It happened…

Sooo, just as I dreaded, not long after I posted my last update, my little bear started fighting his naps, and for the last week or so I’ve been giving him a hand in getting to sleep. 

He will not feed (still EBF) unless tired or sleepy, otherwise he is distracted by everything else around him. And so, he is not feeding much in the day, but is making up for it at night. Recently, he is up every 2-3 hours at night, which he had NEVER done 😂😂😂. 

He is also teething which I think may be impacting his sleep, so I am just going to go with it for now, and pray everything goes back to normal soon. We’re getting better the last few days/ nights so I may start to be strict again soon. 

I just knew as soon as I uploaded my last post, that I was speaking prematurely and things would go back to normal. That will teach me to speak too soon! 

Six months young..

Six months ago today at 1.01pm, my little munchkin flew out of me (quite literally). I can’t believe that he is now six months old, and has gone from a teeny tiny bundle (a beautiful one mind), that would just sleep, cry (or should I say SCREAM) and feed, to a lovely bubbly little human who is just so happy and cheeky.

He really does have a lovely little personality already, and he certainly knows how to get his own way, and because he is just so cute, it’s hard not to give in. I really wish I could press pause sometimes and properly take everything in. There’s so much I want to do but just not enough hours in the day (even though we’re up from 5.30am everyday 😂😂).

This last month has been all about getting my munchkin to self soothe himself to sleep, which he is doing brilliantly (he still tests me though). And I’m pleased we have not had to leave him to cry himself to sleep whatsoever. I say we, but let’s face it I mean ‘I’. The husband doesn’t get involved with bedtime, night wakings or naptime.. Lucky him!

Although we’ve tackled getting Sami to sleep, for the last 2 months or so, his sleep patterns have changed considerably, and the amount of night wakings has increased SO SO much. It’s safe to say I am insanely sleep deprived, I don’t even know how I am functioning. I long to sleep for more than 3 hours at a time, and right now am jealous of everyone around me who gets that and more (a lot more).

It’s been way too long, and being this sleep deprived can make you irritable, short tempered and generally moody. Thankfully, I have an understanding husband and mother, (the people who spend the most time with me) who just ignore it and let me be. I often can’t go back to sleep after being woken, and am just waiting for the next waking (for hours). I honestly have so much love and respect for all mums out there. You really don’t appreciate what it’s like until you’ve been through it.

Anyway, enough of that. Even though the last month has been solely focused on Sami’s sleep and nap times (I don’t go out for very long in the day as want him to have all of his naps at home while he is still learning to self soothe), I feel that six months old is full of exciting firsts and new experiences. Here are ours:

  • Sami tried his first food threedays ago, puréed carrot, which he loved. He hated puréed potato the next day, and loved sweet potato on day 3. I am loosely following Annabel Karmel’s weaning guidance, and have a couple of her books. I will let you know how we get on.
  • Sami moved into his ‘big baby’ cot three weeks ago (a little early but he was ready and it’s actually helped with naptime tremendously. He also moved into his own room a little early, at just before five months. It has helped us both as we are both light sleepers and I would often wake him getting into bed and getting up to use the loo.
  • We will be saying goodbye to Sami’s carrycot base on his bugaboo, and he will be forward facing which I’m so excited about. He loves going for walks and we often go on very very long ones. He will be able to see so much more :).
  • Sami’s high chair arrived today, and I can’t wait for him to join us at meal times, as we continue to experiment with flavours and textures.
  • Sami’s babble game is now strong, and he is experimenting with sounds. I am so impressed with all of the different sounds he is trying to say. My personal favourites are ‘mama’ and ‘dada’. I’m not sure wether he knows what he is saying, but he often makes these sounds when in his cot trying to sleep and wants us to come.
  • We are so delighted and excited with the fabulous news that Sami will have a little cousin- due June 2016. Exactly one year younger than Sami. I have grown up with a sister and cousins of similar ages, and I can’t tell you how valuable this has been for me. I am overjoyed that Sami will experience this, and I just can’t wait to welcome my nephew/ niece.

All in all its been a very eventful month, I feel like he is growing so much and learning so much and I’m just so excited to see how he develops further. He is worth all the sleepless nights, and lack of social life. I literally devout my time to him 24/7, but he is so worth it, and he is such a happy baby, I think he knows that he is loved so much.

I will leave you with some pictures of the finished nursery 😄

Sleep training update. Six weeks later 

Wow, I can’t believe it has been six weeks since I started sleep training. I have been nervous about writing this update, as I feel as soon as I ‘speak’ this out loud, it will all go pear shaped. 

