This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #NaturalGoodness #CollectiveBiasDid you know April is Earth Month? Today I'm teaming up with one of my favorite eco-friendly companies to talk about our bedtime routine…..Tom's of Maine! I've been using their products for years, and was excited to discover that they had great products for Lydia when she got to toothpaste age.
When I talked about some simple tricks to help babies and toddlers sleep through the night, I mentioned the importance of a bedtime routine. I got a TON of emails from y'all asking about our bedtime routine….what it was and how we implemented it…..so I thought I'd go into detail about what has worked for us.
A little backstory: When Lydia was a few months old, she started medication for her hemangioma. This medication required her to maintain a high blood sugar level or there were some risks of side effects. So for medical reasons, we had to wake her up at least once a night and feed her (she was still nursing) until she was about 10 months old. Because of this, we decided not to do intense sleep training….instead we created routines that would instill positive sleep habits and associations. Our goal was that once it was NOT medically necessary to wake her up….she would naturally sleep through the night. Around six months, she started waking up only occasionally and the rest of the nights we had to set an alarm and wake her up. At ten months, we were given the green light to stop feeding her at night….within two nights she slept all night. So, I believe this TOTALLY worked. Even though she'd been in a ten month feeding at night routine, she was and is a great sleeper….put herself to sleep happily starting at about six months and continues to do so.
Regardless of whether you choose to sleep train, or what method you use…..I strongly suggest creating a bedtime routine. As a teacher, I know that children (especially infants and toddlers) thrive within the known. They learn to anticipate routines. They are comforted by the norm, and it is much easier for everyone when they know exactly what is happening.
Simple Tips for Creating a Bedtime Routine:
1) Start as soon as possible: No joke, we started our routine when Lydia was about two weeks old. I know, it sounds nuts. But it was as much for us as it was for her. We needed to learn what worked for us as parents so that we were in sync. It was important that we BOTH knew the routine, so that either of us could put her to bed once she wasn't nursing anymore.
2) Write it down: When creating your routine write it down. Follow it exactly. Every single night. For at least a month. After your child is comfortable with the routine you've created, things can be adjusted for special occasions. But in the beginning…….keep it as stable as possible.
3) Create a routine that's realistic: If you have an older child, and you eat dinner at 6 pm every night…..don't decide to do baby bathtime at 6 pm. It's not going to work, right? You know your own schedule, work with it….not against it!
4) Keep elements as stable as possible: Once we started brushing Lydia's teeth, I noticed the importance of each item being recognizable. We always try to use all natural products….so from day one, we used Tom's of Maine Silly Strawberry toothpaste. It's free of artificial colors, flavors, fragrances, or preservatives (I know I'm way more crunchy mom than I thought I would be). Lydia loved it. Until the night we ran out of it. We had a sample of another type, I figured….no big deal, right? Oh wrong. She spit that toothpaste out and looked at me like I'd lost my mind. Guess she really does notice the little things! Now we have backup Tom's of Maine toothpaste ready to go in our medicine cabinet!
So, here's what you want to see (right?)……our actual bedtime routine:
1) Bathtime: bubbles, toy ducks and boats, play classical music
2) Say goodnight to guests
3) Bedroom (no coming back out!) : nighttime diaper and pajamas
4) Three stories and milk in sippy cup
5) Brush teeth with Tom's of Maine Silly Strawberry Toothpaste
6) Prayers, Kiss Goodnight, Lights Out, White Noise Machine On
Just an FYI, as a family….we use multiple Tom's of Maine products including: their adult toothpastes and their deodorant. They're all natural, friendly for our environment, and cost effective….what a win!You can find Tom's of Maine products at Walmart……in the toothpaste and personal hygiene sections.
Welcome to Let it Shine…..the new, revamped Funday Monday! After two years….we decided to rename our link up to something we felt would be a better fit. Thus, Let it Shine! Why the name? Because we want this link up to be just that…..your chance to let it shine. We'll be sharing our favs here each week and on social media…….
Another place we will be showcasing our favs? The Let It Shine Pinterest Board! So, go ahead…..and Let it Shine!