loquacious family

Monday, January 11, 2016

Disneyland - How We Roll


Rather than give you a boring-a$$ play-by-play of our 4-day detour to the Happiest Place on Earth, I thought I'd write instead on how we traveled while we were there. Maybe there's a pro-tip in there somewhere for you. Maybe. Mind you, every Mouseketeer website I google'd prior to our trip had a zillion tips on how to save money while visiting the Magic Kingdom. This is not one of those posts, and our tips don't save you any $, so I guess in some ways that's refreshing to read?


*Stay on the Property
Proximity - Everyone claims that it's just as easy to stay at a hotel that is across the street from Disney, but I call BS. We stayed at the Disneyland Hotel, and because we ended up (by fluke) in the Fantasy Tower, we were literally 50 preschooler-steps away from the entrance to Downtown Disney. The monorail was only another 3 minute walk away, so you can hop on the ride and head straight to Tomorrowland if you wanted. We totally took advantage of this when we returned to the park one night after dark; it was awesome to be able to beeline straight into Disneyland without having to go through the gates again, and walk down Main St. for the umpteenth time. Our proximity to Downtown Disney also meant that we were super close to the shops, and when it was 10:00 pm and we wanted a Starbucks? Easy peasy, thanks to being RIGHT THERE.


Perks - If you stay at a Disney hotel, you get to take advantage of Extra Magic Hours every morning. This means that, prior to official opening hours at 9:00 am, you can head to the park at 7:00 am and wait a glorious 0 minutes to ride the rides that would normally have 2-hour wait times. We didn't take advantage of this, since we are late late risers, but when Little L is older, I fully anticipate we will make full use of Extra Magic Hours. Another perk is that you get discounts and swag; we scored some nice lanyards and pins (there is a whole other Disney world of pin traders, but I'm not familiar with it), plus coupons to discounts on dining and certain shops. When eating at a Disney restaurant is so dang pricey, 10% off is a wonderful thing. A third perk is that if you buy a big bag of stuff at a shop inside the park, you can get it delivered to your room (for free!!). No lugging giant plastic bags back, which is a very excellent benefit for shoppers like moi.

Parking - Specifically, valet parking. I highly recommend this, and while it costs an extra $12 on the day (vs. self-parking, which is nearly $20), it means that you're not wasting precious time trying to find a spot a million miles away from the hotel entrance. It also gives you access to bell services, who (for a tip) will haul your many bags to and from your room. Also included are extra parking hours; on our last day, we had to check out at 11:00 am but bell services held our bags and valet kept our vehicle parked until we finished riding the last of our rides.

Guest Services - So, we originally bought a 3-day park-hopper. Then, after having used up all 3 days, we decided we needed one more day to do Disneyland. Enter the lovely folks at guest services, who happened to be in the lobby of the hotel. We only had to present our tickets to them for them to help us upgrade our park passes. Again, easy (which, when you have a kid, is a huge bonus).


*Make meal reservations 60 days ahead...online.
You're only allowed to make reso's at certain Disney restaurants (both in the park and in downtown Disney) 60 days in advance of your visit. I had it marked on my calendar and set with multiple alerts so that, exactly 60 days before we were set to visit, I could book us some tables at my favourite restaurants (Naples, Tortilla Jo's, Cafe Orleans, La Brea Bakery, Goofy's Kitchen). Even with reso's, there was a bit of a wait time, but for those poor folks who tried to walk in, sometimes the wait was like an hour or more. When you want to maximize your Disney time, and you know you're already going to spend half the day waiting in line for rides, the last thing you want is to also spend another hour or two waiting to eat at a restaurant.


*Bring clothing for every possible weather condition.
This was a big lesson for us, because we mostly packed fall clothing, assuming that Anaheim doesn't get winter-cold. Well, it does get near winter-cold after the sun goes down, especially in December. Hubbs ended up having to buy a Quiksilver lined jacket for the cool evenings, and we had to buy Little L some more sweat pants since we only packed her capri's.

