Did you know that July is National Ice Cream month?
Here are some sweet but sugar-free products for your little one! (links below)
Want to make your own mini Ice Cream sandwiches? Check out Katie’s blog when she made them last summer.
Stay tuned to Snuggle Bugz’ Facebook Page for a special give-away on National Ice Cream Day – July 16th.
Ice Cream Product Links:
I clearly remember what it was like to bring a newborn baby home for the first time. I was completely in love, totally in awe and totally clueless about how sleep deprived I was going to be in about two months.
Once major sleep deprivation set in, I knew I needed help! There were so many resources readily available about pregnancy, labour, breastfeeding and bottle feeding – but finding information about newborn sleep was not as easy. I needed to know specifics. I wanted the when, the where and the how-to information that would help me understand my baby’s sleep needs.
So, for every new parent who’s struggling with sleep, hopefully this information will answer some of your questions.
Newborn Sleep: Ages, Stages & What You Can Do:
Weeks 1-8: Enjoy the Ride
After you’ve had your baby, there will be a moment when you sit and stare at that gorgeous little face and think ‘now what?’ Luckily, in the very beginning, especially the first one to two weeks, there isn’t much you can or should do. This is the honeymoon period – enjoy it!
From 1-8 weeks old, your baby hasn’t yet matured with regards to sleep. Newborn sleep is very unorganized, meaning there is no pattern and there can be day and night confusion. That’s okay! It’s how it should be; this is your time to spoil your baby.
Encourage your baby to get the sleep they need (about 14-18 hours a day), using whatever it takes, as long as they are sleeping in a safe sleep environment. At this point, your baby’s biological sleep rhythms don’t exist so you can’t create a routine yet and don’t have to worry about creating bad habits.
Week 8: First Sleep Milestone – Social Smiles
The first sleep milestone comes around six to eight weeks of age. At this point, night sleep should become a bit more organized, with longer stretches of sleep, around four to six hours, becoming more predictable.
At this stage, your baby will likely start with their first social smiles. Your baby sees you and smiles and you know that he’s acknowledging presence. This is a good way to determine that you’re in the next newborn stage and that it’s now appropriate to work on the components of healthy sleep.
How to Encourage Healthy Sleep Habits:
While it’s still early to enforce a consistent day-to-day routine, there are little things you can do to encourage healthy sleep and prepare them to be rock star sleepers in the future. You can start by being consistent with the environment where your baby is going to sleep. You’ll notice at this stage that your baby doesn’t sleep as well in louder environments than he did as a newborn. If you aren’t planning on co-sleeping or continuing to co-sleep, it’s a great time to start placing your child to sleep in his crib and in a dark and quiet setting as much as possible.
Remember, at this age you can’t create any bad habits, but it’s important to get your child familiar with their crib surroundings. The only way he’ll get used to his crib is to be consistently in it. That being said, if a swing or car seat is what gets the job done that day, that’s okay. For now.
Watch Baby’s Sleep Cues
At this age, babies shouldn’t have more than an hour or two of wake time during the day. At around 45 minutes to an hour, you need to watch for your baby’s drowsy cues, which could include:
- Zoning out
- Wide eyed stare
- Rubbing his eyes
- Pulling his ears
- Turning his head from side to side
Every child has their own set of drowsy signals. When you see these signs, see if your child will put himself to sleep. This is a great way to start teaching your child to self soothe, a skill that you’ll want to encourage as early as possible. If they can’t put themselves to sleep, it’s okay. Self-soothing skills often don’t mature until approximately 12 weeks of age. However, you can step in with your own soothing routine or sleep cues to help prepare your baby for sleep.
The goal of your bedtime or naptime routine should be to relax and soothe your baby, not to necessarily put your baby to sleep – that’s their job. Your soothing methods, or sleep time cues could be rocking, singing, feeding, or a combination of these. The soothing process doesn’t need to take very long. This process is a component of sleep training and shows that you are starting to respect your child’s need to sleep by anticipating when he needs to go to sleep. Learning to recognize the drowsy signs and developing a rough sleep routine at this point will avoid your baby from becoming overtired.
Practice, Practice, Practice!
