Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Toddler and Baby Sleep

It's 3:30 in the morning. I'm wide awake because my almost 3 year old woke up about 2 hours ago, crying for her mommy and daddy. I hear her before David does, which is shocking because I'm able to sleep through just about anything. I go into her room and what does Miss Thing say to me at 1:15 in the morning? "Mommy, I need a Kleenex". Seriously. I give her a Kleenex and the head back to bed, only to toss and turn for the next 2 hours.

Ella has always been our rock star sleeper. She started sleeping through the night when she was about 2 months old. She loves taking naps, though she does have her days where she won't take one. The big transition of moving her to a big girl bed last summer was flawless. She gets her sleep habits from my side of the family. The Pellys are known to be amazing sleepers. We started doing a weekend family movie night a while back and it's so much fun. We fix one of Ella's favorite dinners, alternating between tacos and tacos and we set up camp in her playroom. She gets so wrapped up in the movie that we have to remind her to eat her supper. But, we've noticed that when Ella does wake up in the middle of the night, it's usually a night when we've watched a movie. It's not like we're watching anything scary or inappropriate like "Goodfellas" or something similar (though David has tried). So far, we've seen "Toy Story 3" (so funny), "Despicable Me" (loved it), "The Incredibles" (good, but a little much for her), "Finding Nemo (her favorite), "Land Before Time" (old school, but really good and free on cable when your "Marmaduke" RedBox dvd has a boo-boo and won't play) and many more. Normally, when she does wake up, we're able to get her to go right back to sleep, which makes for a much happier toddler and mommy and daddy the next day.

Now Finley is a bit of a different story. For about the first 4-5 months of her life, she was not a napper. One would think that having a full belly and clean diaper is all a baby needs to take a long nap. I know I don't need much of anything, other than to be still for about 10 minutes (sometimes 5) and then I out for the count. Not so much for Finley. My sweet precious baby would cry and scream and make noises that I never knew existed. I'm of the mindset that if I let her go long enough, she'll fall asleep eventually. I mean, she's not going anywhere and is safe in her crib. Well, that worked for about 25% of the time and then the other 75% of the time, I would cave after about an hour or so and go get her. The second I peeked over her crib, she would stop crying and start smiling. But, now she's a great napper and will take a long nap for me in the afternoon. Despite her issues with naps, she had no problems sleeping through the night starting around 3 months. When my babies get a full night's rest, it's a win-win for everyone.

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