Baby Got Sleep?
Let's talk napping! Who doesn't love it? Mama gets in some much need ME time and baby gets the rest that they need… but let’s face it, that’s not always the reality. As a mama, you are more in tune with your kiddo’s personality and needs to know whether or not nap time will be stress-free for you. There are some things that I’ve noticed that help and hinder my boys sleep and I thought I’d share below to let all the mamas out there know sleep routines aren’t always rainbows and butterflies.
Breastfeeding & Sleep
I breastfed both of my boys until they were about fifteen months old and I don't care what anyone says, breastfed babies cannot be sleep trained like formula fed babies in my opinion... especially in the early months when they are feeding on demand. You try to get them in as much of a routine as you can, of course, but they must eat when they're hungry!
I'll also share that we aren't big on sleep training in our household. I know some parents swear by it and I'm not going to lie I’m envious of the parents who have more freedom because of sleep training... but, it just didn't work for us especially alongside breastfeeding. Wrong or right, I've let my boys figure out their sleep routines with my help.
Nap Resistor VS Nap Lover
Lots of factors go into a child's napping routine and it amazes me to see the difference with my two boys. Even though they have the same day to day routine they have such different needs when it comes to sleep.
Ryan's never been big on naps, even as an infant he took itty bitty cat naps... maybe 30-45 minutes long 3 times a day… maybe, haha. Still now, at three years old, Ryan's body just doesn't require as much sleep. He dropped naps the day he turned 2 and recently started napping again recently when I bumped him up to full time at his preschool. I guess seeing the kids around him nap makes him want to also because he refuses to nap on weekends.
When Ryan doesn't nap, he's lights out at 7:30pm and up again after 12 hours at around 7:30am. However, the days that he naps at school, he's not ready to sleep until around 9-930pm, which isn't the easiest for a tired mama who just wants some alone time in the evenings. I considered dialing him back to part-time school over it! Just so he can sleep at the same time as his brother and I could be free post 8pm (hallelujah!). Then I realized his little body and mind needs the midday nap especially on school days when he is exercising his brain muscles and burning a ton of energy playing with his classmates. So, for now, I'll suck it up and sleep later... I'm curious to see when things will change for him again...
Leo, on the other hand, has always napped for longer. Leo's been on a one nap a day sleep routine since he was about 15 months old. He typically naps for two hours and goes down at 7:30-8pm. Leo's nighttime sleep isn't as affected by his naps compared to Ryan who's naps have always altered his sleep. Leo can go down for a nap around noon, some days 1pm, but either way, he will still sleep by 8pm. I hope my little lion keeps going this way for a while! Us mamas gotta have one good sleeper, right?!
The Mystery of Sleep
I don't think I'll ever fully have my kid's sleep patterns figured out... for now, I'm enjoying them being little, even the nights when Ryan leaves his bed and comes to ours. I honestly don't mind it because I know it'll be short-lived. I think napping and sleep are one of those things that are different for each family dynamic and as long as the kiddos and parents are happy and healthy, that's all that matters.
Nap Tips & A Giveaway
Even though I’m constantly figuring out my boy's sleep needs there are some things that we do each night to help lead them to sleep… baths before bedtime, using sleep sacks, and story time. It’s really helped teach them when it's time to go sleep at night. Routine and consistency are everything when it comes to sleep and they thrive off of it.
Speaking of consistency… one thing I am big on being consistent with is imaginative play. I’ve found that having a play routine helps with napping. Imaginative play helps them stretch their imaginations, explore their surroundings, and tire them out a little better.
One of my boy’s favorite imaginative toys is our Tnee’s A-Frame Tent! And it could be your kiddos new favorite toy too because I’m giving one away (a $139 value) to one lucky mama… hooray!
Past #MomBossMonday mama, Courtney Gray, combined her want for a functioning pretty home and her children’s needs for imaginative play and created Tnee’s Tpees and the result is a gorgeous line of tents and teepees that will keep your babies playing, exploring, and getting tired out for nap time of course.
How to enter the giveaway:
Mamas with more than one kiddo, head over to my Instagram post about this and let me know how their sleep routine differs and share some tips that have helped you get some peace and quiet too. That's all it takes to enter! Good luck, xo!