I mentioned on Instagram that our little Lila is an awesome sleeper and I had SO many questions in return about what I did for sleep training. So today I thought I’d share a little bit about what I have done, what products I use and what books I have read to get us here.
So, to start off, when Lila was two weeks old I felt this pressure to get her on a sleep schedule. I was so worried that if I didn’t that she would never sleep or be a really bad sleeper. I read a bunch of baby sleep training books and tried to implement a really strict schedule (never let her fall asleep in my arms, rigid times and crazy routines). Lets just say that was miserable! She slept less and so did I. That’s when I decided to use all that I had learned in my readings and just experiment! I used things that worked and discarded the things that didn’t.
Sleep equals more sleep. From all of my reading I learned that trying to keep your baby up late so that they’re sleep better does not work! The more your baby sleeps the more they want to sleep. And that has really been true for Lila!
Babies want to be on a schedule. I spent a few weeks mainly being at home and trying to listen to my baby. I found out her cues for being tired and being hungry. And pretty quickly she established her own schedule. The only thing that I did, was encourage the EAT, PLAY, SLEEP routine. This means that I just don’t let her fall asleep right after eating and it seems to really make a difference. To do this, I usually burp her after she eats which often wakes her up a bit and then change her diaper (that really wakes her up). Rarely she will stay asleep through all of that, and that’s ok. I just take that as a sign that her body really needs to sleep and let her 😉 Flexibility is key with babies!
This is what a typical day looks like for Lila.
Awake at 7 am- Feeding
7:15- 8 am Play
8-9 am Nap
9-10 am Play
10 am Feeding
10:15-11 am Play
11-12 pm Nap
1 pm Feeding
1:15-2 pm Play
2-3:30 pm Nap
3:30-4 pm Play
4 pm Feeding
4:15-5 pm Play
5-5:30 pm Nap
5:30 – 7 pm Play
7 pm Feeding
7:15- 7:45 pm Play
7:45 – 9:30 Sleep
9:30 pm Feeding
9:45- 10:30 Play
10:30- somewhere between 5-6 am Sleep
5-6 am Feeding
After feeding until 7 am Sleep
Obviously it’s a little different everyday. Some mornings she wakes up earlier and sometimes her naps are longer or shorter, However, she pretty much always eats every 3 hours with playing then a nap then more playing in between.
So… I let my baby sleep in my arms! It’s not every time she sleeps which I think is important, but probably once a day she takes a nap in my arms. I love it and so does she. I also think it helped her start on a good nap schedule because she sleeps the best in my arms and I have slowly weened her off of it and into her rock n’ play.
She usually naps in her rock n’ play, bouncer, car seat or in my arms and then sleeps at night in her DockATot. This thing is a must!! I think it helps her sleep SO much longer. It says on their website that is is completely breathable, but because we have an Owlet we feel good about her sleeping in it overnight. (review of the Owlet coming soon!). I like to have her nap in different places because it makes it easy for her to sleep wherever we are and during whatever we’re doing.
I try to keep our nightly routine similar every night. We change her diaper, put on her owlet sock, put on her pjs, dim the lights in her room, put a heating pad in her bed with a blanket over it (best trick ever from my mother-in-law) and then I feed her. She is usually so tired after I feed her that I just lay her down in her now warm bed for the night, but occasionally I’ll cuddle her and rock her after she eats and then lay her down. I think having he bed warm when I go to lay her down really helps her feel cozy.
If she wakes up in the night I try to wait 3-5 minutes to see if she will self soothe, but if she doesn’t I always feed her. But then, I put her right back to bed after she eats. I don’t let her cry it out, but I give her time to try to self soothe and as she gets older I will gradually lengthen that time.
Well that was kind of a lot of information and I probably forgot something haha but I hope it was helpful for someone!