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Starting solids is one of those great milestones in your twin babies’ lives. It takes them from babies into little people that suddenly have likes and dislikes.
One of the best things you can do before you start down the path to starting solids with twins is to get prepared as much as you can – mentally and physically.
Suddenly a whole lot of new things are added into your already busy day, which when you have twins, is full enough already.
If you’re like me and want to prepare your own foods, there is the food prep time plus it is MESSY x 2 which adds more cleaning and washing – see what I mean by mentally ready???
Are Your Twins Ready for Starting Solid Food?
Firstly, you have to know that your twins are ready – and remember that they may not be ready at the same time.
They should be:
- Around six months of age (adjusted age) to ensure their digestive system is developed enough to process the food.
- Able to support their head and neck well
- Interested in watching you eat – reaching out for the food or make open mouth or chewing movements while you’re eating.
- Seem hungry after their milk feeds or demanding milk more often
- When you offer a spoon, they open their mouth and don’t push their tongue forwards and push the food out.
These milestones may happen at different times for each twin.
When Does Solid Food Replace Milk?
Milk – either breastmilk or formula is still the most important food for your twins’ growth and development until they are around 8-9 months old.
It is important that you offer milk first and then solid food, to ensure they are getting all the nutritional elements they require from their milk before filling up on other food.
Once your twins get to around 8 months you can swap it to food first, milk second.
Getting Prepared to Starting Solids with Twins
A vegetable steamer – steaming the vegetables and fruit will minimize nutrient loss and maximize the flavor. Just ensure they are cooked to a soft texture that will puree to a completely smooth consistency.
A stick blender that will create completely smooth purees.
Ice trays – LOTS – you can batch make your purees and then freeze them. It makes life much easier.
A great baby weaning book for ideas such as Annabel Karmel’s Complete Baby & Toddler Meal Planner.
Baby spoons and bowls
Bibs – large is better. I loved the Cotton On ones.
Washcloths to wipe faces and hands and arms and hair and…….
Cloth Nappies to go everywhere bibs don’t reach
Baby Wipes to quickly clean the wall/floor/ceiling from food splatters
A large fabric shower curtain can be placed under the two high chairs. After each meal, you can pick it up with all the crumbs/food splatter and shake it outside for the birds, and at the end of each day just throw it in the washing machine. No need to get down and scrub floors or floor mats.
A bucket with your favorite stain remover and water in it so you can quickly put any soiled clothes in it. Pear and banana are seriously bad for staining clothes so get them soaking as soon as possible.
You will start having lots of clothes changes in a day – a good excuse for more baby clothes shopping.
During the warmer months – feed them outside. Far less stressful! I think the bird population doubled around my house when my girls were little. They were the best-fed birds in the neighborhood!
Tips on High chairs for Twins
To start with your babies may be too small to sit in a highchair safely and comfortably so you will want something to sit them in such as a Bumbo on the floor/ Twin Z Pillow etc). They need to be sitting upright to avoid choking.
When looking for highchairs some things to think about are:
Narrow foot base – you will have TWO of these monstrosities taking up your kitchen/dining/lounge for a good year so don’t go for high chairs that have a really wide foot base as they just take up more room. It is also easier to have your twins sitting as close to each other as possible to minimize mess and for ease of feeding.
Minimal corners/edges/seams – baby food goes EVERYWHERE so the more nooks and crannies you have in your highchair – the longer it will take to get that spag bol cleaned up. And remember you have TWO to clean.
Easy to wash – the best ones are the chairs you can hose down or chuck in the shower.
These IKEA high chairs are the ones I used and lots of other twin mamas use them as well. They tick all the boxes above and are really portable.
Great first foods are steamed and pureed to smooth carrots, sweet potato, and parsnip and apple, pear, and banana. If you are concerned about possible allergies then stick to one food at a time for three days to evaluate if there are any digestive upsets before introducing a new food.
You can then start introducing new foods every few days and start to offer combinations such as pear and banana, pumpkin, and carrot.
There are LOTS of great websites and books on starting solids so spend some time with Mr. Google before you get started so you have a bit of a game plan.
Best of luck – it’s a very exciting time and hopefully, I have helped to make it that little easier and less stressful for you.