Reducing your carbon footprint with twins or triplets

reducing carbon footprint with twins

Author: Chloé Miller from Rebel Eco

Reducing your carbon footprint with twins or triplets

Choosing to go ‘eco’ with a baby is a big decision. Some choices mean a little more work and possibly a little more cost, BUT… some choices are easy and save you money too. Which is a big plus when you are juggling more than one baby at a time! Whether you can make a few small changes or go the whole hog and commit to everything doesn’t matter. It’s all about doing what you can to reduce your impact and help create a future for your babies which is safe and healthy.

Traditional baby stuff (wipes, nappies, lotions, baby bath, clothing) contributes a huge amount to landfill. I want to take you through a few examples and show you how you can really make a difference by making some small changes.

And just think! With twins or triplets, you’ll be making double or triple the difference!

(Please note this blog contains some Rebel Eco affiliate links)

landfill and twins

Let’s start with nappies

You go through approximately 7000 nappies with each child. If you are buying traditional ‘disposable’ nappies, i.e. plastic, they are all going to landfill and contributing to landfill emissions. Nappies stay in landfill for approximately 500 years before breaking down into microplastics that stay in the environment forever.

If you would like to reduce your carbon footprint with twins and triplets via nappies, you have three main options:

Use reusable cloth nappies

These consist of an outer shell and an insert that are washed and reused. Yes, there is washing involved, but once you get in the swing of things, it becomes a habit. Your investment per child is around $350 for about 10 nappies (compared with an average of $3000 for disposables). You can usually use the same nappies repeatedly until your child is toilet trained. If you want to try reusables, but don’t want to face the washing, there are cloth nappy washing services you can use. Check out some great Aussie nappies here.

And its not as hard as you may think. Read our tips on using cloth nappies for twins or triplets HERE.

can you cloth nappy twins

Biodegradable disposable nappies

These are readily available in mainstream supermarkets and are made from natural, biodegradable material. They aren’t any different to use than plastic-based nappies and in fact are better for baby and the planet. These are not the number one choice because you still need to send them to landfill where they will take a very long time to biodegrade, but a great option when you are juggling multiple babies at once.

Toilet train early

This may seem like a funny one but the earlier you can get your kids out of nappies, the better for the planet and you! No judgements here on how long that process will take, as we all have our own approaches and all kiddies are different, but if you have the patience and time to get this going early, you’ll reduce the number of nappies you send to landfill.

Clothing choices can help reduce your carbon footprint with twins or triplets

Another way to reduce your carbon footprint with twins and triplets is to be careful about baby clothing. Babies and children need quite a few items of clothing due to all the ickiness that takes place, but what are the best sustainable options that are kind to the planet and baby? And which options will help you with twins or triplets?

Hand-me-downs/second-hand clothing

If you can avoid buying new clothes, especially cheap, ‘fast fashion’, you are already doing your bit for the planet. Fast fashion is very attractive as it is cheap and cute, but the problem is that it isn’t made to last so there is a cycle of discarding and replacing because it is so affordable. Aussies on average buy 27kg of clothing a year and discard a whopping 23kg of that to landfill each year! There is also an ethical issue with fast fashion as most of it is made overseas in sweatshops where workers are underpaid and overworked.

Sooooo… if you know someone with older kids, hit them up! And, obviously, if you have older kids, save all their clothes for your bubs. You can find secondhand clothing online and at op shops and some pieces are really cool. I have been lucky enough to receive bags of hand-me-downs from friends and colleagues over the years and the kids love going through all the ‘new’ items and choosing their favourites. And the more hand-me-downs you get, the more to share amongst siblings.

sustainable living and twins

Ethically made clothing

If second-hand isn’t your thing, another option is to make sure you are buying ethically made clothing so that you know there weren’t any sweatshops involved, you know the growing and manufacturing process was sustainable AND once the clothes are discarded, they will biodegrade. Go for natural fibres like cotton, hemp or bamboo which are nice and soft for babies. A great Aussie brand is Boody and they have clothing for Mum, Dad and babies.

