Christine Stewart-Fitzgerald 0:02
Well, you've been the world traveler, and then life changes when twins come along, or does it? Most people resign themselves to resume traveling after their twins are potty trained or even older? Well, today we're here with some experienced twin moms who have been jet setting around the world alongside their kids. Is this for everyone? We'll find out. This is Twin Talks.
Christine Stewart-Fitzgerald 0:55
Welcome to Twin Talks. Twin Talks is your weekly online on the go support group for new and expectant parents of twins. I'm your host, Christine Stewart-Fitzgerald. We've got a great show for you today. So we are talking about twins and traveling. So first of all, though, say here's here's Sunny, our producer, and we're to tell us about how you can get involved with our show.
Sunny Gault 1:18
Absolutely. Well, guys, thanks for tuning in to Twin Talks. If you haven't already, be sure to visit our website, it's new mommy media.com, you can subscribe to our weekly newsletter, which keeps you updated of all of our episodes, not just twin talks, we actually produce some other podcasts that might interest you as well. Everything is parenting focused. And another great way to stay updated is to hit that subscribe button. So whatever player you're listening to our podcast on, maybe it's Apple, Google, Spotify, whatever it is hit subscribe so you never miss another episode. And if you're looking to find a way to get even more involved in our show, you can check out our membership club, we call it Mighty Moms, because you guys are all amazing, mighty moms. And that is where we chat more about the topics that we talk here. You know, we talked about on the show here. So obviously, we only have so much time for the podcast. But we want that conversation to continue. So if you want to check that out, you can continue the conversation, you can connect with other moms. And that's also where we let you know about future recording. So if you're listening to this episode, and you think you know, I'd like to join on a future recording. That'd be really fun. You can do so as all through Mighty Moms. So check that out. We've got a bunch of banners and stuff on our website. And there's more information there.
Christine Stewart-Fitzgerald 2:31
All right. Well, you know, let's get started. And let's introduce everyone who is joining our conversation today. So tell us a little bit about yourself, your family your experience with today's topic. And I want to throw this over to Caroline, first of all,
Caroline Hershey 2:44
yes, thanks so much for having me. My name is Caroline Hershey. I'm a mom of one year old twins and recently founded a blog all about traveling with kids called "Jet with a Set. My family lives in Manhattan, and we love to travel. So when I found that I was expecting twins, I was immediately determined to figure out how to make that happen. No matter what the obstacles were, whether it would be you know, the crazy long flights or COVID restrictions. We've kind of figured out how to make it work. So I'm excited to talk about that today.
Christine Stewart-Fitzgerald 3:15
Okay, and we also have with us, Lindsay, tell us about your family.
Lindsay Castiglione 3:19
Hi, well, thank you for having me. I'm excited to be here. My name is Lindsay Castiglione. I'm a mother of two sets of twins. I have an identical boys set who are 10 years old, and a boy girl set who are 25 or I'm sorry, who are eight years old, and they're 25 months apart. So pretty close in age. I own a prenatal multiples education business called full hearts collaborative. We do online expecting twins classes and breastfeeding twins. And I'm also an ibclc lactation consultant. And I help a lot of moms online virtually. And we have experience with traveling since we are a navy family. We've done a bunch of moves across the country. And tons and tons of road trips home to see family and in two different locations.
Christine Stewart-Fitzgerald 4:07
All right, okay. And Sunny, our producer.
Sunny Gault 4:10
Yeah, so my situation is not nearly as exciting as everybody else. I'm like, I'm gonna learn from you guys in today's episode. So I have four kids total. My twins that are my youngest kids, they are identical girls, and they just turned eight. We just had a birthday party for them. And so, um, my husband and I are kind of scared of travel now. But um, we really didn't do that much travel, even before kids. And I don't really know why that is. I actually did a lot of traveling when I was younger with my mom and dad. But that kind of stopped and I think it kind of stopped because it just was so it was a price thing, right? It was like the travel that we needed to do so we live in Southern California and the rest of our family is in the Midwest. And so if we were going to travel anywhere it would be to go see both sides of the family, which literally lived like five miles apart from each other in Ohio. And we learned really quickly how expensive that was. And a lot of the challenges that go along with that. And so I admire you, ladies for doing what you've done. Like I said, I'm going to be taking ample notes during today's conversation so I can get the courage to do what you have done. But up to this point, it's been married, it's been very mild, the kind of travel we've done, like I said, we've gone back a few times, cross country to see family but not outside of the states. And it sounds like a an amazing dream. And I'm very jealous that you guys have been able to do this.
