Thursday, October 28, 2010

Something About Grandma's House--Sleep training day 4 and 5

I don't know what it is about Grandma's house, but Lauren slept amazing on night 4. She still woke up 4 times, but each time was able to settle back down with only a pacifier and without nursing. That is one small step to people without kids, but one giant leap to any new parent, I'm sure.

Last night she was a wee bit more restless. I caved (again) and brought her into bed with Grandma and I because Grandma has a California King, and it was after all, a sleepover. With Pavlov in mind (yes, referring to Macy and Nate's comments), a "stimulus" just might be the trick. I don't think a bell, or salivating, is key here; but the "sleep lite" application on my iTouch just might prove a saving grace. In the book I read, they say to have white noise. So, my new approach? Lay near Lauren with the sound of rain or waves playing on the iTouch and each night make my way closer and closer to the door until finally I can lay her down with the white noise playing, and I'll be out in another room getting things done (or passed out from exhaustion in my own room!)

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Not so Silent Night--Sleep Training, Day 3

Lauren had no trouble falling asleep last night. After a bath from Dad and the rest of the routine, she settled into her crib as if she were exhausted. It was as if she couldn't wait to get out of my arms into her cozy blankets. I couldn't believe that by 7:10 pm she was breathing heavily away into Dreamland.

That was until about 8:30 pm.

From that time until Jeff and I woke up at 6:00 am, Lauren awoke at what seemed to be every half hour. We even caved and brought her into our room to co-sleep (which availed to no quality of sleep seeing as she is a tiny "windmill" with flailing arms and grasshopper kicking legs.)

If I weren't a psychology major, I might throw in the towel after last night and try this sleep training thing in a few months down the road. But, because I am a psychology major, I'm smart enough to know that there are things I am doing now that reinforce her behavior to wake up and depend on me and which in a few more months, would be much tougher to break. And, you'd think because I have experience in +/-reinforcement, shaping behaviors, and manipulating situations for the better that I'd have had a great night's sleep by now!

Day 4, here we come!

Monday, October 25, 2010

Sweeter Sleep--sleep training, day 2

Last night was amazing...well, until Jeff and I went to bed. We went through our routine with Lauren, and she seemed pretty tired in general last night. We started around 6:30 pm and by 7:00 I was ready to put her in her crib. She cried for a little while, but by 7:09 she was out like a light.

It was sweet and serene quiet time and it was the first time in months Jeff and I were able to start a movie before nine...and stay awake for the whole thing! The only issue? Lauren woke up 3 (or 4?) times throughout the night :(

The first two times, she quickly fell back asleep when Jeff gave her a pacifier. It seems like a blur, but I think by 1:30 and 3:30 am I caved thinking she needed to nurse both times to get her through the night. I'm excited to see what tonight brings. As my mother-in-law recalls, she "power-nursed" her babies right before putting them down; making sure they ate as much as comfortable to get them as many consecutive hours of sleep as possible!

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Sweet Sleep--sleep training, Day 1

I've reached my limit of sleepless nights, interrupted zzz's time, and midnight nursing sessions. Don't get me wrong, I love bonding with my little one, but after 6 months of choppy sleep I'm due for a good night's rest. So, I set out with a few tools to jump start my venture into sleep training.

After talking to multiple mothers, I checked out the book "The Happiest Baby on the Block" and a few other books about calming and sleep training. I've read several articles on and felt I was ready to give it a shot.

So, tonight was number 1 and for the next week or so, our routine will go something like this:

7:00 pm: Let Lauren burn some energy in the Johny-Jump-Up.
7:10 pm: Give Lauren a warm, relaxing bath and talk in a soft, calm voice
7:20 pm: Have Lauren in a fresh diaper and p.j's, comb her hair, and then bundle her in a warm blanket.
7:30 pm: Read a short story, say family prayer, make sure dad has a chance to kiss goodnight, and nurse if needed.
7:35 pm (or about then): Cowboy up and place baby in crib. Turn off lights, turn on "white noise fan" and sit beside the crib as needed.

We did great tonight. After 30 minutes of roller coaster crying (started out with a complaining cry, escalated into a scream-like cry, then hit a real cry which took every ounce of my will power to not pick her up, then back down, etc.) and me whispering little words of comfort to her, Lauren settled into sleep recognized by her easy rhythm breathing. Then I knew it was safe to tiptoe outside.

All references say Lauren should reach destination Dreamland bliss within a week (9 days max). I'll log our progress with the hopes of getting 7+ consecutive hours of sleep by the time October ends.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Every Nursery needs a theme!

I started with a pink and brown theme, and then I tried to add a touch of my favorite animal. Can you tell what my favorite animal is??? Did I go overboard?

Lastly, two very sweet girlfriends donated to my cause! (Or my love of giraffes!)

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