And then it rained. Like, all day rained. :( While we own like a dozen umbrellas and a ton of rain gear because we live in the Lower Mainland, we never thought to pack any of this stuff when we headed down to "sunny California." The end result of this is that we are a little more broke, because we had to drop some serious $ at the store buying low-quality plastic ponchos (that off-gas so badly that you will end up smelling like you were made in a factory in China, too) and umbrellas. Take a page from us; be boy-scout prepared for every possible weather condition if you do Disney anytime other than mid-summer.


*Bring a stroller (or rent one if you dare).
We didn't dare rent a stroller (hello, lice and germs and potential pee accidents!), but we did see that Disney has a lot of them for rent; theirs are even embroidered with Disneyland logos! Anyway, we brought our own Baby Jogger City Mini Zip, which folds up very compact and looked way more comfy to ride in than the rental buggies. The Disney parks are fairly huge, and for a little person, I'm sure the parks would feel absolutely immense. There's no way that even the most energetic kid would want to walk it all day long, so a stroller gives them a reprieve and a rest and an opportunity to save their energy for the rides and the line-ups. A bonus feature of strollers is that they're also great additional storage devices for stuff like your winter jacket, which you won't need during the day but will want to have once the sun goes down!


*Bring noise-cancelling headphones for the noise-sensitive
Little L had no issue with the noise of the people, but she found the rides themselves (and the announcers and music) to be very loud. Understandable, because how else would you hear the instructions above the other competing sounds? For a preschooler with sensitive hearing, however, this proved to be a bit overwhelming. We didn't have any headphones with us, so we would cover her ears for her during some of the rides. I think that before we return to Disney, we will definitely be investing in a pair for her to use while she enjoys the rides.


*Buy Disney "stuff" ahead of time
Okay, this one is a cost-saver. If you buy your kids some Disney clothes from Old Navy online during a summer or fall sale, then you'll have stuff for them to wear when they go to Disney, and you won't be paying $25USD for a t-shirt! The same applies to toys and other Disney items; their merchandise seems to be prolific in non-Disney stores anyway, so it might be worth your while to stock up on a few of these and save them for your trip! We pre-bought Little L a t-shirt, but in her case, she didn't really care about the Disney merchandise anyway, so we weren't in danger of overspending while we were in the gift stores.

*Park Hopper passess are for bigger kids
This was another lesson learned for us. We bought park-hoppers, thinking we might hit up both parks each day of our visit. WRONG. We did California Adventure on the first day, and again on the third (briefly, mostly to use the potty and buy some snacks), but the bulk of our time was spent inside the Magic Kingdom. In hindsight, it would have been better to buy single-park passes, and then we would have felt more committed to riding and exploring California Adventure on the day that we visited it. To clarify, with older kids I would say that a park-hopper is probably a good thing, especially since it seemed that during the "peak hours" at Disneyland, the rides on the California Adventure side weren't nearly as long. For littles, however, save your money and get single-park passes instead.


*Buy souvenirs last
If you're really wanting to stock up on Disney merchandise (I like their tea towels and kitchen/bathroom stuff), or you have souvenirs to buy people in your life, I would recommend waiting until the last or second-last day of your visit. This way, you will have had a chance to see all of the stuff that's available for purchase (and selection does in fact differ slightly from store to store, and park to park). You can then make an informed choice about what you really want to buy, and it will give you time to reconsider dropping $40USD on sequinned Mickey ears that you will likely never wear again.

*Have an excellent data plan in place.
The Wifi at Disneyland (and the hotels) sucks. While reception is pretty good, their Wifi lacks the bandwidth (or whatever you call it) to be able to support all the visitors that are trying to get online for free. In the end, I used my data plan while I was at Disney. It was way quicker, and saved my sanity.

