Newborn sleeps 10 hours! (TIPS & TRICKS)

i’ve knocked on wood a couple times in the last week. writing this post is kinda freaking me out and i’ve become quite superstitious. as if me giving advice on my baby’s sleep schedule will suddenly revert him back to a terrible sleeper. but i’ll be courageous and push through bc superstition is bizarre and i’ve never really believed in it and well, i want to share my advice on sleeping, dangit!

Let me first begin by saying: THIS IS MY BABY’S SCHEDULE. every baby is different. how many times have you heard that statement since becoming a mom? lol but I do believe a few simple steps and a few simple pointers can actually work for any baby. Another point I must make is that I’m BIG on intuition. I believe God gave us a true dose of intuition the minute we conceived our children, every mother and every father and therefore, we really do know what is best for baby. So, read this post with the light, fun, and truly entertaining purpose that it is intended, and raise your glass to our babies sleeping through the night, bc honestly, that’s what we all hope and pray (beg!) for every night as we lay those sweet babes down to sleep (no matter what age!)

ok, here’s some backstory. Stone is a good sleeper. Always has been. Can sleep in a sun-filled room with the tv blasting and his parents in full-blown conversation. He loves to be swaddled, for the most part, although he does love to work his hands up to his face and is pretty good at it. He sucked his thumb briefly in those first couple of weeks, but hasn’t done it since. We have never used a paci, although not opposed, just haven’t needed it.

When I was pregnant, my friend Tori told me about the SNOO. She went on and on about the SNOO. I was very sick during my pregnancy and while many women love to daydream about when baby arrives and they spend hours filling their registries with the essentials and all the most adorable accoutrements, I never got into that. Grant actually made our registry. I couldn’t even think about it. From being sick to being stressed at work, to worrying about labor to moving house, I had zero brain space to pick out bibs.

But that conversation with Tori kept creeping back into my head. She said the SNOO saved her and her newborn baby in the sleep department. She kept saying he slept soooo good. I didn’t even know what that meant and I truly didn’t appreciate the conversation for what it was worth, but I did remember that SNOO = sleep.

So I told Grant about it and after picking him up off the floor after seeing the price, we decided to retire the idea of the SNOO. but only for a little bit. Grant somehow checked the SNOO website on this random day and it was on sale (FOR $750!!!!). He asked if we should just go ahead and get it, and I said, go for it (having no real idea what this meant for our lives . . . ). The SNOO arrived a week before Stone arrived, and literally the night I was induced, Grant had randomly pulled the SNOO out of the box and assembled it.

So fast forward to today. The SNOO is pricey, but IT IS WORTH IT. I don’t know newborn life without it, so please know that I’m so extremely spoiled by this thing and it is worth every penny.

That’s tip number one: get yourself a SNOO. The best way to describe it: a motorized bassinet that has a built-in swaddle, built-in white noise machine, and 5 soothing settings. We started using the SNOO around week 4, when I felt like Stone had gained some weight and would fit nicely in the swaddle. If Stone starts to wiggle, or gets restless, the SNOO knows. it knows everything. if he starts to cry, the SNOO knows. the soothing settings change based on his movements and cries. Usually, Stone is just restless, and the SNOO rocks him right back to sleep. If Stone is actually hungry or just wants his mom, the SNOO will go through all the sooth settings and eventually shut off the bassinet completely. This is our cue to get baby. It takes like maybe 4 minutes (if that) to go through all the settings, so don’t worry, he’s not crying for long. the sooth settings just give him a chance to fall back asleep on his own – and he usually does.

We have learned so much about Stone over the last six weeks of using the SNOO, and we rarely even put Stone in his SNOO if he’s still hungry or needs a diaper change. so the need to go get Stone out of the SNOO because of crying has happened only a handful of times.

