Monday, September 19, 2011


I know, I know... here I am talking about sleep again. But I'm in need of a little help with a couple *issues* that I'm hoping some of you may have had some experience with. Believe it or not, bedtime is AMAZING now. What happens after bedtime, however, has turned into crazy town up in here.

A couple months ago, we decided to start putting L in her crib because she's fond of the diagonal starfish sleeping position, and I wasn't getting any sleep at all. Surprisingly, she did great her first night while I cried myself to sleep. For the most part, she's been in her crib ever since, unless she's having a tough night, in which case she's in bed with us. So, here's where things get complicated.

1. I'm having trouble keeping her warm enough at night. By two weeks, she wanted to and was able to break out of even the tightest swaddle, so we gave up that practice long ago. I started putting her to bed in sleep sacks, but noticed that she slept much better on nights that she didn't wear one. I was uncomfortable with having loose blankets in her crib, so I came up with this weird technique where I would lay down two folded Aiden + Anais blankets, put her on top of them, and then pull up the flaps and tuck them under her... kind of like a rolled taco. This worked pretty well for a while, and I think the snugness of the blankets wrapped around her was plenty to keep her warm. Sure enough though, as soon as she discovered side sleeping, this technique didn't work as well, and she'd wake up flustered in a jumbled mess of blankets. Then, I decided to tuck the folded blankets into the foot of the bed along with a baby quilt. Since she's such a reckless sleeper, the blankets get kicked off in no time at all. Usually, by the time she wakes up for a bottle, her little body is FREEZING. I wish I could explain to her that staying warm requires keeping the blankets on, but you know the drill. The other morning she woke up and I assumed she wanted a bottle. She was really crying, so I put her in bed next to Joe and she passed out instantly. I realized that she wanted warmth, not food. I felt horrible. Now, if she wakes up on especially cold mornings, I'll put her in bed with us and sure enough, that does the trick. As you can see, I need suggestions. Unfortunately, her footed sleeper just isn't cutting it. I'd turn the heater on, but is it me, or is sleeping with the heater on horribly uncomfortable?

2. Ok, next. She's mastered rolling from her back to her stomach, and she LOVES it. When we put her on the floor to play, it's impossible to keep her on her back now. And unlike most babies who roll and then practically lose their minds because they're so annoyed by being on their bellies, she's as happy as a clam. She picks her head up high with a shit-eating grin on her face, and it almost looks as if she can't believe how amazing she is for being so skilled in the art of rolling. This surprises me as much as the next mom because she started out hating tummy time just as much as every other baby. Well, she loves rolling so much that she feels the need to do it ALL the time, including while she's sleeping. Which is fine, except for the fact that she has NO CLUE how to roll back. During the day, while she's hanging out, it's fine because, like I said, she enjoys being face down. But at night, when she wants to reposition herself and can't, it gets a little infuriating for her. A couple nights ago, I was up every hour to hour and a half, rolling her onto her back. I'd also have to stay with her for a while to make sure she wouldn't instantly roll back. Needless to say, I was not happy the next morning.

I try to give her plenty of floor time so that she can figure out this whole rolling situation, but it honestly seems as if she has no interest in rolling back. She's so happy to be on her belly, that she's fine just staying there. I've tried doing the thing where you dangle a toy in the direction you want them to roll towards, but she'll start bending her legs and lunging forward almost as if she's trying to CRAWL. She's five and a half months old... I'm not sure I want to encourage crawling just yet. So, what to do? I was reading some forum where this woman experiencing the same dilemma wrote in. One mom responded saying that she had the exact problem and that at six months, her daughter learned to sit up and no longer had any desire to practice rolling onto her back. Consequently, this continued to interrupt her sleep for another two months. Um, how bad would that suck?

