Welcome to How Do You Do It?, a blog by and for moms of multiples. We tell it like it is. We talk about the day-to-day realities, joys and challenges of raising twins, triplets and more.
You can read about how we do it and how, sometimes, we just don’t. We tell you how we mothers of multiples make the most of help from family, friends and the larger community, talk about the handy tools that have helped us long the way, and share the mommy issues that are often magnified when raising several kids all the same age, many of whom were born prematurely.
Some of the moms are currently expecting twins, whether this is our first pregnancy or their fourth. Others have multiples in elementary school. Many of our multiples were born premature, and several of us have preemie singletons too. We represent large families and small, include married and single moms, and span the continuum from stay-at-home moms to mothers with demanding full-time careers outside the family. We’re a special needs mom, several NICU veterans, a loss mom, an adoptive mom later in life, and moms from around the world. We’ve made it through infertility, high risk pregnancy, difficult childbirth, prematurity, developmental delays and continue to rise to the challenges that come our way.
We accept guest posts by parents of twin, triplets or more or on topics specific to raising multiples.
Learn about the moms of How Do You Do It?
2cuteblog, also known as Mama and Mommee to her two twin toddlers, lives in Ottawa Canada along with her husband, Mr. Mama. After staying at home with Mister and Missy for close to two years, she is back at work fulltime and trying to maintain some work/life balance. She is always looking for ways to stretch a dollar for children’s items and family-friendly activities – including travelling with toddlers in tow! In her blog posts, you will find advice for first-time parents, stories about her twins, and the places they go, things they do. Visit her personal blog 2Cute – Adventures in Twin Parenting or follow her on Twitter@2cuteblog to find out what they’re doing next!
Angela is a stay-at-home mom raising surviving triplets. She lost her first-born triplet, Carter, after 49 days, and her survivors, B & T, keep her pretty busy with their ongoing needs as a result of their prematurity. She manages to find time for her business and personal blog. Her tagline ‘Mom of Triplets. Lost One. Survived & Sharing’ is her goal in blogging and she aims to share with others that it’s possible to survive after loss. She and her husband live in the Houston, TX suburb of Cypress. She also blogs at Thirty-One:10.
Beth was happily raising her now 4 year old daughter and planning for one more when the doctor said that he saw 2 good sacs. Her boy/girl twins we born at 35 weeks, he naturally, easily, after 4 pushes. His drama queen sister turned transverse and then her placenta separated, leading to her delivery by C-section (with Beth under general anesthesia). Thanks to post delivery eclampsia, Beth met her twins when they were 26 hours old. Now those days are just a memory and the twins are crazy and funny. Crawling all over the house chasing big sister, reading books, knocking over towers and cuddling are favorite activities. Beth’s challenge is to balance a preschooler, 1 year old twins, her DIY obsession, and a full time job as a college professor, while finding time to occasionally vacuum to feed her OCD side. Beth blogs at Pickles in My Tea and in My Soup.
Carrie, mother to 17 month old twin boys, has presently traded a lab coat for mom jeans to be a SAHM. As a research scientist, Carrie was used to problem solving and troubleshooting small tasks while keeping big picture goals in sight. As a mom, she has found her job to be quite similar. While repeating the mantras “don’t sweat the small stuff” and “this too shall pass”, Carrie and her husband managed to survive the first year as twin parents. As this second year progresses, Carrie is enjoying the small freedoms and enjoyable moments that come with toddlerhood. Carrie and her family (including dogs and cats) live in the Bay Area and enjoy good weather, good produce and good times. Carrie enjoys documenting life as a twin mom with the hopes that her stories and insights will make other peoples journey just a touch easier.
Dana is the Queen of her castle in the Pacific NW, with her husband and three boys (two rambunctious identical twin 7 year olds, and her sweet, cuddly toddler). She is a full time working mama, a feminist, an optimist, and a fiercely loyal friend. Her favorite word is GRACE and her daily mantra as of late is “live simply”. With such a crazy and amazing life happening all around her, she finds balance in her yoga practice and occasional morning runs in the fog. She loves reading mommy blogs and connecting with the wisdom of others.
