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I receive questions all the time about how Mckenna has become such a good sleeper. I think a lot of it has to do with just her demeanor and the fact that she’s a baby that legitimately loves to sleep, but I’d also like to think that some of my hard work and effort into healthy sleeping habits for her has contributed to her awesome sleeping habits as well. We certainly didn’t wave some magic wand and had her sleeping through the night like magic, though. Believe me!
I’ll go into our specific sleep training techniques and experiences another time, but I truly believe that at the root of every good nights sleep is a good bedtime routine. (That goes for adults, too!) It’s so hard to go from up and running around like a wild animal to head hitting the pillow and falling asleep. You know? So, we try and keep things consistent each night before bed and keep things calm in the moments leading up to bedtime to help with that transition. We also use a few products that I swore by with Alea and continue to use with Mckenna, and also a new product that I recently just discovered and love!
ONE | Routine, Routine, Routine: I can’t emphasize this enough. Keeping the pre-bedtime routine consistent and calm has been a lifesaver. We typically are able to put Mckenna down in her crib while she’s still awake, but if we’re running around the house like maniacs or had a kitchen dance party just minutes before bedtime, she won’t be able to wind down as well in her crib. Ya know? We try and keep things pretty chill, eliminate the screen time, and read books together or play quietly with her favorite toys before bed to set a nice, calming vibe.
TWO | Find the Right Time: There’s no one right bedtime for every baby or child. It’s important to find the one that works for your baby and for your family. I’m pretty strict about Mckenna’s 7pm bedtime. I know that’s an unpopular opinion among some, but if we have plans that interfere with bedtime it’s just not worth it to me to mess up her bedtime and deal with the wrath of Kenna that will ultimately follow. Stick to your guns and stay as consistent as possible with bed time.
THREE | Bath Time & Our Favorites: We don’t do bath time every night before bed, but the nights that we do it’s evident that Mckenna is so much more relaxed and ready for bed. I think it has something to do with our JOHNSON’S® products that we use as well. We recently found the COTTONTOUCH™ Newborn Wash & Shampoo that works so well on Kenna’s sensitive skin. We’ve used the JOHNSON’S® Bedtime lotion since Alea was a baby and the gentle scent is so sweet & calming for bedtime. Mckenna’s crazy hair and curls are starting to get harder and harder to comb through, so after baths we’ve been using the JOHNSON’S® Baby No More Tangles spray to get those snarls out. These new and reformulated products are free of parabens and phthalates, dyes, sulfate, and created with over 90% naturally derived ingredients. I love knowing that the brand my parents trusted on me is the brand I trust on my children and it’s now more gentle than ever!
FOUR | White Noise & Comfort Items: This of course depends on your child’s preferences and the age of your child, but white noise, a blanky, a stuffed animal and a pacifier are Mckenna’s must-have items for bedtime. Her room is right off of the living room and kitchen, so the white noise helps to drown out the chatter and the noise after she goes to bed.
FIVE | Snuggles & Songs: Right before I lay Mckenna down in her crib, we snuggle up together in her rocking chair in her bedroom. The lights are off, her noise machine is one, and I sing her a few of her favorite songs. These moments are some of my absolute favorite and truth be told, I’ll be so sad when she doesn’t want me to rock and sing to her before bedtime anymore. Note: I don’t intend on rocking her to sleep, but rather just get her to that sleepy point before I lay her down in her crib.
We found all of our JOHNSON’S® products shown above at our local Walgreens. I love that I can just swing on in and grab what I need and be on my way. It’s also a store I know, trust, and I know they have my family’s interests and needs at heart. It’s the perfect quick stop on my way home from work, too! Bonus! And even better? I saved some serious cash when I went to stock-up. Between 7/29/18 and 8/25/18 you can buy one get one 50% off JOHNSON’S® products with your Walgreens balance reward card. (Plus, you get some SERIOUS rewards points, too!) Learn more about that sweet deal HERE.
Needless to say, bedtime is one of my favorite times in our house. Not just because it means that I’ll get some time to myself before I hit the hay, but also because it means some quiet, meaningful snuggles with our sweet little miracle baby, too. We really are so thankful and lucky that she’s such a good little sleeper (especially when she sleeps in past 8am on the weekends) and hope that she continues to always enjoy getting some extra Zzzz’s!
What do you do in your house to make bedtime go a little better?