Why new parents aren’t going to get ‘the extra hour’… Or are they?
It’s that time of year! I used to look forward to this, in a childless time of my life… An extra hour in bed, what could possibly cause people to dread it?
Children cause people to dread it.
Now I don’t think Baby Button is going to be too fussed at night as he’s so unpredictable with his bed times right now due to Leap 7 (I follow Wonder Weeks!) and teething. But mornings? I’m anticipating a few very bleary eyed early mornings clutching a coffee and praying for a nap.
I’ve spent a lot of time trying to prepare myself for the inevitable – so I’m going to share some tips I’ve discovered.
The Ten Minute Method
In the week leading up to the clock change, put baby to bed ten minutes later than you would usually, if the clocks are falling back. If the clocks are springing forward then try ten minutes earlier. This in theory, should balance the hour gained or lost that night and make the morning less painful.
Play Days And Night Nights
Helping baby differentiate between day and night is a tried and tested method. During the day, it’s playtime – go out for walks, go to play groups, make the most of those glorious daylight hours. Spend the darker hours doing calmer activities – reading, singing, bath time… This helps in associating light with energetic activities and night with snoozing.
Establish A Routine
Something every parent knows well. Make sure you have a solid ‘bedtime’ routine that signals to the little one that it’s time to step down a little and embrace the calm. We start with nice warm bath, usually with some bubbles and a drop of lavender oil in. Then we have a little time in the bedroom getting dry, changing into bedtime clothes and closing the black out blinds. After that it’s downstairs for a CBeebies bedtime story and a feed before bed.
I really used to struggle with Baby Button as his ‘night light’ used to be the stair light in our old home. Since moving I’ve invested in a night light from Amazon. Nothing fancy or cute for now, just a standard light which has a sensor – it comes on when it’s dark and turns off when it’s light. It made a difference in our routine and although Baby Button does wake more than once a night still, I wouldn’t be without this.
What do you do to prepare little ones for the time change? At ten months, we probably will find it more difficult in years to come so I’m welcoming every suggestion!