Dory lives in Richmond, Virginia, with her husband Tim, dog Lucy, and cat Toby. Her fraternal boy/girl twins were born in November 2013. She used to be an elementary school teacher, but is now going to be a SAHM, where she focuses on her blog Doyle Dispatch and her craft business Personally Yours by Dory. Dory started blogging in 2009 to document her DIY wedding-on-a-budget, and she has continued blogging past the wedding to document her family life, budgeting and stay-out-of debt adventures, home decorating, and DIY projects and tutorials. In the past months, Dory has really enjoyed documenting and writing about her twin pregnancy, helping other soon-to-be twin moms though the totally new experience of a multiple pregnancy.
Margie is happily married and the proud momma of fraternal, red-headed twins Wesley and Andrew. She has her Bachelor’s Degree in Environmental Science and went from a full-time to part-time federal worker when her boys were born in 2009. Margie is an active member of her local Mothers of Multiples organization and finds that the friendships she’s made with other moms of multiples have been a huge support thoughout the “twinsanity” of life. When she’s not completely exhausted, Margie forces herself to go for runs and tries to eat healthy. She loves Christmas and anything chocolate, and she enjoys the outdoors, cooking, being crafty and snuggling on the couch with her family and 3 dogs. Margie is the author of Double the Giggles.
Janna lives in Portland, Oregon with a lazy border collie named Cru, her husband and 5 year-old, identical twin boys born at 38 weeks, each weighing over 7 pounds. She works from home as a writer and editor and loves outdoor adventures, holidays, simple living and old historic buildings. She counts list making as a favorite hobby and fully believes the Lochness Monster is real.
Jeanene and her husband Kelly are raising a “second set” of kids together. They have six children by birth between them, ages 17 to nearly 30 (his two daughters, her four sons) and are now parenting their boy/girl “functional” twins, Isaiah and Zoe. Isaiah was 4 months old when Zoe was born. Both kids came home as newborns in 2011, and were adopted from foster care on National Adoption Day, November 17, 2012! She shares the perspective of raising multiples through adoption. She also speaks from the position of raising kids as “older parents,” something that Jeanene and her hubby have found is becoming a more and more common experience. Jeanene is a passionate landscape, wedding, and portrait photographer, but has put the business side of photography on hold to focus on the special needs of her kiddos as a SAHM. Her days are now spent in a mixture of play, occupational therapy, and everyday life with two year olds running around. Think messy! When she has time, she enjoys casual photography, hiking, fly fishing, hunting, reading, writing and working researching the best ways to meet the needs of her sensory challenged kiddos! She blogs about foster parenting, adoption, and life with two toddlers at A Miraculous Mess.
Katelyn is a stay-at-home mom to three year old fraternal twin girls, Lisa and Alison, and a brand new baby boy, named Michael. She is enjoying having a newborn again and also loving the dynamics (so far) of having kids of different ages. When Katelyn isn’t playing or taking care of her kids, she’s often reading a book, blogging, watching a movie, or taking care of business. She’s also a talented artist, a Sunday School teacher to a group of 6-year old kids, a supportive spouse to her graduate student/math teacher husband, and a musician. She works hard to have a clean house, great preschoolers, and a happy home. She shares bits of advice and much of her life over at her personal blog What’s up Fagan’s?
Lindsay is a stay-at-home mom to 3-year old twin boys (a.k.a. the twinadoes), and loving it more than she ever thought possible. When not chasing after her overly active kids or tending to their many needs (a.k.a. naptime), she loves to organize the playroom and cook for her family. As a nutritionist she enjoys finding new ways to get her toddlers to eat healthy and coming up with healthier recipes for traditionally not-so-healthy meals. She blogs at Chaos and the Kitchen.
lunchldyd is mom to 11 month old boy/girl twins and their 3.5 year old sister. She has returned to her job as a high school English teacher after being a SAHM for a year. When not at work and the kids are asleep, she is addicted to watching TV and sometimes sacrifices sleep to read in bed. She lives in a now-too-small house in the Los Angeles suburbs with her husband, three kids, and two dogs.
