A Mama’s Guide to Survival with Two Under Two

Two months ago I became a mama of two. Zoey is 2 months old, and Oliver will be 2 in a month. The transition from one to two is kicking my butt, to put it bluntly. We have our good days for sure, but even the best of days are just hard with two tiny humans demanding your full attention. We are slowly getting more into our new ‘normal’ everyday. I feel as though I’m learning a few things along the way. I am obviously not an expert, but below are several secrets I’ve stumbled upon in my (very short) two months of having two littles.

 

7 Tips to Surviving Motherhood with 2 under Two
  1. Mac & Cheese

6 Tips to Survive Parenting of 2 under 2

Seriously though. Oliver is a pretty picky eater, and what he loves one day he won’t touch the next day. There was a point in time where I was making 3 lunches and 2 dinners, only to have all of them rejected and thrown either on the floor or all over me. Ain’t no one got time (or patience) for that, especially with an infant screaming in the swing. The one staple that has never failed me? Boxed mac & cheese. So now that’s just my go-to when I don’t have time to guess what my almost-two-year may or may not feel like eating that day. (Sometimes I buy the organic stuff, because, #healthy.)

 

2. TV

Yea. Judge me all you want. I was 100% the person that was going to strictly limit my kids’ screen time and never let them watch more than 20 minutes of TV a day…and then I had a kid. And then I had a second kid, and let me tell ya- sometimes the TV is my lifeline. When you just need an hour and a half to shower, eat, clean, make dinner, what have you- never underestimate the value of The Minions. You do what you gotta do.

 

3. Leave the house. Immediately regret decision and vow to never leave the house again.

Oliver is as social as they come. He was in daycare for about a year and a half, so he loves other kids and getting out of the house. Which is great. Except leaving the house with a toddler who doesn’t believe in listening and an infant is really hard. And Zoey is NOT the infant that sleeps the whole time. She cries. A lot (though we’re hopeful this will get better). So about 5 minutes after the hour and a half it took me to leave the house, with children screaming in unison in the backseat, I’m trying not to swear under my breath and vowing to never leave the house ever again. BUT! I’m finding that I’m getting more comfortable the more I do it, so I just suck it up and leave the house!

My suggestion for leaving the house- start small! When Zoey was about 3 weeks old I thought it would be a phenomenal idea to try story time at our local library. Not my best plan. Oliver got incredibly overstimulated and was running around and kept trying to press the buttons on the projector. Zoey kept fussing and spitting up, and it was pretty much just a disaster. We left early and haven’t been back since. I found trips to Target or small grocery store trips were the best start. Even just going for walks was a start for us!

 

4. Find a fenced in park

6 Tips to Survive Parenting of 2 under 2

I don’t know why they even build parks that don’t have a fence. I’m pretty sure whoever designs them never had children. So find a park with a fence where your child can’t run away, stay in a committed relationship with said park, and don’t be tempted by other parks that may have newer and shinier toys. It’s not worth it.

 

5. Double your caffeine intake

Double the kids means double the caffeine. It’s basic math. This point needs no further explanation.

 

6. Wear the baby

6 Tips to Survive Parenting of 2 Under 2

When I’m trying to make dinner and the infant is screaming and the toddler is whining…I just can’t. I wore Oliver a little bit when he was a baby, but let me just say that my K’tan has become more invaluable to me than ever over the past two months. Sometimes life just requires two hands, but my sweet baby girl missed that memo. This allows me to bounce baby girl to sleep while “ROAR”-ing with my son and his dinosaurs all over the house.

 

7. Park near the cart corral

This has become a non-negotiable for me, ya’ll! It’s no longer about how close to the store I can park- if the only spot beside a cart corral is a quarter of a mile away, we’re walking. When I tell Oliver, “Come here, please,” he views this as a personal challenge to run in the opposite direction as fast as possible. Since I’m not trying to chase him down in a parking lot while lugging a car seat (or wearing an infant), I park near a cart corral. No more worrying about my toddler getting hit by a car, and I’ve found this to be a major stress relief for me.

 

BONUS!

8. Give yourself grace, mama. I struggle with this so much (more detailed post all about this coming Thursday), but we need to just take it one day at a time, and give ourselves all the grace in the world. We are the best possible mama’s for our littles.