Christine Stewart-Fitzgerald 5:47
Oh, you know, and I feel the same way. So I'm introducing my travel experience as well. So I've got three girls, and the oldest two are the twins. And then I've got a singleton for years behind. So now my twins are 12. And you know, honestly, I have to say prior to twins, I actually did quite a bit of traveling, and I and I lived abroad myself. I'm myself very comfortable, you know, being in different continents and whatnot. And yeah, when the twins came along, I was just like, oh my gosh, like, like, I couldn't think about anything besides being like, you know, home and just trying to get through each day. So honestly, I think the idea of jet setting around the world with with infants is amazing. And I am, I am very curious about today's topic.
Christine Stewart-Fitzgerald 6:43
We are here today with our twin moms who've been major travelers and including Carolyn Hershey. So she's a twin mom, who's recently been traveling around the world with very young twins. Now, does this sound like an impossible dream? Let's find out how we can just pick up and go. Caroline, I'm going to start with you. So give us your backstory. I mean, like, honestly, like why would you even consider traveling long distances or around the world with a set of infant twins? What made you take this on?
Caroline Hershey 7:14
Yeah, it's a good question. And just to start off, it's definitely not for everyone. I know how crazy it sounds, especially today. But I think it kind of goes back to I grew up traveling, and it was a huge part of my childhood. And my husband also he didn't really grow up traveling a lot. But love travel, he traveled a lot for work. And it was always something that we did as a couple before kids. So I think just with anything, if it's something that you know, you're so passionate about before kids, that it's really important to, you know, maintain it as best as you can after kids, I think because if you completely lose something, then, you know, I think it would just kind of take away from the fun that we had. And we figured having kids with us, you know for those memories, and those trips will just make them even better. So I think you know, it sounds a little naive, because you think, oh, yeah, it sounds easy. But then, of course doing it is a totally different story. So I think for us, especially, we had a pretty rough experience in the NICU for four months, during COVID. And kind of just feeling so trapped. And so hopeful that one day when, you know, our kids finally graduated from the NICU, and they came home that we really just wanted to almost make up not last time, but you know, just give them as many experiences as possible and kind of just never put anything off and just do everything that we could because we just felt like, you know, it would be such a miracle for them to come home. And then How amazing would it be if we could pull off something like this? So I think that's kind of what our mindset was in our inspiration. Also, my dad was a extreme world traveler, he went through 136 countries. So I think it's really just in my blood and just something I really wanted to pass down to them.
Christine Stewart-Fitzgerald 9:02
Wow. So you said obviously you you grew up with this, right? You said like yeah, how old were you when you started traveling?
Caroline Hershey 9:09
So I was actually born overseas. I was born in Hong Kong, and we moved to the US when I was two or three years old. But just every year we would travel to Asia because my dad was there for a business trip. And it was just a huge passion of my family. So I definitely grew up pretty young traveling and my mom tells me you know I did it by myself with you cross the Pacific so definitely possible.
Christine Stewart-Fitzgerald 9:35
Wow. And so you I mean as a kid it's not like he probably you had really good positive memories of you know, being with your parents and so that was probably part of it.
Caroline Hershey 9:44
Totally. My best memories and even the long flights. I remember my mom used to make us like all different kinds of games to do on the plane. So I feel like I got used to that pretty young. And then the jet lag of course I just have vivid memories of sitting with my brother in like a hotel bathroom eating cereal. cuz my parents would kind of bribe us like, Okay, if you wake up at three in the morning, just keep yourself in the bathroom. Yeah, it was, it was always it was always fun. Those are some of my best memories.
Christine Stewart-Fitzgerald 10:11
I've never heard of that before sitting back to me that that's, that's a great form of bravery. So, Lindsay, how about you?
Lindsay Castiglione 10:19
So we also had quite a NICU stay with our first set of twins. And so our family wasn't able to meet them. And this was for pre COVID, though they're my oldest set are 10. And we are Navy family. So we get stationed all over the country at any given time. So we were probably, let's say, about two or three weeks out of the NICU for our very first road trip. And it was probably about a five hour drive. And you can imagine what our vehicle looked like, I think at the time, we owned a Grand Cherokee. And I don't think there was a spare inch left, between bouncy seats and nursing pillows and pumps, and you know, just everything and we bought our minivan, like very quickly after that trip. But everywhere that we've moved, we've had family come visit us. But we also you know, you miss home, you want to go back. And so we've done a lot of trips back and forth, and all different types of routines with them, trying to trial and error learning what works, and what doesn't. So
Christine Stewart-Fitzgerald 11:23
Since both of you your twins are in the NICU, I mean, did you have any? I don't know either friends or family say, oh, you know, they're so young. They're just out of the NICU, you know, maybe say cautioning you not to take a road trip?
