At 15 months, we're still mostly breastfeeding, spending at least a couple hours in a wrap a day (sometimes many more), and co-sleeping most of the nighttime. How do we do it? There are a few things about this that make everything easier, and a few things we do that make our parenting style easier, too.
- So much patience. Creativity. Willingness to communicate. I do my best to tell our lil fella what's going on, why it matters, and why the rules are (usually) about keeping him safe. Sometimes this is hard in the moment, but we still talk about it afterwards if not immediately. His understanding is constantly growing and I like to think it makes our job easier later.
- "Woolies:" For cosleeping, we like disana (german made) wool shorts to keep baby's diapers from getting our bed wet/poopy. (They also keep him warm even if he's wet, which is a great boon because these days a wet diaper may not wake him.) I bought them extra big just in case I accidentally shrunk them, and since they're one of our baby dude's most expensive accessories, I bought them large enough that we may not have to get another pair down the road. I'll talk more about these in a separate post.
- Separate "cuddle" space for me and hubby to get together.
- Lightweight blankets for bed. We also think our memory foam pillows help to make it safer to cosleep.
- 15 feet of fabric to wrap the baby in with me for fussy/tired/teething times. We like girasol, didymos, moby wraps & still use our Ergo carrier lots! We have multiple wraps in case one gets wet/poopy/food/etc.
- IKEA nightlights - LED color change with a three click on/stay/off so that we can see him for nighttime diapers and easy on/off plus holds charge for several days at a time so it can come to bed with us. (and in the car for road trips)
- High-chair in the kitchen! This has made it so much easier for me to get things done while also making the baby dude happy. He loves to be up high enough to see what I'm doing, and he doesn't even have to be eating- water play, kitchen "tools," and playing with food are good, too.
- Drawing table/snack table with paper, crayons, some fruit & veggies in bite size pieces (or hand size depending on mushiness)
- Relax, take a breath and ask: "is there any need to intervene right now?"
- Relax, take a breath and ask: "do i really need to do anything right now besides just being available, sitting on the floor?" Our little fella totally loves when we come to his level, much like a cat or a dog who wants to be close to their people. (This is a great time to do yoga!!!)
- Lots of time/space for baby to play outdoors and to explore nature. He's so relaxed after daily outside time, and a great sleeper.
- Be sure you're taking care of your own needs. (This advice is crucial for mamas & papas, too!) Get enough rest. The rule of "sleep when baby sleeps" still applies, but is a little less important these days. Drink ample water, especially if you're nursing! This is a great example to set for your little one, too.
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