Ask Amma

Posts Tagged ‘sleep’

Work while baby is awake!

In How on 29 December 2014 at 5:09 pm

Everyone says, “sleep when baby sleeps.”  But how on earth am I supposed to do that?  My parents and in-laws were with us for the first year but now we are on our own.    My wife is an artist and I am an occupational therapist.   We set our hours so that one of is with him at all times.  My wife at least can sleep while feeding him but I don’t have any chores that I can do lying down.   When our son sleeps is the only time I have to get anything done at home!  If I slept I would wake up to piles of laundry, nothing to eat, stacks of unopened mail, and no time to take a shower, let alone read a book or go to the gym. 

Baba of a 1 year old in Ann Arbor

As this was one piece of advice I followed early and often, let me tell you how I did it.  In order to sleep when baby sleeps, you need to work when the baby is awake.  I have talked about this at La Leche League meetings and many people say that they wish they had heard this advice earlier, so I am going to try to spell it out. Read the rest of this entry »

How can I help my baby sleep at night?

In How on 15 November 2014 at 8:00 pm

My baby wakes up 10 times at night, nursing even when she is not hungry.  How can I peacefully help her sleep at night?

Mother of a 10 month old in Chandigarh

As they say with every phase of breastfeeding, این نیز بگذرد‎, or “this too shall pass.” 

Often it is just when we have figured out how to handle a given situation that it passes, leaving us wondering if it would have passed anyway or our efforts made any difference at all.  Sometimes what we thought was a problem was actually a solution to some other problem we did not recognize.  Once solved, it passes. Read the rest of this entry »

Resources for Continuum Learning

In What on 28 January 2014 at 4:31 am

Work with the fundamentals of lifelong learning from birth


How do we set the foundation for lifelong learning?  In the early months and years of life, these five resources will help you practice continuum learning with your little ones.  Follow-Up to Attachment Parenting and Continuum Learning.  Scroll down for summary table of  Resources and Skills Learned.

1. Breastfeeding
Breastfeeding helps children learn a vital skill that they need all their lives:  how to eat.

Children’s first introduction to the flavors and feelings of food comes through breastfeeding.  As they gradually increase the variety and quantity of the food they eat, nursing serves as a safety net, allowing them freedom to try foods without any obligation to eat a given quantity by a given time.  Breastfeeding babies have time to acquire taste for a healthy variety of foods, while assured nutrition through mother’s diet.  Nursing also provides antibodies that help little ones as they explore the wider world and…

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I will carry you till you are 30!

In Field Notes, How on 6 January 2013 at 2:01 pm

I will carry you till you are 30!

from Srinadh, Daddy to 4 year-old Anika and 4-month old Aanya in Dallas

Some of the things the girls and I do together:

Aanya seems to have developed a strong attachment to her Dad’s shoulder as a place to hang out, be carried with her eyes wide open and content and eventually doze off (no matter the time of day)!   This has been a source of tension with other members of the family who complain that they then are expected to put her to sleep in this manner too and that they would much rather do it in less expensive ways 🙂

She unfailingly smiles at her Dad each time I look at her. If I look at her 50 times, I get 50 smiles back!

With Anika, I read her 2 or 3 story books each night, sometimes sing her a song and then she sleeps. Anika and I share a bed as the little one sleeps with her Mom. We might all get back into the same bedroom at some point soon.

If I see that Anika is getting too wound up about something, I try to distract her and sometimes take her out and just change the pace.

I still carry her a lot and I have told her I will carry her even when she is 30 years old which she finds very funny 🙂

During Christmas time, I would take her to see lights that other people had put up. She enjoyed this a lot during the recent holidays.

These are some of the things we do together.

AskAmma thanks Srinadh for sharing this note, part of a series on Play.
Gentle Reader, how do you play?  AskAmma will feature selected stories every Wednesday.


What do I do for cough and cold?

In Recipes, What on 17 October 2012 at 8:05 pm
So many people ask about cough and cold, so here we go.
As a student I used to observe that I would typically come under the weather right after exams were over.  It was as if my body was saying, “now it is my turn.”    So be fair and give yourself some TLC (Tender Love and Care NOT Tomato Lettuce and Cheese but you can have some of that too. Minus the Cheese. Signed, Humor Consultant*) rather than insisting on business as usual.  My three point plan for recovery was:
1.  aggressive sleeping:  sleep until you can’t sleep any more
2. More gentle readers may wish to call the second point “continuous water sipping.”   For those young enough to breastfeed, they can nurse and sleep at the same time.  I nursed my daughter through several fevers this way.   Read the rest of this entry »

Where Should Baby Sleep?

In Where on 26 May 2012 at 1:30 am

Difference of opinion: Where should baby sleep? I strongly feel its always better to have the baby bed next to the mother rather than putting the baby on a crib. My husband feels that sleeping separately would make baby independent and he also feels that we might accidentally hurt the baby if we all sleep on a queen bed ( we currently have no room for a king bed). How do I convince my husband?

mom-to-be in Maryland

You have told me your opinion and your husband’s opinion regarding where baby should sleep.  There is one more opinion that deserves consideration, and that is the opinion of the one who is sleeping – the baby!  Nestled in the arms of a parent, comforted by human warmth, sound and breathing rhythms, babies sleep and learn about the world around them.  Unlike other primates that “cling” to their mothers, “human infants are dependent upon their mothers to ensure that proximity is maintained,” says Professor Helen Ball of the Parent-Infant Sleep Lab of Durham University in her article Bed Sharing and Co-Sleeping: Research Overview . Read the rest of this entry »

Sleeping on his own

In Yes / No on 10 April 2011 at 6:41 am

Sleeping on his own – he needs to be fed,carried, rocked or sung to sleep. He doesn’t fall asleep on his own – is this ok? Do we need to follow some method?

Yes, it is okay. See #3. Also see Baby wants to be held.
If you need something more than simply "sleep with baby," here is Dr. Sears’ list of Sleep Facts and comparison of "methods."

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