Caroline Hershey 11:36
Yeah, people definitely thought we were crazy from that perspective, especially my twins, they were micro preemies. So of course, we're always, you know, extra careful about germs and everything like that. But we kind of thought of it. Like, you know, we're not really exposing them differently than anything that we do here. We're still washing their hands, you know, they have all their vaccines. And we're being just as careful about that stuff as we would here. And I actually, you know, on planes, everyone has to be vaccinated and wearing masks, so I didn't really worry about that part as much. So YOLO.
Lindsay Castiglione 12:10
Yeah, and even though this was far again, for our pre COVID, we, we kind of conducted ourselves really similarly to all of the things that we do now, we kept family gatherings, really to a minimum and made sure our family knew that prior, and we would stop very briefly, maybe on a restaurant, but only one of us would go in at a time. We never brought the babies into like a rest area or anything like that. So you know, lots of hand washing, lots of hand sanitizer, that type of thing.
Christine Stewart-Fitzgerald 12:38
Right? Oh, yeah. So did you and your family friends? I mean, do they just think you're, you're crazy, or are they encouraging you on your endeavor?
Caroline Hershey 12:47
I think it depends who I mean, my family definitely can understand it a bit more just because it's, I guess, relatable to, you know, how they were. But yeah, I think everyone thinks it's nuts, just because the amount of luggage that we have. And you know, it's definitely a production. But I don't know, I feel like, you know, my husband, he's a very intense personality. And he's super organized, which is great, because we kind of balance each other out. I'm a little bit more laid back about things. So I think everyone kind of trusted that if anyone could pull this off, it would be us just because, you know, everything was planned down to the minute. You know, I think we that's really important. I mean, you can't pull off a trip like this unless every detail is kind of worked out. But you really have to think about, you know how you're going to get from the airport. We didn't bring car seats. So that's another point. Yeah, so there's just a lot of logistics. So I think we weren't just going blind. We both have a lot of experience traveling, you know, made sure the babies had global entry and passports pretty much as soon as they could when they got home. So yeah, I don't know. I think we just want people to support us and believe in us. And I think we proved that we could pull it off.
Christine Stewart-Fitzgerald 13:58
Wow. Now that's that's I mean, I gotta say, I mean, we talk about logistics. I mean, you know, yeah, so often we think about just the logistics to get out of the house. Just Just go on a shopping trip. Much less. You know, a trip trip. Yeah. So I can only Yeah, I can only imagine. Yeah. When you got a planner in your family? Yeah, that key? Delegate? Okay, go get it. Go for it. Yep. My husband's a lot like that. He's He's a planner as well. So I let him figure out like the some of the detail. Yeah, those things. Yeah. You know, when you originally started planning things, and then how things came about, I mean, we know how was it different? Were there any sort of major surprises compared to what you planned for and what your expectations were? What did you maybe learn in the process?
Caroline Hershey 14:42
I think we kind of went into it knowing that this was not going to be easy. So I think with anything to do with twins, just having that mindset of like, alright, we're just gonna roll with it. You know, we're gonna see what happens. We're going to anything that could go wrong, you know, we have everything in the diaper bag, we'll figure it out. But you we kind of built up to doing a bigger trip. So we started with, you know, road trips. And you know, figuring out how to keep their schedule on the go thing out more during the day. And then we did a shorter trip to Florida, then we went to the west coast. So that was a bit longer and kind of testing how they would react to the time difference, figuring out their scheduled for that. And then the bigger trip to Europe, I think we had a lot of key learnings, just in terms of what we needed to bring. And honestly, it seems so obvious, but one of the biggest things was just realizing that anywhere you go in the world, like there are babies there. So anything you could need, you're going to be able to find you know, unless it's something super specific, or a certain brand that you want everything from like diapers to wives like basic medicine, anything like that you're going to be able to find so once we realize that, and we could just, you know, buy all their food and milk and all that stuff. It just alleviated like, an entire suitcase. So, yeah, I think it's just, you know, the more you do it, you kind of refine the process and figure out what works.