*Use the Disneyland app!
Hence the need for Wifi (or data)! There's a Disneyland app that you can download for free that will provide a map of the parks as well as give you wait times on the rides you're jonesing to go on. We used the app a countless number of times to make sure that we could wait the shortest possible amount of time to enjoy the attractions. In fact, it was because of the rain and the app that we had a 2 minute wait time to ride It's a Small World. The GPS part of the app also helps with navigation around the park, which was a huge help for newbies like us! 

*BYO Starbucks (Via)
While there is in fact a Sbux in Downtown Disney, that place is perpetually busy and I don't like waiting a long time for my coffee. Several other shops do also serve Sbux coffee, but they're few and far between. The room coffee is most definitely not Sbux, either. It's not bad, mind you, but for a Sbux addict like myself, it would have been helpful to have had some of those Via packs on hand so that I could get my fix without having to drop a bunch of $ and keep my family waiting.


And finally, the rides that we enjoyed and are definitely anxious preschooler-friendly:

The Many Adventures of Winnie-the-Pooh - (15x)
King Arthur's Carousel - (4x)  
Casey Jr. Circus Train - (2x)
It's a Small World - (1x)
Alice in Wonderland - (1x)
Chip n' Dale Treehouse
Disneyland Monorail
Donald's Boat
Tuck n' Roll's Drive 'Em Buggies - (1x)
Goofy's Playhouse
Heimlich's Chew-Chew Train - (1x)
King Triton's Carousel - (2x)
The Little Mermaid - Ariel's Adventure - (1x)
Mickey's House
Minnie's House

I would have gladly enjoyed more rides, but the line-ups before Christmas were fairly long, and Little L is really not into loud rides, so we did Disney at her pace and within her comfort zones. She is already talking about returning to Disneyland, so I am guessing we will be back in the next couple of years! :)

 









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Monday, January 4, 2016

An Unexpected Life

Oh, 2015. You definitely bested 2014, but you were not without challenge and change. From new careers to new homes and new life experiences, the year was neither predictable nor intended. We considered that our annual theme for 2015 would be "renewal," but in hindsight perhaps a better word would have been "unexpected."

As I reflect on where we are right now as we close off 2015, I marvel at where God has been leading this motley crew of three. There was Hubbs' career pivot; the unanticipated transitions that he made from being a founder/CTO at a small start-up to fielding Director/VP of Technology opportunities at several exciting new ventures. We currently sit in consideration of the offers on the table, so stay tuned to his LinkedIn to see where God directs us!
Earlier than we expected, we also found the perfect townhome in the 'burbs to relocate to. Our timeline would have had us moving during the summer months, but God in His goodness provided us with a bigger space to call "home" in May. And while we do miss the proximity we used to have to the train line and downtown, we are so grateful and excited to be in a gorgeous community that feels more intimate and family-friendly. The extra 600 square feet and private two-car garage are nice, too!

Our new home also provided me with the space I needed to finally become an Usborne Books independent consultant, pursuing a direct sales business opportunity that I've had my eye on for several years. I didn't expect to actually sign on and hit the ground running in 2015, but with Hubbs' support and my own very keen interest in the product, I've been able to tackle this new endeavour much earlier than I had anticipated.

This year we also witnessed Little L's very slow and unexpectedly difficult transition into preschool, but we are so thankful that her attendance has provided us with extra eyes and ears to observe and confirm the exceptional qualities that make Little L a non-traditional learner. We anticipate that 2016 will bring us increasing clarity and insight into how best to support our daughter in her new role as a student.

To celebrate the good health of my mother-in-law, we were also surprised with an invitation to spend Christmas 2015 in Palm Desert with Hubbs' family! Although Hubbs and I had previously concluded that we wanted to wait a few more years before taking Little L to the "Happiest Place on Earth," this gift of a trip led us to seize the chance to go to Disneyland over the Christmas season. I will share a few of my thoughts on doing Disney with my loquacious little kid in a separate post, but suffice to say we did not expect to be blown away by both the generosity of my in-laws and the magic of experiencing Disneyland through the eyes of a 3.5-year-old. What a great blessing!