For clothing that can’t be donated or passed on, check out Upparel who take unwanted textile waste and recycle it into brand-new awesome stuff.

Borrow toys and books to help reduce your carbon footprint with twins or triplets

Join your local libraries

A great way to reduce the number of new toys and books at home is to join your local library and your local toy library! You can borrow books and toys for your mob to enjoy and then go back and swap them every few weeks. The kids love choosing and you don’t need to get rid of toys that are broken or old by putting them in landfill. I think this is especially handy for twins or triplets so you can avoid 2 or 3 of everything taking up space at home.

twins and ways to reduce carbon footprint

Sensory and experience play

Another idea to reduce waste from toys is to use sensory and experience play rather than toys. Babies and kids love playing around in water, doing scavenger hunts in the garden, going to the park to look at all the animals and bird and feeling the breeze and sunshine on their faces.

DIY whatever you can to cut down on packaging and chemicals

There are lots of “little” ways you can reducing your carbon footprint with twins or triplets that will all add up.

  • Make your own play dough, slime or glitter from what you have in the pantry. It’s great fun for kids to help and can usually be done without any plastic packaging. Check out a quick YouTube tutorial or check out my recipes here.
  • Make your own baby food if practicable. It’s easy to buy plastic-free fruit and vegetables and whizz up all kinds of purees rather than buy ready-made food with packaging.
  • If you or the kids have a green thumb, try growing some of your own vegetables at home. Even just a few tomato plants can save money and packaging.
  • DIY your party decorations, food and games. Holding joint parties for your little ones is actually a great way to reduce the wastage of 2 or 3 parties so you are already onto a winner there! Then if you stick to the ‘reusable’ motto, you can’t go wrong. Make or buy decorations that you can reuse year after year. Skip disposable plates, cutlery and napkins and use what you already have. Use books or wooden toys as prizes instead of plastic toys. Set up clearly-labelled bins for guests to recycle their waste or drop off their dishes to be washed (check out some tips I wrote here).
  • Use cheap pantry staples to clean your home naturally. This is a big one in my home as I don’t want to expose my kids to chemicals in cleaners or send them down the drain into our waterways. There are many ways to clean at home with 1 or 2 natural ingredients (think bicarb soda and vinegar) that are quick and easy. Check out my post on natural cleaning here. Making your own helps to avoid plastic packaging. But if that isn’t your thing, there are lots of natural, phosphate-free options available in supermarkets.
triplets and carbon footprint

Cut down on disposable baby wipes can help reduce your carbon footprint with twins or triplets

Like nappies, you have a few options when it comes to baby wipes, the worst of which is disposable. Like nappies, they can end up in landfill for a very long time and break down into microplastics. You can use an extraordinary number of wipes with one baby. And that is only going to be doubled or tripled with multiple babies.

So, what are your options?

Reusable wipes

These are a great option as you can just wash and reuse after each use. I have made my own with cut up squares from flannelette pyjamas soaked in soap and olive oil. But an easier option is to use face washers or similar. Just use soap and water and baby oil or similar to keep them damp and then rinse and soak before washing.

Biodegradable wipes

There are a few biodegradable wipes available in supermarkets these days although they are sometimes slightly more expensive than disposable wipes. They are made from natural materials like bamboo and will break down in your compost or in landfill eventually.

If you do choose disposable, please do not flush them down the toilet even if they say ‘flushable’. They don’t dissolve and build up in the pipes and create blockages.

Those are my top 5 tips for reducing your carbon footprint with twins or triplets.