Lindsay Castiglione 16:04
Yeah, I just became such a list maker, I mean, I would start listing out all the things that we would need to pack about a week beforehand. And I tend to overpack. So that was definitely something I struggled with. But I didn't want to be caught off guard with something that we really needed. And we didn't, although you're right, we could have probably just gone to the store and buy and bought whatever it was. But you know, definitely very detailed on the list making of every little thing that we possibly could need.
Caroline Hershey 16:32
Totally. And especially with like international travel, there's so many, just tiny details that you need in terms of like documentation and forms and figuring out like different rules between different airlines and countries. So yeah, it definitely helps to have at least one of the two parents super attentive to those things.
Lindsay Castiglione 16:51
Christine Stewart-Fitzgerald 16:53
Let's look at some of the ways I think, you know, that twin parents can really embrace this idea of of travel. So I think, you know, you have to have a certain mindset, you know, and saying, Hey, this is this is important. And you know, everyone on being on the same page, right? One of the things you've been talking about right now is just the idea of like, simplicity and minimalism, right? Less is more that you don't necessarily have to pack every single thing. You know, to your point, Caroline like, yeah, you're going to a place where they have babies, and oh, yeah, there's there's baby stuff, right?
Caroline Hershey 17:27
Totally, yeah, I think beyond just all the stuff and you know, all that packing tips. It's really just a mindset of, you know, hoping for the best and preparing for the worst, but not going into it in such a panic. So I know travel, especially even without kids is just naturally stressful, right? Like your flight could be delayed. You know, you forget something or whether you know, whatever could possibly go wrong, I think you need to just go into it with just a really positive attitude. And I always say this, like, whenever we're around the babies, they're super calm, they're smiling and pictures. And everyone's like asking, like, oh, they look so happy all the time. And I really believe that they can read our energy. And if we're calm, and we're smiling, then they're totally fine. But they can tell when we're stressed and yelling and freaking out. And they start responding to that, and they get upset and uncomfortable. So I feel like if you can just have that kind of calm mindset as much as possible. And then when something does come up, which it probably will, I mean, we had, so I could go on, like all the mishaps that happened to us and things happening in the airport. It's all about just how you react and just realize like, it's gonna be fine. Let's just get through this moment, one day at a time and move on. I think that that goes for a lot of things besides travel, but you really just have to learn how to stay calm in the moment.
Lindsay Castiglione 18:45
I think also what Caroline said about working up to a bigger trip is a great idea and a great way to look at it. So like, even if you're just doing a day trip, prior to doing a longer vacation, or whatever it may be, is a great idea. It's going to help you wrap your mind around it. And then you're also going to get that feeling. I don't know if other you guys have experienced this as well. But as a twin mom, you know, if I had a challenging grocery shopping trip or any sort of, you know, library trip, and I got through it, and I got through it successfully, you come home at the end of the day and you're like wow, like I'm supermom I did something really hard and it was successful. And so building up to it through those small trips is going to give you that kind of confidence too.
Caroline Hershey 19:31
Christine Stewart-Fitzgerald 19:32
Oh, gotcha. Now that makes sense. You kind of like sort of celebrate the small things and and acknowledge that hey, this is this is working, you know here and I can you know build up to something that's that's larger and you know, have the confidence for yourself for your whole family that hey, it's really not as big it's not as daunting.
Caroline Hershey 19:52
Another thing just having infant twins I know you talked about how expensive traveling is which totally does not go unheard and I I think another reason why I think we've been so ambitious to do it in this past year is that when twins are or when any kids are under two years old, they're free, so you don't have to buy them a seat on the plane, which is obviously a huge savings. So yeah, and they also can't walk. So that makes it a bit easier. Like, I'm totally aware that when they're toddlers, this might not be a big conversation. But yeah, so I think just figuring out also, a lot of times people are thinking, oh, like the twins, how are the twins gonna do? And I say, at least for mine, most of the time, they're fine. The stress is really coming from me or for my husband. I was like, why are we freaking out? What's going on? The babies are fine. Like, they don't realize that it's maybe one o'clock instead of 12 o'clock. You know, they're not screaming, they don't care that their schedules not perfect. So I think it's just realizing in the moment, like why, what's the cause of your stress? And just, you know, getting through that?
