Saturday, January 9, 2010

Oh Sleep, How I Miss Thee...

In her defense, Ava is a champion sleeper. With the exception of when we initially put her down for the night. She just won't go to sleep.

Part of it is that she sleeps a lot during the day - so we've been trying our best to wake her up during the day. It's nearly impossible, but we've come up with some creative strategies at this point.

I thought perhaps our room is too quiet, since she sleeps like a baby out in the living room all day, so we tried her noise machine and her seahorse glowworm, but no dice. It may work for a bit, but she won't stay asleep.

We've now adjusted several different variables, but still, it can take hours before she'll go to sleep at night. And so I ask this: What is your bedtime routine like and does it work for you? I'm desperately needing suggestions. I try to make sure she consistently gets full feedings rather than 'snacks' so that she needs to eat less often and will sleep for longer periods, but still, nothing. And then once she gets to sleep, she'll generally only wake to nurse and then go back to sleep, which at least is something, right?

All advice and input appreciated!


  1. Have you read Happiest Baby on the Block? I haven't been able to test his theory yet, but I just finished the book. His sleep advice is swaddle tightly, harsh white noise, and swinging/jiggling (well that's 3 of his 5 steps). There are tons of videos on youtube that show him demonstrating how to do it too.

  2. I am having the same trouble. Adelle won't go to bed and actually sleep until around 11 - which is normal (I hear). But the hours leading up to that are confusing. I have the book and have started to read it because it was recommended by more than a few people!

  3. Oh how I remember these days. Here's my advice...Marianne too, was an awesome sleeper, 4 hours a stretch.

    Thing is she didn't have the day and night thing figured out till about a month, and it was 6 weeks before she could eat enough to stay full and asleep for the whole 10 hours at night.

    What worked for me was making nighttime boring. Keep the lights off, use a nightlight for feedings, and a dim light for changings.

    If she wants to play, play something that's not her a story or if you're desperate watch something quiet on TV, like a talk show.

    When she starts to look sleepy (the worst, after an hour, if she lasts that long!) do the following:

    Don't read or talk to her, don't sing, sit quietly in a rocking chair and let her nurse till she gets sleepy, then sit for 10 minutes to make sure she's out. Make sure the wait the 10 minutes or she will wake up the second you put her down. Trust me, poor J learned this one the hard way!

    Then transfer her to crib in whatever position is comfiest for her...Marianne always loved to sleep on her tummy. I know there's all the talk about SIDS and such, and I was nervous about it, but if I put her down on her back she'd wake up after 20 minutes. :( Do what works for you and Ava.

    She's still a little young, despite sleeping so well now, for you to expect her to sleep through the night. Give it another month, she ought to be okay, if she's anything like her cousin Marianne.

    When they can eat about 6 oz, then they can usually sleep 6-8 hours.

    Our current routine goes like this - and has since she was sleeping through the night at about 6 weeks old (she started daycare at 9 weeks):

    1. Get up in the morning around 6 AM
    2. Breakfast (big bottle)
    3. Drop off at daycare - snack bottle
    4. Playtime
    5. Morning nap (10 AM to 11 AM ish)
    6. Lunch (baby food now, big bottle before that)
    7. Playtime
    8. Afternoon nap (2 PM to 3 PM ish)
    9. Snack bottle
    10. Pickup to head home (5:30 PM)
    11. Get home (6:15 PM)
    12. Have dinner (6:30 PM)
    13. Bathtime + playtime
    14. Storytime
    15. Snack bottle
    16. Bedtime (7 PM to 7:30 PM ish)

    On average, she ate about 36 - 40 oz a day starting at 3.5 months. Her doctor told me at 4 months that was normal. I looked it up, and it was normal - for a 6 month old.

    Sometimes I wonder about the guy, I really do. But she's not overweight, she's in the 50th percentile for weight and height...she just burns it all moving around SO MUCH.

    Unfortunately as she's gotten older, she now resists naps and bedtime...we've had more than a few 'let her cry' naps cause she doesn't want to sleep.

  4. Asher has this same exact problem except that he won't go to sleep "for the night" until 12 or 1am. I put him down at 10pm and he's up within 1/2 hour. Hopefully he'll start going to bed earlier in the next few weeks!

  5. It seems impossible now, but even the fussiest baby does sleep eventually.

    Good luck to you guys! :)


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