Sunday, January 29, 2012

Sleep Aids

Conan is a great sleeper these days.  I guess we earned it, with all the trouble we had getting him to sleep the first 9 months or so.  We've got a super bedtime routine, including a few special objects that he takes to bed EVERY night.  The two most important are his bad-dream-catcher (seen in the photo above his ear) and his sippy cup of water.  The bad-dream-catcher prevents bad dreams, and the cup prevents requests for drinks of water. We know he's sound asleep when we hear the "thunk" of the sippy cup falling to the floor.  He also always takes a toy to bed with him, but it alternates which one.  Frequent favorites are Baby (pictured),  Horsey, and James*.

Even better than our bedtime routine these days is Conan's morning routine.  He gets up about 6, takes off his nighttime diaper, goes to the bathroom, flushes, and washes his hands all by himself.  Then he either comes into our room and climbs in bed for a little snuggling, or frequently goes and plays quietly by himself for a half hour or so.  It's amazing.  It's always been a challenge to keep up with his early rising tendencies, so every extra minute we get to stay in bed is a minute for which I'm very grateful.

UPDATE: We were still having some trouble with Conan getting us up before six. We finally realized he had no way of knowing when it was too early and when it was OK to get us up. So we put an alarm clock on top of his bookshelf, where he can see it. We covered the minute digits so only the hour shows, and told him he has to wait until it says "6" before he can wake us up. He can get out of bed when it says "5" but he has to play quietly until the "6" comes up. It's working beautifully!

*James is a character in 'Thomas the Tank Engine'.  James is red and his tender has the number 5 on the side.  I fondly remember the days when I did not know the names, colors, numbers and defining personality traits of a dozen talking trains.

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