MandyE is the mother of 4 ½-year old fraternal twin girls, Baby A and Baby B. (And yes, their names actually start with the letters A and B!) She worked in the marketing field for nine years before her girls were born, but these days she’s relishing the opportunity to be a SAHM, which she plans to continue until the girls start kindergarten. MandyE has been blogging at Twin Trials and Triumphs since her girls were a year old. Between her blog and her local Mothers of Multiples group, she considers the multiples community a huge part of her support system.
MarisaB is the proud mother of year old boy/girl twins, Jack and Mara. A recent stay at home mom, she left her job in corporate communications to raise her very active–and curious–twins. A former adjunct English professor, MarisaB and her husband, Steven, live in the Philadelphia area. When she isn’t blogging about the trials and tribulations of being a new twin momma, she enjoys reading, cooking, attempting to knit, jogging, enjoying a nightly glass of wine, and spending time with her family at the Jersey Shore. MarisaB loves talking with other twin moms, so drop her a line at MarisaBtwins@gmail.com.
Marissa is mom to fraternal twin boys, born in January 2012. While one of them has special needs and the other does not, they are both pretty amazing. Marissa majored in linguistics, served in the Peace Corps, worked with autistic children, and was half-way through nursing school before being put on bed-rest during her pregnancy. While she hopes to someday finish nursing school, it seems like she couldn’t have asked for a better background when fate handed her two awesome boys.
Yetunde-Olusola was born, raised and married in Lagos Nigeria, had twin girls in Houston, Texas and is currently raising them in Calgary, Canada while balancing an engineering career on the side. So I guess if you had to put a label on that you can say she’s an expat, working mother of Sugar and Spice (The Twins). She started blogging at mytwintopia blog when her twin girls were born and loves to share tips and resources based on her personal parenting experiences in the hopes that she stops some frazzled twin parent from re-inventing the wheel. She doesn’t do a lot of crafts and recipes and tends to be fairly concise with words. She blames all that on her introverted alter-ego.
RebeccaD has 8 month old fraternal twin boys, R and M. She’s a teacher-turned-SAHM in San Francisco who loves dance, quilting, and geeking out over DIY projects. Having twins is challenging her perfectionism in the best possible way.
Sadia (rhymes with Nadia) has been coordinating How Do You Do It? since late 2012. She is the mother of 7-year-old monozygotic twins, M and J. She lives with them and their 3 cats in the Austin, TX suburbs and works full time as a business analyst. She co-parents at a distance with her soldier ex-husband and his teacher wife. She decided to retire her personal blog, Double the Fun, when the girls entered elementary school in order to better protect their privacy, and was delighted to have the opportunity to keep a foot in the blogosphere through HDYDI. She also blogs at Adoption.com and Multicultural Mothering.
Sara is a Toronto, Canada based writer and working mom of multiples. Her blog, Multiple Momstrosity was named one on Toronto Mom Now’s 2012 Top 30 Mom Blogs. She is a two time veteran of the Three Day Novel Writing Contest and has written an unpublished novel, This is You Without Me. She lives in “The Junction” with her husband Chris and spontaneous fraternal toddler twins (Molly& Jack).
Sarah is a stay-at-home mom to 2-year-old Cameron, and fraternal twin boys, Jackson and Benson, who are under 1. She graduated from Brigham Young University with a BA in Dance and teaches ballet lessons part time. Her husband is in his second year of medical school and part of the United States Air Force. When free time pops up she enjoys digital scrap booking, reading, bubble baths, and dates with her husband. And let’s be honest, wasting time surfing Pinterest, Facebook, and Instagram is a great way to stay awake during those nighttime feedings! She hopes that she can provide a realistic, but very up beat voice about life with twins, and ultimately motherhood in general.
Carolyn is the full time working, volunteering, keeping active, Canadian mom of 3 year old twin boys and a 5 year old boy. Carolyn was introduced to the world of parenting in a rush, with the sudden arrival of her 31 weeker firstborn. Two years later, her twin boys thought they’d show up their older brother and showed their little faces at 27 weeks and in just as much of a hurry as their big brother! In just shy of two years Carolyn experienced the NICU twice for three little ones. The biggest lesson she took away from their NICU experiences was a lesson in patience. Carolyn learned to slow down, breathe and focus on the things that mattered; her little boys, her husband, her family. Although her twins experienced many hurdles while working their way through the NICU and she took them to close to two hundred appointments in that first year, Carolyn took time to reach out to the “preemie” community, which spans the globe. The unusual experience of having preemies and multiples has opened up all kinds of unique opportunities Carolyn never knew existed until she started her family. Carolyn has joined organizations promoting premature birth awareness, multiple-births awareness, chairs Multiple Births Canada’s Preterm Birth Support Network, writes a monthly newsletter for the Network, blogs and guest blogs, all in the name of NICU, preterm birth and multiple birth awareness. You can check out her blog at Twintrospectives.
