I swore my baby would sleep in our room, right next to our bed in his cradle until about 6 months. But at 14 weeks, we decided to make the switch. I caved for a few of reasons.
1). Liam was not on any kind of schedule and we were having a hard time implementing one with him going to sleep in our room. We didn't have the monitor set up in there, so I didn't want him out of my site. He'd usually begin the night sleeping in a pack n' play we have up in our living room (or in my arms), and then we transfer him to the cradle after a late night feeding.
Everything I read hammers home the importance of getting your baby use to a night time routine early and especially at the 3-4 month mark. It's important to be consistent and get them use to their room.
2). He has never been a good night sleeper. He sleeps in 2-3 hour chucks all day long - loves the nap length of sleep. So, I figured we needed to change something. Maybe being in his own room would help. Maybe we were keeping him up/waking him up?
3). The boy was keeping me up! While I was actually lulled to sleep by the sounds of his breathing and snoring, he is an active sleeper and moves around. I was constantly thinking he needed something, when really he was just moving in his sleep. I would wake up to what sounded like calisthenics coming from his cradle. He lifts his legs up in the air and then flops them down... this boy will have strong abs.
4). He was starting to outgrow his cradle. While it's bigger than a bassinet, with his wild night time movements, he'd hit the solid wood walls waking us all (him included) up.
So I started having him take naps in his crib to get him use to his new bed...
Then we made the switch a few nights ago with a bedtime routine in his own room and all! This way he wouldn't feel banished to his room just to sleep. Our typical routine (as of now)...
1). Once he starts to get sleepy (I can usually tell by him rubbing his eyes or starting to get cranky), usually between 8 and 9:30pm depending on his naps that day, we start the routine.
2). We go change him into his pjs in his room and get him a fresh diaper. If it's bath night (2x a week) we'll do that first.
3). Then we sit in his big comfy rocking-recliner chair, and read some books until his eyes start getting really sleepy.
4). Then I give him a bottle. He usually falls asleep eating, but when I burp him, it kind of wakes him back up.
5). So then we read some more, or I talk to him or sing (but I'm not sure that's pleasing to the ear so we're working on a lullaby play list). I've started asking him what the best and worst part of his day was (the peaks and pits), but he hasn't answered me yet, so I just tell him mine.
6). Then when he is almost asleep I transfer him from my arms to his crib. He usually kind of wake up again (I swear he'd sleep 12 hours straight in my arms if he could) - so I put on his Sleep Sheep sound machine, rub his belly and head and tell him I love him and good night with a few Shhhs (he likes that sound).
Then the hardest part.
7). I walk away and out of his room. I quickly grab the video monitor and watch him the rest of the night...
Sometimes he'll start fussing a bit and it'll take a few trips of me going in to rub his belly and Shhh him, put his pacifier back in or turn back on the Sleep Sheep (which is on a timer) before he's really asleep for the long haul. The main thing is, I am trying to be consistent. I know it'll take a little time till he gets use to it, but so far I think his sleeping is already a little better!
And I'm getting use to it, too. The good news is - our house isn't that big and his room is right across from ours. At night, when all is quiet, I can even hear him without the monitor, though I have that right by my head any ways.
What is your bedtime routine? When did you move baby to the crib/own room?
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