Archive for Family/Travel

Merino Kids Toddler Sleep Sack

I think all toddlers thrive on routines. I know mine do. And thus our bedtime routine goes like this almost without exceptions ~ after giving hugs & kisses all around, J & Zach go back to our room for his final pre-bed sippy cup of milk. Lucy & I hang out in the den to get her prepped for bed.

After one last book, L will say “sleep sack” & “mommy time”. Those are her code words for it’s time for her sleep sack & nursing with me. L gets her sack on & she knows it’s almost bedtime. She’s also begun asking for “sippy” cup of milk in between “side” {her word for wanting to nurse on the other breast}.

I’ve talked before {toddler must haves} {Halo sleepsack review} about our love for sleep sacks. And that hasn’t changed even as Lucy’s on the verge of being 2. Daycare does blankets for nap & L has asked for a blanket a time or two during weekend naps, but overnight, we do sleep sacks. While I have loved a fuzzy one for winter in the past, I was thrilled when I was recently contacted by Merino Kids in regards to trying out one of their organic cotton & merino wool toddler sleep sacks.
Merino Kids sleep sack packaging

I chose {& quickly received} their gorgeously packaged sleep sack in Honey Oat. This sleep sack is by far the softest & most luxurious one I’ve ever felt. The light brown is very gender neutral, so if Lucy will share it, Zach will be able to enjoy it too. The weight has been great for winter temps & yet will be light & cool enough to easily take us through spring & summer.

Bedtime Lucy Merino Kids sleep sack

Merino Kids sleep sack on, sippy in hand & paci/baby/bunny close by, Lucy was *ready* for bed!

I ordered the toddler size 2-4 years, so they could grow into this sleep sack. And as you can see, Lucy does have quite a bit of growing room! At this point, it’s a bit hard for her to walk in, but I typically carry my sleepy girl into her crib as well as pick her up and carry her into the den in the mornings as well. The length makes sure she has room to kick & roll in her crib as much as she wants at night.
Morning Lucy Merino Kids sleep sack

The Merino Kids sleep sack design has the zipper going from under the arm to the bottom of the sack all along the side. I really like the way you don’t have to be tugging at a zipper under the babe’s neck for a late night or early morning diaper change.

Merino Kids sleep sack Lucy & paci

check out this cool feature too ~ the Merino Kids sleep sacks are stroller & car seat friendly with the front & back flap for the latches!

I love this sack so much I’d put Lucy in our Merino Kids sleep sack every night if I didn’t occasionally have to wash it. :-P And speaking of washing, the instructions that came in the pretty package recommended against putting the sleep sack in the dryer. So that’s kinda a bummer as I don’t have a ton of hanging space in my laundry closet. But so far, not drying has meant that this sleep sack doesn’t have any of the unsightly {& itchy} piling that can come with drying cotton fibers.

You can order a Merino Kids sleep sack from their babysleepbags.com link or Amazon where you’ll see that the price is a bit on the higher side, but like many things in life, you pay for superior quality & comfort. And if yours are like my Lucy and wearing a sleep sack on a nightly basis, you’ll definitely get your money’s worth out of the Merino Kids sacks.

I was provided a Merino Kids sleep sack at no cost to us for purpose of this review. I was not otherwise compensated & my opinions expressed are solely my own

The End of Co-sleeping?

It started due to sickness. One had a bad cold/ear infection/stomach bug/something. And to prevent the other from getting it & waking up while their sibling coughed/sneezed/vomited, we bought Zach in bed with us. And it worked. Once well, L started sleeping through the night in late November/December {after some not welcomed 10-midnight wakings led to successful modified CIO sleep training}, and Zach would wake to nurse still.

So having him co-sleeping meant just rolling over when he said ‘mommy’ & tugged up my top. As I’ve said for almost two years, we do whatever works. Whatever gets us the most sleep; letting nay-sayers be darned. So what if he wasn’t “sleep trained”? We were getting by & he was getting the extra milk I thought my lil guy might need in the middle of the night.