Christine Stewart-Fitzgerald 20:55
Oh, no, that's no, that's that's a great example. But yeah, it's it's usually the adults that are reacting to things. It's not necessarily the kids, we think it's the kids or maybe I'm a little bit over protective of, you know, the kids and we think we think, Oh, they might be upset because of this. And maybe in reality, it's not, it's not such a big deal. Probably, I think with anyone traveling, I mean, you have to be resourceful. You know, when you're in a new place, you know, you may not have the regular brand of baby food or you know, you need like calming, you know, bath lotion or something like that, and, you know, kind of have to just adjust to that, or, you know, be resourceful. I'm guessing Carolyn, you had a few times where, you know, you had to go out and maybe find things or to get what you needed. And, uh, I don't know, in the middle of an airport, perhaps?
Caroline Hershey 21:43
Well, we actually forgot to pack bibs, which was pretty hilarious. So we had a layover in Amsterdam, and we just like ran to a gift shop and found, you know, little like tourist bids, which were fine. And looking back, like not having bids is not a huge deal. You could always change their clothes, but they were a pretty huge mess. And I didn't know how many extra pairs of clothes we had. And I definitely didn't want them to be like soaking wet with milk. So yeah, you can usually just find something or if they don't have bids, maybe it's just like an extra t shirt, or something like that. But yeah, in terms of the other stuff and all the toiletries, I mean, you'd be surprised like Pampers, totally universal, like everywhere has them. So you know, able to get diapers there wipes and then yeah, the food is definitely different. Like we give them a lot of like the fruit pouches here. And we were in London and I found like, they didn't really have those they had it was more me there was like chicken and things that we normally wouldn't give them in like a pouch. But like, you know, what, if they're doing it here, it's fine. So just buying stuff there and then kind of realizing that anything we're eating they can eat for the most part we've done, you know, all the allergy testing and, and that's been fine so far. So yeah, kind of just trying something and we just got to try new things. That's part of travel, I guess.
Lindsay Castiglione 23:00
We actually forgot a nursing pillow or my tandem nursing pillow on one trip. And I know a lot of twin moms can just get by without having that pillow to nurse but I had it just ingrained in my mind that I had to have that pillow. And I actually went on Facebook marketplace and found one in our, in the town that we were visiting and was able to go pick it up in a few hours because I was worried that like Babies R Us back then they wouldn't necessarily have one in stock. So that worked out really well.
Christine Stewart-Fitzgerald 23:30
The power of social media you gotta love that right? Yeah, no, yeah, no, that's true. I mean, and you know, I can totally relate to you know, like the nursing pillows too, because that's for twins because it's obviously such a very specific item. And so yeah, I mean, I think we've all had to improvise even even at home and propping things up I think I don't I think Sonny I recall I remember a while back we were doing a recording and I think you needed to you had your girls with you when they were just baby right we had to like we're scrounging for pillows and we breed are propping them up right?
Sunny Gault 24:04
Yeah, these are like during recordings I would bring my twins and and I there was a room on the side too. I think sometimes if I was going to pump or something I may have to you know, pumps aren't exactly the the you know, the quietest things in the world when you're recording podcasts. But yeah, I mean any port in a storm, right? I remember because I did too. I use the breastfeeding pillow for my twins and I think they even have one for doubles, right for actual twins, not Singleton's I use that. And I would have been really upset had I forgot that to Lindsey. I would have been like, Okay, well, where can I get another one?
Christine Stewart-Fitzgerald 24:42
So, yes, so I think they're kind of lazy, you know, into just just being flexible with like, Okay, I'm not going to get, you know, so frustrated with the fact that I don't have my stuff and my, you know, comforter, my regular environment. I have to admit that when my girls were really young again, I sort of I took the more cocoon approach stayed home and I had my my setup like my breast feeding station on the sofa. And then I had kind of one up in another upstairs in my bedroom. And I would just sort of kind of alternate between the two. So it was comfortable. And you know, and I see pictures of the moms who are like, sitting on the air, you know, the airplane floor, you know, and got the the the kids and I'm like, I'm like, How do you do that?
Caroline Hershey 25:29
You just do it. We were on a train from Paris to London, this is insane. We did a day trip. And my daughter always just poops, you know, at the worst possible moment. So we're literally had to about to get there and the trains, they're like, they stop and you have like two seconds to get off the train until it just keeps going. So I'm like, Oh God, like I'm holding her in the carrier. And I'm like, if I don't change her like this, who was going to be everywhere. So I just run into the moving train bathroom, and I put her on the floor. And this is like, so disgusting. And I just did it. I just did the diaper on the floor and moving train. It got very messy. But I don't know, you just you just do what you asked to do when you're on the go. As you said, it's fun. I mean, after you accomplish it, you feel you're like your a superhero.
