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Bible Verse of the Day

Sleep

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Two nights ago, Emma gave me a pleasant little surprise.  I awoke in the morning and realized that she had slept right through from 10p.m. the night before, and only woke up at about 7:30a.m.!

That was a first for her, and I hope she will soon learn how to consistently do that.  For the two subsequent nights, however, she did not sleep through, but woke up once.  Not too bad.

Only time will tell if this trend will continue :)

Each night (well, most nights…when Hannah is not too overly sleepy), as I tuck her in to sleep, we will share a special minute or two just to catch up with each other.  Sometimes she will request for a bedtime story and sometimes she will tell me a bedtime story instead.  At times, we’ll help each other make up stories…short and funny ones.

Yeah, my Hannah still sleeps with me and is very much attached to me.  She says she will move to her own room when we get back to Penang, so hopefully she’ll keep her word.

Our chit chat sessions are special moments I would treasure forever.  Even though I need to nurse Emma, Hannah is being very much the helpful big sister by bringing me the nursing pillow and then as I nurse Emma, Hannah will ask, “Can I hug your hand?”

Now how do I say no to that? :)

We chat about everything at all: how her day was, what day it would be the next day, what we would be doing the next day, how Hannah sleeps like a starfish, we discuss how we’d share the blankie…and then she would yawn, close her eyes and fall asleep.  It is the perfect end to every day.

Ethan and Hannah have been sharing our bedroom space ever since they came into our lives.

Ethan, who started from the crib, and moved to the cot and then to our bed and then to the mattress on the floor, had been indicating that he is all ready to move out to his own room, on the condition that the bedsheet is a Cars bedsheet.  You see, he currently has a Cars bedsheet, but it’s on a single mattress.  We figured it’s time we moved our little big man to his own room with his own bed, and currently our only available option is our 2nd bedroom which has a queen-sized bed.  So we had to get a Cars Queen-sized bedsheet set.

Hannah, on the other hand, has been wanting to sleep on her brother’s single mattress for the longest time, and has requested for a Barney bedsheet.

Coincidentally, we finally found the Cars bedsheet (in Queen size) last weekend, so we got it for Ethan and he was very excited when I washed it clean and laid it out on the bed for him.  He happily said goodbye to our room and moved to his new room with his new bedsheet.

The plan was for Ethan to sleep in the other room and for Hannah to move to the single mattress in our room, as a form of gradual transition.  But what we hadn’t expected was when Hannah requested to sleep on the single mattress in Ethan’s room too.  She wanted to be with her brother, apparently.

bedroom

That’s not all.

She asked me to LEAVE the room and said that she could sleep by herself.

On the first night, I sat at the foot of her mattress till she fell asleep.  On the second night, she asked me to leave the room.  On the third night, she wanted to lie down with me.   But now most of the nights, she can fall asleep on her own.

I was still a little apprehensive if she would be able to sleep on her own, so since Ethan and Hannah moved out, we have left both the room doors open, and on almost every night, Hannah has either wandered back into our bed in our room, or she has cried and I’ve carried her into our bed.

I say “almost every night” because last night was the very FIRST night that she slept through in the room with Ethan.  I woke up in the early hours of the morning and discovered that she wasn’t by my side.  When I checked on her, she was fast asleep, albeit she had rotated 180º!! :)

That’s a HUGE improvement and we are so proud of both Ethan and Hannah for making this transition.  Shows that they are growing up in leaps and bounds…

…but why does our room feel kinda empty now? :(

bedtimebuddies1

Hi everyone!! Meet Isabella the giraffe, and Bearbee the teddy bear … two of my best bedtime buddies ever!  They fit right into my arms for a warm cuddle and snuggle and I love them dearly. :)

Bearbee is named that way because she’s my little baby and I incorporated the word “bear” into her name.  Bearbee was a present from Daddy a few months ago.  I can’t remember where exactly Isabella came from, but Mommy thinks she could have arrived as a free gift when we bought something years ago.  Regardless, she’s a very special giraffe, because her neck is not THAT long…I could not think of a name for her, so Ethan gave her that name.  Methinks it suits her just fine!

bedtimebuddies2

I also have my bolster and my beautiful blankie (just like Baby Bop has hers) and together, all of my bedtime buddies stay with me by my side when I sleep, at night as well as in the daytime.

bedtimebuddies3

Don’t we all make a wonderful team? :)

Have you ever encountered a problem that you tried to solve but could not, and then one day, you realize that it had worked itself into a solution?

