Entries Tagged as 'baby sleep'

bedtime bedlam


We have a problem in the oh bother house. A big problem. A bedtime problem.

It started a few months ago, but we’ve now reached Desperation Point, peaking during the week we were snowed in (god, I hate snow).

Bedtime has become a nightly battle with Holden. She doesn’t want to go to bed. She doesn’t want to brush her teeth. She wants me to tell her one more story. She wants to tell me a story. She wants me to rub her back.

Once her door is closed, she immediately comes out five more times because a) she wants some water, b) the dog moved to the foot of the bed, c) one of her drawers is open, d) I didn’t turn out all the lights and close all the doors on the second floor, e) she just wants to see my face.

She gets up in the middle of the night because: a) she has to pee, b) the dog moved to the foot of the bed, c) she can’t find her flashlight that she insists on sleeping with, d) she had a bad dream, e) she doesn’t know.

During the snowstorm, she started wetting the bed at night, after having been Pull-Up free for months. After three straight nights of washing all of her bed linens, I gave up and went back to Pull-Ups. Her Pull-Up is now wet every morning.

It’s to the point now that we both fear bedtime. I’ve been trying various tactics to improve things.

Dream Catcher to improve bedtime @ohbotherblog

  • I’ve been using some random old Bath & Bodyworks Lavender Pillow Mist as “Good Dreams Spray.”*
  • I bought her a dream catcher.
  • I gave her a mini flashlight to sleep with.
  • I bought her a nightlight (that she refuses to use).
  • We practice deep breathing and talking about the good dreams she’s going to have.

When I was little, I remember I used to have trouble sleeping too. I’d make my mom leave the hall light on and my door open “just a crack.” I’d lie awake for hours. Sometimes I’d sneak over to my little brother’s room and pull him over to my bed with me.

Because of my experience, I’ve always thought I want the kids to share a room at some point in their lives. Maybe that point is now.

The problem is (or… it’s not really a problem so much…) that GB is an excellent sleeper. The kid essentially requests to go to bed and never fights it. He’s never climbed out of his crib once. Do I really want to mess with that?

Probably not. Not yet anyway… but I did find a super cute bunk bed for when the time comes.

Dorel Living Brady Bunk Bed @ohbotherblog

In the meantime, I guess we just power through and hope this phase ends soon.

*Here’s a cute recipe for “Monster Spray.”

big girl bed, big girl room, big girl


Transitioning from crib to big girl bed @ohbotherblog

As you may or may not recall, I was a little stressed about making the transition from crib to big girl bed for Holden. The plan had been to keep her in the crib in the nursery until her second birthday (June) and then make the move, while then also moving Gatsby from the bassinet in my room into the crib in the nursery. But when my little monkey started crawling out of the crib about a month ago, I decided we had to fast-track.

I was planning on taking baby steps by moving the big girl bed into the nursery first to let her get used to the new bed before the new room. I turned the crib around with the high side facing out to buy myself some time until I had help moving the beds. For moms in my position: this actually worked and kept her from crawling out of the crib. You just have to put the kid in and take them out from the side.

Transitioning from crib to big girl bed @ohbotherblog

But then, one day last week, Holden started carrying her blankets and some of the 87 stuffed animals she sleeps with from the nursery, across the hall and into her big girl room. So I decided—what the hell?—let’s just go for it. And we did.

And… it worked! She slept just fine all throughout the night with no crying or calling out. I did hear her talking to herself/her toys on the monitor a bit before she fell asleep but, to be honest, I wasn’t worried about it as long as she was quiet and out of my hair, haha. In the morning, I again heard her talking to her toys so I waited until I saw her actually get out of bed to go in.

Naps have worked just as well. We’ve been going strong for about a week now and there’s no looking back.

Transitioning from crib to big girl bed @ohbotherblog

Check out that big girl. See: totally wasn’t lying about all the stuffed animals.

Also, this is the bed we got her from Ikea: the MINNEN Ext bed frame, which fits a twin size mattress at its largest size (which is what we have in it).