Lindsay Castiglione 26:19
She probably has a great immune system too.
Caroline Hershey 26:24
Christine Stewart-Fitzgerald 26:27
Added benefit. And you know, I gotta say, as a twin mommy, yeah, we just we just get stuff done. I think I really do think we'll figure out a way. No, I'm with you. We're gonna take a break. And when we come back, we're gonna continue our discussion about the essentials of traveling with twins.
Christine Stewart-Fitzgerald 26:48
Well, welcome back. Today we are talking about traveling with twins. So not just about like what gadgets you might need, or but what type of mindset you really need to be successful. I think one of the things that you had mentioned was about routines versus scheduling and trying to keep things sort of feeling the same, you know, for the new twins. So Carolyn, you had I saw your blog, you know, I know you've got the blog jet with a set.com. And so I took a peek on that. And I think you did touch on that the idea of having a routine for your, for your twin. So what does that look like when you're when you're on the go?
Caroline Hershey 27:21
Yeah, so I think with, you know, depending where you're going, whether you're going to be just traveling during a normal time, that would be a nap or feeding. Or if there's, you know, an extreme time difference, I think, usually at home, you know, we have a pretty strict schedule of the twins are always on the same schedule in terms of eating and napping, going outside. But I think you really just have to let go of that a bit. When you're on the go. So it really just becomes more of a routine. And I think what that means is, you know, they know, they kind of as they grow, they definitely know what to expect. So you know, when they're in their pajamas, like they are signaled, I think, to sleep. So I think keeping up as many of those things as you can, even if, when they're going to sleep is a totally different time. And same with feeding at my thank you should keep everything as close to the schedule as possible. But I think if you can just, you know, you've got to be flexible. That's the main thing.
Christine Stewart-Fitzgerald 28:14
That's interesting. You're mentioning about having a sort of like the cues of having like pajamas. It's like, okay, when you get your pajamas on that's that's bed time. So did you have any kind of other routine, like feeding them? Or I don't know, like, you know, singing songs or something that you created sort of this routine on the go?
Caroline Hershey 28:31
Yeah, we tried to Oh, like they always had like a big bottle before bed. So definitely, when we first would get on the plane, if we want them to sleep, we would start you know, just giving them the bottle and kind of calming them down, putting them in the carrier that kind of makes them sleepy, too. And then yeah, in the morning, we do have a morning song. And we always think to them, so I think that like helps them wake up. But yeah, I mean, I can't I would be totally lying if I said this was you know, so easy. And I tricked them into being perfect travelers. I think definitely going into it. I mean, be realistic, that's not going to be the case. Definitely the first two nights of our trip when we were in Berlin, they were off the entire night. I mean, completely wired to the wall jumping around, because, you know, not only have they just got an office on flight, but you know, it's the middle of the day for them when it's night. So they're totally just thrown off. And I think you just you just got to, I don't know, kind of get through it. And then they're pretty quickly able to rebound and get back on a good schedule. But yeah, definitely it's definitely not going to be seamless.
Christine Stewart-Fitzgerald 29:40
And Lindsay I know I mean, you were doing the road trips, but it's kind of the same thing of like, okay, you got to create this this routine, even though you're in a different place, like how did you create, you know, or carry the elements of routine with you?
Lindsay Castiglione 29:54
Yeah, I mean, we were really particular about naps and sleep times and we felt like You know, sleep was like, essential to our existence. And in order for us to sleep, clearly they had to be sleeping. So we tried to time things around their naps as best we could. But one issue we did run into is that we were diehard blackout curtain fans. So their rooms at home were completely dark. And if we're traveling in a car there, you know, it's bright out. So we didn't get a whole lot of naps from them whenever we were actually traveling. But you know, you just kind of catch up when you get to where you're going and try to get them back on their routine. But we definitely, we traveled with the same sound machine that we use at home. And that was one thing that kind of helped with the continuity. And just try to keep bedtime and all that as closely aligned as we could we did get some flack from Family A times when they were like, well, we're visiting now why do they have to take a nap? And you know, to explain to them, like our schedule, when you have two babies, like your schedule is like your religion. You have to follow it, so.