Well a couple weeks turned into months & months. And co-sleeping became our routine. We liked the cuddles, the convenience for dream-feeding, & being close after away from him all day. We talked about transitioning him back to a crib via baby steps into a pack-n-play in our room or the guest room so they still wouldn’t wake each other. But then we didn’t. And then L was sick again, then it was Zach’s turn, then his surgery & stomach bug.

But my turn at the stomach bug last Thursday night was kinda a line in the sand. Vomiting your brains {& dinner & lunch} out then your son wanting to nurse & sleep on your pillow was rough.

When we went to GA & Jason’s parents’ house last weekend {post to come!}, we did their bedtime routine in our shared room, then put both L & Z in side by side pack-n-plays. I’ll be honest, Jason & I went to bed just after L & Z, fully expecting to be up most of the night with Z {& maybe L too} awake due to being in strange bed. And he slept til 4 before crying & us pulling him up between us!

The following night, L & Z went down to sleep fine & both lasted til 515a when the husband’s forgotten alarm had us all awake then snuggling in the queen size bed.

With those sleeping successes, we discussed trying Z out in his bed when we returned home. But I had a work conference Sunday & Monday, & I fully did not expect changes from our routine made while I was gone.

To my shock, my Dad & husband did a modified CIO with Zach that Sunday night & within 20-30 minutes of tears & fussing that first night, Zach was asleep in his crib. And even cooler, Lucy had gone & stayed asleep while Z was carrying on! When he woke up in the middle of the night, Jason did bring him into our bed to co-sleep til morning.

Monday night, Z put himself to sleep in 5-10 minutes & lasted in his crib all night. My arrival in the mix of bedtime Tuesday meant a few tears & cuddles, but he still put himself to sleep within just a few minutes & slept through the night!

Y’all this might be a bit premature, but we’re on a streak of sleep here. For everyone! It’s wild & crazy. Who knew what 8 hours of straight sleep was like?! Not this momma for more than TWO YEARS!!!

Working Mom Snow Days

Bless my fellow contributors at Liberating Working Moms hearts. They put up with me flaking blog post ‘deadlines’ way too often.

But this past week, I {& so many other Southern working mommas} experienced real snow day{s}. The looming uncertainty, the first flake excitement, & the reality of being snowed in.

image

Lucy was less than thrilled. Zach thought the snow was awesome. Their Daddy made a snowman out of sand pails & yard waste. :)

I shared my Snow Day working mom thoughts on Liberating Working Moms last Friday. Jump over there with me ~ I’d love to hear your experience {& there’s another L & Z snow photo too}.

Why We Read

There’s a newish blog out there co-written by a group of busy moms who champion their continued love of books, we still read. And while I haven’t been able to keep up with all their posts or {even recently} my own reading, I love the idea behind managing to find little bits of time to keep up with book reading in between raising kiddos & sharing it online.

Wednesday night, as L & Z sat together sharing their toddler elephant chair each with their own book & then L jumped in my lap while we tried to capture a still photo of Zach stacking up his current favorite books then sitting on them to read on his own, I thought, THIS is why I read. This is why I read to them. This is why they will sometimes see me reading. Raising little readers (lil book nerds!) brings me so much joy.

Snow Day Reading

Frozen Love

We watched Frozen this morning after I made waffles for our half-snow day, half-delayed work day. It was the kiddos first full length movie! They caught some of it in between book reading, Little People animal playing, & car riding/pushing. I really enjoyed it ~ the winter setting was perfect for our snowy morning. I loved the strength of the female characters, the silly snowman & fun reindeer & the male characters of substance. I know we’ll be watching it again.

And then I went to shower & start getting ready for work while L & Z played & laughed in their cribs. My mind started on the bond of the sisters in Frozen & how that love changes everything. And that took me to tears, because Lucy won’t get to experience that.

Most of the time, I’m 99% over the loss of baby B while living in the wild, fast paced life of working & keeping up with two toddlers. Then something as silly as sisters in a movie takes me back to the hard shock of our loss.

Now it’s more the sadness over what could have been for L & Z; what it would be like for them to have a third party in their shenanigans, another sister to fight with & love & hug. Things we & they will never know.

{Stay tuned for non-sappy snow & makeover posts this week! I promise I’m done with melancholy now that I’ve gotten that out. Also feel like I shouldn’t have to qualify my feelings, & yet I do.}