Motherhood is: Worrying about why my baby can't fall asleep

Do you want me to lay next to you? Do you want me to tell you one more story? Do you feel more peaceful when I'm with you as you drift off to sleep?

Motherhood is: Worrying about why my baby can't fall asleep


Sleep is important. I know you know that deep down. I say it a lot. The information is definitely seeping in there somehow, somewhere.

It's important for the baby, for you big kids, and for me and Dad, too. It seems like such a simple task when you think about it, doesn't it? You guys take a bath or shower, brush your teeth, put your pajamas on, read some books, say our prayer, get your bottles or pacifiers or whatever the stuffed animal flavor of the week is—and lay down in your cozy bed. Lights off, eyes closed, off to dreamland, right?

So why is it so hard sometimes? And I don't mean this in a sarcastic way. I genuinely wonder. It's part of what keeps me up at night. (That and work and catching up on TV and cleaning up and…)

I wish I could know for certain each time you seem wired at 7 pm or when you wake up inconsolable at 3 am. Sometimes I have an idea and sometimes my strategies to calm and soothe you work—but I still wonder…

Why can't you fall asleep tonight, baby?

Are you too hot? Too cold? Overtired? Overstimulated? Is your diaper wet or dirty?

Are you hungry? Thirsty? Do you have a fever? Are you teething? Does your belly hurt? Do you have gas?

Are you uncomfortable? Am I rocking you too slowly? Am I not soothing you? Do you want me to sing a lullaby?

Are you cozy enough? Is that sleep sack soft enough? Do you want a pacifier? Maybe a lovey?

Do you only want to lay in my arms? Do you want milk? Do you need medicine? Do you wish I had the right answer? Do you wish I could read your mind?

Why can't you fall asleep tonight, kiddo?

Are you remembering a bad dream? Are you scared of something? Do you need a night light on? Is there any way I can help ease your troubles?

Are you excited for tomorrow? Do you feel like you're missing out on something? Are you thinking of that drawing you wanted to finish? What is keeping you up?

Do you want me to lay next to you? Do you want me to tell you one more story? Do you feel more peaceful when I'm with you as you drift off to sleep?

What are you thinking about? What are your worries? What is keeping you up tonight?

Are you wondering how many stars are in the sky? Why dinosaurs aren't around anymore? How big a castle really is? What clouds actually feel like? Why we even need to sleep?

And just so you don't call me a hypocrite, I'll say—I stay up late every night of my life and I know I shouldn't. Sleep is important. I know that. If you saw me up at 11 pm watching a mindless TV, I know you would tell me to go to bed. Just like I tell you.

But some nights it's just so hard, isn't it?

Why can't you fall asleep tonight, mama?

Are you worrying about your baby's development? Are you stressed over your little one starting kindergarten next year? Are you sad that your toddler doesn't need you as much anymore?

Do you wish you could spend more quality time with your partner? Do you miss them? Is it because you're often both so exhausted? That you're both so caught up in the chaos of raising children?

Do you feel bad about canceling on your friends? Did you forget to text her back? Do you feel left out? Do you feel like this busy season will never end—and you'll never see your friends again?

Do you wish you had more energy to go to the gym? Do you wish there were more hours in the day to get to everything you wanted to do? Are thoughts and to-do's running through your head?

Are you replaying the day, wondering if you were enough? Are enough? Did enough? Planned enough? Prepped enough? Laughed enough? Had enough fun? Enough patience? Enough enthusiasm and positivity? Enough love? Enough vulnerability? Enough happiness?

Sleep is exhausting, isn't it?

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Products that solve your biggest breastfeeding challenges

Including a battle plan for clogged ducts!

When expecting a baby, there is a lot you can test-run in advance: Take that stroller around the block. Go for a spin with the car seat secured in place. Learn how to use the baby carrier with help from a doll. But breastfeeding? It's not exactly possible to practice before baby's arrival.

The absence of a trial makes it all the more important to prepare in other ways for breastfeeding success—and it can be as simple as adding a few of our lactation aiding favorites to your registry.

MilkBliss chocolate chip soft baked lactation cookies

MilkBliss lactation cookies

Studies have shown the top reason women stop breastfeeding within the first year is because they are concerned about their milk supply being enough to nourish baby. Consider MilkBliss Lactation Cookies to be your secret weapon. Not only are they wholesome and delicious, but they were formulated specifically for breastfeeding moms based on the science of galactagogues—also known as milk boosters. They also come in peanut butter and wild blueberry flavors.


Evereden multi-purpose healing balm

Evereden multipurpose healing balm

Also up there on the list of reasons women stop breastfeeding: the toll the early days can take on nipples. Made from just five ingredients, this all natural healing balm is ideal for soothing chafed nipples, making for a much more comfortable experience for mama as her body adjusts to the needs of a breastfeeding baby.


Lansinoh milk storage bags

Lansinoh milk storage bags

For a breastfeeding mama, there are few things more precious and valuable than the milk she worked so hard to pump—and it's the stuff of nightmares to imagine it spilling out in the fridge. With these double-sealed milk storage bags, you can be assured your breastmilk is safe and sound until baby needs it.


Belly Bandit bandita nursing bra

Belly Bandit bandita nursing bra

Nursing a baby is a 24/7 job, which calls for some wardrobe modifications. Because Belly Bandit specializes in making things more comfortable for the postpartum mama, they've truly thought of every detail—from the breathable fabric to the clips that can be easily opened with one hand.


boob-ease soothing therapy pillows

Boob Ease soothing therapy pillows

For nursing moms, duct can quickly become a four-letter word when you suspect it's getting clogged. By keeping these soothing breast pillows in your breastfeeding arsenal, you can immediately go on the defense against plugged milk ducts by heating the pads in the microwave or cooling them in the freezer.