MINNEN Ext bed frame @ohbotherblog

It looks like it might not be available anymore, so that’s a bummer.

Guess I have to get my butt in gear and actually finish the room now! Post on that coming soonish. Maybe.

escape artist: holdy’s crawling out of the crib


When your toddler escapes the crib @ohbotherblog

So it finally happened: Holden has crawled out of her crib. I opened the door to my bedroom this morning and there she was, standing in the hallway. There had been no thud; no crying. Just Holdy and her bedhead, ready to shake up the status quo I had been enjoying for so long.

I’ve been dreading this day since I first took notice of Holden’s athletic prowess as a 7-month-old. I was hoping we’d be able to skip this stage and I’d be able to just transition her to the toddler bed when we were both ready… but it looks like that’s not going to happen.

Here’s my dilemma: My plan was to keep Gatsby in a bassinet in my room for the first three months, which would bring us about to Holdy’s second birthday. At that point, I was going to transition Holdy across the hall to her big girl room and toddler bed (which has a twin-size mattress, but is low to the ground and has side rails). The room is already quasi-set up and Holdy likes to play in the room, but she hasn’t napped or slept there yet.

Today, after the escape, I wanted to see if Holdy would nap in her big girl room. She said she wanted to and seemed excited about it, but when the time actually came, she wanted to go back to the nursery for her nap.

So what do I do?

I did put a baby gate up at her nursery door now so she can’t just go traipsing about the house. The nursery is baby-proofed and I have a video monitor in there.

Should I move the toddler bed over to the nursery for a few months to make the transition one step at a time? Go for it all at once? This may be a good time to remind you that I have a 3-week-old and am already not getting much sleep myself, haha. Don’t even get me started on the fact that she’s ready to potty train and I’m not…

Argh, toddlers, amirite?

baby’s second night


Surviving Baby's Second Night @ohbotherblog

As tonight will mark the one-week anniversary of my second night in the hospital with Gatsby, I wanted to share another oh, bother. PSA™ with ya’ll while the horror is still fresh in my mind. You see, in addition to the postpartum recovery/pad sandwich situation that no one (but me!) warns you about, no one warns new moms about Night #2, or Quite Possibly the Worst Night of Your Life.

You may congratulate yourself the morning after that first night with your new baby—even with the nurses in and out of your room all night, you’re still kind of running on adrenaline so the sleeplessness doesn’t bother you too much. You may think, “Hey, that wasn’t so bad. I totally got this.” But… you don’t know. You. don’t. know what awaits.

When I had Holden, a lactation consultant visited my room specifically to warn me about Night #2. There was even a special page dedicated to Night #2 in the “Your Newborn for Dummies (aka You)” manual the hospital gives you. Do not brush off these warnings; be prepared because Night #2 is coming.

This time, I don’t know if I was blocking out my memories of that night in a survivor/PTSD-type situation, or if I was thrown off by the nurse telling me that my little boy would be really sleepy after his circumcision (it’s a trap! Don’t believe it!) but once again, I found myself unprepared for Night #2.

It starts in the evening as visiting hours are winding down and you find yourself alone with your new baby (and possibly your partner if you’ve decided to enlist their support for the night). You feed your bebe one last time before a few hours of sleep… or so you think. But no: this is Night #2, aka New Mom Hazing Night, aka The Cluster Feeding Night aka Nurse All Night Night.

There will be no sleep. There will only be nursing. Every time you take the kid off your nip, he will cry and the only thing that will soothe him will be more nip. Forget about him sleeping in the tupperware hospital bassinet; he will only sleep on your chest with your nip in his mouth… therefore you will not sleep, as the nurses make damn well sure you don’t fall asleep in bed with the baby. You will still fall asleep with the baby in bed with you at least once this night, against your best efforts. This sleep will be fleeting. Your partner will be useless. You will cry. Your nipples will hurt. All the nursing will require frequent changing of your pad sandwich. Your baby will cry while you’re in the bathroom and you will shout, “Okay! Okay! Yes, Mommy will be right there!” out the bathroom door. You may try to make it through the night by watching TV, or reading Twitter on your phone, or ordering little flowered headbands on Etsy at 3am.