Tip number two: put SNOO in a dark room. Ok, so we had Stone in our bedroom for the first 6 weeks of his life. We don’t have curtains in there, which is fine at night, but for daytime naps, he would sleep in the bright sunny room. By 6 weeks, I decided it was time to move the SNOO into his nursery, where we have black out curtains. Game changer. His daytime naps have been amazing. he sleeps the full nap and honestly could sleep longer if I didn’t wake him up.

Tip number three: make naptime consistent. (disclaimer: I am home all day with my baby. I have the luxury of making a schedule and sticking to it. We rarely go out. And if we do go out, his naptimes do get interrupted and we pay for it at night. So please know that this advice is based on a stay at home mom who can be very strict with her schedule. hats off to all the moms who have amazing childcare providers that keep their babies on schedule and love them all day long!! ugh, those are angels on earth am i right?!) I used to let Stone nap anywhere. Usually in the living room, with the tv on, lights on, etc. etc. This worked great for us while he was really young. By the 5-6 week mark, I was ready to give him the ultimate sleeping environment, which was actually more of a sacrifice for me than him. It took some adjusting and discipline, especially walking up the steps to put him in his SNOO, but man, it’s worth it. SIDE NOTE: I love a baby napping on my chest. When the iron strikes and Stone falls asleep on me, I do soak it in. Every single nap doesn’t HAVE to be in his nursery. BUT it does help with the full night sleep. SO when you are weighing the pros and cons, just know that there’s a HUGE pro to snuggling and napping with babe, but the con could be he has a harder time going to sleep at night. Remember, this is Stone’s story – your baby is different and lovely and beautiful and something different probably works for them. PS: The reason it could be considered a con is that Stone doesn’t sleep as long and as uninterrupted in my arms. Naps in the SNOO are 1.5 hours. When he’s in my arms, he does a good 30 minutes before he wakes up. So, that’s the difference from a SNOO nap.

Tip number four: Moms On Call. Ahh instagram. Thank you. One day my friend Brittney posted about this app called: Moms On Call. She was sharing about how well her daughter slept because of this app and even though Stone was sleeping great, I was super curious. So I bought it, and started following the schedule for his age the next day. It was actually quite similar to the schedule we were already following, but it included a bunch of tips and tricks to help as well. When I first downloaded it, I was on the 0-7 week schedule. about a week of that and it was time to transition to the next age group (which was scary bc i had JUST nailed the other schedule) We are on the 8-16 weeks schedule right now. It maps out the day from the first feeding (7A) to the last feeding (7P), and all the naps, playtime and bathtime in between. LOVE IT. worth the money in my book. Right now he eats at 7A, 10A, 1P, 4P, 7P (every three hours) and naps at 8:30A, 11:30A, 2:30P, 5:30P (for 1.5 hours each nap) & 8P to 4-5A.

Tip number five: Babytracker. My friend Rachael told me about this app while I was pregnant, and again I didn’t fully appreciate it’s power. I have been tracking Stone’s feedings, diapers and naps since day one (the hospital forces you to track diapers and feedings, on paper (ugh), so I was already in the habit when we got home). Now if you love to track things, this will help you majorly. This is how I can say with confidence that Stone sleeps 7-10 hours every night. Without the app, I wouldn’t know left from right, up from down, because the days seriously blend together. I track how much he eats during the day too – this helps me put him down to sleep after that last bedtime feeding knowing he ate good all day and there’s a slim chance he’ll get hungry in the middle of the night. It also reminds me what side he should be nursing on each feeding because how in the world am i supposed to remember otherwise? I’m no superwoman!

Tip number six: bedtime routine. Yes, we finally have one of these. Took us 6 weeks, so don’t put pressure on yourself if you still have a young babe and no real routine. We start with a bath (Grant does this mostly; it’s their time to bond and I love it!) and then a nice clean diaper, a nice warmer sleeper, coconut oil and lavender oil on his feet and legs and then his final bedtime feeding. Sometimes this feeding is an hour long. I usually read him a book while he eats and then he goes to bed. Bathtime starts at 6:30P, feeding is from 7-8pm and by 8pm he’s in bed. I don’t start hearing him over the monitor until between 4-5am. Then I change him and feed him (for about 10 minutes) and then he sleeps again until 7am. And that’s when our day begins!

