Monday, June 24, 2013

Sleep and Sugar

Since we had our meeting with the sleep consultant and put a plan into place, our four year old's sleep has improved quite a bit! It has been a week now and she now sleeps 10 hours at night and has about an hour long nap in the afternoon, that is far more sleep than she has ever had! She is generally in a better mood and is much easier to deal with. The tantrums she was having before were starting to make me crazy. The worst tantrum she has had in a week was last night before bed and that was because she was overtired (we put her to bed too late). She had a screaming fit and was using every excuse in the book to get us back into her room! I did what we were told to do, take her back to her room without speaking to her. She was very angry with me, even this morning but she eventually calmed down last night and went to sleep on her own.

I have made the decision that we will keep this schedule as long as she needs this amount of sleep. If there is a birthday party or event (as long as it's not a family member or close friend) during nap/quiet time, we will be missing it. When she goes to the birthday parties and events and misses out on the quiet time or a nap that is needed, she is sleep deprived for days and then Matt's and my nerves are shot and we end up being grouchy with each other and the kids. In the end, it's not fair to anyone. So from here on in, any acquaintances birthday party is NOT more important than my children's sleep and our sanity.

Speaking of sanity, since we have committed to clean eating, I have been experimenting with sugar and our children. I have found food coloring, white sugar, fructose, etc really affects them. It makes them absolutely crazy! And surprise, surprise it also affects their sleep! I know that I can't ban sugar completely because there will always be sugar at birthday parties and school, but I am really trying to avoid the nasty sugars around our house unless it's a special occasion. I have a few friends who limit their children's sugar intake so it should be easy enough to keep up. Our biggest problem will be people we know who give their children a constant supply of slurpees, suckers and gummy bears and Ceili and Abbey will see that and wonder "why can't I have that?".

The picture in this post is Ceili playing outside in her clover crown after a good nap. We were really enjoying out time together because we were both well rested and in a great mood!

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