Caroline Hershey 31:06
Yes it is. This is not a joke. We love this sound machine too. We brought this always bring the sound machine and kind of even on the go can create like a little nap pod almost in the stroller by putting a blanket over turning the sound machine up. And they kind of just pass out. I think they tricked them.
Christine Stewart-Fitzgerald 31:23
That's I gotta say, That's really interesting. I mean, kind of creating this sort of sensory experience, you know, to say, Okay, it's naptime or so with sound or versus, you know, hey, the feeling of wearing pajamas, or, like you said, singing to them. I mean, those are really great, practical ideas, because I think sometimes we get stuck on the like, it's, you know, they have to be in a certain plan. Here's the crib and you know, sleeping a certain way and have you know, their blanket. I don't know, we kind of fit we get fixated on stuff, right?
Caroline Hershey 31:55
Yeah, well, we do have it, there is an exception to all this, there's a stuffed animal, little turtle that my son is obsessed with. And without that turtle, this whole scene would fall apart. We ordered like 10 more of them, because it's just this one turtle, no other turtle, no other stuffed animal. If he has that, he just kind of starts sucking on it and falls asleep. So the day that we lose the turtles, my blog shuts down.
Christine Stewart-Fitzgerald 32:20
It's funny, it kind of does remind me. So all three of my girls have the little the older the dogs, it's the the violet and scout dogs that you can program with their names and sing the little songs. And so I know when we've gone on on trips, you know, we definitely packed the little, the animals. So, so one of my girls, you know, it's she's got violet, and then the other, the other one has scout. And so that was kind of Yeah, like somewhat of the tour. Like that was their thing that they brought with them. I know our I think our first flight for my girls, they were just less than two. So they were lap children. So we were thankful we didn't have to buy them tickets. We went to Hawaii. So it was you know, it was a five hour flight for them. And they weren't they were fine and handled the logistics. But yeah, we tried to bring some elements of of home with them. So that yeah, they felt like they had when they're in bed there was you know, they had their little violet singing to them. So it was bedtime, even though the sun's out. Yeah. You know, if you strip things down, I mean, were there things you've found that they really aren't as important as you thought that they were?
Caroline Hershey 33:38
I think everything is to the point of letting go and not letting the small things not sweating from the small things. I think as a twin mom, you naturally have already gone through so much stress, whether it be with the breastfeeding or the sleepless nights sleep training all that. So I think your your level of tolerance almost for stress is just so much higher, I think than other people because you've gone through so much. So when a little blip comes up when you're traveling, like oh, you spilled the milk, and now you can't do it or there's no way to warm the bottle. The flights a little bit delayed or something like that. I think just having gone through all the other elements of twin parenting, it's, it just doesn't seem as stressful.
Christine Stewart-Fitzgerald 34:21
Let it go. Did you guys have any sort of deal with health issues? I mean, there's always like, you know, just the normal stuff of getting, you know, little little colds or you know, like upset stomachs or you know, I know the kids go through like teething and they're just cranky you want to find like, like what did you do when you were had to deal with those kinds of things?
Caroline Hershey 34:44
Yeah, well like knock on wood. We haven't had anything too bad. Definitely congestion I think from flying and just being on the plane for so long. You know, having like stuffy nose or maybe their ears are popping a bit but I don't know we bring all you know the normal like medicines and those no suction thing, which is like my best friend with us. And yeah, I just kind of deal with everything the same as we would at home. And then I think it's always just smart to know, even without kids just to know, kind of like, where's the nearest hospital? Is there any like language barrier where you would need to know, in an emergency, and just kind of, you know, having all that information in case, God forbid, something more serious were to happen. But, you know, we also like, talk to our pediatrician before and kind of like, make sure that they're feeling good about this. And any questions. So think, yeah, just prepare for the worst, but hope for the best.
Lindsay Castiglione 35:34
Yeah, we, one time when we were moving from South Carolina, up to Connecticut, we had stayed over at a hotel and two of our four got a stomach bug in the middle of the night. Just like the worst. And so, you know, it was a horror scene. As we all know, we have two babies that are throwing up everywhere. But the hotel staff was really awesome about helping us, you know, they could see like that we needed extra things. And so they were bringing us all sorts of extra towels and bags, and all of that sheets. So we got through it, we ended up taking them to an urgent care so we could get some Zofran because we had to get back on the road. We we couldn't just kind of wait it out. But the Zofran so it's anti nausea medicine that kind of got them on the mend pretty quickly. And somehow our other set of twins did not end up picking it up by Wow. But yeah, you just I mean, we had to make the best of it. And thankfully, it was quick.