There were other less-awesome "unexpected" moments too, like the receipt of our extraordinary tax bill and the sudden dismissal of our accountant (those are indeed related), but for the most part, 2015 was filled with a positive surprises. Where God will take us next is a complete mystery to us, but we find ourselves filled with great hope and anticipation as we enter into 2016 believing it to be an even better year than the last.

And while the word "unexpected" is likely to continue to dominate into the first half of 2016, I feel like there may be another theme for the next annum. More on that later, but for now, happy new year, and may your days be filled with hope and the expectation of great things to come!







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Monday, November 23, 2015

Why The Tree May Be Staying Boxed This Year

Our 2013 tree. She loved it.

In past years, I have consistently made a stink about not setting up the Christmas tree in a timely manner. Hubbs is not into Christmas decorating, so convincing him to assist me in hauling all of the Christmas stuff up from storage has always been a challenge, and more often than not, a bribe is usually involved. I, however, am the person who cranks the Christmas station on the XM dial the moment Remembrance Day is over. I LOVE LOVE LOVE everything about Christmas, from the festive golds and forest greens and cherry reds, to the special merchandise packaging "gift sets," to the bustling malls aglitter with artificial trees and ornaments. For me, the season comes alive with holiday cheer (and holiday grouchiness, which I have an inexplicable ability to block out), and I ride it like a drug-induced high (or at least, what I perceive a high to be. I've never taken drugs).

This year, however, my November has been filled up with book-selling events. Between that and being a mom and a substitute teacher and soon-to-be tutor, my days are full. I have barely had the time to sit down and think about Christmas gifts, much less ponder decorating our home space (that we will only be occupying for a portion of the holiday season, thanks to our warm destination Christmas this winter). We are in a newer, bigger space this Christmas as well, which means there is a lot more potential surface area to cover.

Anyway, I am not stoked at all when I even briefly think about adorning our abode for the holidays. Seriously, I am dreading it. So not like me, right? I know. But part of it is the work that I know is involved, and part of it is the fact that we won't even be able to enjoy it for the entirety of the month; I feel overwhelmed even considering it. Of course, that Hubbs is now working on-site at his client locations does not help one bit; before, I could rely on him to be here to assist during the work day, but now I only get to see him at the end of the
day after his lengthy commute. He's spent, I'm spent, and thus the tree remains boxed in our garage.

Not our tree, but *a* tree that was on display at Nana & YeYe's hotel last year.

Little L has been getting festive, though; she remembers that we have a certain Little People Nativity set in one of our boxes, and she has been waiting for a few months now to gain access to the figurines again. And so, much to my chagrin, I simply cannot avoid doing something to make our home merry. It's not for me, it's for the little girl who is just now starting to comprehend and develop a taste for the merriment and cheer that comes with the holidays. I don't want to rob her of the experience and anticipation of Christmas, and I know that the glittery ornaments and wreaths and knickknacks all somehow add to the excitement of this glorious season.

But if I can figure out a workaround, we are not putting up a tree this year. I'll keep ya posted! ;)



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Saturday, October 24, 2015

Hustling and Bustling and Thankful Hearts


Obviously my posting frequency has really dipped these last few weeks, to the point where I would say I'm not even worthy of "mom blogger" status at this point! It isn't intentional, of course, but as with all things, life ebbs and flows through different seasons, and some are simply busier than others.

Right now, we are in "hustle" mode, forcing the blog to take a back seat to juggling new (preschool!) schedules, my Usborne commitments, and keeping our business books up to date. Hubbs has started working onsite at his client offices, so we have also been adjusting to his daytime absence and commuting hours. Add to that a busier day with an active 3.5 year-old, and sometimes the hours just escape me.

