Early on, you'll need to shop for baby equipment (many baby stores offer a twins discount if you buy two of the same thing), find a pediatrician, and prep your house. When organizing your home, don't focus just on the nursery. If you have more than one floor, set up a changing station on each level; include diapers, wipes, and extra baby clothes. That way you can avoid running up and down the stairs every time one of the babies spits up or needs to be changed. Also, "set up a portable crib or playpen in the area where you will be spending most of your time with the babies, so that you have a safe place to leave one baby in case you need to attend to the other," says Carline, of Los Angeles, the mother of 21-month-old twins Jay and Ava.
It's also a good idea to hook up with other parents of multiples. They can tell you what to expect, weigh in on the merits of side-by-side versus front-to-back double strollers, and help you feel as though you're not alone. If you don't know anyone, you might join a support group. The National Organization of Mothers of Twins Clubs (nomotc.org) has more than 475 local support groups and an active bulletin board on its Web site. Also check out tripletconnection.org and twinslist.org.
Finally, be sure to enlist the help of friends and relatives. "Do not turn down any offers of help!" says Maria, of Pelham, New York, whose mother-in-law helped out for two months and whose parents visited regularly as well. "You have no idea how crazy it's going to be with two newborns. You'll really appreciate an extra set of hands." If there's no one available, consider hiring a baby nurse (pricey, but many say it's worth it), a sitter who can come for a few hours a day, and/or a cleaning service.