Before I start and give you my detailed 12 hour ‘night shift’, I just thought I would give you a list of all items we have purchased or the ideas we have tried in desperation for a little sleep!!!… (We got desperate!!)
- Ewan the sleep sheep – this had such amazing reviews we had to buy it!! For those who don’t know who Ewan is, he is a sheep cuddly toy who lights up and plays ‘womb noises’. The intention is to make baby feel like they are still in the womb with the ‘soothing sounds’ – Spencer isn’t a fan!
- A heat pad – This is what it says on the tin. A heat pad you plug in and put under babies mattress to warm their bed up before they get in. (Seriously, how spoilt!!?) – Spencer isn’t a fan!
- Swaddling blankets – These are specially designed blankets to make ‘swaddling’ easier and safer. – Spencer isn’t a fan!
- Projector – This projects a ‘star show’ on the ceiling (Granted Spencer may not actually see this yet!) – Spencer isn’t a fan!
- 100’s different textured blankets – Spencer isn’t a fan!
- My clothes – I read that putting an item of your clothing in with baby can help settle them – Spencer didn’t like it!
- White noise apps – Because weirdly the sound of a washing machine/hairdryer helps settle/soothe baby. – Spencer isn’t a fan!
- Hungry milk – This is a formula milk for hungry babies, the idea is it will keep baby fuller for longer meaning he should sleep for longer – Spencer isn’t a fan!
- TV – We tried leaving the tv in our room on for some background noise/ light – Spencer isn’t a fan!
- Muslin Cloth – Someone told me how putting a Muslin next to baby will soothe him. – Spencer isn’t a fan!
- A new bed!!! – Spencer had his Moses basket originally (he wasn’t a fan) so we bought him a ‘Next to me’ this is just a cot with one side down which attaches to your bed so they basically feel as though they are in bed with you. – Spencer isn’t a fan!
- Sleeping in bed with me – I know, not recommended! BUT, this really is the only way we all get any sort of sleep sometimes!!!
The list really does go on, we have tried everything and anything to try and make these bedtimes go smoother than they were!! It really is just trial and error. There will be good nights (by good I have had 4-6 hours sleep!) and there will be horrific ‘just kill me now’ nights!!
So here goes, here is a detailed summary of a night with Spencer…
8pm – This is bath time. This routine happens every night… (yes, I know, bathing baby everyday isn’t recommended). Firstly I run Spencer a nice warm bubble bath with lavender night time bubble bath (to calm and relax him of course!). Once we are finished relaxing in the bath, Spencer gets a full body massage with baby oil – I know what you’re thinking! (Spoilt!!). After his massage he gets changed into a sleep suit and we sit on Mummy’s bed and enjoy a nice bottle. (This bottle has an extra oz than Spencer’s day time ones to make him that little bit fuller).
So the above is our standard bed time routine which happens every night and usually lasts around half an hour.
8.30 – Spencer gets swaddled into his swaddle blanket and Ewan the sheep comes out to work his magic. – Even if he doesn’t seem to work, I still try! – Now we are sat on my bed and I am rocking Spencer to sleep. For some reason come bed time Spencer is wide awake and will just lie in my arms watching me with wide open eyes!!
9pm – Still no sign of sleeping and my shoulder is now killing!! Spencer gets put into his next to me, taking Ewan the sheep with him. It is crucial at this point that I put Spencer down as carefully as poss and DO NOT take both hands off him. – This is to make him think he is still in my arms otherwise all hell breaks lose!! Once in his cot, I sit next to him patting him to sleep.
9.30 – Finally! Spencer has fallen asleep. Now I do a strange looking dance to manoeuvre myself quietly and carefully away from the bed. I then carefully and quietly pick Archie (the dog) up off my bed and put him on the floor. My reason for this is because he follows me everywhere and I cannot risk him jumping off the bed and the noise of him jumping down waking Spencer!!! NOnce up, I sneak into the en-suite to collect my toothbrush to take into the other room to brush my teeth (no way am I daring do it so close to Spencer now he’s asleep!!)
9.45 – DAMN YOU EWAN!!! That sheep stopped playing his annoying noises (he automatically turns off after 10 mins or so) – I am using him as my excuse as to why Spencer has just woken up!! Back to the patting Spencer we go…
10.15 – I am still patting and shushing away with the help from useless Ewan… Spencer has had quite a few loud cries in this past half hour…
10.20 – Woooo!! He’s asleep!! Now I better try and get some sleep before I am woken by a hungry or just needy baby! – I must just add, as Spencer’s next to me is half way down the bed (due to the bedside table being in the way) I too, have to sleep half way down the bed in order to pat at each cry!!
11pm – Spencer’s woken up and his crying is past the patting stage now!! Up we get for some rocking and laps of the bedroom to try get him to sleep! While walking round and round my room I may aswell do some all important Facebook/snapchat/Instagram browsing to keep myself entertained!!
11.30 – He is back asleep and Iv carefully placed him back in his bed!
12:00 – Spencer is screaming!! I leave him in bed screaming while I sprint downstairs to make up a bottle. Thank god the bottle prepping machine only takes 2 minutes to make!!! – Ladies, any of you who are formula feeding this gadget is worth every single penny!!! My best baby buy!
12:30 -Spencer has been fed, winded, had his nappy changed and has been re-swaddled. Now we are back to the rocking to sleep in my arms stage…
1.15 – He finally goes off to sleep!!!
3am – Spencer wakes up screaming and somehow released his hand from that swaddle blanket and is now trying to eat his own hand!! Bottle, wind and nappy change time again!
3.30 – Still no sign of sleep! Now that it has got to the point we both need sleep I put him in bed with me (I shouldn’t, I know!) Almost immediately he goes to sleep!
6.30 – Spencer wakes for his bottle, wind and nappy change. What an explosive nappy it was!! In the space of 5 mins I was weed, pooed and sicked on!! – just another day in the life of a baby!! However, during our morning nappy change we always have lots of chats and I get lots of beautiful smiles so it is worth it!!
6.45 – We have half hour of Spencer lying on his changing unit while I chat away to him and see all his beautiful smiles!
7.15 – 8 – We lied in bed having cuddles before getting up and ready for our day!
12 hours broken down:
Spencer’s total hours asleep: 6hours 15mins
Nappy changes: 3
Although above is a summary of mine and Spencer’s night (Spencer is 8 weeks) every baby is completely different and every night is completely different too!! Sometimes he will sleep more than this, sometimes less.
Meanwhile, this was Archie’s position throughout the whole night…