Our Sleep Training Journey

My youngest Isla is six and a half months old. Since the day she was born she has been sleeping comfortably in our bed. My Husband and I are big supporters of co-sleeping. We believe in the short term and long term benefits. Now that’s a whole separate post, and before I keep writing. Yes we understand the risks and took every measure to keep Isla safe. We did the same with our first Daughter as well.

Now co-sleeping lasts for so long in our bedroom and Isla has reached the age where we can finally sleep train her into the crib. Professionals say it’s best to do so between the ages of six to eight months. By six months their emotional part of the brain has developed more, making it easier to understand that you will come back into the room. Past eight months you start dealing with breaking habits, which can cause long term problems with your little ones sleep. As well as your own sanity.

Tips for Sleep Success

  1. A really good bedtime routine
  2. Preferred method
  3. A good support team
  4. Make sure the entire support team is on board!
  5. CONSISTENCY (The most important part, hint the capital letters)

Now there are many different methods to sleep training. Crying it out, not crying it etc. We chose “cry it out” method, same as our first Daughter.

For nap time, I plan on leaving Isla in for an entire hour without going in once. Going in makes it more difficult for Isla. She cries more because we have a strong bond, and coming in and not staying makes her even more upset. She has a lovey, Mr. Pink Piggy. We make sure that goes in with her!

For bed time I go in every 15 minutes. Bedtime is always the hardest, because we cuddle every night and Isla is use to always having my Husband and I there. So I knew she was really going to be stubborn at that time. Now my plan was to go in, dance and maybe read a book again. She gets really worked up, tears, boogers and a really red face. So it’s takes her a bit longer to calm down. Once calm, back in she goes and I wait another fifteen minutes. I will continue this until she falls asleep.

Now when she wakes in the middle of the night. I will do a feed, burp, read a book and put her down. And do the fifteen minutes again.


HOW IT WORKED OUT

Day 1: In order of Naps Isla cried 15 minutes, 7 and then 2. Bedtime was 45 minutes and I had to go in twice to calm her. She woke up once and silly me forgot to bring the nursing pillow in. Isla wouldn’t lay on the floor to feed so I brought her to bed to feed and I fell asleep! (Slaps hand to face!)

Day 2: In order of naps, Isla cried 10 minutes, 5 and she didn’t cry for the third. Bedtime was 15 minutes, I went in once to sooth. When I put her down she rolled over and went to sleep. She woke up once for a 15 minute feed, burped and she laid back down in her crib without the help of the sound machine.

Day 3: In order of naps, no crying, no crying, no crying. Bedtime was no crying. She woke up once, 15 minute feed, burped and laid her back down without the help of the sound machine

I can successfully say Isla is sleep trained into her crib. And it only took three days! I am so beyond happy. Before starting this process I was prepared for the worst because we have such a strong bond. But being consistent and getting through the hard part makes it all worth while in the end. My Husband almost caved at bedtime Day 1 and Day 2 because he is not use to hearing her cry loud, with a high pitch. But I said no! You have to stick to the plan or it will not work. And it worked and he is quite happy about having the bed to ourselves. How one manages to hog almost an entire king bed is beyond my knowledge.

I hope my story and tips help you with your little one! And I hope your story is successful like mine! Just remember to stick with it! And know that if it didn’t work out that is ok! Just have to try a different method. All babies are different and not everyone’s story is the same.

Thanks for reading,

Jaclyn Yvonne

5 Tips to get Motivated Again

Throughout the year we all have our ups and downs. At times we are doing amazing, working out, eating healthy, accomplishing things at work and at home. Then there are times when you have completely fallen off the band wagon and aren’t achieving what you want. I couldn’t count how many times in my life where I have been in this trench, with very little motivation. I’m just making may way out of one now, trying to get back into working out. This Summer was a hot one in Ontario and I will admit, eating ice cream and having a beer was better than working out.

Other than wanting beer and ice cream, there are many things that can cause us to sway a bit, or a lot. As a mom or a parent it’s sometimes very easy for you to lose your motivation because of all the stresses and hectic schedules that come from kids, a house, a job and all the little things in between. But don’t feel guilty if you aren’t doing what you want to be doing. Life happens, we just have to get that motivation back!