You will doubt yourself. But don’t let that baby break you.

Because soon it will be 5am, then 6am, and you’ve survived. They’ll be bringing your shriveled scrambled eggs and blueberry Yoplait soon. You’ll probably be going home today. Your kid is worn out from hazing you and there’s most likely a nap in your future… unless your nesting instinct waits until the day you get home from the hospital to kick in, like mine does. But that’s a different story.

And that, my new-mom friends, is Night #2.

I highly recommend that you check out “Baby’s Second Night” on KellyMom.com for the legit info on why Night #2 is a thing (spoiler alert: it’s because the baby is out of their coming-through-the-birth-canal fog and is all like “WTF?!?” and needs some comfort; and also because cluster feeding helps to build your milk supply) and for some helpful suggestions on how to get through it with your dignity (somewhat) intact. I’m pretty sure that information is what was shared in my hospital manual.

The good news is that it gets better (…and then it usually gets worse for a while, but it’ll get better again. Maybe. Hopefully. Definitely). You got this.

Bottle-feeding moms: how do you get through the terror that is Night #2?

nekkid toddler


I'd rather be naked onesie from Old Navy @ohbotherblog

“I’d Rather Be Naked” jumpsuit from Old Navy.


So Holden’s fun new trick is taking off all of her clothes and her diaper while in her crib.

It started with the shirt a few times a couple of weeks ago. Now lately when I check the video monitor in the morning or after her nap, I see her bare ass staring back at me.

Luckily, there haven’t been any serious bathroom incidents to accompany her nudist exploration… yet… but I’m waiting for dreading the day that there’s a surprise waiting for me in the crib, or on the walls, or in her hair.

From my super extensive and thorough online research, it seems like this could possibly be an indicator that she might be ready to start checking out the potty. She has two little potties, a white one in the bathroom and a toy one that sings, that we’ve had in the house for about four months. She likes to sit on them and clap for herself, and she’s peed in the white one in the bathroom a few times before bedtime (after which she received a sticker. woo.).

But lately when I ask her if she wants to pee in the potty, she says, “no,” so I’m not pushing it. I also don’t have the time to dedicate to actual potty training just yet, though I figure if she seems game when I’m home on maternity leave we may give it a shot. She’s 18 months old now, which seems to be on the early end of the spectrum.

Otherwise, I’ve seen suggestions on how to keep the diaper on, including:

  • putting the diaper on backward
  • duct taping it on
  • putting her in onesie pajamas that are harder for her to get off

Not sure how I feel about these things. She is a determined persistent stubborn little thing and I wonder if making her work harder will just make her hulk out.

So, did your kid start ditching the diaper? How did you handle this phase?

don’t go, naps!


Baby Mustache Nuk @ohbotherblog

I think it’s coming. I’ve been dreading this moment for months. I think… it’s time… to give up Holden’s two naps.

I’m very sad about this. Those two two-hour breaks during the day have been spectacular. I can shower. I can eat. I can clean (ha!). I can write. I can nap. Do we really have to do this?

Holden is 15 months old. For the past eight months or so, she’s been napping from 10am-12pm and then from about 3pm-5pm (she goes to bed between 7:30 and 8pm). For about the past month, for various reasons, her nap schedule seems to be changing.

When I get home from work, my parents will usually tell me that she skipped her afternoon nap, or that she only napped for a short period of time. But then some days I get home and she’s still napping at 5:30pm.

On the weekends when I’m with her, she seems to be more on track. By 10am she seems really ready for that morning nap. Sometimes we’re out and about so the afternoon nap gets pushed back but she still usually takes that nap in the afternoon.

So 1) does this really have to happen? 2) how do I do this? Do I start pushing back that morning nap an hour and take it from there? 3) is it okay if I cry when this happens?

When did your kid transition from one nap to two?

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