So I was looking for inspiration on this post and asked over on the Facebook page what people are curious about. Our lovely college friend Julie who just added a little one to their family asked about sibling jealousy and juggling two kids.
The best advice someone gave me is to think about it this way: The baby won't know the difference so tend to the older kid first when you can. As the younger sibling, I call shenanigans. As a parent, it seems to work most of the time.
That said, I also make Peanut wait sometimes while I deal with Gizmo because a) I don't want Peanut becoming spoiled and b) Gizmo has needs too.
I also talk to the baby if she is crying while I tend to Peanut's needs. While the talking sometimes soothes her, the words are meant more for Peanut. I say something like, "I know, Gizmo you need (a diaper change/fed/to go to sleep/put on your back because you refuse to roll from you stomach to your back even though you are perfectly capable of doing so). But right now your big sister needs me. It's her turn now and then it will be your turn." This way Peanut knows that it's not all about the baby but it's all not all about her either.
Now for juggling two kids.
First I will say that the husband and I have tried to set aside one-on-one time with each of the girls. Trying to take on two kids by yourself can be hard but one makes it much easier and enjoyable for everyone.
We also try to make sure the adults get a break every once in awhile too. For him, that means golf. For me, that means some quiet time reading alone or going shopping by myself.
Because Peanut is Daddy's Girl, he tried to take her out on special trips to breakfast, to Target even to the grocery store by herself especially right after the baby was born. We made a big deal about this telling her it was her special time and it was only for big girls. We told her the same thing when she started going back to the sitter's and when she spent some time with her grandparents.
We also tried to include Peanut in things that we did with Gizmo. We let her "help" us change her diaper and give her a bath. I let her snuggle up next to me while I fed Gizmo. I asked her to sing to the baby. If Gizmo gets fussy while I'm getting ready for work, I send Peanut to talk to her, which usually accomplishes two things: it calms the baby and keeps Peanut occupied.
It's not so much the kids part that is difficult but juggling everything else like laundry and cooking and yard work and grocery shopping and, and, and...
We are doing fine but I don't feel as organized as I would like to be. But I've also accepted that and tried to cut us some slack. We are two working parents with two kids under the age of three. There is only so much vacuuming that can be done. It will get done. Just maybe not today (or tomorrow).
What's your best advice for parents dealing with new siblings?