Remember, at this stage there really aren’t any strict rules and the only goal is to have baby be as consistently well rested as possible throughout the day. You can start having them practice putting themselves to sleep, but if you have to take over, it’s okay. Don’t get discouraged. During this stage, you’re both practicing. Sleep at this point is still unorganized with no pattern and naps that vary in duration. Just keep figuring out those cues and practicing what works best for both of you. Encourage healthy sleep habits and it will eventually come together!
Alanna McGinn is Founder and Certified Sleep Consultant of Good Night Sleep Site, a global sleep consulting practice. She is Representative and Director for the International Association of Child Sleep Consultants (IACSC) and serves on the faculty of The Family Sleep Institute. She and her husband, Mike, live in Burlington, Ontario with their 3 children (1+twins!) and when she’s not on route to the bus stop or tripping over fire trucks and tea sets, she and her global team are working with families to overcome their sleep challenges. You can follow her expert advice in national publications like Today’s Parent, Yummy Mummy Club, PBS Kids, and Canadian Living. Alanna strives in helping families and corporations overcome their sleep challenges and have happy well-rested smiles in the morning. You can find out more about Alanna McGinn and Good Night Sleep Site and you can join Alanna on the first Wednesday of every month at the Burlington location of Snuggle Bugz/Nestled for her in-person sleep clinic from 10-11am. Follow Good Night Sleep Site on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram for all your sleep essentials.
Our Clearance Centre Sales are held on the first Wednesday of EVERY month. This month our Clearance Centre Sale will be on Wednesday, July 5th, from 10am-1pm. As always, we must stress that this is a CLEARANCE sale and not a warehouse sale. And as much as we would love to have you shop at one of our beautiful retail locations, the Clearance Sale will be taking place in our Clearance Centre at 1040 Sutton Drive, Unit #1 in Burlington.
Product inventory is limited – meaning once we are sold out, that’s it – and products are SOLD AS IS. ALL ITEMS PURCHASED AT THE CLEARANCE CENTRE ARE A FINAL SALE & CANNOT BE RETURNED TO ANY SNUGGLE BUGZ RETAIL LOCATION.
Here are some helpful hints so you know WHAT TO EXPECT at the sale:
1. Location. As mentioned above, the sale is at our Clearance Centre, not our store. 1040 Sutton Drive, Burlington. There is no street parking available for the sale.
2. Come On-Time. The doors open at 10am and will close promptly at 1pm.
3. Be prepared to wait. Come with a charged up phone and an expectation that there will be a line.
4. Dress for the weather. The line to get in is located outside, in our parking lot. Be sure to dress weather appropriate.
5. Food. Eat before you come, bring snacks and water.
6. Washrooms. We know we said bring water but we DO NOT have access to washrooms for public use. Please plan accordingly.
7. Strollers. This event is not particularly stroller friendly. Please leave any strollers in the car or at home and consider using a baby carrier if you are bringing your child with you.
8. Carrying your purchases. We do not have shopping carts, so come with free arms and hands.
9. Payment. We accept Visa, Master Card or debit only. Amex, Cash and Gift Cards are NOT accepted. All items are FINAL SALE.
10. Delivery. All items will need to be taken with you when you purchase. Please ensure you bring a vehicle that is capable of transporting what you hope to buy.
Please keep in mind that these products are sold AS IS. The inventory selection includes pieces that were floor models, discontinued items, items that have been opened or removed from their original packaging, etc. These are not items that you would find in one of our retail stores or online. All products are safe for use.
With expectations clearly set and helpful hints provided, your shopping experience at our July Clearance Sale should be that much better! We look forward to seeing you there!
For Canada’s 150 celebration, we’ve put together a list of 15 of our favourite Red and White products.
Well, now that baby #2 is almost officially 9 months old and has spent as much time on the outside as he was on the inside, it is more than time to get serious about shedding the baby weight (before it becomes toddler weight). I fall into the same category as many second (and third, fourth, etc) moms who hadn’t lost all the extra weight from the first time around, so naturally, starting the journey this time is even more overwhelming. After starting and stopping more times than I can count, I am working on some strategies for long term success and commitment since every time I “quit” it seems to be that much harder to rally the motivation to start again. I’m in no real place to give advice or tips on this topic (the health and fitness industry would cry if I did), but I am happy to share my journey, tools, and plans in the spirit of accountability and we’re-in-this-togetherness. With two children, the task has certainly not gotten any easier since there is one more person that now comes before my own self care. On the bright side though, as a veteran Mama I also have a better understanding of what I can sacrifice in order to make ME a priority and work towards these goals. Here are some of the strategies I am working to implement to make this second time a charm.
