04 Jan

Co-Sleeping with Little Peanuts

Today we are getting cozy with our founder + editor, Megan Bailey, as she shares a peek into her bedroom + how her family co-sleeps.

There is so much that comes into play when it comes to sleeping and children, and many families have differing opinions on the best method or personal beliefs on this subject. Some parents believe in strict sleep-training at a very early age for their children while others believe in the benefits of co-sleeping. When reading all the information out there on both sides of this important parenting aspect, it can easily become overwhelming to decide which sleeping method has the most success, is healthiest for children, and also fits your family’s lifestyle best. For us, we’ve pretty much tried a little bit of everything! With our first son, Beckham, we were pretty good about keeping him on a sleeping schedule but we weren’t crazy strict about it so if our schedule got off track, it wasn’t a big deal. We put him in his crib whenever he slept and we were pretty good about letting him sooth himself back to sleep if he woke up in the middle of the night. From very early on, Beckham was a great sleeper and continued to be for a a couple of years.He would even walk himself into his room every night after bath time and wait to be lifted into his crib. Once our second son, Bennie, was born, I feel like (and I’m sure many moms can relate with their second child) all the schedules and rules and guidelines went out the door, and we were basically just trying to make it through the day in one piece! Bennie was nothing like his older brother as a baby and was not a good sleeper, waking up a couple times throughout the night. We also live in a smaller home and didn’t want Beckham to get woken up every night from his brother crying, so we ended up having Bennie sleep in our room in a pack-and-play. I’m sure this was the start of creating bad sleeping habits for him, but with a young toddler and a new baby on top of a husband who is a firefighter and has crazy work hours, we were just taking any kind of sleep we could get! This was the beginning of us becoming a co-sleeping family.

LittlePeanutMagazine_family_co_sleeping_3 LittlePeanutMagazine_family_co_sleeping_10 LittlePeanutMagazine_family_co_sleeping_16Fast forward to today and at some point in the middle of the night, we all end up in the same bed together! Sleeping + co-sleeping is something I think about often. I have mixed feelings about it and see the pros and cons for both sides. For instance, I do love our nighttime routine of reading stories with the family and my boys going to sleep in their own beds. This window of time does give my husband and I a chance to have some alone time and relax just the two of us. (That’s a whole other topic about making sure to spend quality time with your partner to continue to grow that relationship together) but I do love + relish this time and believe it’s healthy for both parents and kids. On the flip side, I secretly love it when my boys come into my bed at night. I love cuddling with them and sleeping next to them. I will also admit that I don’t get as good of sleep because of this, but waking up to all four of us cuddled in a warm bed seriously fills my heart as full as it can get. I can’t even tell you how many pictures I have on my phone of my boys first thing in the morning still asleep in my bed. For us, this is how we spend time together and strengthen our family bond. I truly believe this is what brings our family closer together. I know when I’m old and my kids are grown up that these will be the memories I remember most and the memories I long for the most. Co-sleeping allows more time for conversations, skin-to-skin contact, hugging, and of course lots of kissing. One thing my boys are not deprived of is kisses. And to add to that, our boys see me and my husband kissing and cuddling a lot too which I also believe is so good for them. What better way to see what a happy marriage is like than to witness that on the daily.

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As a parent, I would probably consider myself pretty laid-back. We of course have rules and schedules, but I’m not one of those moms who gets all crazy if we are somewhere and my kids don’t go down for a nap right on time every single day. I’m also not the type who cooks a well-balanced meal every single day for my family. I’m the mom who is going through McDonald’s drive-thru a couple times a week, whose kids main source of vegetables comes from ketchup, and whose kids are not in bed by 7:30 every night. I will be the first to admit that we should probably be a bit better at disciplining our kids and setting more rules, but in reality, we are just lax when it comes to some of these things. We are very spontaneous people, love adventures, and are basically just trying to navigate our way through this journey of parenthood the best we can. At the end of the day I think about all of the things that I do “wrong” as a parent. There are so many moms I compare myself to because of the world of social media; so many moms that just seem to be doing all the things right and checking the boxes when it comes to the traditional roles of a mother. It’s so easy to compare and worry and to beat myself up, but I keep trying to tell myself that as long as my boys are happy and feel loved then that’s all that matters to me. Really isn’t that the most important role as a mother or a parent? At the end of the day it doesn’t matter what new fashion your kids are wearing or what trendy restaurant you visited or even that your kids ate at McDonald’s for more meals than you want to admit. All that matters is that our kids feel safe and loved. And if that is in fact all that matters, then I feel like I am doing something right with my kids. I love them more than words. I work so hard for them, and I genuinely want them to grow up feeling like they had an exciting + happy childhood and got to experience all of the amazing things this life has to offer.

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I think we can easily get hung up on all the information out there on the important topics of parenting, and we are overly critical of ourselves. We always tend to worry what others might think of our decisions and what is perceived as the right way to do something, but I’m here to say, choose whatever feels best for you and your family. If you believe it’s best that your kids go to sleep on their own + stay in their bed all night or if you have decided that co-sleeping fits cohesively with the way you want to raise your kid, then do it and don’t feel bad about it for one minute! Let’s stop being so hard on ourselves as parents and spend more time enjoying these special moments that go by way too quickly.

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Since we’ve decide that co-sleeping is how our family sleeps and we spend so much time in our bedroom, we wanted to create a space that was comfortable for our entire family. Do I even dare admit that there was a time not very long ago that all four of us slept together in a queen size bed? Ha! It really is laughable at how we made it through those crazy nights and for sure not something that I would recommend to anyone! There is a point when co-sleeping is probably not very beneficial when it’s depriving you of sleep. After many nights literally getting kicked out of bed we finally broke down and bought a king size bed. It was the best decision we ever made!! Once we got a new bed it was time to give our room a little face-lift as well. It’s crazy to think that we spend a third of our life in bed, so what you sleep on truly matters! The key to all of our newly-found comfort comes from Parachute Home’s amazing bedding. Their products are made of the finest long-staple Egyptian cotton, combed with precision to remove all impurities and dyed naturally in a process that surpasses the highest safety and environmental protection standards. I didn’t even know that sleeping could be this enjoyable, and I can’t say enough things about the quality of Parachute Home’s products… but the best part is their affordability. You don’t have to pay a lot for great quality and comfort! It makes sense to create an enjoyable space for your family to grow together right? To finish off the final details, add in a few great lighting fixtures from School House Electric and a fresh coat of white paint, and you have a simple yet perfect room for spending quality time with the ones you love most. We may not have a lot or a big beautiful home, but as long as we are together we absolutely have it all and I wouldn’t want it any other way.

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