Sunday, November 27, 2011

Help my baby sleep!

A common request by many parents!  Yes, Loving Lessons is here to empower and support a family when their child is not sleeping through the night.   You don't have to do the Ferber method and let your child cry it out, but you can do it in a  loving and  gentle way so your child can sleep, and you still get the sleep you need too!  Helping children sleep is not a one size fits all solution. When teaching your child to sleep, it's important to take into consideration your child's temperament, age, developmental needs, parenting styles, routines, and schedules.  Healthy sleep habits now, are the foundation for healthy sleep habits later in life!

Loving Lessons offers consultations and classes in your home or via Skype.  A new service available is the  Sweet Dreams Class which is a one hour sleep education, filled with tips and strategies for your child's age, and a question and answer session. Learn more about services available by visiting Loving Lessons Pediatric Sleep Consulting.

This is a great time to help your baby sleep because on Cyber Monday, Plum District is offering $50 vouchers to use towards any consultation or solution option for $25. Learn more about this offer by visiting the Plum District- For Moms, By Moms.

And yes, now you can learn how to help your baby sleep -by sleep training your child in a loving and supportive way!

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Dare I say the naughty words- Sleep Training!

I did!  I did say sleep training and these seem like naughty words in most parenting circles.  Number one question parents ask parents- "How is your baby sleeping?"  It makes parents uncomfortable, lie, make up sleepy tales about the sleep they think they have or wish they had, or they keep the talk minimal because if you even knew what was going on behind closed doors!  YIKES!

What some parents fail to realize is that our children are a clean slate.  Everything and I mean EVERYTHING they learn is from us.  As parents we have so much influence in our child's little life.

When I'm talking about sleep training, I'm merely speaking of the healthy habit I hope you teach your child- how to sleep.  During the night we go through different sleep stages/cycles and we have a partial arousal.  As adults, we might reposition ourselves, turn over, or just adjust the covers.  For children that don't know how to go back to sleep without some sort of crutch or association  (bottle, pacifier, rocking, holding/snuggling with mom or dad), they wake and are ready for the next part of their day. And as the parent- you're not because it's the middle of the night and you are thinking- GO TO SLEEP.  Although- Adam Mansbach did write a book with a few choice words I'm sure we all may be thinking... there's no way our children learn this skill unless we take the time to teach them. 

Here's what sleep training does NOT mean.  It does not mean break out the Ferber method and just let your child cry it out.  Nor does it mean you are a terrible parent if you can't hold or attend to your child's every cry or your child will be scarred for life if they cry.  We are human - so that in itself makes us imperfect, but more importantly we are parents and there is room to grow and learn how to help our child develop these healthy habits.

Many times I'm asked- how do you teach children how to sleep?  My approach with each family is unique- as each child has his or her own needs.  It means I need to learn about the child, the family, parenting styles, temperaments, and the sleep history.  My role is NOT to judge or criticize.  Believe me when I say I have been there and done that.  Desperate times call for desperate measures.  We all have the crazy sleep story of how we got our baby, toddler, or preschooler to sleep.  But my goal is to come up with a gentle, creative solution that you and your family can live with and follow through.  But more importantly, I hope you walk away with tools for your parenting toolbox to empower you as you go through the journey of parenting. 

If you have a young child, my wish for you is to make sure your child knows how to sleep. Read a book, talk to your pediatrician, or contact me, a sleep coach to help support your family's sleep needs.  You have to train up your child in so many ways, and don't forget sleep is just one of them!

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Get ready to FALL back!

Daylight Savings Time ends this Sunday!
As adults we love this time of year: the leaves change color, the chill in the air, and the extra  hour of some zzz's!   But for our children, it's a little more work to reset their internal clock.  There are two ways to help your child make it through the change and get their sleep!

Start TONIGHT if you plan to make a gradual change in your child's routine. This is helpful for children who have a more alert temperament, children who may be more sensitive to being overtired, or who tend to wake up early. Bedtime should be 15 minutes later than usual tonight, 30 minutes later tomorrow night, 45 minutes later on Friday night, and an hour ...later on Saturday night. You need to move the wake up time 15 minutes later each morning too. Try to expose your child to as much sunlight as possible in the few days following the change.
Enjoy your extra hour of zzz's!

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

When your a MOM, you're a ROCK STAR!

If you're a mom, then you have achieved ROCK STAR status!  I'm not sure who wrote this piece, but I love it and makes me think of my daily life with my boys- I couldn't imagine not being a ROCK STAR! Where else am I loved and adored so much? 

I live the life of a rock star. It’s true! I have wild hair and make up with frequent costume changes.

Everywhere I go I have an entourage. People are constantly yelling my name. I look out into the crowd and they’re actually crying for me, reaching for me.
I have no privacy. I’m watched when I shower, when I’m cooking, even when I use the restroom… for my own protection I’m sure.

When I go places I must do so quickly before my fans get out of control and start a riot. Every night a different guy wants to sleep with me. Each of them seems genuinely hurt when I turn him away.

Occasionally I get dirty underwear whirled at me with a whoop and a smile. It’s even hard sometimes to walk through my own home without someone spotting me and trying to grab my legs or my clothing.

Oh, and don’t forget about the stalkers! You know those crazed fans that follow you everywhere? Why, I can’t even talk on the phone in the pantry without an eye or two peeping at me.

Yes, it’s true- I live the life of a rock star. And this goes out to my biggest fans- Connor & Bailey- thank you for making my debut so special!!