Sunday, April 17, 2011


I mentioned a while back that I wanted to post a little bit about how the girls are sleeping and things we've learned or found helpful getting them to sleep/nap well.  

If I remember correctly I had mentioned about how we started the Cry It Out method a mont or two back.  As much as we never wanted to do that, it honestly has saved us so much time and energy for our selves that I would never have done it any other way.
I've had another twin mom question what to do to get her littles ones asleep without having to spend hours calming them or even having to head back into the room at all hours of the night.  So after much trial and error this is what we found that worked for us.

CIO- I refused to do this too early, but once I could tell that they knew we would come back in if they cried (because they would slow or quiet once we entered the room) it was time to do it.  That was around 7 or 8 months if I remember correctly?  Not only were they in bed at 7-8pm, we wouldn't go back in there and would have those 3-4 hours to our selves.  It was extremely hard at first and I as an emotional wreck during the first couple nights cried a little myself.  But trust me!  It gets easier!!

Bed time feeding- it was at 6 months ish that our doctor said that they shouldn't be needing to be fed at 3-4am like usual.  So to ensure that they had plenty of eats in their bellies we started to feed or put in their bottle some rice cereal.  Mixing the normal amount of formula or breast milk in with it.  This way they were extra full and wouldn't wake up in the middle of the night hungry.  At first it was hard to get them to finish the bottles but we never forced it.  Within a week though they weren't waking up till around 6am.

Noise-  So many people have told us that we need to get them used to loud noises now or else it is going to kick us later.  Well instead of blaring the TV or allowing the dogs to be crazy at night, we simply just put a noise maker in their room.  We actually started this from the get go and it has helped every since.  It calms them down and also drowns out the outside noise around their room.  It is an automatic one that lasts for about an hour and has several settings from the ocean to a train pulling in the station.  We generally use the ocean or thunderstorm.  

Mobiles-  We didn't see this work for us much until probably a month or to ago.  Before that if anything it kept them up with all the movement they just wanted to watch all night.  Although now I do use it if they are getting off to a rough start with their nap or bed time and it generally will calm them down enough that they fall asleep to it.  

Temperature-  so crazy story, I've heard parents state that if they keep their room cooler it helps the babies sleep at night.  Completely not the case for us.  If we don't keep their room a good average high temp and they get even slightly colder than usual they don't sleep as well.  We were reminded of it a few nights ago when Mr. A turned off the heater thinking summer was here and through the night it got to a pretty chilly temp.  Guess what?  The girls woke up at 3am and were just super upset and had a hard time going back to sleep until the temperature was warm enough for them. We do use blankets but with how much they move now a days half the time they are off them by morning so I wouldn't count on those keeping them warm enough all night.  

Night Lights-  The dude and I will argue about this into the night, honestly.  I think it helps them, but he insists it keeps them awake.  So in reality this one we just don't even use.  We haven't had one in their since they got home from the NICU and even though the couple of nights we tried one I thought it helped we just decided we would keep them used to not having one.  The noise maker has a light blue "night light" on the top that we use and think works good enough.

Naps-  These were a nightmare for the longest time.  We never could get them to go down easily and they never stayed down long enough.  Ending up with 2 cranky babies by midday was just horrible.  BUT once we got them on a good night time schedule it did a complete 180, not only were they sleeping through the night but their naps were now lasting 1 1/2 to 2 hours and were consistent.  As well as putting them down for naps were a cinch because of the CIO, they knew we wouldn't come back in until they fell asleep so now all they do for naps is talk or coo to themselves till they fall asleep.  

The Door/Baby Monitor-  So from the beginning I had to have the door half way open and the baby monitor on always.  This has changed.  With our house layout we can shut the door completely and still hear them well enough if something is wrong.  Even at night I no longer use the baby monitor (although at night we keep the door slightly open since it's quiet in the house) because it used to keep me up at night with their night time noises.  During the day while I do things as they nap the door is shut and the monitor is off unless I go down stairs or out side.  At night, door open monitor off.  I know this wont work for some who have 2/3 story houses with their kids room on different floors as their own.  

Reality- Getting a baby or even several babies to sleep and sleep how we hoped for them to is a complicated task( i thought it would be simple!).  Honestly though it's something that should be worked on and doesn't just come easy.  If it does for you, that is awesome and I'm jealous.  But a majority of my friends and family have always had to work to get their kids on a good schedule.  It all comes down to what you're comfortable with and what works for you and your littles ones.  I will say this though,  I hate hearing parents who have 3 year olds that still don't sleep through the night correctly, and even coming from my doctor that stems from not getting them on a good schedule when they are little.  There is always things that will get in the way but generally if you keep to your schedule or do your best to if anything it causes a few extra minutes of fuss out of a whole day of happy playful little ones.  

I know I've forgotten things, so if anyone has questions I'm more than happy to answer.  Like I said, it's trial and error and it's what works best for you. This is just what we've tried and has worked because trust me we have tried it all.  :)
What are some things you've heard that work or have tried your self? 

I hope everyone is having a great weekend!  I'm off to finish 2 last projects. 
{Happy Sunday!}


  1. Lots of good things for me to remember down the road. I might bookmark this post :)

  2. Great post! I never was good at the cry it out method, I was always to week to that little cry! We use a noise machine in lil mans room as well, don't know what we would do without it! Thank for sharing this post!

  3. thank you soo soo much! i literally poured over every word you said. i have no idea what i'm getting myself into and this helped a ton. keep the advice coming sister!


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