Belly Bandit perfect nursing tee

Belly Bandit perfect nursing tee

A unfortunate reality of nursing is that it can really seem to limit the wardrobe options when you have to think about providing easy, discrete access. But by adding functional basics to your closet, you can feel confident and prepared for breastfeeding on the go.


Bebe au Lait premium cotton nursing cover

Bebe au Lait cotton nursing cover

Nursing in public isn't every mama's cup of tea. But babies can't always wait until you've found a private place to get down to business if that's your preference. That's where a nursing cover comes in handy. This one is made from premium cotton and features a patented neckline that allows for airflow and eye contact even while you're covered.


Lactation Lab basic breastmilk testing kit

Lactation Lab breastmilk testing kit

Curious to learn more about the liquid gold you're making, mama? The testing kit from Lactation Labs analyzes your breast milk for basic nutritional content like calories and protein, as well as vitamins, fatty acids and environmental toxins to help boost your breastfeeding confidence.


We independently select and share the products we love—and may receive a commission if you choose to buy. You've got this


12 outdoor toys your kids will want to play with beyond summer

They transition seamlessly for indoor play.

Without camps and back-to-school plans still TBD, the cries of "I'm bored!" seem to be ringing louder than ever this summer. And if you're anything like me, by August, I'm fresh out of boxes to check on my "Fun Concierge" hit list. It's also the point of diminishing returns on investing in summer-only toys.

With that in mind, we've rounded up some of our favorite wooden toys that are not only built to last but will easily make the transition from outdoor to indoor play.

From sunny backyard afternoons to rainy mornings stuck inside, these toys are sure to keep little ones engaged and entertained.

Meadow ring toss game

Plan Toys meadow ring toss game

Besides offering a fantastic opportunity to hone focus, coordination, determination and taking turns, lawn games are just plain fun. Set them up close together for the littles and spread them out when Mom and Dad get in on the action. With their low profile and rope rings, they're great for indoors as well.


Balance board

Plan Toys balance board

Balance boards are a fabulous way to get the wiggles out. This one comes with a rope attachment, making it suitable for even the youngest wigglers. From practicing their balance and building core strength to working on skills that translate to skateboarding and snowboarding, it's a year-round physical activity that's easy to bring inside and use between Zoom classes, too!


Sand play set

Plan Toys sand set

Whether you're hitting the beach or the backyard sandbox, this adorable wooden sand set is ready for action. Each scoop has an embossed pattern that's perfect for sand stamping. They're also totally suitable for water play in the wild or the bathtub.


Water play set

Plan Toys water play set

Filled with sand or water, this tabletop sized activity set keeps little ones busy, quiet and happy. (A mama's ideal trifecta 😉). It's big enough to satisfy their play needs but not so big it's going to flood your floors if you bring the fun inside on a rainy day.


Mini golf set

Plan Toys mini golf set

Fore! This mini golf set is lawn and living room ready. Set up a backyard competition or incorporate into homeschooling brain breaks that shift focus and build concentration.


Vintage scooter balance bike

Janod retro scooter balance bike

Pedals are so 2010. Balance bikes are the way to go for learning to ride a bike while skipping the training wheels stage altogether. This impossibly cool retro scooter-style is built to cruise the neighborhood or open indoor space as they're learning.


Wooden rocking pegasus

plan toys wooden rocking pegasus

Your little will be ready to take flight on this fun pegasus. It gently rocks back and forth, but doesn't skimp on safety—its winged saddle, footrests and backrest ensure kids won't fall off whether they're rocking inside or outside.


Croquet set

Plan Toys croquet set

The cutest croquet set we've ever seen! With adorable animal face wooden balls and a canvas bag for easy clean up, it's also crafted to stick around awhile. Round after round, it's great for teaching kiddos math and problem-solving skills as well.


Wooden digital camera

fathers factory wooden digital camera

Kids get the chance to assemble the camera on their own then can adventure anywhere to capture the best moments. With two detachable magnetic lenses, four built-in filters and video recorder, your little photographer can tap into their creativity from summertime to the holidays.


Wooden bulldozer toy

plan toys wooden bulldozer toy

Whether they're digging up sand in the backyad or picking up toys inside, kids can get as creative as they want picking up and moving things around. Even better? Its wooden structure means it's not an eye sore to look at wherever your digger drops it.


Pull-along hippo

janod toys pull along hippo toy

There's just something so fun about a classic pull-along toy and we love that they seamlessly transition between indoor and outdoor play. Crafted from solid cherry and beechwood, it's tough enough to endure outdoor spaces your toddler takes it on.


Baby forest fox ride-on

janod toys baby fox ride on

Toddlers will love zooming around on this fox ride-on, and it's a great transition toy into traditional balance bikes. If you take it for a driveway adventure, simply use a damp cloth to wipe down the wheels before bringing back inside.


We independently select and share the products we love—and may receive a commission if you choose to buy. You've got this.


Two weeks. I cannot believe that it has been two weeks since my second son was brought into this world. Two weeks since my husband and I welcomed baby Simon, the final piece of our little family.

But, here is the whopper: It has been two weeks since I have been the mom of a toddler and a newborn. I am now responsible for taking care of two tiny humans.

It absolutely blows my mind how much my life has changed in the last two weeks. It's definitely not all rainbows and unicorns around here, but things are going pretty well. This is me being cautiously optimistic.

What I have done is learned a lot about myself, my kids and my new life in the last two weeks.

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