Photo, macetaria

19 comments:

  1. I don't have a solution to the rolling, it might end up being a wait it out deal (sucks, I know). Though maybe others will have a cure for you. But for the cold, my solution has been a space heater with a thermostat in it set on top of his dresser. I set it really low so it only kicks on if the temp drops below 65 in my son's room. So it isn't hot in there, but he doesn't wake up cold. I also have a fan running all the time to keep the warm air moving around so I don't have to have the heater too close to the crib (the fan noise also covers the click of the heater starting up). Also, if it is a really chilly I put him in long sleeve and leg jammies and even socks sometimes. If it is seriously cold I've done two layers of clothes on him and a little hat.
    Good luck! The first year is full of weird problems to solve, and just when you get something that works they don't need that anymore. Totally frustrating, but I think the cuteness and kissable cheeks make up for it.

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  2. I can't help with the rolling thing since that was an issue for us too until our little dude eventually learned that he liked sleeping on his stomach. But in terms of the warmth issue...this is going to be mind blowing...

    Add more layers of clothing.

    Bonkers right? I was having the same issue, mentioned it to my pediatrician and then was instantly embarrassed that I hadn't thought of it myself. Basically on cold nights we put a short sleeve onesie on under the footed jammies, and socks on over the feet. works like a charm. I imagine in the winter we may even add a long sleeved shirt on top of the pj's.

    Good luck. Lucia is getting cuter and cuter btw!

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  3. I went through the same problems when my twins were tiny. I was so paranoid about SIDS and "back to sleep", that when they started rolling over in their sleep I flipped them back dozens of times in the night, until I asked my pediatrician about it and he said that once they are able to roll, the risk of SIDS declines greatly, so don't worry about it so much and let em sleep like that. I hate telling you to do that though, you should see what your ped says.
    They also got cold at night, and my solution was to have them in those polar fleece footie pjs AND a sleeveless sleep sack that I made. And a space heater. The heater is uncomfortable for me, but they seem to love it, and I still use it in their room (they're 2.5 and still can't keep blankets on). Good luck!

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  4. @shannon and caitlin yeah, i thought about the space heater but figured since we hate it, she'd hate it too. she also sleeps in our room, so it might just have to be a sacrifice we make. i'm not at all worried about her sleeping on her stomach, it's just that she's a MOVER, so once she doesn't want to be in that position anymore, she wakes up annoyed. i know, she doesn't exactly make things easy. :/

    @peggy i've actually thought about doing extra layers, but thought she might be uncomfortable. i guess i just figured since *i'd* hate to sleep with so many clothes on, she would too. I have to start remembering that she's a baby and not exactly programmed like me. thanks, i'll try the extra clothing tonight!

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  5. Same things over at our house. I agree with the layering, it could make putting on jammies a fight, but it's worth it. As for the rolling, I've just let my little one work things out for herself a bit (while staring at the video monitor) and now she's so comfy sleeping on her tummy. Like the last comment said, once they can roll they are fine to sleep that way.

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  6. First of all, Celia, I love the way you tell stories! You make me laugh every time! Thank you for that.
    Second, I live in Norway, and it gets quite chilly at night, even in the summer time. I know this is controversial, but, here, even in the hospital when the babies are born, we use a baby duvet. I have used it ever since Olivia (my 5 month old) was born and we even used it when we co-slept. She is warm all night and we have never heard of any accidents with a baby duvet here... So, if you dare, I recommend it.
    Second tip. Norwegian style: wool, wool, wool. You can't never have enough wool. Is cool during warm nights because it breathes better than cotton, and warms in the cold weather. If feet are warm, she'll be warmer too. Hope this helps :)

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  8. @kelly and kelly like i said, i'd prefer to not sleep with the heater on because sleeping with the heater on sucks imho. and it's not that she can't sleep on her stomach, but more that often times, she wants to roll back while she's sleeping and can't. that's usually when she'll wake me up to come rescue her. :/

    @daniela thank you! you know, i try very hard not to follow the rules and go with my own instinct, and i'm *this* close to getting her a duvet.

