Lately Aiden has been sleeping at night wonderfully but struggling with his naps. I got this book, which I think is GREAT. Lots of common sense stuff, but let's face it, sometimes even common-sense things get overlooked or forgotten and we need reminding. But there is also a lot of other good stuff in there. And it's not a plan to just follow - it's about coming up with a plan that fits your individual family, deciding if it's working, and tweeking it every so often if needed. (We're not all about the cry-yourself-to-sleep method...that's just not for us.)
Before all this, Aiden would nap after nursing, sleep for about 20 minutes, and wake back up still tired but wanting to nurse again. Sometimes he would sleep for up to two-and-a-half hours, sometimes only the twenty minutes a few times a day. It would vary each day, which was frustrating for both of us. He needed the sleep, I needed the time to do stuff around the house. Something had to change, and I wasn't going to do it by letting him cry it out. Enter the book. Thankfully it was a quick read and had things I could start using right away. :) Otherwise, how would you find the time to read on ways to help your baby sleep - if your baby never slept! Hmmm..... We didn't need the book for bedtime - that's easy for now. We do have a better routine, and he goes out even quicker than ever! But our focus was naptime.
So, I decided to alter Aiden's naptime schedule a little bit, and WOW has it made a difference! It's not much, but it works. At the very first eye-rub, yawn, or anything to indicate he is tired (if we are home and I am able!), I take him into his room, we sit down with his little stuffed bunny (that only comes out at naptime and during the day) and a book, read, then he goes straight to the crib with a paci (which he just started taking two weeks ago today!), and we turn on our sleepytime music. The child goes right to sleep (well, ok, not every single time - but 9 out of 10 he is out within just a couple minutes) without fussing at all.
We're still working on sleeping longer without waking and needing to nurse or get his paci. But that will work out in time. He's already getting better at it. Naptime is just working so much better these days, though. He's happier, mama's happier - it's a win-win. :)
Side note: Aiden did go through a week of starting to wake every couple hours at night - but we think he was going through a growth spurt b/c we could tell he was just HUNGRY! And he's getting back to where he was - almost there!