In the midst of all this chaos and change, I am so thankful for a God who never changes. I'm grateful that He has continued to show our little family an abundance out of His grace, and while we find ourselves sometimes a bit breathless from the hectic pace of our days, we also cherish all the more the quiet times we can enjoy together as a family. We are blessed that His goodness has been made evident, and His mighty hand continues to guide us as we figure out some big and little things in our lives, from the direction of Hubbs' career to whether we should spring for another vehicle (the answer is a resounding NO at this point).

And so, as we try to adjust to a new season of life, the blog remains in the background like a cozy sweater, not quite a good fit for the current climate but ready to welcome me back into its soft, comfy embrace when the time is right. 

How is this season going for you? Is there familiarity in the rhythms of your routine, or are you embracing change like we are?



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Monday, September 21, 2015

Two Can Still Be a Lonely Number



I might be steering into sensitive/controversial territory here, so consider yourself warned.

People often give us reasons why we need to have more than one kid, chief among them the following:

- we make cute kids, so therefore we cannot stop at just one
- more kids means that over time, they can entertain each other and let us off the hook (of playing with them)
- when we get old, more kids means more children to care for us, thereby reducing each child's burden
- when we both die, having multiple kids means they still have each other
- in the event we lose a child, we still have another one
- only children are sad and lonely, and having siblings fills their inner needs and reduces loneliness

The last line of thinking is the one I was pondering about the other day. While every one of these reasons may simultaneously have some small merit and yet be completely and utterly ridiculous, it occurred to me the absurdity of the reasoning that one should have children for your children's sake. Really? What strikes me as most ludicrous of all is that most children don't really know what they're asking for when they inherit a sibling, and 100% of the time, children don't get to pick who their siblings are. While some children hit the lucky sibling jackpot and end up with sisters/brothers that become lifelong friends, I think that if we were to be completely honest here, most people end up with siblings that are only associates by circumstance. Like, if their siblings were classmates, they might not necessarily be friends. In some cases, they definitely would not.

So while having two or more littles might mean that for those first two decades of life, they have a live-in frenemy or compatriot in mischief, there is certainly no guarantee that in the overall course of life, these children will have a loving, harmonious relationship with each other. In nearly every family I know, from every generation dating back to my grandparents' era, there is a dysfunctional sibling relationship or estrangement. We're talking way more than half, folks, like 75%. And I would say that even among the 25% who don't have strained sibling bonds, there isn't necessarily a close friendship between *all* of the sibs. Unlike friends, siblings are kind of an obligatory relationship; therefore, compatibility is not always guaranteed.

It's safe to say, then, that having children for the sake of your children is fairly weak logic. I don't think that just because Little L is an only child, that she will necessarily feel alone, and I don't know that she would ever want to exchange the attention and standard of living afforded her by being an only child, for siblings. If she, like so many people I know, were to end up with a sibling that she simply did not get along with, then I would posit that her quality of life would be severely reduced (as would my own). If I were to have a second child (no, I don't plan to), believe me when I say that it will not be for the sake of Little L!

Perhaps I am making a blanket statement here. How is your relationship with all of your siblings? How is your parents' relationships with all of theirs? What's your best friend's sibling situation like? Or your grandparents', or extended families'? How about your spouse's, or his family's? Think of all of the people you are close with, and then think of their relationships with their siblings. All good? No dysfunction? No estrangement, or "tough love" scenarios, or strain? Maybe it's just me. That said, I speak as one who was raised in a traditional family with 4 kids, and who is married to a husband who also comes from a traditional family with 2. No divorces among the generations preceding my own, and lots of kids in my parents' and grandparents' origin families, as well as in Hubbs' extended clan. Christians, Catholics, Buddhists, and some agnositics, too, and I would say that the 75% rule applies.

