Our Favorite Items for the First Year
For all those to-be triplet moms who have been asking, I put together a comprehensive list of things I really loved in the first year. I linked everything to amazon (except the triplet table, which I linked elsewhere), because that’s where we bought everything (using prime, which I got for free as a new mom). Also, I am grateful to the triplet moms (Ashley and Meri) who GAVE me a number of these things. Ladies, thank you very much!!!
In no particular order:
1. We purchased inexpensive convertible carseats, not the infant ones. I can’t imagine spending more than $60 per seat. If you buy infant seats, you’ll end up spending twice as much to replace them after 6 months. If you only have one backseat, (and triplets) you CAN fit 3 carseats across, it’s just a little more expensive per seat (but they last longer, up to 65 lbs.).
2. Try pumping breast milk. I had a great pump, but I produced next to nothing and gave up in only a few weeks. I wish I would’ve tried longer.
3. Swaddling wraps are awesome for the first 3 months.
4. Get a sound machine or a loud fan for the babies’ room. We bought a CD player with ocean sounds. The sound machine blocks outside noise, reminding them of the womb and soothing them to sleep. Well-loved to this day (16 months).
5. Bouncers. Another must-have. We had 2 that were given to us from my lab mates, and we used them EVERY SINGLE DAY.
6. Rock-n-plays THE top of my must-have list. Great for all babies, and great if you have any reflux babies, too. Because you (hopefully) bought the rock-n-plays, you do not need to purchase mobiles for cribs, so skip them.
7. Around 3 months, you need a play gym, exersaucer and jumper. Not only do they keep the babies entertained for long periods, the exersaucer and jumper will keep them off their heads, preventing flatness (thank you, Ashley and Meri).
8. Younger than 5 months: You need 3 boppies so they can lie on them and bottles can be propped for feedings. If you are breastfeeding, these are great for support. Don’t stagger feedings – by 5 months the babies will get very upset that brother/sister is eating and not them, and as they get older, babies will attempt to steal bottles. Keep them on a schedule and it will lead to less crying and less fussiness as they get older, and know what to expect. Plus, it will make things easier for you, especially if they are napping at the same time and you can do other things.
9. Another must-have: sleep sacs. We started using them when the babies transitioned to cribs (in the same room), at 6 months. Now, at nearly a year and a half, we are STILL using them! We used them all summer, too, because they keep the babies snug, and Jackson loves to suck on his. Also, they restrict legs, and I’m convinced they’re keeping our crazy climber, William, from taking a fall.
10. We prefer the triplet table over the space savers or high chairs. We have both, and never use the space-savers/high chairs, but LOVE the triplet table. The space savers are annoying to clean because of the cloth, and were forever dirty. Our triplet table actually takes up less space than the savers did. Also, the table is MUCH easier to get them into, feed all at once at, and clean. We keep it in our small kitchen, tucked away, with a bench that slides under.
11. Buy a quad stroller, especially if you want to do things alone. We didn’t make this purchase, opting instead for a giant attention-getting tandem stroller that we HATED. We also bought this side-by-side triple jogger and use it every day. Buy a double and single because you and hubby will take them out together, and quickly prefer them. I don’t recommend a choo-choo unless you hardly ever walk, or live near a zoo you visit regularly. Also, the babies can’t nap in the choo-choo, and at some point, they may want to if they’re younger than a year. Still, the choo-choo is VERY popular among triplet moms (even though ours is gathering webs in the garage). Plus, my husband feels very uncomfortable because it’s so attention-grabbing.
12. Baby-proof the entire house with the best gates on the market. Why? Because triplets move in packs. I wondered how people could need 5+ gates, but here we are with 7. We blocked off the kitchen because we rent. We ended up buying 4 superyards (approx $200), 1 for the TV and fireplace, 3 for the outside set-up, and 3 additional gates to keep babies from the 2 openings in the kitchen and the hallway (approx. $150) You’ll spend so much more than you ever planned. Of course, buy the best of the best for stairs. Don’t go cheap because three babies will push over anything not sturdy. Invest in gates that mount to the wall for even better staying power, not pressure-mounted.
13. Buy a hoky because the floors get dirty fast, and you can’t vacumn as much as you want. You’ll be thankful for it after they start feeding themselves and food gets all over your nice floors/carpet, too. Plus, as babies get older, you can’t vacuum while they’re around because they either freak, or go after the cord/outlet, or the noise disrupts their naps. But with the hoky, they’ll follow you around, enjoying every minute.
14. Do some kind of outside set-up if you have a yard. We ended up buying 3 super yard gates and making a huge circle that connected to the patio door. We put down indoor-outdoor carpet. A giant sun-shade completed the area. Every evening, the babies would take baths in the kiddie pool. When this is possible, forget the bathtub (unless you like lots of screaming, slipping, and lower back pain). I filled the kiddie pool with buckets of warm water and they loved climbing in and out of it, and were endlessly entertained by the whole outdoor experience.
15. We liked the book Babywise (thank you, Ashley). We had sooo many books, but this was out favorite for multiples.
This is all I can think of for now. I would recommend checking out craigslist and sales for multiples in your area. No need to buy everything new!