Juggling Holidays and Sleep

Christmas is the best time of the year at my house.  I love to go Black Friday shopping, decorating the house, baking cookies, going to Overly’s Country Christmas to look at lights, having drinks with friends, and wonderful family get-togethers.  However, those family get-togethers looked different when I had my children.

Let me explain.  As a sleep consultant and having a type A personality I thrive on a schedule.  I enjoy knowing that I can sleep until 8 am every day and my kids sleep 12 hours a night (minus sickness).  I like knowing when they nap and the times, I can do things.  It’s not for everyone but it works for us.  Now, throw family/friends get-togethers into the mix and my schedule goes out the window. 

I’ve been pressured A LOT to keep my kids out later than I would like.  When my children used to go to bed at 6:30 pm people looked at me like I had two heads.  But hey, it worked for us!  Now that my children go to bed at 8 pm I still get looks.  We follow a strict nap and bedtime routine.  But, I’ve learned something in the few years that I have been a sleep consultant.  An 80/20 schedule does work!  That means 80% of the time you stay on schedule and 20% of the time you go off schedule.  This is perfect for those days you may need to skip a nap or stay out past bedtime.  Here are a few tips to stay successful.

  • If you know that you are going to be off schedule on Christmas Eve, do stay on schedule for the days leading up to it.
  • If you were off schedule Christmas Eve do try and at least keep their nap at the same time. Even if you have to drag your pack n play to your in-laws (I know it’s a pain). Try to make it a priority to have a consistent nap time.
  • Do not be surprised that if your children stay up late the night before that they wake at their normal time the following day. Only about 20% of babies and toddlers can actually sleep in.  Sorry parents.  A later bedtime does not mean a later waketime.

If you are a go with the flow type of person with your children’s schedule, keep doing you!  If you get anxious about sleep schedules and always try to stay on top of things these tips are for you!

From all of us at NorthStar Sleep Consulting have a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!


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Amber Baker
Amber is a Pittsburgh native who grew up in Irwin. She now lives in Rostraver Twp with her husband Justin and two girls Haisley and Isla. Amber graduated from CCAC in business and also from Pennsylvania State University with a Bachelor’s Degree in Employment and Labor Relations. Recently she has graduated from the Family Sleep Institute to become a certified Sleep Consultant. Currently she owns NorthStar Sleep Consulting (nssleepconsulting.com) and is a Pittsburgh based Flight Attendant for the past 13 years. When I’m not working I enjoy coffee, Target (LOL), and baking. Everyone in my family (Isla doesn’t know it yet) loves desert! Haisley and I love to cook every chance that we get. Once the kids go to bed Justin and I enjoy the quietness outside in the warmer months or love watching a good movie. Check out my website at https://www.nssleepconsulting.com/ for more sleep tips.