I hope they are helpful to you. If you are interested in other sustainable-living ideas, please take a look at some more tips and tricks below:

General sustainable-living ideas

  • Gift wrapping and craft – Save everything! You will undoubtedly receive a lot of gifts from the time your babies are born. And for years and years into the future! Start a habit of saving every piece of wrapping paper, ribbons, gift bags, bubble wrap, tissue paper and so on so that they can be reused for gifts or used for arts and crafts and school projects. This saves you spending oodles of money on overpriced wrapping and saves all of that wrapping from landfill.
  • Gifts –Try to prioritise ‘doing’ gifts over ‘things’. There are lots of toys from your childhood that you probably don’t even remember. But you remember that great day at the beach or the fun park or a camp out in the backyard.
  • If breastfeeding works for you, it’s a great, zero-waste way to feed your babies. No bottles, no plastic packaging, no cost.
  • Recycle everything you can – Most people are very familiar with household recycling. There are also lots of other things that can be recycled such as batteries, markers and pens, soft plastic packaging and paint. Save these up and then recycle them in the appropriate places to stop them from going to landfill. This website is super handy.
  • Buy pre-loved – Prams, car seats, baby carriers, baby seats, cots etc. You can find so many things in amazing condition on sites such as Gumtree. And then you can sell or donate them when you no longer need them.
  • Skip the car – Get outside with the pram whenever you can. Babies love getting outdoors. So if you can get outside for a walk to the local park or to your local shops, it’s a great way to cut down on carbon emission from your car.
  • Air dry washing – The sun is the best anti-bacterial dryer you can get and costs the earth nothing.
  • Collect excess water – Put a basin in your laundry sink or the bottom of your shower to collect grey water for your garden and/or to soak nappies and wipes.
  • Shop locally – Cut down on emissions from your car and to support local business.
twins and carbon footprint

Chloé is a realistic greenie who is super-passionate about helping people to make small lifestyle changes that have a big impact. She started Rebel Eco to help remove the overwhelm that comes with making eco-friendly changes by sharing tips and advice through online courses that teach you how to live a low-waste life without a huge effort or a huge price tag.

Rebel Eco

If you are interested in reducing your waste and toxins at home, check out Chloé’s free 5-day DIY challenge where you can learn 5 easy recipes for home cleaning and beauty that take less than 5 minutes to whip up. Facebook group Instagram Facebook page FREE 5-day low-waste challenge

Bubs 2 Bratz Nursery Hire

car seat installation townsville

Bubs 2 Bratz Nursery Hire – Vendor e-interview with Amanda Nass

Tell us a bit about yourself and how you came to start Bub2Bratz Nursery Hire & Child Restraint Fitters

As you know I am Amanda the Owner / Fitter at Bubs2bratz Nursery Hire in Townsville, a beautiful part of North Queensland. I am a mother of 3 (Heavenly Daughter and 2 cheeky little boys 10 & 9).

After 20 years in the corporate/tourism industry, motherhood and travelling was my life. Bubs2bratz Nursery Hire was created due to lack of options available in Townsville/NQ for visiting friends and relatives. My little business started in the rumpus room with a few items to hire out. Now we have a showroom/fitting bay with a lot of modern hire options available.

townsvile baby hire Bubs 2 Bratz Nursery Hire

What is the best part of your job at Bubs 2 Bratz Nursery Hire? 

Apart from the safety side of children in child restraint fitted correctly in vehicles, it’s the journey you go through with our customers. From early pregnancy, breast feeding to birth to toddler stage and then repeat again! Who wouldn’t like seeing cute babies every day!

What is the most popular item you hire at Bubs 2 Bratz Nursery Hire?

Capsule hire would be the cost-effective hire item in stock and the most popular. We offer a range of modern capsule suitable for all travel system prams on the market. Our hire includes complimentary fitting by accredited ,  and passionate fitter in our under covered fitting bay.

Breastpump hire townsville

What does pram and car seat detailing actually entail? As a mother of twins myself, this was one thing I struggled to find time to do was clean the car seats and the pram!

Car seat & pram cleaning fits perfectly with our hire business. Our hire stock is kept cleaned and santized between hires. Our customers were asking us to clean their car seats and prams because of how great our hire stock looked. We understand how busy life can get with children, so this service is flexible and affordable. We follow all manufactures instructions using child friendly cleaning products.

Choosing car seats for multiples is such a big decision. What hints and tips do you have for our new frazzled parents to be?