Realistic but Real:
The time in my life where I can devote all of my energy towards healthy eating, meal prep, and exercise is gone, and this weight took several
months years to gain, so it is not going to come off quickly. It will be a slower-than-I’d-like, challenging, frustrating process that will require more dedication and commitment than ever before and I need to be easy on myself. That’s the realistic part. Now, comes the REAL talk. Motherhood is hard. Labour is hard. Toddlers and tantrums and waiting to drink wine until after bedtime is hard. But I’ve done it all and have come out fairly unscathed. I can do hard things if I am willing to try. So, like a child at bedtime, I am going to put all my energy into not giving up and remember that the hardest things usually have the best rewards.
Don’t Believe the Breastfeeding Lie:
If it worked for you, then that is fantastic (and I will pretend to still like you), but the rumour that weight just melts off if you’re breastfeeding is certainly NOT true in my case. If anything, I feel like it stacks the cards against me. I am constantly hungry, I now need to wear two sports bras to contain that bouncy milk supply, and I am tied to the baby with a feeding schedule that limits when I can exercise and eat. BUT, I know that my nutrition is key to a healthy supply and also to passing those healthy nutrients on to baby, and that for me is a motivator to make good choices. Knowing that breastfeeding alone will not allow me to lose the weight takes it mostly out of the equation and I will stop eating chocolate chips while I am nursing, thinking that I am burning them off as I go.
Channel Your Inner Dad:
I’m sure there are many biological and hormonal reasons for it, but it seems in most cases women have a much harder time leaving their children than men do. This must be the reason that I am grocery shopping on a Sunday with two children while my husband is home alone watching football. (Or maybe I am just a really great wife?) The point is, Dads seem to have the ability to love their children immensely but to also leave them on occasion in order to fit in time for themselves/sports/friends/beer/gym/hour long bathroom breaks, etc. Now that this is my second go around, I’ve started to let go of the mom guilt when I leave at bedtime (and surprisingly don’t miss getting my child her 32nd glass of water in bed). I can take some time for myself to go to the gym or on a walk with a friend in order to relieve the stress that can make losing weight very difficult. Whether it is your partner, your mom, your sister or your friend, accepting help with your kids allows you time to take care of yourself and recharge those batteries that have been running on empty. You will likely return happier and in turn, less likely to eat all your feelings.
The Problem is the Solution:
Those adorable little monsters that got you into this predicament can also help get you out. There will never be more than 24 hours in a day but you can make the most of the time you do have and include your kids in your activities. One of the best investments I’ve made in my health is in my running stroller. I have a Thule Cross 2 jogging stroller that allows me to keep both kids contained and comfortable while I get my sweat on. The best part is that I can use this for multiple activities (bike, walk, jog, and even ski) so that it switches things up for us all. I used to try longer walks with my regular stroller and after a while the kids would get restless, cutting our trip short. With the jogging stroller the ride is smoother and they also have more room to relax so they can last for a 5km run with no issue. I also use my baby carrier for more leisurely walks or activities where my older child roams free and I have the benefit of carrying an extra 20 lbs to increase that burn. Involving your kids in your plans also sets a great example and teaches them about healthy eating and exercise from an early age.
Once you decide what methods you will use to cut calories/ lose the weight, be accountable and write it all down to stay on track. I use an app to track my calories and stay within my daily range and I also keep a written journal to write down the way I am feeling. I write my “why” on the first page and whenever I feel myself faltering I revisit the reasons that I want to achieve a healthier lifestyle and body. As much as I dislike writing it down every day, it is somewhat cathartic and sometimes I find I write things down about the day that I didn’t even know I was feeling in the moment. Taking the time to reflect on how my choices throughout the day were tied to my emotions also helps me identify triggers and create strategies to maintain my healthy habits even when I want to eat all the chips in the house. It may also turn out to be a pretty interesting record of what life was like with littles when you read it ten years from now.
So, here is to our success! Whatever goals you are working toward, be they big or small, may you find a strategy that works for you and maybe one of these above will help you in your journey too. And, by all means, if you have some great tips you want to share, I am all ears!
Katie is a new mom of two and will be sharing her experiences in parenting a toddler and a newborn though this series “New with Two”.
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