Christine Stewart-Fitzgerald 36:37
Wow, that's, that's no, that's great to know. Because yeah, I mean, that's like, you know, a parent's worst nightmare. It's like, you know, if you got your pediatrician, or somebody you can call like on home is like, Oh, what do you do? So that's, that's great that you had the, like, the resources and people sort of helping you and directing you to what's what's there locally, you know, even when they're not sick, or twins are always being looked at. And, you know, we get all the constant questions, and it's like, okay, you know, sometimes you just feel like you want to leave alone. But then there are other times where, you know, the strangers, you know, can be super helpful.
Caroline Hershey 37:13
Yeah, I think it's definitely depend. But, I mean, I felt abroad, especially people are just so much friendly. Or maybe that's because we live in Manhattan, where, you know, I'm getting yelled at for trying to bring them on, like the subway or anything like that. But yeah, I mean, people were so friendly, especially in London, like helping me carry the stroller upstairs. Because our hotel actually just did not have any accessible entrance. So that was an issue. But yeah, I mean, when whenever they're strangers, just like in the airport are trying to, you know, people get a little bit too close. And not even because of COVID. But just germs like you wouldn't try to start touching, you know, a stranger. So why are you trying to touch my babies? I definitely get freaked out by that. You know, people just want to talk and Oh, they're so cute, which is nice. But I think yeah, there's just like a time and a place for and I think sometimes people aren't great at kind of reading the room. And maybe this is not the most appropriate time to be, you know, trying to tell me your whole connection to twist. But yeah, I think for the most, for the most part, people definitely feel for you, especially they see you like oh god, like you're traveling with two babies. So they try to be helpful for the most part. I will say though, security, they are never sympathetic. And my experience. Every single thing is coming out of the stroller, and I'm carrying them and I'm going through twice and the bottles one time that was a big mistake. We filled up with water. And they had to you know, scan each one, like come on. But yeah, for the most part I think people are people are being nice.
Christine Stewart-Fitzgerald 38:46
Yeah, no, I know. They get the security like imagine you get the evil eye and people are like, Oh, no, yeah, no, I'm not going in that line. Yeah.
Lindsay Castiglione 38:54
We did a lot in our car, as many things we could do. So I would nurse them in the car. And typically speaking, I did not use my tandem pillow when we were like out on the move like that. I would just nurse them individually and it worked out just fine. But diaper changes and all that it just we would recline the front passenger seat and try to do as much as we could there. The thought of to the public bathrooms, you know, you know, Caroline's very adventurous we I guess we were a little bit worried about it. So we tried to keep them out of there as much as we could.
Caroline Hershey 39:32
Yeah, I don't know. I guess I am adventurous. But my mindset is like you just got to do what you got to do. So whatever works,
Christine Stewart-Fitzgerald 39:40
I think a potty training I'll say like with the potty training aspect. I know when my girls were young, I used to carry this little fold up seat it made it smaller so so we could use public, you know, toilets. So essentially we could use the regular you know, the restrooms and we're just trying to stay close to you know, to toilets.
Lindsay Castiglione 40:01
So we had... IKEA makes the best, very minimalist potties, like the little potty training bodies. There's not a lot of like pieces to it, it's very simple, very easy to clean. So we had one of those in the back of our car always, not just when we were traveling, but always once we started potty training the first set, and we would put a plastic bag inside it and so that, you know, it was covering the edges. So it was all nice and clean. Once they were done. We tie up the plastic bag and no more trouble really than a diaper change. And that worked really well for us. You know what the biggest issue was for me on road trips was I did a lot of trips by myself with all four of them. And for myself to go to the bathroom. That was a tricky thing. Yeah, because I didn't want to bring all four of them into a rest area just there would have been crazy. So there was definitely some times where I have to admit it. I used that potty. Because you got to do what you got to do. And I was on like 1011 hour trips by myself, so it had to happen.
Caroline Hershey 41:03
I love that.
Christine Stewart-Fitzgerald 41:05
Well, that's great.
Christine Stewart-Fitzgerald 41:11
And that wraps up our show for today. We appreciate you listening to Twin Talks. Don't forget to check out our sister show Preggie Pals for expecting parents and our show The Boob Group for moms who breastfeed their babies. Parents Savers, your parenting resource on the go, and Newbies for new moms during the first year. This is Twin Talks parenting times two.
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