I feel like I’ve been hiding away in a deep dark hole.. All in aid of getting my little bear to sleep by himself. As he sleeps every two hours, I try to be at home for every nap time, as I don’t want him falling asleep in the car or pram to jeapordise the progress he has made. I never wanted to be ‘one of those mums’, but trust me it all changes when your actually here and you’d do anything to get a little bit more sleep and sanity! 

So anyway, back to how we’ve got on with sleep training.. For the last month, my little cutie has managed to put himself to sleep at every bedtime and every nap time (bar a couple of times when I’ve had to help or we have been out and about). 

It sounds amazing, but it hasn’t been easy, and sometimes this can take up to an hour for him to actually drift off. Albeit, for the first week he would drift away no problem, no fuss, no drama, and without me needing to return to his cot to calm him back down. I’ve put this down to him testing me to see if I mean business. Nearly every bed/ nap time, he tries he’s luck to get me to put him to sleep instead. So this is what I have learnt:

  • You need to stay calm! If you aren’t, your baby will pick up on it for sure. 
  • My baby needs to be happy and relaxed before he can drift off, so he has to be smiley and in a good mood when I put him down, and I often use a slow song to relax him. If he gets worked up because he can’t sleep, I have to get him happy again before I can leave him.
  • He often wants me to sit next to his cot while he peacefully drifts away.
  • He likes the room to be dimly lit whilst falling asleep, but dark for the rest of the night.
  • White noise is a gods send! My baby is a light sleeper, so it really helps to block out the noises in the rest of the house. 
  • You need to stick to your guns. If he really won’t sleep at naptime then eventually I draw a line and wait for the next nap.

I am really pleased with our progress so far, even though he wakes more at night the past fortnight. A self soothing baby does not mean a baby who will sleep through! I’m not so fussed though for now, and will see what happens once he’s weaned. I’m also not getting my hopes up as feel  anything could happen and result in us reverting back to old ways. For now I am going to keep being persistent.. Wish me luck 

2 weeks later.. Sleep training update 

It’s been two weeks since we started sleep training. I am pleased to say I am getting a lot more sleep, but due to my poor little bear suffering from a bug the last week, I haven’t been sticking to my guns as strictly as I would have liked. 

For the first 6 days I was strict in making sure he fell asleep alone at bedtime and every night waking. It was hard work but it was paying off. From day one, he drastically reduced the number of times he woke. However, now that he is ill when he wakes during the night and he’s poor little nose is struggling so hard to breathe, I can’t help but help him out.. After all that’s what mummy’s are for.. 

My baby is back to sleeping one long stretch a night (most nights), which averages between 4 and 6 hours, he then wakes once or twice. On two occasions he has managed 9 hours straight which is just amazing. 

However, we are still struggling with very early starts. He’s just too eager to get up and play. This has improved, but we’ve had a handful of nights were he’s woken at 5am, and two occasions were he has woken at 4am (this morning being one of them)😂😂. I will tackle this problem once we have a fully self soothing baby! (Oh and once naps are sorted too).

So, all in all I am pleased with the progress we have made so far, but don’t want to get my hopes up yet as anything can happen, and my munchkin still prefers mummy to put him to sleep. I am just so relieved that the waking up every 2 hours has vanished for now, but I’ll be praying this carries on.. 🙏🙏🙏

Sleep training.. Day 2

I had a feeling that last night would be harder then the first night, as I still thought it was just a fluke. So this is how last night played out: 

6.50pm: Sami put himself to sleep after three ‘pick up put downs’

9.00pm: I went to bed, expecting to be woken by 9.30pm, his usual wake up time.

12.40am: Sami was very quietly stirring, but trying to go back to sleep.

12.50am: I felt sorry for him and gave him a feed, he was starving! 

1.02am: Put Sami back down (very sleepy at this point)

1.05am: I could hear him quietly trying to settle himself, I knew he’d manage, so I peacefully drifted off.

3.54am: I heard quiet stirring again, and Sami trying to sleep. 

4.06am: I convinced myself he needed a feed so went in and fed him. He was starving so I’m glad I did.

4.15am: Left him awake and happy, he spent the next 45 minutes trying his very best, I went in three times and picked him up and put him down and every time I did he had wind or a burp. This was stopping him from sleeping I thought. 

5.00am: I really just wanted him to sleep at this point so comforted him back to sleep ( I couldn’t help it he’s doing so well). 

5.30am: I put him back down and he woke up smiling, laughing and ready to play. He was so happy that I gave in and got him up. Il tackle his early wakings after we have sorted his initial sleep problems.

After a horrendous two weeks, even though I haven’t followed it to the book, I am so happy with the progress we have made. I just hope I can continue to follow it through and can get past day 5, as that’s when Sami regressed when trying to nap train last month.