4th of July was pretty uneventful for us. I was worried about what firecrackers could do to the delicate eardrums of my wee ones so we stayed in. Actually, we went for dinner to Ruby Tuesday's and then came home. By the time we got home both Dylan and Riley were sound asleep so they went to bed...
On the bedtime topic - early last week they both began sleeping thru the night, 9 hours to be precise.. Pretty incredible! It was hard, hard work but I wanted to share how we did it. First I will tell you about the "rule of 3" - it takes 3 nights to get it, and once the baby has sttn for 3 nights straight, chances are they will continue...
First thing I did was talk to the pediatrician about getting them to sttn. She said to make the night wake-up boring for them by not picking them up (HARD TO DO!!) and not feeding them. She said that they will realize there is nothing to wake up for and will start sleeping through.
The first night was torture. Both woke up and I tried consoling them. Riley was actually easy, but Dylan didn't understand why I would give him a bottle. It was heartbreaking. I did cheat and snuggled him back to sleep, but I didn't give in to feeding him. Riley just needed a pat on the belly and a "go to sleep, sweetheart" and she was fine. They had gotten a midnight feeding as usual but not a 3am like they were used to.
Night two was a little easier - again midnight feeding, again they both woke up, but both went back to sleep pretty quickly...
Night three - Riley slept through12am-6am :) Dylan woke up but went right back to sleep.
Night 4 - neither woke up from 12-6... ths lasted for a few days so I decided to ramp it up.
phase 2 - night 1 - I put them both to bed at 10pm after a busy day. I had also swaddled them in a Miracle Blanket. They slept through until 5am
Night 2 - did the same thing, this time 9pm bedtime and they slept again til 5
Night 3 - 9pm bedtime, swaddled, both slept til 6am!!!
Since then they have been going to bed between 8 and 9. In fact, Riley actually gets mad if she doesn't get put to bed at that time. If she isn't getting ready for a bath by 8:15, it's crying for her until she's bathing. Then it's a bottle and put into her crib where she stares at her mobile (which have learned NOT to turn on!) and her Sleep Sheep turned to "stream" or "ocean". She rarely fusses once she's in her crib, she does kick a lot but I suspect it's the last bit of energy being used before sleepytime. Dylan does the same thing, but sometimes he needs his pacifier. Riley could care less about a paci!
So basically, I have made it a ritual - bath, bottle, bed along with swaddling and occasionally rocking... It's hard not to pick them up for cuddles when they cry but really they very rarely do now that they know the score..
Hope this helps some mommies out there - there are many ways to sleep train, but this way worked well for me!