5.14.2014

Sleep Routine + 17 Month Bed Time Favorites

Sleep has been a sensitive subject for all of about 17 months.  
Ok. Maybe I overstepped.  Truthfully, I'd say it was a tough go up until about 15 months. 
I was blessed with the gift of sleep from my newbie bebes when they were 2 months old.  Fast forward through to month 4, when we were in the thick of physical therapy to treat Jolie's torticollis and it was an all night scream fest. 
{Read more about Jolie's torticollis journey HERE}

Parker slept through it all.  The screams and the scuffle and bustle around her crib as we comforted and soothed and uncomfortable Jolie.  She was my 'rockstar sleeper'.  
Until we reached month 6.  
Month 6 of life for the twins meant major milestones for Jolie and her tort, as well as the start of growth spurts and teething for both.  The latter also meant that Parker, my once rockstar sleeper, would be awake at all hours, and Jolie quickly resorted back to sleeping through the night.  Parker, of course, had stints of sleep- a few weeks of sleeping through the night, and then we would regress to being awake 3-4 times, just to find help for reaching a paci, or a simple rub and kiss of her forehead.  

I finally came to a breaking point of refusing to pick her up when she fussed at 1am (and 3am, 4am, 5:30am), and as much as that sounds terrible, if she knew I was willing to pick her up, I was also willing to hold her all night if it meant she would sleep.  After a week of sleeping in the rocking chair, I learned very quickly I couldn't make the mistake of picking her up when a simple sound of my voice and a gentle rub of her cheek would do the trick to soothe her back to sleep.  

I still stand by this rule with that little girl to this very day..
Yesterday Parker was rocked to sleep at nap time by her BB.  She fought me for an hour before going to sleep for the night.  She wanted and expected to be rocked, just as she was for nap earlier that day.  It would be one thing if I rocked her for every sleep time, but I don't, and I never have.  They go down sleepy, and fall asleep without a peep 99% of the time. 

Around 14 months, something clicked for Parker and she found slumber through the night more often than not.  At 15 months, if she woke during the night, she found no reason to need mom, and would soother herself back to sleep.  
Finally. 

Naps are a different story- we have always been pretty good nappers.  Around month 4 we finally figured out how to get them on a regular schedule of three (sometimes a fourth late in the afternoon) naps during the day. Before that time we were still following the Eat-Play-Sleep routine.  At the point of actually putting them on the nap schedule, I found that 'Play' was getting longer and longer between "Sleep" periods. 

We transitioned to just two naps a day when they were 6 months old.  We dropped the late afternoon nap and moved their bed time from 9pm to 7pm.  There were suggestions of doing the 15 minute increments over the course of a week or two.. but I was impatient.  I basically went 'cold turkey' on the girls and they did perfectly fine.

Moving to just one nap a day was even easier than 3 to 2 naps.  The girls did it on their own, really.  When daylight savings hit, they were sleeping in until 9-9:30am.  At that time the girls' first nap was around 10am.  We started to push their naps to 11:30a, which meant their 3pm nap was nonexistent.  

And here we are.

Eat/Sleep Schedule at 17 Months:
Wake @ 8:30am
Side Note: the girls almost always wake up before 8:30am.  They prefer to lay awake in their crib, chatter back and forth, and sometimes fall back asleep.  It usually rounds out to being about an hour before I go in the nursery to get them up for the day. 
Breakfast @ 8:45am-9am
Lunch @ 11:45am-12pm
Nap @ 12:30pm-3pm (sometimes shorter & sometimes longer)
Snack @ 2:30pm-3pm
Dinner @ 6pm
Bed @ 7:30pm (occasionally this is moved to 7pm if they missed or didn't sleep well at nap time.)

I wanted to share a few of our favorites for bedtime- most of which have been favorites from day one, but these really have been the most consistent in our routine for nap and bedtime.
1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 

