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Airplane Travel with a Baby: EP 22

If you are like me you will avoid air travel with your children until they are old enough to vote. But most of you are far more courageous than I am in which case this podcast is for you! In this episode Elisabeth and Franny share their experiences and insights on navigating the friendly skies with a baby or toddler in tow including the following:

  • How many toys do you really need to bring with you?
  • Two words: hand sanitizer.
  • Have a plan but know that things won’t go according to plan.
  • There will be at least one diaper blowout on your flight.
  • Travel is parenting in another place.
  • Handling time changes when traveling.
  • Have a plan for naps on the go.
  • How much do you need to invest in specialized travel gear?
  • Setting expectations (hint: low, keep expectations low).
  • It’ll be OK!

I giggled when Elisabeth admits, “I flew an overnight from Boston to Fairbanks with a 6 month old, optimistically thinking he’ll sleep the whole way.” I flew Boston to Paris overnight with a 2 year old similarly thinking it would be impossible for him not to sleep eventually, right? That the social pressure of a plane full of sleeping people might compel him to sleep. Apparently for both of us, our optimism was misplaced.

The PLS Facebook group is full of people looking for the secret sauce that will guarantee you an easy flight with a baby or toddler but to the points presented in this podcast, there is no guarantee. There is just your best effort, positive thoughts, and the knowledge that good, bad, or otherwise, eventually that flight will be over and that someday, many years from now, you will look back and laugh about it.

Take a listen here or check it out on iTunes!

Got a question for a future Q&A episode? Fire away at podcast@preciouslittlesleep.com.

Podcast Sponsor

Check out the Reverie power bed! After you have kids your bed turns into a home base: the place you sleep, night parent infants, read books with older children, gather for family movie night, etc. The Reverie power bed can make your existing bed more comfortable for sleep. You can raise the head of the bed for easier night feeding/nursing. You can adjust the bed to aid in C-section recovery. Got swollen ankles? Raise your feet while you sleep. There are loads of ways this can help make your bed more comfortable and more functional for your whole family.

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Toddler Sleep Schedules [with 2-1 information!]

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Considering the popularity of my blog post for sleep schedules from 4 months to 18 months, I thought it was time to give toddler sleep some love! Read on to learn about different schedules for toddlers from 18 months [or 1 nap] to age 3! I will preface this blog post the same way I did my first schedule post by saying that all children are different and yours might not necessarily fit into this schedule perfectly every single day but it is just meant as a guide to know what is typical at each age and as your child grows.  I intended this to be a helpful guide to see what a day in the life of a toddler on an age-appropriate schedule looks like – meals, naps, and nightsleep. When looking at these schedules, what’s important to note is the time awake in between sleep times, not necessarily the time on the clock [unless otherwise indicated]. I generally recommend laying the child down 15 minutes before these targeted ‘asleep’ times to give them ample time to fall asleep.

18 months [the start of the 2-1 transition]

Children at this age need roughly 13 hours of sleep in a 24 hour period, 1.5-3 hours of that sleep should occur in the daytime with 11-12 hours of sleep at nighttime.

Prior to the transition [age 13-18 months]:

6:30am – up for the day
7:00am – breakfast
9:00am – snack
9:45am – 10:45am – nap#1 [to hold off the transition until this point, it’s beneficial to cap this nap at 1 hour]
12:00pm – lunch
2:00pm – snack
2:45pm – 3:45pm – nap#2 [a full 4 hours of awake time between naps 1 and 2]
5:30pm – dinner
6:30pm – bedtime routine [should not include any milk, last milk with dinner!]
7:15pm – bedtime [asleep by this time]

One week into the transition:

6:30am – up for the day
7:00am – breakfast
9:30am – either a big snack OR lunch split in half
10:15am – 12:15pm – nap [we pushed out the first nap by 15 minutes every 3 days. If the nap ends at noon or later, we move to bedtime. If the nap ends before noon, we do a catnap/quiet time around 3:00pm]
12:30pm – either a big snack OR the other half of lunch
2:30pm – small snack
5:00pm – dinner
5:30pm – bedtime routine
6:15pm – bedtime

Two weeks into the transition:

6:30am – up for the day
7:00am –  breakfast
10:00am – either a big snack OR lunch split in half
11:00am – 1:00pm – nap [we continued to push the nap out by 15 minutes every 3 days]
1:15pm – either a big snack OR the other half of lunch
3:15pm – small snack
5:30pm – dinner
6:00pm – bedtime routine
6:45pm – bedtime

Four weeks into the transition [transition complete]:

6:30am – up for the day
7:00am – breakfast
9:00am – snack
11:15am – lunch
12:00pm – 2:00pm – nap [nap was pushed out by 15 minutes every 3 days to a 5.5 hour waketime]
2:30pm – snack
5:45pm – dinner
6:15pm – bedtime routine
7:00pm – bedtime

Please check out my Comprehensive Nap Transition Guide here for detailed information about each nap transition!

19-23 months 

Children at this age require 12-12.5 hours of sleep in a 24 hour period. 1.5-3 hours of that sleep should occur in the daytime and 10-12 hours of sleep at nighttime.