Goddess in Progress is a first-time mom to boy/girl twins, Daniel & Rebecca, born August 2007, followed by singleton Ellie. She left a lovely but not-so-lucrative career in higher education to be a stay-at-home mom for the forseeable future. Originally from Chicago, she now lives outside of Boston with her husband, two kids, a dog, a yard, and a minivan. How very suburban! Back when she had spare time, she enjoyed cooking (baking, in particular), and crafty things like knitting, crochet, and quilting. She remembers those days somewhat fondly, but wouldn’t trade all the fresh cookies in the world for her twins. She blogs all about it at Goddess in Progress.
As a first-time mom to twins, Jonathan and Faith, Krissy can honestly say she had no idea what life would be like post-infertility. When she got her first glimpse at the two little heartbeats, she thought “Twins! How cool! But now I will need two of everything!” Little did she know how little she knew! Her background is in the field of aging, and she has a particular fondness for persons with Alzheimer’s or other dementias. Working in a senior center, adult day care and assisted living facilities helped some what to prepare her for the constant multi-tasking needed to juggle the demands of her two kiddos. Krissy enjoys eating out with her husband, hiking, taking the kids on walks, blogging, reading, baking (loves to get fancy with her sugar cookies!) and of course, spending as much time with her girlfriends as possible. Visit her family at Two Are Better Than One.
Cynthia has always enjoyed having a plan and takes enormous comfort in making to-do lists. Never known for her ability to “go with the flow”, Cynthia and her carefully-laid plans were thrown for a loop when her 6-week ultrasound showed (surprise!) twins. With 3 kids, a dog, and a full-time job, Cynthia is actually more relaxed than she has ever been. Even with her minivan, slightly dusty furniture and often un-styled hair. Cynthia spends most of her free time doting on her children. But once they are asleep, this multiple-mama keeps sane by having date nights with her husband, girl nights with her friends, and “me” nights with a good glass of wine and mindless television. Follow the Journey on her personal blog.
Laura N is very familiar with the question, “How do you do it?” but is more often asked, “Are they all YOURS?” Let’s face it, pushing a quad stroller full of toddlers attracted a fair amount of attention, especially when there was another child walking alongside it. Laura jokes about being a celebrity among members of her Moms of Multiples group, as people often approach her and ask, “Are you the mom with the two sets of twins?” So far, nobody has asked for her autograph. The truth is, raising two sets of twins close in age (and a teenager!) can be pretty overwhelming, and having a sense of humor about the situation has helped Laura get through some of the darker days. One of the darkest days was several years ago, when one of her twins was diagnosed with autism. Since then, Laura’s learned a whole lot about early childhood intervention. When she isn’t writing at Twinfinite Chaos and Autism is Beautiful, she spends her days playing Mr. Potato Head, listening to Laurie Berkner songs, and trying to pick up the house faster than her children destroy it.
American Wife is a rockin’ mama to three lovely little ladies, Peyton and Clarity & Moxie (born Sept ’07). She currently resides just outside of Baltimore, though born and raised in Pennsylvania. Her husband looks better in jeans than she does, but believe-you-me she is working on that! Spare time? What is that again? Oh yes, for hobbies and stuff. In her “spare time” she enjoys knitting, playing Guitar Hero, photography, and listening to music (not simultaneously!). Her favorite things in life (after family of course!) are her tattoos, bananas, music, rainy days, and elephants. You can read more of American Wife’s c-c-crazy adventures and thoughts over at american-wife.blogspot.com.
