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This morning, I had a dear friend of mine text me and say, “I have a blog post idea for you!” and I said, “Okay, hit me!” (Technically, it wasn’t this morning since this post is scheduled but it IS this morning for when I am writing it! FYI :))
She said, “Transferring Jason from the bassinet to the crib! How you did it, what worked for you and what you would maybe do differently if anything!”
So here it is…our experience with the big bassinet to crib move.
If you read my post, “When/ How Baby J Started Sleeping Through the Night (Part 1)” you would’ve seen that we moved J to his own crib/ room at around the 3 month mark. I never THOUGHT I’d be the type of mom to move my baby that early (people recommend anywhere from 3-6 months for the transition), but somehow in my sleep-deprived state, David convinced me it would be a good idea.
Looking back on it now, it seems crazy that we moved him into his own room at THREE months. THREE MONTHS. (He would’ve been so little!!!! What were we thinking?!) But honestly, it was the best thing for us (and our health).
In that post about J sleeping through the night, I wrote that it was around the time that we moved J into his crib, that he started to really be able to sleep through the night, aka Mama and Dada were also able to sleep through the night.
Before we moved J into his own crib/ room, we had him on a bassinet beside our bed. For a light sleeper like me, it meant that I woke up at EVERY grunt and whimper. By moving J into his own crib/ room, I truly believe we ALL slept better, even him. I think it allowed him to sleep more soundly, and we weren’t waking him up at every snore/ toss and turn, and vice versa.
Also, it meant that we were able to really start implementing “sleep training.” I have mentioned this before, but D and I decided to go with the “cry it out” method, which really worked for us. (Again, I know this isn’t for everyone and there are SO many ways you can handle sleep with a baby, but when we entered into this season, we felt like this method would work best for our lives/ family/ personalities, etc.)
Once we moved J into his crib, we tried to be VERY adamant about a strict bedtime routine because it gave J the hint that it was BEDTIME. Also, there were a few crucial gadgets we really relied on.
Things We Needed for “Sleep Training”:
–Cloud B “Sleep Sheep” Sound Machine
(or some sort of white noise sound machine)
–BreathableBaby Mesh Crib Liner
-Soother (!!! This was key for us since J was a soothie baby)
(Side note: I feel like sleep training/ eating habits [basically all a baby does, plus poop] go hand-in-hand, so I go back and forth a lot between the two, in this post.)
So here it is, our experience:
Before we transitioned J into his own crib/ room, he was doing about a 6 hour stretch at night, having 1 feed in the middle of the night, then going back to sleep for 2-3 more hours. At that time, he was eating 5-6 oz of formula, every 3-4 hours. THEN, sort of around the crib transition, we started noticing changes in J’s appetite so we started implementing the E.A.S.Y routine, combined with the 4 hour routine, which I also talk about in my other posts, here and here.
In short, switching to the 4 hour routine meant that J ate (4) 8 oz bottles, at 8am, 12pm, 4pm and 730pm, bringing his total formula intake to 32 oz for the day. For him/ us, this meant that he got all the calories he needed during the day, so in theory, he wouldn’t NEED to eat at night. Sure enough, once J started consistently finishing those 4 bottles, we noticed that there were more and more nights that he wouldn’t finish his middle of night bottle.
Once we saw this happening consistently, instead of feeding him at night, we started just offering him his soother when we woke up at night. We did this for a couple weeks and some nights were more successful than others. As in, some nights we caved and could not console J, meaning he was hungry…so we would heat up a bottle for him. So basically, every night was a little different for a little while.
BUT the two major things we did we did do during this time was a) CIO and b) play the dad card. For the CIO part, this meant we would not go in RIGHT AWAY when J cried. We would wait 3-5 minutes (unless he was really wailing) before going in. Once we were in there, we would either put his soother back in, turn his sound machine back on (which was part of his bedtime routine) and shush him/ pat his bum OR pick him up, put soother in, and rock for a couple minutes, then put him back down, pat/ shush and walk out. We would repeat this, as needed, until he fell asleep for good. For the “dad card” part, we read that (especially for breastfeeding moms), it often worked really well if Dada went in to soothe baby, instead of Mama, because it meant that baby would not get excited and think it was feeding time. I was VERY for this part of the plan, as it meant that David usually took the bedtime – 6am part of the evening and I could sleep (!!!!).
For a while, that meant that David (and sometimes me) would get up 2-3 times a night and have to play this “back to bed” game with J. Like I mentioned above, this worked REALLY good some nights and not so good on other nights. One particularly bad night, David and I tag-teamed and did EVERYTHING we could and could not console J. We tried for over an HOUR and J cried, and cried and cried. Eventually, we had to just give up and let him cry (for another hour) and he eventually fell alseep on his own. It hurt us to have to hear him wail like that and thankfully, it hasn’t happened since!!
Shortly after we started all this, we also started J on SOLIDS (I’ll post this video sometime). This was exciting/ promising for us, as it meant that J would be even MORE full at night and not wake up wanting to eat. And sure enough…success! Most nights, J would wake and still cry out for us, but we started noticing more and more, that he’d cry out/ whimper and fall back asleep within 30 seconds or so. Side note, I mentioned in my list above that we used a crib liner. I did not invest in this at first because the thought of SIDS freaked me out. BUT I did research on this mesh liner, and would 100% recommend. We found that when we didn’t have it, a lot of the time J was crying out for us, it was actually because he would roll and get his arm (or leg, if we didn’t put him in a sac that night) stuck in between the crib spindles. Once we got the crib liner, J stopped crying out for us!! Talk about a great (if not the greatest) investment!! 🙂
So, that’s it folks. That’s how we did it. Would I do anything differently? Probably not. While on the one hand, it makes me sad sometimes that J doesn’t NEED to be cuddled/ coddled, on the other hand, I am also proud of how independent J can be!
And while a part of me IS shocked over how early we did the crib transition, it was perfect because J wasn’t very mobile at the time. Now, at 8 months, J really kicks my butt at naptime and needs to be rocked to sleep! Any mamas out there have advice for this? While J can be put down AWAKE at night, and falls asleep on his own, no problem. I find that if I leave J to try and fall asleep on his own for naps, he just ends up standing up and playing in there. Ugh!!
Anyways, I guess that’s parenthood, isn’t it? Anytime you feel like you conquer one thing, something else comes up. Mannnnn….GOOD THING they’re cute!!