I recently read 15 Differences Between the First Child and the Next One over at the awesomely hilarious site Scary Mommy which had me both nodding enthusiastically throughout most of the article and automatically conjuring up my own list of add-ons. Here are my Top 5!
1 kiddo: Dirty laundry was kept neatly in the hamper or diaper wetbag (as applicable) and taken downstairs when there was enough to do a load. Clean laundry was folded and/or hung right away so it didn't wrinkle.
2 kiddos: Dirty laundry often exists in many places outside the hamper (floor, bathroom countertop, hung over a chair, etc.) Periodically I do a general "sweep 'n' dump" into an ever-present pile beside the washer, where it's easy to tell when laundry's (over)due. Clean laundry often remains in a basket (either folded or unfolded, depending on my ambition level) for days at a time. What can I say - it's more accessible. Go-to outfits are right there at our fingertips!
2) Toy Cleanliness
1 kiddo: Toys were washed or wiped down regularly; usually about once per week. I even came up with mnemonic "Wipedown Wednesdays" to ensure I stayed on track with this not-so-fun but necessary (or so I thought) task.
2 kiddos: Are you kidding? With (more than) twice the toys, half the time and a whirlwind of a preschooler constantly tracking germs into every nook & cranny of our home, keeping everything in baby's path pristine is an intimidating proposition, at best. So I basically use the "senses" test - if something starts looking or smelling dirty, it gets cleaned. Until then, I can't rationalize the time investment.(Note - we've been lucky enough to avoid hardcore sickies coming into our house since the little guy arrived, which would warrant a thorough, cross-the-board sanitization!)
3) Toy "Preservation"
1 kiddo: Significant effort was invested into keeping playdough colours separate, carefully repairing book booboos (with clear tape, of course) and the like.
2 kiddos: See previous point. So freakin' many toys that I'm no longer gonna get my knickers in a knot if a few get a little bunged up.(That said, we do try to keep the higher quality and/or favourite items in good condition.)
4) Weekly Menu Planning
1 kiddo: I got into this when my first was about 5 months old. There are many reasons to do so, and it worked well for us for several months.
2 kiddos: I'm sad to say, I haven't managed to get back into this since DS arrived. [Insert numerous lack of time and health-related excuses here.] Short answer is I do want to get back to this, but it'll definitely be more challenging than it was with one little munchkin. In the meantime, I'm happy to say we're not sacrificing proper nutrition - if anything, we're eating healthier than we were a couple years ago as we're more knowledgeable now - but we have been spending more and we probably end up with a bit more waste. I'll definitely let y'all know if we do manage to get back to MPing - wish me luck!!!
5) Cloth Diapering on Vacay
1 kiddo: I was dedicated (some might say militant) that a 'sposie wasn't going anywhere near my DD's sensitive little bum, no matter what! As such, I cloth diapered for over a week at the cottage and on various other trips. I was SuperGreenMom, gosh darn it!
2 kiddos: I did it once - on an easy weekend jaunt to Great Wolf Lodge, and lemme tell ya - packing the trunk was a serious space optimization exercise. In lieu of a Very Large Roof Rack (which we could consider buying, sure), moving forward my fluffy stash is simply gonna go on its own vacation while we go on ours.
How about you? What main differences did you note between child #1 and #2?