Five Tips to Regain your Motivation

  1. Set small goals – I like to start with small goals that I know I will achieve within a day or two. Folding all the laundry by tonight or cleaning one bathroom. These little wins will give you that feeling of success. Then grow upon that, increase the number of goals or increase the size of the goal as you go.
  2. Remind yourself Why – Focusing on why will keep you set on your goal. “Why do I want to clean the bathroom?” So I know that it is done and my girls will be having a bath in a clean tub tonight.
  3. Write it down- Seeing your goal in physical form, such as written down in your journal, agenda or post it note. Will remind you about what you want to achieve and set you up for better success.
  4. Focus on achievements – Say I cleaned the bathroom but I didn’t have time to soak and clean the girls bath toys. Instead of focusing on the obstacle. Focus on the fact that “I cleaned the tub so the girls can have a freshly cleaned bath tub”. This will help you stay positive and move forward. Only looking at what you didn’t do will reduce your motivation.
  5. Go easy on yourself – It’s okay if you drop the ball and don’t achieve a goal, or things didn’t go as planned. Take a deep breath, relax and set another goal. And if you find you still aren’t reaching that goal, then you know something needs to be re-evaluated.

Know that you can start over each morning.

Thanks for reading ,

Jaclyn Yvonne

Postpartum hair loss……………………………

Roughly four months after Lily was born, I experienced an unpleasant part of postpartum. While washing my hair I noticed something, hair in my fingers. When I rinsed I noticed even more hair on my lower back. I ran my fingers through my hair, and there it all was! Well it felt like every hair on my head but a big enough chunk to start the tears. Postpartum hair loss is a thing and it can be a very big thing!

Why after forty weeks of pregnancy, all the symptoms that come with labour, would women be haunted by hair loss a few months later? Now there are some women out there who are fortunate enough to never experience this horrifying event. You are blessed, so very blessed. For those who had or have postpartum hair loss, I feel for you. Anyone reading this who has yet to have children, or are pregnant. Oh this is a thing. This is something I wish I knew about.

My story is that I actually started to lose my hair 34 weeks pregnant. Not a lot but some, not like I did postpartum. After panicking to my Doctor, demanding blood tests. Every test was normal, better than normal. Perfect! Just my lovely pregnancy hormones. Sitting in her office she explained it’s normal and I may experience more hair loss afterwards. “UUMMMMM EXCUSE ME?” I nearly died. Lose more hair? How?

Well ladies, during the third trimester your beautiful locks go into a resting phase. After birth, a couple months later your hormones start to go back to normal. Your hair will go back into its regular growth cycle. The hair sheds before the growth. That’s the positive side to this post, IT GROWS BACK! Be patient but you will get there, and then you get to deal with all the fun baby hairs that you can’t tame.

I experienced hair loss with both girls and I’ve learned a few tricks to help make you through this.

The biggest, most important, most crucial rule is to NOT GOOGLE POSTPARTUM HAIRLOSS! The pictures will send you spinning. Just don’t, do not do it. And now that I mentioned it you’re probably going too. But don’t!

  1. Buy yourself a wet brush, I recommend brushing in the shower. So when you style you don’t notice as much falling out.
  2. If you our freaked out about it, like I was. Have someone else brush your hair. I use to make my Husband do it. If I didn’t see the hair, I wouldn’t panic as much.
  3. Treat your hair like royalty! Get hair cuts frequently, try not to style as much, avoid hot hair tools, and damaging hair tools like tight elastics.
  4. Grow you hair out, you’re able to do more hairstyles.
  5. Don’t be cheap, buy amazing hair products.
  6. Drink lots of water and eat a healthy diet.
  7. Reduce stress and get lots of sleep. (I know as a new mom this is hard but try your best)

Don’t worry ladies! Your hair will grow back! Give your babes some extra cuddles and love because their being in your life is worth the hair loss !

Thanks for reading,

Jaclyn Yvonne

A little about me…

It’s only been a few days since launching my blog site and, so far so good! I will admit I was slightly nervous, and have been since I started planning my blog a few months ago. Although those nerves are a bit shaky, I’m still very excited about this new chapter of my life.

I thought I should post a few things about myself you readers don’t know.

1. If you have read my bio you will know I am a Registered Dental Hygienist. I was a very strange kid growing up, I wanted to be a Dentist. My parents never had a hard time getting me to brush my teeth. Still to this day I have not yet had a cavity! Well the time came for me to decide my future, so off to University I went. With full intentions on being a Dentist, I felt during my second year this was not what I wanted. So I shocked my parents at Christmas that I was not going back to University. My Mother could have killed me. But I applied to Dental Hygiene School and thats pretty much it. I love helping others improve their health and quality of life.

My beautiful Mother and I at my graduation. Our little secret then was that I was pregnant with Lily!