Well, I think that just happened to us… :)

When Ethan was born, I made up my mind to implement co-sleeping.  Well, actually initially he slept in his crib, but the frequent middle-of-the-night feeds for a new mommy who was exclusively breastfeeding her firstborn was getting too tiring for me.  So thankfully, I managed to master the art of breastfeeding him while sleeping/lying down.  Besides I didn’t want to put him in another room then, and have to run into his room to sleep with him at night.  That would defeat the purpose altogether, wouldn’t it?

So eventually Ethan moved into our bed and we were all happy.

However, as he grew bigger, his rotational sleeping behaviour was causing us our peaceful sleep.  We ended up with no space at all!

When we moved to the States (at that time Ethan was about 2.5 years old), we’d planned on training him to sleep in his own room.  After all, he would have a room of his own and it was a fresh environment perfect for training.  Alas, that plan backfired when he refused to sleep in his room alone.  In the end, all three of us crammed into the queen sized bed.  Imagine, our bed in Penang is a king sized one, and now we had to all somehow fit into a queen sized bed!  On top of that, at that time, my pregnant belly was also getting bigger and bigger.  How on earth we managed to do it is beyond me…

Anyway, we came back to Penang with Ethan still refusing to move to his own room.  We told Ethan he could use our guest room as his own room, and he agreed to move when he turned 4 years of age.

When the day came, he tried sleeping in his own room, but got up and complained that he didn’t want to.  He claimed that sleeping there gave him bad dreams and he always dreamt of a snake.!

So back we all went on to the king sized bed.  To make matters more squeezy, Hannah now had moved onto our bed as well.  Yeah, blame it on me who did not train her when she was a newborn…anyway, the nights got really crammed, is all I can say.

Then one day, Ethan had a bout of food poisoning and threw up frequently.  I took him to the doctor and gave him medication.  Then I advised him to rest, but not on the bed, because he might dirty it if he threw up suddenly.  So I put a single mattress on the floor in his room (the guest room) and he agreed to sleep there.

When he got better, he still requested to sleep on the single mattress in our room.  And we obliged.  He said sleeping on the mattress on the floor was so much more comfortable!

Well, seeing that he was SO comfy on the mattress, and realizing that half our battle might already have been won, I decided to get him a little present.

sleepprocess1

Combining his Lightning McQueen and Cars craze and his newfound love in sleeping on that mattress, I made him an offer he could hardly refuse!

So now, Ethan sleeps on his own Cars mattress in our room.  He can go to sleep on his own without needing anyone to be in the room with him.  And he can wake up by himself too!  We have reclaimed our space on our bed, with the exception of Hannah, who is still sleeping with us. By the way, Hannah has also recently shown a keen interest on sleeping on her brother’s mattress too..so perhaps we can work something out there. :)

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The next step is for Ethan to move into his own room.  He has already indicated he is ready.  It’s only a matter of time now.

cheeky_ethan

Several weeks ago, when I had exhausted all methods of getting Ethan to sleep, I introduced the concept of “counting sheep” to him.  I explained that he should imagine seeing the sheep jump over a fence in front of him, and count them as he lay down on the bed.

So Ethan said out loud, “Okay, Mommy.  One… two… three…four… five…six…. seven… eight… nine… TEN!  There are TEN SHEEP Mommy!”

Duh.

So I told him to count in his head, NOT out loud.  And that he was suppose to keep counting ’em sheep.

And this time he counted only THREE.  And he still could not fall asleep.

There was another time when I asked him to count sheep yet again, and he replied, “There are NO SHEEP today, Mommy.”

Pretty in Pink

 

My Ah Mah from Ipoh recently bought me these lovely little night gowns.  Mommy tells me they are from a place called Carter’s and the gowns are called sleeplikely gowns.  They are supposed to make me sleep better at night and also make diaper changes easier for Mommy.

Well, I wouldn’t know about changing diapers but I certainly think I look adorable and pretty in ’em gowns! :)

 

I also get to go to bed in this cute little dino sleeping sack:

 

My big brother Ethan took really good care of it when he used it last time, because it is still in wonderful condition!

I’m not sure if the use of these gowns and sleeping sack will help eliminate the loud throaty sounds I make at night though, but Mommy and Daddy definitely hope so!

I’ll have to admit that little Hannah is definitely taking the meaning of beauty sleep to another level.  We are actually quite amazed at the number of sleeping hours she is clocking in.  Given the fact that she was practically up the whole of the first night I was with her, I was prepared for the worst.  But so far she has been a very good girl, and will contentedly sleep for a few hours straight after a satisfying feed.  At times, I have even had to wake her up for a feed or a diaper change or for her bath.

