God bless the moms with two kids under the age of 2 (and therefore, two kids in diapers, cribs, and strollers). Good wine and strong support systems aside, here are our top suggestions for controlling the chaos.
1. A stroller that functions as a single or a double. “This way you can stroll them together, or ‘Wear One, Wheel One,” explains our Gear Guy, Jamie Grayson. Jamie’s picks: the new Britax B-Ready, the Uppababy Vista with RumbleSeat attachment, or the ubiquitous Phil & Teds inline buggies.
3. A double video monitor. The new Multiview Handheld Color Video Monitor from Summer Infant can be set to scan between two rooms every 8 seconds.(Just because you’ll be obsessively watching to see whether your newborn is breathing doesn’t mean you’ll lose interest in your toddler’s bedtime antics.) $269 at diapers.com.
4. Clothing labels. Mabel’s Labels will help the sitter, housekeeper, dad, and grandparents keep track of whose stuff is whose. (It’s surprising how similar in size a 6-month and an 18-month romper can look.)
5. A play gate. One alternative to constantly telling your toddler to “stay away” from the baby is to use a Superyard play gate while the little one is napping in the bouncy or doing tummy time. $69.99 at target.com.
6. A pair of white noise machines. Put one in the “Big Kid” room, to ensure your toddler isn’t woken by middle-of-the-night newborn shrieks; the second goes in the nursery, to keep you from constantly reminding your toddler, “Shhh, the baby’s sleeping.” $19.99 at homedics.com.