CraftyLissa was always destined to drive a minivan – her first vehicle was her parents’ maroon GMC Safari. Now her love for minivans is finally considered normal, as mommy to twin boys, Jack and Nathan. She, husband and the two boys live in Kansas City where they don’t love barbeque quite as much as one would stereotypically think. CraftyLissa works full-time outside the home, runs her own side business and yet still tries to sneak in a little craftiness every now and then by knitting, sewing, and digitally scrapbooking. She is currently addicted to Lost and Project Runway and blogs about her twins at Adventures of a Twin Mommy.
In the span of one crazy year, LauraC had major ear surgery, her husband started a new job, moved from Chicago to Raleigh, got pregnant on the first try, found out 18 weeks later it was two boys, bought their first house, spent 14 weeks on bed rest, and birthed healthy premature fraternal twin boys in May 2006. Most days, being a working mom with a traveling husband and twin toddlers is even crazier than that. She spends way too much of her free time keeping up with her favorite bed rest shows, contemplating exercise, drinking wine, listening to NPR, and writing her not-so-deep thoughts at Laura’s Mommy Journal.
TraceyS is the un-seasoned mother to Abel and Oskar, born at the end of January ’07. Originally from Chicago, this self-proclaimed nomad finally settled in Austin, Texas with her super-husband, and yellow lab Matilda. One week after giving birth to her boys, TraceyS decided not to go back to work as a historic building preservationist, but to spend her days with her rambunctious duo. She squeezes in her love of photography at every opportunity she can. And when the wanderlust calls…she packs up her men and off they go! She blogs at www.babysilverman.blogspot.com.
Originally from Portland, CarrieinAK fell in love with an Alaskan boy during a not-so-fun epidemiology class in graduate school. Shortly after graduation, she packed up her outdoor gear and beloved KitchenAid mixer and set out to start a new adventure in the Last Frontier. The adventure got much more interesting when CarrieinAK and her handsome husband added identical twin boys, Finn and Reid, to their family in January 2007. This full-time working momma enjoys strong coffee, making lists and planting flowers in the springtime. She has zero tolerance for movies that last longer than an hour, pumping her own gasoline and communities without curbside recycling. Her boys (all three!) are the light of her life and, in a perfect world, there would be more hours in the day to read Karen Katz books together. CarrieinAK’s personal blog can be found at The Adventures of Carrie, Brook, Finn and Reid.
After two years of infertility, Rebecca‘s six week ultrasound showed two heartbeats! Thirty weeks later, on Easter 2007, Danny and Abigail made their way into the world. Nothing has been the same since! Part doctoral student, part social worker, part stay at home mom (with none of those parts sleeping through the night), Rebecca’s life often feels like a delicate, complicated balancing act. So far it hasn’t collapsed! She gets through the days with an organizational system of who does what when that frightens her husband (although he rarely admits it) and an intricate schedule of who does what when. When possible, she loves to fit in some yoga, time with friends, a good cooking project, a fun novel or just a quiet Saturday hanging out with hubby and the kiddos.
Fully-embracing the M.O.M. (Mother of Multiples) experience since her twins’ conception, Cheryl has gleefully transitioned from full-time video post-production maven to home-based mom and telecommuting writer/editor. With her twins Darren and Sarah now too big for their DuoGlider, Cheryl’s dicovered she genuinely misses the “Are they identical?” question from strangers. With he-child now outsizing his little (by seven minutes) sister, Cheryl has discovered the new oft-repeated onlooker declaration, “But they’re not twins!” requires comparable composure and personal restraint. When not expounding upon the adventures of twin parenting, Cheryl enjoys reading, giving museum tours, and participating in her adult church discussion group. Above all else, she prefers hanging out with dreamy husband, Scott, and of course, the twins. Learn more about them by visiting www.Twinfatuation.blogspot.com.
When Emomily isn’t changing a diaper or three, throwing clothes in the laundry or making yet another trip to Target, she enjoys sleeping, taking a quick shower and doing dishes. (Okay, she really does not enjoy doing dishes. But she would give up chocolate for a year to get more than 5 hours of uninterrupted sleep!) She is a former corporate software marketing drone who is now a happy SAHM to three kids. Katie was born July ’05 and fraternal twins Nate and Josh, who will turn joined her in September ’07. She advises all of you women out there not to contemplate moving 400 miles when 7 months pregnant with twins nor to move into your new home the day you bring your babies home from the hospital. It kinda sucked. You can read more about her adventures at The Mencken Mob.