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  10. I just wanted to say that you are awesome! It's hard to ask for advice as a new parent because sometimes people can be so opinionated and a bit grouchy. I try and remember that if you are spending time trying to figure out what is best for your baby you are already doing the right thing.
    Leslie

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  11. Not much to add here that hasn't been said except; what about swaddling her lower body (legs swaddled, arms free) and then put her in a sleep sack. Maybe that'd keep her sleeping longer/better in the sack. Or, like already mentioned, a duvet. In Denmark sleep sacks and swaddling are virtually unknown 'phenomenons' and all babies/kids use duvets.
    I hope she'll finger the rolling part out soon. Good luck!

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  12. Hello Celia. My baby did the exact same thing with rolling on to her stomach and waking me up to roll her back. It was a form of torture for me but she honestly couldn't figure out how to roll back when she was so tired so I had to go in and help her. Like everything with babies, it was a phase and she grew out of it. Next she sat up in her sleep...that was the final straw for me though! Eventually ahe would just fall down and fall asleep again.

    And the warmth issue? Merino wool! Can't recommend it highly enough. Like Daniella said, it's breathable and warm. I have lots of merino clothes and sleep gear for my daughter, it's one of the few things I can relax about.

    All the best. And don't forget, most things with waking are phases. I had to remind myself of that a lot in our first year.

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  13. We do a long sleeved long legged thinner cotton sleeper underneath fleece sleeper. You can even do a onesie under that if it's not enough. I figure it's like having a sheet and a blanket covering you up. We also put socks on Westley's hands if it seems too cold in his room.

    The doc told us that you put them in the crib on their back and however they end up is fine. I think since our babies are old enough to hold their heads up and turn them from side to side sleeping on their tummies isn't such a big deal anymore. At least our doc seemed unphased by it and like he got the question all the time.

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  14. thank you, everyone! i really like the idea of using merino wool. silly me... i never would have known that baby clothes came in wool. i think wool sleepers will help plenty and on really cold nights, i'll make sure to add lots of layers.

    as for the rolling, i guess it just is what it is. i was hoping i could figure out a way to help TEACH her how to roll back, but i'm sure she'll just figure it out when she's good and ready. ;)

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  15. Layers. Our house is old and cold in the winter. E was just a newborn in December. We got a space heater, and put E in layers. We hate the space heaters, too but it was an evil necessity. We do blankets, too. Even our doc said once she started to roll it was really okay. We went with knit blankets at first because crazy new-parent logic reasoned that all of the holes made it less dangerous (ha). Good luck...

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  16. Hello Celia! First time commenter, fellow SoCal mama here. Layers certainly can't hurt! The sleep sacks I have are all sleeveless, and I noticed my 3.5-month-old's arms were cold, so on one cooler night we put baby leg warmers on her arms. Or a long sleeved onesie would work too. I also use a swaddling blanket (one of the ones with the feet on it from the hospital) but instead of swaddling her (she's way too big for those blankets now) I tuck it well under the cosleeper mattress on the end and the side further from the bed but leave it untucked on my side. That way she can kick it off without me having to worry that she'll get tangled up, and I can easily pull it back over her if I notice she's kicked it off and feels cold. Hope that helps!

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  17. Ok, I've given this some thought, and I have two words for you: gaffa tape.
    Haha.. maybe not. I bought our impending bebe a sleeveless merino sleepsack.. which I guess I'll pair with a long-sleeve onesie. I thought this all sounded great in theory, but now I don't know!

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  18. T-kong has recently started rolling over so I have no doubt we're not far from this dilemma. As for the other though, you could try swaddling her from the waist down in a Kiddopotamus swaddle. It's got velcro which makes it harder to get out of, and when our babe's arms are out he's snug as a bug in a rug. Until he's not. Heh.

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  19. We have a roller too. She won't roll back and she won't put her face to the side, either, so she just sits there basically smothering herself! Oh, and we are teething. It's been a rough week :)

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