2. I am a coffee mug collector! I love unique and colourful designs. Wherever I go, I need a mug to take home with me. My collection is at the point where I have no more cupboard space, and I’m having to store some in my basement.

3. I love Rugby. Playing and watching the sport is a huge passion of mine. Don’t be in the room when I’m watching because I jump off the couch yelling every five minutes.

4. Being outdoors! Camping, hiking, fishing. Everything that includes being outside. I love being active and part of nature.

Lighthouse Hike in Newfoundland

5. Growing passion for Wine. I’ve always loved wine but recently I’ve been interested in different styles. Different flavours and the wine making process. Plus wine tours are so much fun!

Chadsey Cairns Winery in Wellington, Ontario.

6. Last but not least, I am a large sandwich/ burger fan! I’m a sucker for a really good Pulled Pork sandwich!

Might as well finish this post with an embarrassing one!

Well now you all know some more about me!

Thanks for reading!

Jaclyn Yvonne

Book Review: It All Begins with Food by Leah Garrad-Cole

As a new Mother, I found my knowledge for baby food was quite minimal. By the time my first daughter reached four months old, I panicked. I knew she would be starting solids foods and I had no idea where to start. Thanks to Pinterest and Google we successfully fed our Lily. A year later I was walking through Chapters and came across this cookbook. I recognized the Love Child Organics logo and was intrigued. I flipped through the pages and thought, I’ll just buy it. I came home and instantly realized I needed this book a year ago!

Leah Garrade-Cole is the founder of Love Child Organics, with her Husband they created baby food products that are organic, no preservatives, additives or artificial sugar. They do not use any GMO products, and their focus is only nutritious ingredients. Well does that not sound amazing !

It became very clear to me that certain substances do not belong in children’s bodies and that they significantly interfere with learning and behaviour. Leah Garrad-Cole page 6.

Just reading the introduction to the book made me excited because Leah and I values are very much similar. I’ve used Love Child Organics products many times because of their ingredients. Making homemade food is preferable but we don’t always have time. And I’ve found myself countless times spending too much time in the grocery store reading ingredient lists. Looking up alternative names for sugar and figuring out what is best for my child.

Our children’s bodies are young, new and are in their primary developing stage. With all the studies that are out there about the negative effects of sugar, preservatives and additives have on our bodies. Why would I subject my child to eating that crap and harm their future?

Now why every new mom needs this cool book?

Let’s start with Leah’s discussion on what to look out for. You don’t know what GMO’s are? She will tell you. She makes it easy for you to understand, and to start fresh with your new healthy diet for your child. She has great substitutes for dairy and eggs if your child has a sensitivity. This book contains a “Clean Kitchen” section. Foods you should have on your grocery list and foods you shouldn’t. Leah also has some great tips on how to encourage adventurous eaters.

Then the book starts with its recipes. Which starts from 6 months of age, to toddlers, to lunch and family dinner ideas. I like that the book moves along with age. I wasn’t flipping back and forth through the pages finding recipes for my kids.

The “Purees and Mashed” chapter has a fabulous section on babies first foods. How to prepare, their nutrients and what they pair well with. If I had this chapter when first feeding Lily, I would have saved so much time searching information on the internet.

She offers a variety of substitutes and I found many of her recipes didn’t have huge ingredient lists. Other recipes I have found in books and on the internet contain a lot of ingredients. To the point where I just wouldn’t make it. And Leah’s recipes total cooking times are short. A big bonus for a mom who doesn’t have a lot of time to make healthy meals for their kids.

I’m a big fan of the smoothie chapter. Lily isn’t a fruit fan, surprisingly. She will drink smoothies though. So many of these recipes helpme make sure my daughter was getting all the nutrients she needs. Plus I loved the recipes for myself!

My favourite part of this book are her alternative recipes for Teriyaki Sauce, Tortillas, natural food colouring and ketchup! Ketchup was a big one for me because my oldest daughter is a Ketchup Addict and she doesn’t mind the alternative. I will say though if she chose between Leah’s recipe or Heinz she would pick the bottle.

The pictures are helpful but I will admit that some of my meals did not turn out as colourful as the pictures showed. But were delicious. And Lily loves all the recipes I make from that book! Sweet potato muffins are a big hit in our house !

I highly recommend this book to all families just starting their adventure with babies. It will help you get through the beginning stages of solid foods all the way through to toddler years. My Husband even likes some of the snack recipes I make, and I make extra for him to take to work. And many of the toddler meals I make for us for lunch or dinner not just for my daughter. It’s an amazing all around book! It’s a must gift for any new parent.