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Ok, so I’ve had a lot of people ask me how I got my little Aiden to sleep through the night at 8 weeks old. I can’t take all the credit, because all I did was read the book ” The Baby Whisperer” and follow the schedule I posted above. Now, I have to say that not all babies and mommies are the same so this isn’t a guaranteed thing. But, this schedule and these tips have not only worked for Aiden, but also many other babies that I personally know. So it’s worth a try!
First and foremost I COMPLETELY believe that babies thrive off of a schedule! The schedule above is a great guideline to how to go about your day; feedings, activities, and naps. I adjusted whatever I needed to work with my personal schedule. For example, I don’t like waking up at 7 am so we shifted the schedule to begin at 8 am. I usually focus on when Aiden eats instead of stressing about what time he naps. I usually just put him to sleep when I see the signs of sleepiness (rubbing eyes and getting fussy). It usually takes Aiden about 2 weeks to adjust to a change in his schedule. Those 2 weeks aren’t fun… I have to watch the clock and push him to eat at certain times. But after that, he gets hungry and wakes up at the same time every day on his own. It’s predictable, so it allows me to take control of my day instead of letting my baby control me. Plus, he is happy as his needs are being met timely to their arrival.
Second, ROUTINE is key! Eat, Activity, Sleep, Your time (EASY)! That’s the order I do things EVERY TIME regardless of the scheduled timeing. It helps prevent bad habits like needing a bottle to fall asleep (which is bad for their teeth once they come in) and help your baby learn to self-soothe. My favorite thing about EASY is that it eliminates guessing what your baby wants or needs. When Aiden wakes up, I feed him then let him play/learn, then I change his diaper (babies usually pee or poo about 15 min after they eat… so I usually just change him right before his nap so he is happy. Unless he wants it done sooner.) Already I have checked off him being hungry or dirty so if he is upset I know it’s because he is tired. So I put him down for a nap. If he doesn’t go to sleep then maybe his belly hurts or is in pain/uncomfortable. I don’t have to go through the checklist of things that he might want or need because I already did by now. I usually know what he wants by what time he cries. So when he does, I check the time and if it’s time for him to eat then I know what he wants and he doesn’t have to get angry at me haha.
Third, is bed-time routine. Babies need to learn when it’s time to take a long nap… a.k.a. sleep through the night. The bed-time routine needs to be done exactly the same every night… including a bath. I know it’s time consuming and you don’t feel like giving your baby a bath every night. But, the way I see it is that I get a good nights sleep if I take some extra time to give him a bath.. so YES I do it. Our bed-time routine goes like this..
*Feed Aiden dinner.
*Warm up a bath (Aiden is in his crib during this).
*While bath is warming up- dim the lights, turn on sound machine, prepare pjs and everything for after bath. (set the bed time mood)
*Give Aiden a bath with lavender bubbles
*After bath, rub Aiden with lavender lotion and dress him
*Rock Aiden and sing to him his bed time song (pick any song you’d like but sing the SAME one every time)
*Put Aiden down in his crib to sleep right BEFORE he completely falls asleep (I don’t let him sleep on me because I don’t want him to need me to fall asleep. It’s also helpful for self-soothing.)
**NEWBORN TIP: Elevate the crib/bassinet mattress (from underneath for safety) with books, blankets, or towels so your baby sleeps on an incline. Babies are naturally stuffy when they are first born because they still have fluids in their nose from being in your belly (plus they are nose breathers). So make sure to suction that out so your baby can breath 😉
When he wasn’t sleeping through the night yet, I would do the bed time routine then let him sleep for as long as possible. During night time feedings I wouldn’t turn on any lights. I would pick him up to feed him but I wouldn’t change his diaper unless it was poopy. I’d feed him till he stopped eating and started sleeping. He started to not eat very much until one night he slept 6 hours on his own (which is considered a full nights sleep for babies). He did that two nights in a row on his own. Then from that time on, I would give him his binkie every time he would wake up at night and which became later and later till he started sleeping all night consistently. Now, if he wakes up at night (which happens when he’s sick or in pain from teething), we have a strict stay in the crib rule. I give him the medicine he needs while he is in the crib, get close to him so he doesn’t feel alone till he calms down, and give him his binkie. Feeding at night again is a BIG no no. Once a baby is 11lbs they can safely go all night with out eating. So if they continue, it’s because of habit (you’d be hungry too if you woke up at night for a midnight snack).
Sorry for the novel!! I just really appreciated ALL the help I could get with this when Aiden was a newborn and still love all the advice I can get. So I just wanted to pay it forward 🙂 . I hope you find this information helpful and If you want to know where I got my nursery decor, check out the pink links above! Also, if you have any other questions feel free to comment below or email me! I’ll do my best to help!
Thanks for stopping by!
Thanks so much for this post! I’m a first time mom with a nine week old, trying to navigate and explore this sleep dilemma! Question for you: if I understand correctly, Tracy Hogg’s method for getting a child to sleep on her own is to pick up and hold her until she calms, and repeat over and over again. It looks like you did the opposite by having a no-pick-up philosophy. What was your thought process behind this? Did you have to teach your son to self-soothe? How did that go? Thanks for your input!!
Thank you so much for reaching out! I hope I can help in anyway I can! Being a new mom is seriously the hardest, trickiest thing. Tracy talks about soothing your baby until he/she almost falls asleep. But, she also mentioned that you shouldn’t pick the baby up once you put the baby to sleep at night when it’s not time to eat. The trick is calming them down just before bed, but not quite to the point where they are sleeping in your arms. You teach them to learn to fall asleep by themselves and to be ok sleeping alone. That way they will be falling back asleep by themselves at night instead of crying for you to show up to be with them.
I would only pick Aiden up to feed him then I would let him sleep till the next feeding time. Sometimes you might need to give your child a binkie or a hand inside the crib. Your child will soon learn that night is for sleeping… alone.
Once he slept through the night twice in a row on his own, I wanted to teach him that night time is sleep time and not play time. I wouldn’t pick him up because he didn’t need it.. it was just a habit that needed to be broken. But I would do my best to let him know that he wasn’t alone. Babies are really smart! They know that if they cry at night and you pick them up, they will do it again and cry until you pick them up. They have to learn that night time isn’t pick up time either. And yes I dream fed him. After he started sleeping through the night we started adding the bedtime routine to the dream feed time. I wanted him to learn that after the bath, it was sleep time. Now he sleeps all night after his bath. but if we skip the bath sometimes, he wakes up.
Hope this helps! Please let me know if you have any other questions 🙂
PS. Did you dream feed?