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Toddler Sleep Problems

I wish I could say now that P is 3 years old. Our sleep issue stemming from babyhood are far behind us. The sad fact is that that couldn't be farther from the truth. David and I are brimming on the edge of insanity while we try and battle our allergic to sleep toddler. I was really optimistic that the start of a full day of preschool (five days a week 8-5pm) would wipe her out come end of day. But with the reintroduction of naps (we eliminated them at home due to this problem) she is back to her old bag of tricks.

But before I jump into the here and now with her sleep issues. I have to go back a couple of months. In May the "paci fairy" came to our house to take all of P's paci's to "deliver to new babies". I was super worried about this transition but turns out she was able to handle it quite well. She was excited about the fairy coming and making her a big girl. About a week went by without too much fanfare in the sleep department and then all ish hit the fan.

P began to have aggressive (and I mean aggressive) night terrors. She no longer knew how to self soothe herself. They would happen every single night and last anywhere from 10 - 45 minutes. Always around two hours after she fell asleep. If you have never experienced a night terror, let me break it down. Night terrors take place when a child cannot for some reason transition into REM sleep. P would cry, flail, scream for help, mommy, daddy and just sob. Inconsolably. When and if her eyes opened they would be glazed over and she clearly was not "with us". It's hard to describe but if you have experienced it you know what I am talking about. As soon as she snaps out of the terror she is back to her giggling, smiling self. Some nights I tell you it's almost like an exorcism.

So we have read a lot and researched a lot and it boiled down to a couple key factors. With the main one being that she is over tired. A lot of other things can contribute (being too hot, too much screen time before bed etc.) but we recognize that P's were likely happening due to the fact that she wasn't getting enough sleep. She wasn't napping and then when she went to bed - she wasn't sleeping well.

This went on for over three very long months and it was distressing. I was praying that once preschool started we would have some hope in sight. And while the terrors have lessened quite a bit (about 1x a week) we are now dealing with a toddler who simply does not want to sleep. When she finally falls asleep she is waking up anywhere from 3-5 times a night. This working mama is EXHAUSTED.

So this incredibly long post is basically a cry for help if any other parents are experiencing this. I also know there is a habit I need to break and while I have tried, I am also miserably failing. Because I am so damn tired that it's easier to just give in than fight her. She gets a sippy cup of milk before bed and I know that this is hurting us as she wakes up and cries for it. I've tried to swap it out with water but it's not cutting it (and truth is we are potty training so really she shouldn't be drinking anything!)

P's schedule is as follows:

7-7:30am: wake up get ready for preschool
8-8:30am: arrives at preschool
1-3pm: nap time at preschool (she doesn't always nap this full period)
6:30-7pm: dinner
7:30pm: bath
8-8:30pm: books and bed

She usually doesn't fall asleep until 9:30-10pm. Our pediatrician even suggested I give her children's benadryl for two weeks to try an disrupt her sleep cycles. So I gave it to her last night for the first time and she still slept like crap. We've tried lavender Epsom salt in the tub, essential oils, waking her up before a terror starts (never a good idea with her as it has always triggered a terror), putting her to sleep early, putting her to sleep later. For the love of the SANDMAN go to sleep child!!!

If you have made it to the end of this congrats. If you have advice for me, even better, I'm all ears just don't mind if I close my eyes.
play gown // Plain Jane

First Day of Preschool

Somehow, the day that once upon a time felt so far away seems to have arrived here at rapid pace. How my little girl has gone from a squishy, snoring newborn to a robust three year old still has me scratching my head. I mean I'm still 31 aren't I? Don't answer that. While my updating in this space has been rather slow it is due time that I give a life update on the littlest love of my life.

P is proving to be a true Leo at every turn. She can commandeer a stage with no qualms and sing the first couple lines of Moana's "How Far I'll Go" rather robustly - that is until she notices she has your undivided attention in which she reverts herself to being shy. Something I assure you she is not. She has definitely learned the art of manipulation and oh boy! Is she good at it. For example when she gets in trouble she looks at us with those puppy brown eyes and says "You don't like me anymore?" Oye. You're killing me kid.

I would say her favorite activity is playing dress up and she has yet to meet a princess she doesn't love. Unless of course it's an actual princess than forget it - she goes running. She likes to test us - all the time and is hardly phased by the word no. However I did just learn that I can turn her to ice (like Elsa) and she will freeze. See? Mama's got magic too.

Today starts her first day of being watched by someone who is not family. We've been incredibly fortunate to have had the last three years just like that. Especially grateful to my parents who have been invaluable to us. She loves them something fierce and as a child who grew up far away from her own grandparents - but still loved them something fierce - I can only imagine just how special they are to her.

So to my baby girl on her very first day of school. I wish you this.

That your spirit continues to paint itself everywhere you go. That you are able to be forever true to who you are and how you feel. I hope you're kind and helpful to your classmates and teachers. I wish for you to make new friends and learn new experiences everyday. We love you so so much and watching you grow is and always will be one of the greatest honors of our life.

Now excuse me while I go cry...again.

 shirt - Crew & Lu (no longer available)
Letterboard - Letterfolk 

The Color Factory

Last week my little squad got to go to The Color Factory in San Francisco and it was so much fun. It's a temporary pop up collaboration in a 12,000 sq. ft warehouse, you can read all about here. I was pretty happy I was able to score tickets as they sold out rather fast. In total we spent a little over an hour inside and I even saw the big kid enjoying himself - who knew ;)

rainbow dress - Pleiades Handmade
pink bow - Wunderkin