Anyway, the next time someone tells me I need to have another kid so that Little L isn't lonely and doesn't have to carry the sole burden of her aging parents, I might be punching them in the face. Or sending them a link to this blog post, and then punching them in the face. Because, seriously, MYOB comes to mind. As does the ridiculousness of people trying to tell you what you should do with your own body (and family). BAH.



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Friday, September 11, 2015

Favourite Friday

I'm not usually a big promoter of anything, since I don't get compensated for my opinions and I know that reading reviews is almost always at the bottom of everyone's list, unless of course they're consulting with Professor Google to try to find something they're inkling to purchase.

In light of that, I will try to make this short and sweet. Here are a few of my favourite things:

Mmmm....mango
Method Ginger-Mango 4x Concentrated Laundry Detergent
Okay, so it doesn't smell like ginger or mango. It does however smell magnificent, plus it's less toxic than using Tide (although it does still contain sulfates, phenoxethanol and fragrance). Hubbs has been complaining about his clothes smelling "moldy" even after being laundered with our usual stuff (plus Downy, plus Bounce). I decided to give this scented goodness a go and voila! I haven't even needed the Downy, and the clothes still came out feeling soft. His sat-for-two-days-after-the-gym clothes and his well-worn, greasy jeans all came out smelling and feeling awesome, too. No more musty mold odors! This is totally my new favourite laundry detergent, by a long shot.

Available in bigger sizes too, but I like the baby size best

Norwex Microfibre Face Cloths
I am the consummate lazy person when it comes to facial cleansing. How many facial cleanser products do I get from Ipsy that sit unused in my bathroom drawer? A shameful number, that's how many. I've always been a water-only kind of girl, even though I've tried doing oil cleansers and gentle organic ones. Lately, I've been stealing Little L's Norwex baby face cloths and just washing my face with them, because they're right there in my bathroom and quick and easy to use. Miraculously, my waterproof eye make-up always comes off after just a few wipes with the wet Norwex, leaving behind a nice black blob on the little towel (it rinses off). My face is spotless afterwards, and I love that there's none of that messy dripping that happens when I try to wash with a cleanser. As for the towel, I just have to rinse and wring and let it air dry. On occasion I've boiled the towels once they've started getting a little ripe, but then they return to their former glory and microfibre plumpness, and we start again. We get a good amount of mileage from our facecloths, so the price is well worth it for us!
Thanks Zappos for the image! ;)

Native Jefferson Shoes
I bought these on a whim when I was shopping in our new neighborhood. I had heard some good things about them, and wanted shoes to replace my can't-be-seen-in-public Crocs. Who knew these shoes would be my go-to all summer long? Nicer looking than Crocs, but with similar benefits (waterproof, washable, odor resistant, shock absorbent), and really comfy after I finally broke them in (it took about a week of on/off wearing). While my feet can sometimes get a little sweaty in there, generally these shoes are great for doing neighborhood walking and running errands and pairing with my casual clothes. I love that I can wear them on the rainy days too, since I don't mind my feet getting wet. They've also come in handy when I've gone with Little L to the nearby spray park!





Varage Sale
Okay, so this is an app, and I might be introducing you to your newest addiction, but wow is this ever easy to use and oh so handy!! I have already bought and sold a few things using it, and find that it is effectively regulated and has great features like a small business directory, a forum for discussion posts, and a way to rate your seller by giving them "praise." I spend a little too much time on here, admittedly, but what a fantastic way to off-load stuff you no longer need/want, or purchase stuff for cheap! The app is quite pretty (think Pinterest meets IG, with a FB login) and I love that it is separated by regions, so I can only see the regions that I belong to.

See? Short and sweet. Have a great weekend everyone! xoxo

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Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Sleepy Time, or Our Do Nothing Approach to Sleep Training



It's no secret that my kid has never been big on sleep. She was born wide-eyed and alert, opting to keep her big brown eyes open even under the bright lights of the operating room where she was born. She stayed up for several hours (I think I counted 6) before she really fell asleep that first day.