Choosing a child restraint can be overwhelming at the best of times. Things you need to consider are simple 

  1. Budget – car seats can vary in price due to fabric type, safety elements added, isofix non isofix and brands. But all child restraints must compile with Australian Standards
  2. Vehicle Type – not all car seats will fit in a small vehicle for example, just like not all prams are suitable to your lifestyle.  Do your research, all brands offer a variety of restraints alternatives and price range.
  3. Installation – it’s important to learn how to use and install your child restraint. 80% of parents and carers incorrectly install or use their child restraints. If you are a new parent, it is recommended to have your car seats/capsules installed between 36-38 weeks if not earlier as little ones, come whenever they like. 

Struggling to fit three car seats across the back of some cars can be difficult. Have you found many cars where it just isn’t possible to fit three across? Have you ever had to tell a family they are just going to have to get a bigger car????

This would be my number one question most weeks to be honest. I am having number 3 or 4 and we need to fit 3 across the back seat. Most vehicles can fit 3 across. It’s all about the combination of child restraints (brand, size, suitability) and if the vehicle is fitted with 3 anchor points.

Just because it’s a 7-seater, does not mean it has 7 anchor points. Or if it’s a dual cab Ute does not mean it’s got 3 anchor points. When buying a vehicle for the future of having children this is your number one point to consider. And hot tip – don’t just ask the car salesman how many anchors points it has as they normally don’t have a clue!

Check out the reviews or the manual.

Do you have a favourite brand of car seats? Why is this?

I hire and sell a variety of car seats because what is my favourite may not suit or be affordable for different customers.

My children have always been in Britax range of child restraints , this was because of several reasons, I was a Britax child myself, marketing of their seats was popular when I was having children, but you cannot question the safety of Britax range of seats they have been around of 45+ years.

But in saying that other brands offer great seats as well Infa Secure, Maxi Cosi everyone has a different view of what is the better range.

Bubs 2 Bratz Nursery Hire Townsville

You can find out more about Amanda, and Bub2Bratz Nursery Hire & Child Restraint Fitters HERE.


Twinfo

Twinfo is Australia’s largest, most supportive, online community for parents of twins and triplets. Twinfo offers advice, products and services that make raising your babies easier, freeing you up to enjoy all the precious moments.

You can connect with Twinfo via the Website, Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest or Etsy.

Play ideas for triplets and twins under 6 months of age

tummy time for twins

Entertaining children at a young age can be difficult. Entertaining more than one of them at a time can be even more difficult.

Children under the age of 6 months need a lot of stimulation and as they can not do much for themselves it means that you need to be very hands on with them. Your babies may not be sitting up on their own yet, but may be able to sit up assisted in a small enclosed chair or surrounded by pillows. At this age, the activities that you will be doing with your babies will help grow many skills for them including their fine motor skills and communication skills.

We have put together a few of our favourite play ideas for triplets and twins under 6 months of age.

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Twins and a toddler – 5 tips to help you get out of the house

how to contain a toddler

So its time to venture out of the house with your babies and their older sibling. How stressed are you at the thought of it? Leaving the house with a toddler is a mission as it is, but when it comes to adding in your baby twins as well, it can become a very stressful thought. However it does not need to be as difficult as it might sound. If your toddler is use to being in a pram and now they have to walk, you might be caught with some resilience from them, however in time they will get use to it. There are a few ways that you can make the outing easier on everyone.

Wear one baby

One option if you are not ready to have your toddler walking is to have one of your babies in a carrier on you. This way you are then able to have the other baby in the pram with the toddler in the other seat. This means that everyone is secure and there is no chance of your toddler running off. You can then swap the babies throughout your time out so that they both get some time up close snuggling with you.

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Cloth nappies for twins or triplets

cloth nappies twins

Working on the assumption that a baby uses 5 nappies a day (which is probably an underestimated figure!) you will use approx 5,500 nappies per child for the estimated three years they are in nappies.  That’s a whole lot of nappies when you multiple that by twins or triplets!

Sadly disposable nappies have not come as far as we would like and the components in most mainstream disposable nappies will not decompose and the nappies will stay in landfill for over 200 years before it breaks down. This is such a scary thought and although there are now a number of bio-degradable and compostable nappies on the market, many of these still need to be in certain conditions for them to actually break down and the Australian landfill tips do not always have the right conditions.

