Smart bassinets that rock, vibrate, sing, and claim to help your baby fall asleep: are they worth the money?Read More
8 Hours by 8 Weeks didn’t come easily or without consistency. The first was implementing a consistent Eat-Play-Sleep schedule. The second was encouraging one nap per day in the crib. The third was keeping my baby up for full feedings, and not allowing him to exceed his napping minimums. Read more!Read More
How will you enjoy your vacation with your little ones without needing another one when you get home? In this blog post we will cover it all: What to Bring, impromptu vacation schedules, sleeping arrangements, and and exactly how to recover lost sleep from your vacation when you come back home! So let’s dive into: How to Sleep While on Vacation with Baby or Toddler: Must Pack Items, Regressions, and Flying.Read More
As a special Thank You to all of my dedicated readers, I'm sharing my super easy (& super secret) Spring Forward Daylight Savings sleep tips today in this post so you can enjoy your summer alongside me! Wake up- this is parenthood- don't all good things come to an end?! Guess what- this one doesn't have to. Read more to find out how you can use this time change to your parenting advantage!Read More
We looked at multiple baby lists, searched thousand of movies, and even cracked open some history books to give you the BEST list of Top Baby Names for 2019! Included: Boy Names, Girl Names, Gender-Neutral Names, French Names, Southern Names, and Unique Names- check it out!Read More
How many naps does my baby and/or toddler need? How long should they be? (Bookmark or PIN this page, trust me you’re going to want to come back!) Let’s make your life just a little easier- grab a glass of Pinot or a cup of tea and digest this nap breakdown from birth to 3 years old.Read More
After countless hours and relentless emails to brands begging to find out what sales they’ll be offering early, here are my top gifts that you can score MAJOR discounts on this Black Friday & Cyber Monday, almost all with free shipping!!Read More
Our family tradition is to not only wear these for the entire month during movie nights, but when they go to bed on Christmas Eve, and of course the following morning when they open presents on Christmas for all those candid photos! Here is my list of the cutest holiday pajamas that I’ve been stalking for months!Read More
I am a HUGE believer of swaddling newborn babes. When done correctly, swaddling can help your baby sleep better, soothe a fussy baby and reduce SIDS risk. And when paired with a consistent sleeping area and white noise, you're well on your way to establishing healthy sleep habits.Read More
Here we will talk about all the mysteries surrounding sleep in the summertime, how you can avoid potential sleep hurdles at home or while traveling with children, and sharing our secret tips to help your child embrace sleep while enjoying some sunshine!Read More
Baby has finally arrived, and it’s the first night home from the hospital- but what should your baby wear to sleep at night? And what about your older toddler? Hi, I’m Lauren, certified Sleep Specialist with Sleep and the City, and I’m talking today about how to dress your child comfortably at night during any season (and at any age!) and provide the optimal environment for quality sleep. Throughout my post today I’ll also include some of my favorite examples of clothing and bedding from TealBee.com, so let’s dive in!Read More
"How do you feel about the Dock-A-Tot?" and "Do you think I should order the Dock-A-Tot for my child?" These are two questions I receive almost weekly in my Inbox, as this Baby "Must Have" is on the top of most Mama's list of "Wants". After some extensive research, a little contemplation and my toddler expressing interest about moving into a toddler bed, I finally decided to try the Dock for myself.Read More
“When can my baby sleep through the night? When can I stop swaddling? and “ When can I drop the dream feed?” are some of the first questions as a Mom that I found asking myself (and Googling for hours). With so much conflicting information and advice from my friends and the Internet, I decided to really dedicate myself to learning as much about infant sleep as possible. Knowing what to expect and about WHEN to expect it made me feel just a little less crazy in the Motherhood department!Read More
These are questions I receive over and over in my Inbox & through Facebook; all parents wondering how and when they can move their new infant to the crib, his or her own room, or if a toddler whom has been escaping the crib is ready for a big-kid bed (or when the appropriate time would be to move them into one!) If you’re ready this, you are not alone- at some point we are all ready to have our rooms back, or finally put up that crib on Craigslist for some extra cash, right??
Keep in mind that I always recommend crib acclimation in conjunction with a customized sleep behavioral method (sleep training), so if your child isn’t already sleeping all night contact me here to find out more about accomplishing this first.
So let’s break it down by age:
Newborns 0-3 Months: I would agree with the AAP (American Association of Pediatrics) here and recommend all newborns co-sleep NEXT to their parent’s bed for the first three months, or at the very least in the same room. If your newborn is especially noisy, some white noise such a fan can help you sleep while baby is sleeping (ha…ha….what’s sleep with a newborn?) Some couples, especially those on their 2nd+ kid, choose to sleep baby in their crib from Night #1, but I’m guessing if you’re ready this particular paragraph that’s not the case (it’s hard work navigating down a dark hallway every 2-3 hours am I right?) So there you have it, co-sleeping at this age, especially for BFing Mommas, is your answer.