6:30am – up for the day
7:00am – breakfast
9:00am – snack
11:45am – lunch
12:30pm – 2:30pm – nap [if the child’s 1 nap is well-established, we should move to a ‘by the clock’ nap occurring between 12:30-1:00pm. This nap should be no longer than 3 hours and not past 3:00pm]
3:00pm – snack
5:45pm – dinner
6:45pm – bedtime routine
7:30pm – bedtime

2 years old 

Children at this age require 12-12.5 hours of sleep in a 24 hour period. 1-2 hours of that sleep could occur in the daytime and 10-12 hours of sleep at nighttime. After age 2.5, children do not developmentally *need* a nap like they did prior to this age [although the longer you can hang onto it, the better!] Keep in mind that if your child has dropped their nap, they should now be clocking the full 12-12.5 hours of sleep at nighttime, so bedtime should reflect that based on what time they normally wake up in the morning.

A 2 year old who is still taking a nap:

6:30am – up for the day
7:00am – breakfast
9:30am – snack
12:00pm – lunch
1:00pm – 3:00pm – nap [at this age, the ‘by the clock’ nap should occur between 1:00-1:30pm. This nap should be no longer than 2 hours and not past 3:00pm]
3:30pm – snack
5:45pm – dinner
7:15pm – bedtime routine
8:00pm – bedtime

A 2.5 year old who is no longer napping:

6:30am – up for the day
7:00am – breakfast
9:30am – snack
12:00pm – lunch
1:00pm – 2:00pm – quiet time [a quiet time every single day for a toddler who is not napping is extremely important. Even if they are not sleeping, time to re-charge their batteries for at least 45 minutes mid-day will help avoid major evening crankiness]
2:30pm – snack
5:15pm – dinner
5:45pm – bedtime routine
6:30pm – bedtime

3 years old

Children at this age require 11-12 hours of sleep in a 24 hour period. 1-2 hours of that sleep could occur in the daytime and 9-12 hours at nighttime. For children who no longer nap, they should now be clocking the full 11-12 hours of sleep at nighttime, so bedtime should reflect that based on their usual wake-up time.

A 3 year old who is still taking a nap:

6:30am – up for the day
7:00am – breakfast
9:30am – snack
12:30pm – lunch
1:30pm – 3:00pm – nap [at this age, the ‘by the clock’ nap should still occur between 1:00-1:30pm. This nap should be no longer than 2 hours [but may need to be closer to 1-1.5 hours to not interfere with nightsleep] and not past 3:00pm
3:30pm – snack
5:45pm – dinner
7:15pm – bedtime routine
8:00pm – bedtime

A 3 year old who is no longer napping:

6:30am – up for the day
7:00am – breakfast
9:30am – snack
12:30pm – lunch
1:30 – 2:30pm – quiet time [a quiet time every single day for a toddler who is not napping is extremely important. Even if they are not sleeping, time to re-charge their batteries for at least 45 minutes mid-day will help avoid major evening crankiness]
3:00pm – snack
5:30pm – dinner
6:15pm – bedtime routine
7:00pm – bedtime

Pam Edwards is a Certified Infant & Child Sleep Consultant and founder of Wee Bee Dreaming Pediatric Sleep Consulting in Grande Prairie, Alberta. Healthy sleep is addicting and she has made it her life mission to help families all across the world get the sleep they deserve – a good night’s sleep doesn’t have to be a dream!

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Becoming a Parent: Guilt, Failure, an Unrealistic Standards: EP 21

Most people use the 9 months of pregnancy as a time to learn how babies work (generally) and stock up on essential baby gear so they’ll be ready when said baby arrives. The fact that you will become a parent, and this is likely the largest, most abrupt, and often challenging transition you will ever undergo in your life is barely considered. And let’s be clear, becoming a parent is a massive, wondrous, and immensely painful transition. It is a physical, mental, and emotional transition on the highest order. Which we give nary a thought until it happens. Then BOOM. There it is.

Recently the transition to parenthood has been discussed in major news outlets (The Goddess Myth by Time and The Birth of the Mother by NYT). The titles somewhat unfairly focus on “mothers” but the reality is the issues apply to all parents (yes Dad’s struggle too!).

In this episode, Melissa and I break down some of the themes of becoming a parent including:

  • The identity transition
  • How learning from or parents about parenting helps (or hurts)
  • Cherishing every moment
  • The fantasy of parenthood
  • Parental guilt
  • What can we do to help ease our way through this transition

Links to Additional Resources

Stay At Home Mom Guilt (Melissa’s blog!)
Confessions of a Domestic Failure

Take a listen here or check it out on iTunes!

Got a question for a future Q&A episode? Fire away at podcast@preciouslittlesleep.com.

Podcast Sponsor

Check out the Reverie power bed! After you have kids your bed turns into a home base: the place you sleep, night parent infants, read books with older children, gather for family movie night, etc. The Reverie power bed can make your existing bed more comfortable for sleep. You can raise the head of the bed for easier night feeding/nursing. You can adjust the bed to aid in C-section recovery. Got swollen ankles? Raise your feet while you sleep. There are loads of ways this can help make your bed more comfortable and more functional for your whole family.

Check them out to learn more or follow them on Twitter or Instagram!