For most of the time too, Hannah is able to self-soothe herself to sleep, although by and by, I am sensing our smart girl is beginning to learn how to “manja” and sometimes prefers instead to be cuddled to sleep.

Thing is, her long sleeping hours are mostly during the daytime.  Her day and night schedule is still not established yet, and she sleeps less during the night.  I am trying to change that as best as I can, by creating a fixed bedtime routine, and also by making night-time feeds are short and boring as possible.

Some of the time, Hannah has to learn how to sleep through the noise, because Ethan usually talks very loudly and excitedly.  Sometimes, Ethan would even go over to Hannah’s cot and tell his sister, “Hannah, wake up!” 😛

I do so love watching her sleep…just like a peaceful little angel.  I have even caught her smiling in her sleep at times!

Scrap Credits
Le petit prince a dit cluster frame from Elodie
Toy Store – Partie3 paper and ribbon from Digital-Crea
Elegant word art (sleep) from Bethany

It all started about 2 weeks or so ago. Ethan contracted high fever, up to 39.5°C. I had to stay home with him to monitor his condition and at times it was pretty scary, because the fever fluctuated up and down throughout the day. We then decided to take him in to Urgent Care, where we could just walk in and not have to make an appointment. But that meant waiting for quite a long while, and after the doctor’s checkup, and we had gotten the prescription filled at the pharmacy, there was the arduous task of force-feeding Ethan the antibiotics. Not a pleasant scene at all, I can assure you.

In addition to his fever, Ethan was also coughing and thus, he was finding it difficult to sleep and rest at night. He would kick and scream and refuse to sleep soundly, resulting in both Daddy and Mommy not sleeping well either.

But thankfully, he is better now. It is always a joy to see him back to his usual cheeky and perky self.

Being at home with Mommy for that extended period resulted in an uphill task in getting him ready for daycare after that. He would grumble and throw a big tantrum and became extremely whiny when we had to leave the house in the morning. And that’s not all…one day after we picked him up from daycare, he decided to make a big fuss about not wanting to leave the car, crying and screaming his lungs out in the car garage. And when we finally got him back home to our apartment, he started crying again. Although we put our foot down and warned him sternly that he was not to repeat it, it hurt our hearts to see him behave that way.

We were quite certain it was Ethan’s natural reaction to finally realising he was going to be a big brother soon, and we figured it was his way of trying to get our attention as much as possible.  And we were at our wits’ end as to how to overcome it.

Then the weekend came…and amazingly, Ethan slept through till way past 9:00a.m. both on Saturday and Sunday! When he awoke, he was cheerful, smiling and had happiness written all over his face. He also had his afternoon nap. And added plus was that he began to have a better appetite for food!

So it looks like Ethan has finally inherited Daddy’s and Mommy’s traits of loving to sleep. Well, a growing mind and body definitely needs more sleep, and it is obvious that sufficient sleep makes for a happy toddler. And certainly, no one is complaining! :)


Scrap Credits
Always Welcome kit from Kelly Puddy
The Promise Collection Alphas from Shabby Princess Designs
Doodle Me Big doodles from Mikkel Paige Original
Monogram ampersand & cluster from Sugarplum Paperie
Word Art – 3 from fei-fei’s stuff 
 

Getting Ethan to bed is a routine for us now.  He takes his shower at about 8-ish and then has his “nenno” while I dress him up in his peejays.

Then, he will get his fair share of word videos, where he repeats the words he sees.  Sometimes he prefers a good Barney DVD to while his time away.  He kinda knows that he is only allowed to watch the TV after his bath, and so when we undress him and tell him it’s time to bathe, he will very obediently run to the bathroom.

Anyway, after watching his videos, I will tell him it’s time for bed, and he will either walk to the room on his own and wait for us to open the door for him, or if he is in a “manja” mood, he will ask us to carry him into the room.

He will then roll around on the bed, and sometimes, he will only want Mommy to be there with him.  In this scenario, he will push Daddy away gently, wave goodbye and even give a flying kiss to Daddy 😆

Then he will want to hug me to sleep.  There were a few times where I told him to hug his pillow to sleep instead, explaining to him that Mommy will hug my pillow and Ethan will hug his pillow.  Well, sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn’t.  But in the middle of the night, if he wakes up because of a nightmare, he will need to be hugged and comforted to sleep.  Even in the mornings, if Ethan wakes up and I am not in bed, he will go over to his Daddy and hug him instead.

I know he will soon outgrow his hugging needs, but I am not sure if I am ready to let go yet…because I’m sure you know how therapeutic a hug can get, huh?  I guess I’ll cherish it as long as it lasts…

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