With little C’s teething combined with the aftermath of his MMR vaccine, we haven’t had a lot of sleep in our household for weeks now.
And while I’d initially planned a two-week break from work to cover off C’s birthday and boosters in one go, what I hadn’t entered into the equation was the fact that the MMR takes time to kick in.
Now this wouldn’t have been an issue had we not had a wedding to factor into our busy schedule too. The last thing I wanted was for him to screech and yowl through my friend’s vows and speeches, I’d have hung my head in shame and I admit it did give me nightmares the night before.
Luckily for everyone, the day was absolutely amazing and little C was a happy chap during the ceremony, slept through all the speeches…and then was up all night!
You may remember, we used to be able to get C to sleep with ease thanks to a soothing Persian lullaby, but things have changed in our household.
These days I’m revving up on raw ginger and copious cups of coffee at work after being up all night – although I don’t let it take its toll on family life, I try to laugh it off.
Bath, book, bed
According to a survey of 1,000 parents of children aged three and under by the booktrust.org.uk, new parents lose out on more than 650 hours of sleep in the first year of their baby’s life. It found a fifth of new parents (21%) have taken a day off work in order to catch up on lost sleep.
Jo Frost, Book Trust Bath Bed Book launch, London.
So now we’re past that (just) we’ve adopted a new routine to try and get a better night’s sleep – one which involves a bath, book and his bed (sometimes ours).
BookTrust’s annual Bath, Book, Bed campaign aims to solve these problems in three easy steps, encouraging parents to stick to a simple bedtime routine and asking families to share stories as a regular part of bedtime to help their little ones sleep soundly.
The booktrust.org.uk claims that by following a routine like this every evening before bedtime, it’ll help little C sleep – if we stick to it.
Jo Frost, worldwide parenting expert and BookTrust Ambassador said: “BookTrust’s Bath, Book, Bed campaign is a really straightforward approach to tackling a problem that most parents with young children face – the bedtime battle. Bedtime routines do not need to be complicated for especially-tired parents on their last legs.
“Implementing healthy sleeping habits, and a consistent bedtime routine will not only calm down the child and parents but, provide an environment so that both child and parent can read together helping them both relax and wind down. Meaning everyone will be well-rested, happier and healthier.”
Working full-time with little C in nursery, I miss him – so our bedtime ritual is now a time when he has me all to himself. I put his towel and PJs on the radiator, get a nappy ready, pour his bottle of milk and run a warm bubbly bath.
Bathtime involves a lot of splashing around, playing with toys and eventually once he’s zapped of energy – hair-washing! He can then start to unwind and relax.
Jungle Jam before bedtime
Now we are lucky in that we’ve recently been sent some exciting new children’s books which have a multicultural theme to them. Jungle Jam by Noam Lederman is aimed at children up to five years old.
The series was created by husband and wife team Louise and Noam Lederman who began developing the books following the birth of their first child around seven years ago. They discovered a gap in the market for early years books relating to band music, musical culture and sounds.
Author Noam Lederman, said: “My wife and I strongly believe that music can have a huge impact on early development for children, and found this was an area that was not fully available to us for our children.”
In the first book we received called Jungle Jam, Cyrus got to meet Mikey the Monkey who loves to sing. Mikey sets out on a musical adventure to share his singing with the world and along the way, he meets a group of friendly jungle animals who all play different musical instruments and together form the band, Jungle Jam.
In the second book, Jungle Jam in Brazil, little C got to hear how the band were on tour, exploring the country at the same time as continuing on their musical journey. He loved pointing at all the colourful pictures of the 32-page books featuring Mikey and the gang. He also loved the rhyming text.
Noam has already planned another three books for release before Christmas this year. They include trips to India, Spain and the USA.
Both Jungle Jam and Jungle Jam in Brazil are available to buy for £5.99 each from www.jungle-jam.com, Amazon and Waterstones.
• Families can get involved by attending events or visiting http://www.bathbookbed.org.uk to register for tips, advice and recommended bedtime books. Get involved on social media @booktrust #bathbookbed
• What’s your favourite bedtime story? Do you have a children’s book that little C can review? Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org