This is one of the reasons that cloth nappies are becoming popular again and a lot of new mothers are starting to use them. There are many benefits to using cloth nappies for twins or triplets aside from reduction in landfill. And the positives definitely outweigh the negatives.

twins and cloth nappies
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Choosing a twin pram. 7 tips from a twin mum.

prams for twins

Author: Rachel Pollard

Rachel is a twin mum herself, and a self confessed pram nerd.   She loves them so much she has set up her own business, Polish My Pram, cleaning and selling second hand prams.

Here are her top seven points to consider when choosing a twin pram.

Travel System Compatibility in twin prams

If you are going down the route of getting a travel system, make sure your get a decent capsule that will last the time in order to get your moneys worth. For example -Maxi Cosi Adaptors which are Compatible with a lot of model of prams, not just Maxi Cosi fits – Joie, Nuna, Cybex all fit also!

You are not limited to that ONE brand (and in my opinion all of the above are honestly better than the Maxi Cosi capsules). Travel system prams are a god send in themselves. Such ease of use when out and about, especially for those first 6 months (just a guideline for use- you can get up to 12 months + with certain capsules).

twin pram travel system
Maxi Cosi Dana for 2
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Telling newborn identical twins or triplets apart.

mixing up newborn twins

Author:  Stephanie Ernst

I’m going to be honest here. I’m a mum of identical twins, and everyone talks about those legendary “Mum Goggles” – you know, where your twins look NOTHING alike to you. Everyone else can’t tell them apart.

Confessions Of A Twin Mum

Confession. I mixed mine up a lot when they were babies—a LOT.  And what makes this potentially more embarrassing is that my girls were born with Twin Anemia Polycythemia Sequence, so there was a colour difference for a while.  But, you know, when they’re side by side, that’s one thing.  I have baby photos now where I’m squinting and guessing who it is.

And of course, let’s not forget that one day, in that sleep-deprived newborn twin haze we all know so well – I grabbed the wrong baby and took her to her sister’s doctor’s appointment.

We know that identical twins have different fingerprints (get that dummy down to forensics!) and that there is the option of dressing them differently – that’s not always in line with what you as a parent want to do.  And that’s perfectly fine!

So instead, just for Twinfo, I’ve created the “Sleep-deprived twin mum’s guide to telling your identicals apart.”

telling triplets apart
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Losing friends after having twins or triplets

finding twin dad friends

A lot of things change after starting a family.  Sadly one common and unexpected change is losing friends after having twins or triplets.

Things that change after having twins or triplets

Of course you realise that things will change once your multiples are born.  Your day-to-day routines will change. Your career may be put on hold so that you can continue to care for your babies at home. Let’s not even mention the changes in your body! And even your relationship with your partner will change.  But loosing friends is often not something that crosses peoples minds.

losing friends after having twins or triplets
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Finding a Nanny for Twins or More

finding the right nanny for twins

Our babies are so precious and invaluable to us. It is understandable why making the decision of finding a nanny for twins or more can seem overwhelmingly daunting.

Amanda is founder of The Nanny Balance, a Brisbane based childcare solutions agency specialising in nanny and au pair connections Australia wide.

She is going to lighten that load by running through some questions you may have been pondering in your consideration of employing a nanny for twins or more.

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Special Care Nursery and Twins. Tips from a Twin Dad.

special care nursery and twins dads tips

Author: Chris Scott

Until you have been down the Special Care Nursery (SCN) with your own twins, its hard to really understand what it is like.

Twin Dad, Chris, shares his tips.

You can read Chris’s full pregnancy and birth story HERE

Special Care Nursery and Twins. Tips from a Twin Dad.

A few quick pictures of Cathy and kids, a last kiss with her and off I had to go with the kids, I wasn’t expecting this, but as the kids needed to be checked, etc. and no name tags/bands had been placed on them yet, I needed to stay with them to ensure that they were my kids.

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