Twinmom122606 is a stay-at-home-mom to 3 beautiful girls, a wonderful loving husband & 2 dogs (a sheltie and a chocolate lab) that aren’t very fond of 3 children chasing them around all day long. Her oldest daughter, Hannah, is a great big sister to Sarah & Samantha, identical twin girls, born December 26, 2006. She found out at 8 weeks that she was expecting identical twins (talking about a BIG surprise) …and at 15 weeks that they were girls. She was pursuing her degree at The University of Houston, in hopes of becoming an elementary school teacher…but when she became pregnant with the twins her doctor recommended that she drop out for the semester. In her free time she loves to blog, play in the backyard with her girls, shop, read gossip magazines, read other blogs about multiples & hang out with other moms of multiples. If you would like to read more about her family adventures, you can visit her personal blog at themyershouse.com.
Stacey (aka Snickollet) is the single mom of two-year-old boy/girl twins Riley and Madeleine. Stacey is a Managing Editor by day, and thus practices the art of multitasking both at work and at home. “Free time” is pretty much a foreign concept at casa Snickollet, but Stacey and the twins do find ways to spend time outdoors, hang out with friends, and enjoy elaborate games of pretend. You can keep up with the day-to-day adventures of Stacey, Madeleine, and Riley at Stacey’s personal blog, www.snickollet.blogspot.com.
Shawn is the mom of twin girls, who are 2.5, and blog owner of Between the Lines and The Chunky Purse, a frugal blog. A career journalist, she returned to work only to off-ramp after four months, and after nearly two years of being a stay at home mom who worked at home, she is now preparing to on-ramp back into the workforce for a job she didn’t apply for. When she’s not writing or mothering or being a wife, she can be found drinking wine, reading books or walking in nature.
Rachael at Little Bites of Heaven is the mother of 4. Lydia was born in 1996 & the peaches (triplets) James, Ella & Cameron, completed the set in 2007. She and her husband, John, have been married since 2004. Their wacky adventures are documented at www.schiranotriplets.blogspot.com.
FIVE FUN FACTS ABOUT RACHAEL
- As a life long resident of Central Illinois, Rachael has been able to travel to Paris, Kansas, and San Jose without crossing the state line.
- The age difference between Rachael and her youngest sibling is equal to the difference between Lydia and the triplets (11 years).
- Rachael can spell antidisestablishmentarianism. It is more effective when presented orally…
- Though her hobbies, for the most part, have been limited to repetitive singing of Old MacDonald, toy sharing regulation, and embarrassing dancing for the purposes of distraction, Rachael has uncovered a passion for photography. In an effort to stimulate the lagging economy, she recently purchased a brand new camera and began exploring the art form. She currently employs three young, up and coming models.
- For the moment she is a SAHM, however the dreaded inevitable return to work is drawing near. The world is currently short one group health insurance agent and someone must step up to the plate…
Rachel, the birth mom in a two-mommy household, carried the twins to 37 weeks exactly, born April 2008. Which is the last time she can remember finishing something early. Unwittingly, her partner, Jennifer, and she stumble upon opportunities to breakdown stereotypes of a two-mom family in and through their involvement with church, their local mothers-of-multiples group, and in dealing with health care providers, to name a few. Other than that, they find the biggest difference between their family and more conventional ones is that, absent social mores that traditionally dictate parenting roles, the household chores and child care responsibilities are more easily and equitably distributed. The downside of this for Rachel, however, is the mowing the lawn and taking out the trash. Both mom’s work full-time outside the home, Rachel as a Financial Analyst, and Jennifer as a golf professional. But their most rewarding career is being Mommy and Matou to their boy/girl twins. Their journey is chronicled on Rachel’s blog, Motherhood Squared.
Natasha is mum of three year old fraternal twins Leila and Rahul. She moved to Koh Samui, Thailand with her children after spending 7 years in China. Her husband travels back and forth because work is in China. She has started practicing her yoga more regularly again, and even teaches a few classes a week, after a three year break. She blogs at her personal site Our Little Yogis and at Multicultural Mothering.