Fast forward 3.5 years, and it's no different. She is not one to be forced into slumber, and to even attempt it would result in her working herself up into such an emotional frenzy that only sheer exhaustion would cause her to relent on the wailing. That's my kid.

And so, we have co-slept and endured her crazy bedtimes and wake-up times, nursing her down at night and taking her on long stroller rides during nap hour. For us, this flexible non-schedule was never an issue because neither Hubbs nor I have had to work outside of our home; as a result, we've never had to contend with set sleep schedules to accommodate daycare or our 9-5's. I read somewhere that kids actually do have their own schedules, even from birth. As we charted her sleep cycles, we noted that she did have one, too; hers simply wasn't as predictable as others' were, and that was okay with us. Not ideal, but okay.

Now that she is older, however, she is falling into her own bedtime routine quite organically. It's still "late" by conventional standards, but works swimmingly with our present schedules. Little L usually wakes up between 6:30am and 7:30am, and doesn't nap much anymore. When she does, the duration can be anywhere from 45 minutes to 3 hours (during growth spurt season). On nap days, her bedtime ends up being pushed later into the evening, somewhere between 10:00pm and 11:00pm. Most days, however, she skips the nap and announces that she needs to go to bed sometime between 8:00 pm and 9:30 pm. We've not forced her into this schedule, but she has sort of implemented it herself, based on her own body cues. When she does get overtired from fighting sleep, or announces, "Even if I am tired, I am NOT going to sleep!," we will sometimes offer to load her into the car for a "sleepy sleep ride." That usually does the trick, knocking her out while conveniently reducing her daily nursing (weaning!) and giving us some bonding time in the front seats.

It's not for everyone, but we have found our do-nothing approach to sleep training has worked out well. Little L wakes up happy 90% of the time, and lets me "sleep in" a little because her later slumber usually translates into a more reasonable wake-up hour. She doesn't come charging into our rooms at 4:00am wanting to join us in bed, nor does she do the bedtime dance of "one more story," or requests for water 30 minutes after she's supposed to be asleep. Because we are still co-sleeping, she also doesn't have nightmares, night terrors, fears about boogeymen or any of those things normally associated with kids her age who sleep alone. She gets to spend quality family time with Hubbs and I in the early evening, affording us opportunities to go out for dinner as a family and eat at what we consider a normal dinner hour (because for us, 5:30 is simply too early to eat)!

And as we cap off the evening, there is nothing more sweet than having her little 3.5 year old body snuggled up next to mine. One day, she will want to have her own bed and bedroom and the privacy that comes with it, and I will miss having my baby safely snoozing right next to me. While others celebrate the "freedom" they perceive early sleep training to give them, I celebrate the opportunities I'm afforded to continue to parent my little girl throughout the night. I cherish these moments and feel blessed to be able to have them.

My point here is simply this: for those parents out there who wonder if they're the only ones doing it "wrong" by not sleep training your baby, know that you're not alone nor are you doing it wrong. What works for one family differs greatly from what works for another, and obviously there are a bazillion extenuating circumstances and life variables that factor into which formula for "sleep training" is best. I take great issue with the articles and arguments that condemn parents who opt not to sleep train, or use fear-mongering tactics to suggest that a child who isn't sleep trained must automatically be sleep-deprived and overtired and therefore harmed by their irresponsible parents. These generalizations are no more accurate than the ones that state that every sleep-trained child will end up depressed and anxious and emotionally-damaged because their neglectful parents opted to torture them with extinction methods.

Anyway, I'm glad that we had foregone sleep training in favour of this lackadaisical (or laissez-faire) approach. It has fit so well with who we are, what we believe, and how we live, and we are so satisfied with how things are turning out. Of course, Murphy's Law suggests that the moment we think this, something is going to go sideways with her sleep patterns, but I suppose that's content for another blog post. ;)






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