Thursday, January 15, 2015

Mila's Perfected Bedtime Routine

It wasn't all rainbows and butterflies at first, but we did have one consistent part to our nights. Chicken butt dancing. Dad was the pro of the chicken butt dance. After all, he invented it.  It was hilarious, but it did the trick night after night. Just imagine a six foot two man holding a baby stomping around the house chanting chicken butt dance, chicken but dance. The dance looked a lot like a lunge workout. I tried it a few times and it was a leg burner for sure. Mila seemed to love the movement and singing. She would usually doze off after about fifteen minutes of the hardcore workout. I wonder if Daddy is going to use this tactic with the next baby.

After the silly singing and dancing, when our daughter was sound asleep, we carefully placed her in the pack 'n play. The pack 'n play was directly beside our bed. Mila started nights off there but when she woke up screaming in the middle of the night, I grabbed her and threw her on my chest. It was an easy fix. Mommy, Daddy, and Baby went right back to sleep. Yes, Mila was a part-time co-sleeper, something I said would never happen. This lasted about six months, and honestly it wasn't that bad.

It was hard for me to imagine Mila not sleeping in our room.  It was even a little scary. I knew she was okay when she was so close to us. I could look over and see her breathing which I did a lot. Wes and I started talking about getting her out of the bedroom after about four months, but I always came up with an excuse not to or a future date that would work better. Wes took initiative one night when I was out with the girls. I remember getting home and the baby monitor and baby had moved out of our bedroom. Mila was in her crib in her room fast asleep. That night was a lot easier than expected and a success. There was no going back after that.

My husband and I did a lot of research on baby sleep and knew we had to come up with a new bedtime routine fast. We worked out a routine in her old room and modified it just a bit when transitioning Mila to her big girl room. This is our perfected routine:
  1. Go upstairs to Mila's room to play for fifteen to twenty minutes. Before doing this Mila has to say goodbye to her pups. It is so cute how she throws her hand up and says bye bye.
  2. Time to change her diaper. Mila is starting to help us with this. She grabs a diaper out of her dresser drawer and hands it to us. She has even started pulling the changing pad down to the floor and laying on it.
  3. Get Mila comfy in her pajamas. This is sometimes done while playing. Mila loves placing her dirty clothes in the hamper in her room. She has become such a good helper.
  4. Toothbrush time. Some nights are good and some nights it is like pulling teeth to get a toothbrush in this girl's mouth. 
  5. We place Mila's stuffed animals Ellie, Peanut, and Stripey in the Teepee to go to sleep. She then covers them up with a blanket.
  6. Mila turns out the bedroom light, picks out a book, and brings it over. We sit together and I read the book to her twice.
  7. We return the book, I turn the lamp off, and then it is time to say good night to the things in her room. Good night dresser. Thanks for holding my clothes. Good night changing table. Thanks for cleaning my bum. Good night dream light. You sure are pretty. Good night teepee. Thanks for holding my friends. Hello bed, I will be seeing you real soon, but first I have to give mommy three kisses. One. Two. And the third on her belly. I always get one last giggle at that one.
  8. I then lay her in bed and say a prayer. I also tell Mila I love her and I will see her first thing in the morning.
This thirty minute nightly routine has become one of my favorite parts of the day. I love the family bonding time. I am not sure if Mila loves the routine or loves to sleep. Either way, it works. I hope the same can be said with baby number two.

1 comment:

  1. Hi! I just wanted to let you know I nominated you for the Liebster Award here