I literally have to pinch myself every day to believe that I am now a mum of three kids and a dog! Sometimes I still feel like a kid myself. So to think, I am a mum with all this responsibility, is mind boggling. To tell you the truth, at the moment life is busy, chaotic, tiring and messy, but all in all, it is good and filled with so much love!
Personally I found the jump from one to two kids harder than the jump from two to three… but can I say that only being seven weeks in? We have already learnt how to be a team, how to juggle and multitask and how to be super organised. I’m sure things will change as Brooklyn starts moving, crawling, walking, grabbing things, eating, etc. But for now, I feel like we are in a pretty good place. Better than both Jase and I would have expected seven weeks into having a new born a 4.5 year old and a 3 year old.
If you are wondering how you are going to juggle it all, or you are struggling with managing everything, if you haven’t already read my article, The Jump from One to Two Kids. My Survival Tips, I suggest you do, as I go into detail on my top tips to survive it all;
1. Don’t be afraid to ask for help.
2. Don’t be afraid to use formula.
3. The baby-carrier is your best friend!
4. Be prepared to breastfeed or bottle feed wherever you are.
5. Make sure to carry snacks, nappies, baby wipes and spare clothes on you at all times.
6. Do your best to time your kids sleeps/rest so you can have them both down at the same time.
7. Don’t be afraid to turn on the tv.
However, there is one big one missing from the list above which I have found absolutely essential this time around. And that is…
ORGANISATION IS KEY!
These are my tips to being super organised so you can manage the chaos of multiple kids.
- Pre-prepare healthy snacks the night before: If I know I will be home with the three kids on my own or heading out on an adventure, I always make sure to pre-prepare healthy snacks the night before. It’s so easy to grab a packet of something from the pantry, but having pre-chopped fruit and veg in containers is a game changer to too much-processed food.
- Lay out their PJs and towels ready for bath/shower time before mad hour hits: I do this during the day when I have a spare moment. Just in case I need to do shower time one-handed if the baby is unsettled (like tonight), at least it’s all there and ready to go.
- Make sure to have lots of different lunch and dinner items in the freezer: I’m not going to lie here, I’m a terrible cook and I don’t actually enjoy it. So, I go to my butcher and I freeze easy things. Pre-made meals. No brainer items, I can just take out, defrost and add some veggies to. Don’t make your life harder than it needs to be.
- Shop online: Plan ahead on a Sunday and work out what you will have for dinners during the week. I do my supermarket shopping online and my fruit and veg online. The only way to do it so you don’t have to head to a supermarket midweek is to plan ahead. Meat is the only one that I don’t do online. But between Jase and I, one of us usually gets out over the weekend. And that’s something easy to keep in the freezer too.
- Don’t let the washing get on top of you: I literally do on average now two loads a day! I just always like to stay on top of it.
- Lists and Reminders: Make lists on your phone of things you need to do the next day. Have a running shopping list on your phone so you can add to it as you think of something you need. I seriously wouldn’t remember my head if it wasn’t screwed on. So I make a list for everything and set reminders in my phone with alerts for everything! How else do you remember things these days?
- SLEEP: Make sure to organise your time so you have time to sleep. This is crucial to survival. Without sleep we feel like shit and struggle to function. Jase and I were passing ships the first 4-6 weeks. I would sleep when the big kids went to sleep at 7/7.30pm and I literally think that’s what got me through. That extra couple of hours sleep were amazing! And now Jase gives Brooklyn a bottle of expressed breast milk at 11pm each night, so I pump at 9ish and am asleep by 9.30/10pm.
- If you ever want to get out the door on a school/daycare morning try and get these done:
- Prepare school lunches the night before
- Put out the kids clothes the night before
- Pack their school bag the night before
- Put out your clothes the night before
- Put the pram/baby carrier in the car the night before
- Decide what you will make for breakfast the night before
- Wake the baby up to get a feed in before you have to do school drop offs
Yep that’s right, I try my best to do all of this! I find it is literally the only way I can get out the door to get the kids to kinder on time! In saying that, Jase is a bloody gun of a husband and the team work in our house is amazing! So I guess that’s another tip, train your hubby well. Make sure he is hands-on too. I couldn’t get it done without his endless amount of help.
Might I just add, by no means, does this list equal no tantrums and tears, but it does mean that if and when they happen, you are ready for it and can hopefully still get out the door!
Since starting to write this blog post, I have chatted to a couple of friends who have had three kids and some agree with me and some strongly disagree with me and think the jump from two to three was way harder. I guess it comes down to a number of factors, one being the age difference between the kids. For us, Harper and Paxton are 18 months apart whereas Paxton and Brooks are nearly three years apart. Other factors include your kids; how your toddler/ older kids cope with the new baby, what stage they are going through, easy or hard to manage baby, good vs bad sleepers, reflux baby, the list goes on. This is purely my opinion and my experience. Just remember, we are all different and what works for one may not work for someone else.
In saying that, I hope these tips help you guys. Having three young kids at times isn’t easy, but it is SO worth it! Just don’t let things get on top of you. If you are feeling anxious or depressed, make sure to speak up to your loved ones or to a professional and get some help before things get too bad.
Just remember, some days will be easy and some will be hard. Try to laugh it off if you have all three kids crying or tantruming at once. It will pass. They are only little for such a short amount of time, so try to enjoy them and not to wish it all away too quickly.
If anyone else has any great tips with how to stay on top of things, I’d love to hear from you.
Go mamas!! You are doing awesome.
PS. I am super excited that this article was also published on KIDSPOT .