 

I love my kids more than life itself, and Zoey is the best blessing to our family, but that doesn’t mean this transition hasn’t been hard. You find the things that make your days a little smoother, and, at the end of it all, if your kids know you love them- you’re doing a great job.

What are your survival tips for getting through those tough parenting days? Please share in the comments!

Have a phenomenal day!

"Alex" in cursive

17 Comments

  1. Amanda

    June 13, 2017 at 6:57 am

    Love this list! As a mama of three under three once, I can SO relate! I especially love #3. #thestruggle is real. It’s still real actually at times! And they are 8 and under now. hahahaha!

    1. Alex

      June 14, 2017 at 8:47 am

      See I always tend to think it will get easier and then I’m reminded it’s just going to be a different type of chaos! haha, thanks so much for reading! 🙂

  2. Chelsea

    June 13, 2017 at 7:01 am

    Ah I love you! This is my life the past 6 months! Time for you to move back to nova, you can come over and zoey can scream and spit up all she wants!

    1. Alex

      June 14, 2017 at 8:46 am

      I’m not kidding you when I say every single thing you post makes me wish that! I’ve just gotten really used to North Carolina “winters”!

  3. Leighann

    June 13, 2017 at 8:15 am

    Yes! Always park near the carts! I have twins and it makes life soooo much easier! Also, totally with you on getting out. It’s a lot of work, but you get used to it!

  4. Mary Leigh

    June 13, 2017 at 2:02 pm

    (Sometimes I buy the organic stuff, because, #healthy.) – This is so me! These are all really great tips! We only have one right now and he’ll be 2 in the fall, but I’m hoping we add to our family soon so I loved this post! Honestly, so much of this is me on hard days here with just one! I vowed to not let my kid watch TV before I had him. Now, I think he really has learned a lot from his videos and every now and then, I just need some time to do something like cook, or sit.

    Also, #3 – “But, baby, we’re going somewhere fun and you’re going to love it. Nevermind, you don’t love it. My bad, let’s go back home.” Totally been there.

    And we always park near the cart corrals. Especially now that Little likes to help put the cart away.
    I’m coming by from the Blogging with Heart page and I’m so happy to have found your blog – it’s totally relate-able and I’m an NC girl, too! I look forward to following along!

    1. Alex

      June 14, 2017 at 8:45 am

      Thanks so much for coming over and reading! I love that Blogging with Heart lets us connect with blogs we wouldn’t have found otherwise! I think so much changes from before you were a parent to when you actually become one- I couldn’t believe the things I said I would never do that now I’m just like, “eh, it’s not hurting you!” haha!

  5. Matt

    June 13, 2017 at 7:08 pm

    The Wegmans near our house has the spot next to each cart corral reserved for parents with small children!

    1. Alex

      June 14, 2017 at 8:43 am

      That’s so genius! I really wish we had a Wegmans. Harris Teeter down here has spots reserved for parents with kids, but they’re not near the cart corral, so not even worth it for me, haha!

  6. Cheyenne

    June 13, 2017 at 9:45 pm

    I can relate to all of these so much! I have two toddlers as well and it’s hard. Hang in there!

  7. Kristi

    June 13, 2017 at 10:44 pm

    I love this!! And number 3 is a lifesaver for us! We have to be out of the house by about 10am or we both come unhinged. Thanks for sharing mama! Love your blog!

    1. Alex

      June 14, 2017 at 8:42 am

      Yesss, my son goes stir crazy if we stay in the house all day, which then makes me go crazy! Thank you so much 🙂

  8. candy

    June 14, 2017 at 8:04 am

    I think your bonus tip was the best! GRACE is a five letter word that pulls every day together. We often leave the house too, even if it’s for a short neighborhood walk. Something about changing the environment really relaxes everyone.

    1. Alex

      June 14, 2017 at 8:41 am

      Thank you- it’s one I struggle with most but the most necessary- I have a whole post coming dedicated to just grace because it’s so huge for me! 🙂 Thanks for reading!

  9. annastasia

    June 19, 2017 at 6:14 pm

    I need to remember these for when or if we have another little one. One just seems so easy now that she is 2. Baby period is the worst for sleeplessness.

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