How to Help Your Children Sleep Well Over the Holidays

The exciting holiday season is around the corner!  This means days (weeks?) of parties, family get-togethers, and possibly some travelling.  It can be difficult to accommodate your child’s sleep schedule with the hustle and bustle of the holidays.  I’ve got two young kids and I struggle with these issues myself.  Here are some tips you can implement to ensure you still have an enjoyable holiday AND well-rested kids.

1. Try to stick to your routine as much as you can- but don’t be a slave to it!

If your kids are typically great sleepers, you can probably get away with putting them to sleep an hour later than usual.  If you plan to be at a party until late, bring a pack n play with you and place your child to sleep there so that you avoid having a cranky, overtired child on your hands.

If your child still naps during the day, try to make sure he still gets his required daytime sleep, even if it means he naps on the go in the stroller or car. 

2. Bring your sleep environment and routine with you on your travels

When packing up for your holiday, don’t forget to bring any bedtime essentials that your kids rely on to fall asleep.  Bringing your portable blackout blinds, white noise machine, pacifier, and any loveys they sleep with will help them settle into their new temporary sleep environment.   Use the same bedtime routine with your children during your travels as you do at home to help them wind down.  Children are often comforted by the familiarity of home.

3. Ask for help

Family time is the perfect time of year to sit back and allow Grandma and Grampa to help out with the bedtime routine.  Getting other families members involved with the bedtime routine is often a great bonding time for everyone and allows your family members to spend special 1-on-1 time with your kids.

4. Avoid over-stimulation (and toddler meltdowns)!

Enjoy yourself over the holidays but avoid over-scheduling your kids.  Toddlers can become overstimulated very easily with so much excitement happening.  Have you agreed to attend too many events that your child’s schedule will be different every day?  You don’t need to attend every single family gathering, so don’t be afraid to stay home to keep your kids well-rested and on a good schedule.  

5. Enjoy your holiday!

At the end of the day, the holiday season only comes around once a year.  Try not to stress TOO much about a missed nap and just enjoy.  Once the holidays are over, get your children back onto their regular sleep schedules and routines as soon as possible J  

Written by Eva Klein, Certified Infant and Child Sleep Consultant and owner of My Sleeping Baby

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