuddles-a-plenty before bed- if they feel calm and contented, it often makes a smoother sleep time!
Hope you find this useful! We do offer 1:1 bespoke support for multiples too, if you do need to chat some more, please do get in touch!