1. Cotton PJs by BabyGap.  Good quality bed time attire is essential, if you ask me.  We spend a lot of time in our PJs - sometimes all. day. long.  I have a hard time justifying spending $45 on two outfits for Parker and Jolie, but when it comes to jammies, apparently, I don't even blink an eye.  I do confess to shopping sale items or with a coupon code 100% of the time.  So there.  Justified.  Even with the heat of the summer upon us, I am still buying the long sleeve and pant pajamas- and Gap is the only place I can find them in Texas.  The short sets are on my list, too.. because when its 90 degrees at midnight, we can all stand to give the shorts a break.  The girls often grow out of these Gap jams before they 'wear out'.  Justified again.  holla.
2. HALO Sleepsack. We went from swaddle blankets to sleep sacks and have yet to even think about transitioning out of them.  We actually forgot them when we were at the grandparents over the weekend, and the girls lasted all but an hour before they woke up in confusion.  No need to transition out at this point. No blankets in their crib are needed if they are wearing it!  Parker and Jolie weigh about 22 pounds and fit perfectly in a medium HALO SleepSac. 
3. Monkey Wubby (and Paci).  I've intro'd this little guy on more than one occasion, so no need to repeat myself here.  Parker doesn't go anywhere without the wubby and paci- that will be a nightmare to break (Jordan is already asking when, when, when..) BUT I gave myself a pat on the back at 12 months when we moved to only allowing wubby and paci at nap and bedtime.  That is still a daily struggle, and we've resorted to hiding the things in the pantry..laundry room, under blankets..cabinets.. she's a smart cookie.  
4. Puppy.  The lost triplet.  Puppy goes everywhere since the day we introduced him to Miss Jolie on my birthday last year.  She sleeps with that oversized stuffed dog over her face every night, as if to block out the sound/light and make it as dark as possible.  I am jealous of how peaceful Jolie seems when she sleeps.  Perhaps its puppy.  Puppy is also only allowed (for the most part) during nap and bedtime.  He is also hidden.. but the moment Parker finds her wub and paci, she also finds puppy and happily trots her way over to Jolie to hand him over. SMH.
5. Sound Machine. We officially use two sound machines in their room at nap and bed time. and a fan.  Jolie makes the smallest peep and Parker hops up to her feet as if she was never asleep at all.  This particular sound machine is the one we travel with and is by far my favorite.  Very loud and offers a variety of 'sounds'- but we stick to the 'Ocean' option.  Affordable and haven't had a single issue in the 17 months we've been using it.

What about you, mommas?  Special bedtime routines?  

Suggestions on transitioning away from the paci?? I am not looking forward to that day.

Or the nights that go along with it.

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6 comments:

Joanna Grant said...

I have tried every technique in the book to get my boys to sleep! As of 12 weeks the boys sleep 9.30pm- 7am! They are now 15 weeks and we are still going strong! I have no idea really which technique worked.... Maybe a combination of all of them... But who cares as life is SO much easier with twins when you can sleep!
I use similar routines to you... Music etc, but I've also been doing baby massage classes and it is such a lovely way to wind down with your babies.

TWilson3 said...

Great post! Thanks for sharing. Do you give the girls milk at all during/right before bedtime? I'm having a hard time transitioning my Littles from bottles to sippys because they still are needing/wanting the milk before bedtime. looking for an easy way to transition them. The sippys with the white plug doesn't come out fast enough but when I take out the plug it's too fast. I'm thinking maybe trying the nuby straw ones they love during the day. The bottle before bed is the only one they still use but I want to wean them off of it. Any ideas out there?

TWilson3 said...

Great post! Thanks for sharing. Do you give the girls milk at all during/right before bedtime? I'm having a hard time transitioning my Littles from bottles to sippys because they still are needing/wanting the milk before bedtime. looking for an easy way to transition them. The sippys with the white plug doesn't come out fast enough but when I take out the plug it's too fast. I'm thinking maybe trying the nuby straw ones they love during the day. The bottle before bed is the only one they still use but I want to wean them off of it. Any ideas out there?

Sheena said...

Thought I'd chime in while I'm sitting here at 3:14 am nursing Sebastian...fitting for a post like this one, no? ;) Anyway, just wanted to say that we started weaning our girls of their pacifiers by just letting them have them at bedtime and naptime. We tell them to "throw their binkis in their cribs" when we pick them up after waking and they do it and understand that those are only for when they sleep...even though they do occasionally sneak them past me. They still use them to sleep at 22 months but we're planning on weaning them completely at 2 years. That, like you said, should be fun. :/

Paige said...

My daughter stopped using her Wub Nub on her own around 7 months, but I've heard from several mommas that the easiest way to get rid of the paci is to sinp the end off the nipple. Their children didn't even want it anymore once the tip was snipped off. Good Luck!!

Julia @ The Everyday Momma said...

We have that sound machine too! I got it when my son was about 4 months and we have been using it every single night ever since (21 months now). I take it with for travel as well! It is one the best items we have ever purchased for Myles. We keep ours on Ocean too! It's my favorite :)

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