Tip number seven: grace. give yourself and your baby grace. Stone loves to sleep. He’s not much into this “playtime” stuff the “moms on call” app speaks of. He’s most alert (re: fussy) from 4-6:30PM (thank god, this is when Grant is home) and we do tummy time and HE ROLLS OVER for us (still in disbelief my baby is rolling over) and we sing and dance and do all the things until bathtime. everyday is different and i have to give myself grace. Stone is a human being with needs and those needs can change day to day. as much as I wish life was planned out, that’s unrealistic. so take the structure, love the structure but be okay with a deviation here and there.

So, overall, this is how my 10-week baby has slept 7-10 hours at night since he was 6 weeks old. I really believe that these tips are what works for Stone! If we didn’t have the SNOO, I honestly don’t know what life would be like and I don’t want to think about it lol it’s a luxury item but it has allowed us to get some sleep and therefore, I believe it’s worth it.

What are some tips that work for you and your babe? I would LOVE to know, seriously! Another small tip: we use disposable diapers at night because my other friend Rachael said they are more absorbent than cloth diapers (which we use during the day). So that might also help him sleep through the night, who knows?!

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Here’s Stone’s week in review! He’s 10 weeks today and weighs: 12lbs on the dot!

A couple of cute things: his back is ticklish. I found this out while nursing him today, SO CUTE. My boy is ticklish! ahhh. ALSO, he truly is rolling over. I love it and I’m so proud of him. Smiles all the time. OH, and I took away his favorite toy – my hair! haha. Chopped 10 inches off and I feel like a new woman! My hair hasn’t been this short in FOREVER.

 

guest spot alex: ten things being pregnant has taught me.

meet sweet, alex.

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okkk, wait. i’m getting ahead of myself.

alex recently married the love of her life mike in august last year.

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adorable, right?

alex has never been shy about her desire to have kids. & like most newlyweds, they couldn’t wait to add to their growing family.

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& after a few months of trying, well, she was pregnant.

last weekend i asked alex, like i ask every pregnant person i meet, how far along she is. her response was the typical “blah blah blah weeks.” & if you’ve never been pregnant, you know exactly what i’m talking about. in my mind, time travels in MONTHS, not weeks. so when you say 16 weeks, that means four MONTHS. so just say four MONTHS! i told alex this & she went on to explain the math & reasoning behind the use of weeks vs. months blah blah blah which gave me the brilliant idea to have her guest spot on my blog. i wanna know, as i’m sure you to do too, all the things being pregnant has taught her.

enjoy & please leave lots of love for alex. she’s hilarious & beautiful & just down-right excited to be having her first child!

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1. people will ask if me “are you excited?” ummm, OF COURSE i am excited! & if i wasn’t, do you think i would really admit it?!
2. “morning sickness” does NOT just mean i get sick ONLY in the morning. there is nothing “morning” about throwing up at 9:30pm. yes, pm!
3. people on crack can have a baby, but if i eat a piece of deli meat & some brie cheese, i could get a bacteria infection & lose my baby . . .  says my doctor.
4. it’s much easier for me to lose weight when i’m pregnant than when i’m not pregnant. week 16, down 13 pounds. thanks “morning” sickness!
5. when people ask me, “isn’t pregnancy the greatest thing ever?! i loved being pregnant!” i’m suddenly convinced they are one of those people on crack.
6. everyone, i mean everyone, is a pregnancy expert & feels the need to give me all the advice i never wanted & never asked for. for example:”you should have a natural birth; you will appreciate your mother so much more.” ummm, my mom had every drug available & was high as a kite when i was born. & i intend to be the same way, you know, so i can appreciate her more.

7. the concept of personal space & privacy goes right out the window. for example: people, who have NEVER touched me before, will try & touch my stomach, even though i’m not even showing yet. this goes for complete strangers too. if you didn’t put it here, don’t touch it.

