Get out of the house! Yes, you will be tired- especially early on. Once your twins are on the same schedule and even more when they are sleeping through the night, you will find you have enough energy to get out of the house.
In many ways this step is just as important for the parents as it is for the children. You are able to maintain some semblance of your previous life while fully embracing the wonderful new changes.
As we stated in our first tip, babies and children have no preconceived notions. They are a clean slate and learn from their experiences and environment. They are inherently adaptable. You have to take advantage of this adaptability early on. The more your twins’ environment changes early on the more normal it becomes for them. Conversely, if they sleep in the same dark room or swing with music playing every nap and night for months, they won’t adapt as easily to a new environment.
How do you get out of the house with 2 little babies? Once they are on the same reliable schedule, it is (pardon the pun) “child’s play.” The daily schedule becomes so reliable that you can plan your trips around their nap schedules. By this I mean that you go out when you know the little ones will be falling asleep for their next 2 hour nap. This is enough time to go to the store, out to eat, or even to a movie. There is always a chance you may have to make a hasty retreat, but don’t let your fear of this keep you from trying. You will be rewarded for your efforts more often than not.
Once our girls schedules were in sync (tip #1), we immediately took advantage. We were frequently going out to eat and to the movies by 2 months of age. We did a 5 hour road trip about the same time. We did a 10 hour road trip at 10wks of age. We traveled to Europe at 4 months. Our girls quickly adapted to our wants and needs. They have had no difficulty sleeping under very different conditions- sleeping in the car/train/plane, in their cribs, in pack-n-plays, in infant tents, on the floor, sleeping in dark rooms, sleeping in bright rooms, etc. Barring illness and jet lag (we have tips for both), our twins have not had any problems sleeping regardless of the circumstances.
The more you challenge your twins by changing their environment and experiences, the more readily they will adapt in the future. This allows them to be better behaved simply because it becomes routine. A changing environment in normal for them so they are less affected by the change in surroundings.
Getting out of the house with your twins will build your confidence. Every trip you take with your children gets all of you more comfortable with the process. It will embolden you to go out more often and the practice at packing what you need over and over will aid you for longer, more complex travel plans. This helps the entire family prepare for travel with twins.