Friday was the first night that I actually put Olivia to bed before she’s decided to fall asleep in the living room with us!
I started her bedtime routine with her usual 6oz bottle at 7pm. Then I put her in her bath, and we had a play with her new toys and washed with Johnson’s Baby Bedtime Bath. Then we had a cuddle and watched a bit of TV and played with bunny (the favourite teddy!) and Penelope Peacock (a Lamaze toy brought from Toys ‘R’ Us) and at 8:30pm, I decided it was time to attempt bedtime…
We’ve purchased Olivia a space saving cot from Mothercare. It’s bigger than her Moses basket, but doesn’t impose on our bedroom floor space. So far, she seems pretty happy in it!
So, I put her into her cot, and zipped her up in her sleeping bag. I decided i’d leave the poppers on the shoulders undone, I’m not really sure why. I think because I knew that I wanted to wake her up at around 10pm to give her another bottle and change her nappy before Andy and I went to bed. I didn’t want her to be swaddled and go into too deep a sleep. The baby monitor got turned on, and I left the light show running so it would light up the room with stars on the ceiling.
Olivia went into her cot and sleeping bag at 8:30pm, and genuinely, she was fast asleep by 8:35pm! I didn’t even have time to grab a book from her bedroom. I even came downstairs and said to Andy “I don’t think it’ll be that easy ever again! That was a fluke. Definitely!”
I woke Olivia up at 10:15pm to change her nappy and give her a bottle. She didn’t even really wake up to drink the bottle (I think that’s called a twilight feed?) She then went back to bed, zipped back into her sleeping bag – this time with the poppers closed – no problems at all, didn’t even flinch when she went from being on me, to being flat in her bed.
I’ve done this for a few nights now. I’ve tried putting Olivia into bed earlier to see if she’ll sleep earlier, but 8:30pm seems to be her sleep time. If I take her up earlier, at least I get time to read her a book!
This routine seems to be working for me and Olivia. Now, I know some people might be judgemental about the time I put my baby to bed, but that’s fine, because their baby might like to fall asleep earlier and maybe wakes up earlier than mine. But my baby is happy, healthy and very well rested. She falls to sleep at 8:30pm – naturally, not being rocked to sleep, fed to sleep, without the use of calpol, unless she’s feeling unwell – and she wakes up at 8:30am (most days! Sometimes it’s 6am, sometimes it’s 9:45am!) She still naps during the day and gets plenty of food and playtime in between. All babies are different, and at this stage in a babies life, all that matters is they are happy and healthy! Personally, I don’t feel like my baby needs to go to sleep any earlier or wake any earlier than what she currently does. Her routine works for us all at the minute, and until i’m back at work, I won’t be worrying about teaching her new sleep/wake timings.
All babies are different, just do what works for you and your little one.
P.S. Sorry for going into a rant but i’ve just heard so much negativity about babies sleeping routines (mine in particular!) that it just needs to be aired out sometimes!