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also! people ask me if i’m planning on breast feeding my child. yeah, if we can leave my boobs out of our conversation & your thoughts, i would really appreciate it.
& finally, women will tell me all about their own deliveries. thank you random woman in the grocery store for telling me about your 4th degree tearing. if you’ll excuse me, i’m just gonna go throw up in the cereal aisle real quick.
8. my husband has become more attentive than ever, & of course, i’m using this to my advantage. if i want a chili cheese dog from 7-11 at 10pm, i just ask & he’s out the door before i can finish the sentence. i’m falling in love with him more & more (except when i’m getting sick & blaming him because after all, he did this to me) declaimer: i’ve never yelled these words at my husband. ever. 
9. i cry at EVERYTHING!!! steer clear of the Sarah McLachlan animal cruelty commercials & anything involving interaction between a baby & their mother. & don’t even get me started on the military family homecoming videos. those made me cry before, now i pretty much end up dehydrated after watching them.
10. if you are lucky, you will still have some friends that won’t sugar coat & tell you straight. shout out my friend dana who told me: “i can tell you that it will get better, but that’s a lie. it doesn’t get better.” i appreciated that SO much more than everyone else telling me it will get better.

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BONUS:

11. two words: pregnancy brain. the struggle is real. i will stop, mid-sentence, & forget what i was even talking about. this happens to my husband on the regular, so our conversations have gotten very confusing & very short. people keep reminding me that i am sharing my entire body, including my brain, with the baby. well, this baby better end up being a genius because he is making me look like an idiot. disclaimer: yes i used the pronoun “he.” we haven’t found out the sex of the baby but it’s easier than writing he/she . . . & i am not going to refer to my child as it.

photo 5huge thanks to alex for being my very first guest spot.

& thank you for reading!

got pregnancy questions? sure! leave them & i’ll do my best to answer them. & by that, i mean ask my 19 friends who are currently with-child.

xo

35 things about me!!

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get to know me & watch this ridiculous video . . . click HERE or on the picture!!

an unforgettable baby shower.

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i knew this was going to be a party to remember.

with brooke (&her crew) + jackie + lauren + ahna on decorating/design/food/ambience duty – the result will ALWAYS be amazing. seriously.

& that’s exactly what it was.

our beautiful friend valentina is expecting her very first baby, benedict eli, on october 5.

valentina is not your typical girl, so they didn’t throw her a typical baby shower! the party was themed: wine & cheese.

the photos say it all – literally every detail was remembered [WHICH I LOVE] from the food, to the music, to the drinks, to the LOCATION . . . it was a gorgeous evening on the patuxent river. like, seriously.  just look at these photos!  what!?!

each table was decorated with a simple glass vase, lots babies breath & yellow water (yup – – just a few drops of food coloring, y’all.) ps: benedict’s favorite colors are gray & yellow – in case you didn’t know.

the food – any cheese you can think of, every cracker you love & grapes. hello. it’s that simple.  the presentation is what killed it. they are masters. ugh. beautiful.

the drink set-up was exquisite as well: homemade sangria, homemade lemonade & wine. lots of wine. guests were asked to bring their favorite bottle – brilliant.

valentina isn’t much of a “games” girl either – so the night literally consisted of everyone mingling, laughing & enjoying each other.

you’ll notice lots of mustaches as decorations too. adorable. benedict is a special boy & extremely fancy, so the mustaches make sense.

dessert was delicious – homemade cake & homemade cupcakes. every cupcake flavor you’ve dreamed about – it was there.

brooke+crew/jac/lauren/ahnie – you did amazing & you made photographing way more exciting. let’s start a wedding business, k?

valentina & scott – benedict is one blessed baby boy – can’t wait to meet him!!

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to pin any of these gems, follow this board on pinterest HERE.

all photos were taken either with my canon powershot elph300hs & brooke’s Nikon d300 (still learning how to use that bad boy!)

special thanks to rachael for the shot of me & valentina & to chris for the group shot.