January 22, 2021
2020 was a difficult year for families all over the world. Drastic lifestyle changes, uncertainties, and individual and family struggles created a year filled with heartache, fear, and challenges for many. Parents of little ones definitely faced unique challenges in trying to care for a baby in different circumstances.
Unfortunately, many difficulties are carrying over into the New Year. But equipped with the experience gained from the last year, and the hope for improvements in 2021, many have found added strength.
We surveyed parents to ask them what takeaway or tip they learned from raising a baby in 2020. Here are some of the most common answers we heard:
Ask for help and take care of yourself. It can get lonely and isolating without normal social opportunities. Make time to call a friend, or have a socially distanced walk with a family member. It’s so important to realize you don’t need to do it all on your own—and that trying to do so can be damaging to yourself and your relationships.
All the parenting rules you thought you had for your child don’t apply anymore. Sure, they can draw on the walls or watch two movies a day! Also, not every meal has to be nutritious—talking to your baby while prepping dinner can be more valuable than what’s on the plate.
With parks, playgroups, and other outings on hold, you have to get creative to keep yourself and your baby sane. It’s okay to give your child 2 baths a day if they love bath time play! And your activities don’t have to be well-planned, scheduled, or educational—your baby just wants to spend time with you!
Getting enough sleep is so important. Don’t underestimate the power of a swaddle and white noise machines in helping babies fall and stay asleep!
At Baby Merlin, we know and believe in the power of a good swaddle! The Magic Sleepsuit was created by a mother and pediatric physical therapist to help babies who are transitioning out of the swaddle to have the benefits of swaddle sleep as they age.
Having more forced family time helps you see how happy your baby is with just you. You might notice your calendar looks empty, but all your baby knows is that they are spending lots of time with you. Don’t worry about what things they’re missing out on, they have everything they need with you.
Anyone with an infant knows how many diapers they go through a year. With so many diaper changes, you’ve got to do what you can to make the process easier and less stressful. Put a small clip-on light on the changing table for easier nighttime changes. Do diaper changes 5 minutes before the baby is done eating. And double zip pajamas are absolute lifesavers.
At Baby Merlin, we agree! We designed our Magic Sleepsuit to feature double zippers to make diaper changes easier.
“A year with so many changes is a great time to make the changes you’ve always wanted.”
We love this comment from a parent who was inspired by the adjustments they were forced to make this year to use it as a launching point for their own changes. We applaud all of the parents who have faced down the challenges of this year while raising little ones!
January 31, 2023
January 24, 2023
The team at NAPS helps you tackle the issue of early wakeups. *BONUS* NAPS is hosting a webinar on February 24th. Register here and use the extra-special code MAGICMERLIN and you can join the webinar FREE of charge!
The sound of cheery calls of “MAAAAMAAAAA” from the next room may be lovely at 7am. At 4am, or 5 am, not so much. Your baby may be up and ready to start the day, but you probably aren’t.
Answering the questions below may help you get there.
This might seem like an obvious question, but your baby’s sleep needs will change fast in the first few years of their lives. A quick look at the average nap number and duration might give you an idea:
Part of the reason you might be seeing earlier wakeups is that your baby has graduated from one nap cycle to the next.
We call this an “awake window,” and it can make a big difference. It might seem strange that your baby went to bed fine the night before, and you’re seeing a response to nap scheduling in the pre-dawn hours, but if your kiddo’s sleep is disrupted at night, it will impact the morning.
Black 0ut curtains can make a big difference here. Remember that our brains signal wakeup when the light changes. So if dawn is at 430am, and even a little bit of light comes into your baby’s room, their little brains will PING with wake up juice.
It might seem counter-intuitive, but a late bedtime can actually backfire on you. Overtired kids don’t sleep as well. If you made their bedtime later and it didn’t fix the problem, try an earlier bedtime and see if that helps. You might be surprised.
Try to make one change at a time; just one. Stick with that change for 3-5 days to see if it impacts things. (One night is usually not enough to see substantial change.) Be as consistent as you can with the change you made. For instance, if you decide to increase the space between bedtime and final nap wakeup, make sure to stick to the wakeup time you planned.
If your baby is waking up and chirping happily to themselves, feel free to leave them there for a little while. Let them get used to being alone in the crib. If you can, try to delay the start of the day by 5-10 minutes each day. This can make a big impact.
Everything else aside, remember that this is a short time in your kid’s life; as they get older, their sleep will become more regular, and so will yours. Don’t let yourself get too discouraged. Things are hard now, and you’re doing a great job.
January 10, 2023
Sign up to get the latest on sales, new releases and more…