After our daughter Poesy was born, we were inundated with parenting advice and books -- big, thick, 900-page bricks that purported to tell us everything we needed to know to raise a newborn into a productive member of society. Of course, we had neither the attention nor the time to devote to following any
of this advice.
There's one exception: my friends JC Herz and John Scott recommended a remarkable book called Twelve Hours' Sleep by Twelve Weeks Old: A Step-by-Step Plan for Baby Sleep Success, a very short book that does exactly what it says on the cover: it's a simple prescription for teaching your baby to sleep through the whole night by 12 weeks.
It takes about an hour to read and does not involve doing anything horrible to
your kid like letting her cry all night. Basic method: for the first 8
weeks, keep track of when the kid feeds and sleeps. At 8 weeks, use this
to come up with a sleep and feed schedule that more or less fits the
rhythm she's falling into. Gently encourage her to stick to it (e.g., if
she's hungry before mealtime, see if you can distract her for a few
minutes [the first day], then a few minutes more [the next].)
Over a remarkably short period Poesy fell into a natural schedule that
has her sleeping through the night almost every night -- even after we
change timezones -- we've taken her to New York, Toronto, LA and Tokyo, and she's only eight months old! The impact on our lives was
miraculous -- getting a full night's sleep every night has made us into
better, happier, more attentive parents; and giving Poesy a good night's
sleep every night has made her happier, more alert and more playful
during the day.
The author specializes in coaching parents with "difficult" kids -- multiples, kids with disabilities, kids with colic, etc, and she says the method works on all of them. I've got a number of friends who've gone years with their kids before getting a whole night's sleep -- I can't imagine how hard that must be on your attention, mood, marriage, and parenting!
Reading this book was the best hour's investment I made in my parenting.
Twelve Hours' Sleep by Twelve Weeks Old: A Step-by-Step Plan for Baby Sleep Success
Photographer Chris White takes readers behind the scenes of making his surf photography book Dark Light.
Eric Schlosser’s book and film Command and Control look at the terrifying prospects of nuclear friendly fire, where one of America’s nukes detonates on US soil. It also looks at what might happen if a false alarm gets relayed to a trigger-happy general or President. He starts this New Yorker piece with a terrifying story […]
Published by the fine fringe culture explorers at Daily Grail, the new essay anthology Spirits of Place features stories by the likes of Alan Moore, Maria J. Pérez Cuervo, Warren Ellis, Gazelle Amber Valentine, Iain Sinclair, Mark Pesce, and many other mutant thinkers riffing on how we connect with the locations we inhabit. You can […]
When you can’t wait for the world’s longest meeting to end, the mindless leg bouncing makes your boredom obvious and just annoys everybody else. Everyone knows the TPS reports need the damn cover sheet, but some sadistic colleague keeps forgetting, probably on purpose just to eat into your lunch hour. Enough is enough!While serving a […]
What could be more fun than a slingshot that shoots tiny airplanes? A slingshot that shoots tiny glowing airplanes of course! These toy planes are outfitted with ultra-bright LEDs, so you can fly all night without losing them in the trees.Whether you are a regular-sized child, or an overgrown adult one, these light-up flyers offer […]
You know the drill. You go to the dentist and they ask you how often you floss. You lie through your teeth and say, “every day!” (Bonus points if you have some cilantro or chives stuck in your gums from lunch). You don’t want to keep up the charade any longer, but rubbing that tiny strand […]