Infants and Toddlers Moving to a Crib/Their Own Room: Starting from 4 months old and up, your child now has the increased ability to self-soothe, and our good friend Melatonin secretes quite regularly now, giving your child the ability to sleep longer stretches at night. For these reasons, 4 months is the age I recommend moving baby into their nursery, or the room you’d like them to be sleeping indefinitely. Really think to yourself if you want that sweet noisy angel sleeping in your room when they are 2, 3, 5 years old…..if this isn’t your ideal of paradise, the younger the better to move them to their own room. So if you’re ready to make the switch, know that infants under 1 year of age usually get used to their rooms at night in 2-3 days, and toddlers over 1 year of age take a little longer (around 7-14 days). Remind yourself that with change comes protest, and consistency is what will prevail to your preferred outcome. Below are three steps on how to make it happen:
1) If your child is under 2 years old, expect some protesting the first few nights. Therefore begin your bedtime routine about 30 minutes earlier and make sure it’s calm, soothing one where your child is drowsyand ready for sleep.
2) If your child is over 2 years old, expect some additional manipulation tactics the first couple of weeks. This could come in the form of “needing one more hug” or crying or the worst- your child coming to find you (aack!). My rule for this is ONE more drink/hug- not two, not 10. Keep your bedtime routine super consistent. Do not engage in additional questions or arguing. I encourage loveys/favorite blankets at this age, and nightlight that they can quietly look at books with if they aren’t ready to close their eyes just yet. If they leave the room, silently return them to their room as many time as it takes. Don’t give in, you can do iiiiiiittttt!
3) End your bedtime routine in child’s room. This means pajamas, last bottle (children under 1 only, move last milk/feed to before teeth brushing in toddlers), story time, prayers- all take place now in the nursery or child’s bedroom.
o For the quickest results: Lay child in crib drowsy but awake (about a 9 on a scale from 1-10 using soothing techniques or wind down routines for older ones), and provide a lovey that the child can hold. Say “Goodnight my love” or “It’s time for sleep, I love you…” quietly and leave the room. If crying ensues (this crying is product of change, usually not because they are in pain or scared), go ahead and wait at least 15 minutes before quickly checking on child with minimal interaction, using only your words from above as reassurance. Do not pick child up, and only go in to lay down a standing/sitting toddler ONCE. Loveys & pacifiers can also be replaced if child has thrown it overboard. Leave again and try not to visit again for another 20 minutes and so on. If your child has been sleeping through the night already, this process should go fairly smoothly, but know that the first few nights will be the toughest. It’s always the darkest before the dawn, folks.
o For the gentle-approach: Lay child in crib drowsy but awake, and provide a lovey that the child can hold. Say “Goodnight my love” or “It’s time for sleep, I love you…” quietly and stay in the room until child falls asleep. If crying ensues, go ahead and pick up child to calm them down only ONCE, and sit beside crib using soothing methods such a humming a song or repeating your words above. Know that your presence alone may be stimulating, so if your child is noticeably more upset with you being in the room, then try the tips above for quicker results. Every 2-3 nights, repeat process above but move 3-4 feet farther from the crib/bed until you are no longer in sight. Expect every time you do move, for child to be somewhat upset, but remind yourself that this type of protesting is a product of change, and you’re allowing it, not making it happen (similar to allowing them to cry in a car seat, of course you’re not going to hold them on your lap and drive around instead.)
4) “What if my child wakes up randomly in the middle of night and cries out for me?” Super common, and very likely, so prepare yourself. I advise my clients to wait at least 10 minutes (NOT 9 minutes and 59 seconds, 10.) before checking on child, and make sure you have a video monitor where you can reassure that nothing is really wrong. If crying lasts over 10 minutes, go ahead and use either the “quick approach” or “gentle approach” above. If baby has a BM diaper, go ahead and change him or her in the room with minimal lighting, placing them back down once they are clean (wet diapers can usually wait).
Toddlers moving to a Big-Kid Toddler Bed
Also a super common questions out there! I recommend that toddlers stay in their cribs until at least age 3, or until they actively (or successfully) attempting to escape the crib, which poses a danger threat. As for potty breaks, children’s bladders do not fully mature until age 5, so let them know that using a pull-up at night or diaper is perfectly fine (we tell our son it keeps his “booty warm at night”- works like a charm). Keeping the diaper/pull up on a night will also prevent bed wetting at 3am- and if you find yourself in this situation, double up on sheets and mattress pads so you can pull off the top layer and avoid changing the entire bed half awake. When your toddler is finally able to move into their own bed, talk about it and let them know the change is coming- children are creatures of habit and structure, they like to know what’s coming next- and how wonderful their new “big-kid” will be and how happy YOU will be that they are now in one. Most children actually transition fairly well, and you can also invest in side rails, lay pillows on the floor surrounding the bed in case of a midnight fall, or install a baby gate on the doorway to prevent wandering around the house at night if you are worried.
Remember when it comes to the idea sleep environment for our littles, keep those temps 68-72 degrees, have white noise going all night along, and dark dark DARK for infants (I use this custom sized black out shade in my own house, under $50!) , nightlights ok for toddlers. Good luck everyone, and as always, contact me if you or someone you know may need a little bit of help in the child sleep department. Have a great day and thanks for visiting!