Augustine and His Sleep: The Best Sleep Method for Us

March 6, 2017


Augustine's Sleep Situation

If you’ve been reading Augustine’s updates {like his 4-month one}, you know our little guy isn’t the best sleeper. He’s had a hard time when it comes to sleep since the very beginning. Matthew likes to joke that he’s good at staying awake. Funny but true! Augustine fought sleep and wouldn’t stay asleep for long periods of time. Sometimes he’d sleep for 35 minutes and then be up and want to stay up for another hour and a half, at 3 am! I’d walk around the dark quiet house with him telling him how everyone was asleep, even Ginger, and he needed to go to sleep too. I’d say, “Mommy likes to sleep. Daddy likes to sleep. Even Gingie likes to sleep!” Those nights feel so far away now, which I am incredibly happy about! Today I’m sharing the sleep method that drastically improved Augustine’s sleep.

I was really apprehensive about starting any type of sleep training but we ended up getting to a point where something had to be done, both for my benefit and for Augustine’s. Shortly after that 4-month update we had a particularly bad night where Augustine had two sleep stretches up until 4:45am. One was 45 minutes long and the other was 25 minutes long. Or should I say 25 minutes short? Every single time I tried to put him down he would just cry. And he would also cry when I held him. He’d rub his eyes with his hands so I knew he was tired but he just couldn’t put himself to sleep. The next day was so brutal and I knew we needed to try something. I felt like I wasn’t doing the best job as his mother by not allowing him to have the sleep he desperately needed. I wanted to give him the tools to learn how to self-soothe and fall asleep on his own.

I did a bunch of research on different sleep training ideas and ended up really loving The Happy Sleeper approach. My best friend Lizzie’s sister used this method with both her children and it worked really well. I read the book, “The Happy Sleeper: The Science-Backed Guide to Helping Your Baby Get a Good Night’s Sleep,” and found myself learning much more than I thought I would. I wish I had read this book during my pregnancy, or at least during the first few months. They don’t recommend starting to sleep coach until 5 months but there were so many great ideas I could have been implementing much earlier on. For me personally, I couldn’t do an abandonment cry it out method and I liked that this book had a plan that seemed a little more gentle.

Sleep Training Advice for 6 Month Old

One thing that concerned me though was that Augustine is a very alert baby. I didn’t know how well he would take to this method. So many articles I read would say to, “Go in and pat and shush your baby until they settle down,” but that would never work for us. Augustine would continue to cry, if not louder, whenever I’d go into his room. I decided to do an in-person consultation with Julie Wright because I felt like I had specific questions about Augustine that I needed help with. I wanted an expert to help decode some of his behavior and give us more tailored guidance.

Meeting with Julie was the best thing we did. It gave me so much more confidence. She really assessed our situation, wrote out a detailed game plan, all the while assuring me that within a week Augustine would be sleeping better. I wasn’t sure if I could believe her but it was true. Within just a few days, actually, Augustine started going to sleep at 7pm on the dot. I’d put him down in his crib awake, and he’d fall asleep on his own. I can’t tell you how happy this made me! We had come from nights where I was back and forth going into his room from 7 to 11pm, trying to calm him down, and rocking him until he fell asleep. Now, he falls asleep on his own and sleeps for 3-4 hours at a time. It’s such a huge improvement! I really feel like this was the best sleep method for us.

The Best Sleep Training Method

There are so many important points in The Happy Sleeper, but the one that was really noteworthy to us was consistency. The consistency of having a set bedtime, and a routine that led up to it, were game changing. I think Augustine really thrives off that routine. If any of you are looking for a sleep coaching method I’d highly recommend this book. There are sections on co-sleeping, multiples, travel, sickness, older children, and even the time change! I know without a doubt that this is a book I will re-reference again and again. There are so many dogeared pages!

I also like that the authors talk about how babies don’t need to be “trained” how to sleep. They already know how to sleep because it’s an innate, biological function. Babies just need parents who can be nurturing but also structured and clear. Hoping Augustine’s sleep continues to improve and that the next milestone will be him sleeping through the night! Fingers crossed!


  • Leire Martinez

    Congratulations! only parents who do not sleep well know how hard it is

    • ah yes! It’s been so tough! But getting easier thank goodness!

  • Allegra Liu

    That’s awesome! So glad this is working out for you and you are all getting some rest. Thanks for posting about this. I’m sure to will help a lot of other new or future mamas.

    • Thanks so much Allegra!! It’s such a big improvement for us!

  • Good to know! Thank you for sharing:P

    Shall We Sasa

  • Katherine

    Go Augustine! This book is the BEST – I loved it so much too 🙂 xx

    • It really really was!! I can’t remember if you were one of the many that recommended it to me, but if so THANK YOU!!!

  • Michelle Joseph

    Glad that you’ve managed to work out something for little Augustine. I’m not a mum but I can just imagine. That lack of sleep for him and yourself must have been so brutal. 🙈

    Mich x

    • oh man it really really was!! We still have a ways to go (hopefully he’ll be sleeping through the night soon!) but it’s such an improvement!

    • Thank you Mich!! Sleep is so important!!

  • MissLilly

    as you know I really recognise myself in your words. that sounds like little Em. She’s really alert and a light sleeper (like mum and dad) so any noise and she’s up. She also had reflux to wake her up, other nights she’s really gassy. She’s 6 months now and she still wakes up 3 to 4 times and doesn’t sleep more than 3h in a row, for the last 3 weeks she was waking up almost every hour and taking loads to calm down. Naps during the day was a nightmare, but today she surprised me with an easy afternoon nap and she stayed for 2h in a row. I would say routine is the key. Putting her to sleep at night is now very easy, the problem is to keep her sleeping for a long stretch. Hopefully it will improve for both of us with time 🙂

    • yes fingers crossed! Em and Augustine definitely are similar. I have high hopes that they’ll figure it out soon. SO glad you had an easy afternoon today!! Routines have been a game changer for us too!

      • MissLilly

        Yes indeed! I’m planning to move her to her own room over the weekend since she’s really sensitive to noise, hopefully that will help

  • Kate Aragon

    I remember mentioning this book on one of your Instagram posts. I’m so happy sleep is improving in your home! The Sleep Wave has been working so well in ours (I also have a 6 month old) now we just need to fix the 5am wake ups! 🙂

    • Thank you soo much Kate for recommending this book to me!! (seriously what would I do without other moms?!) Augustine has been waking up around 5:30 lately too! So rough! Hopefully with the time change it will work itself out 😉

  • So happy to hear this method worked for you! My 10 month old has always been a good sleeper but has only slept through the night TWICE. As much as I would love that to be our goal, I think the goal just has to be that we all get some sleep around here 🙂 It can be so, so rough!

    • it really can be!! I’m looking forward to getting a full nights sleep again (hopefully sooner rather than later!)

  • shara929

    Is Augustine’s sleep still improving after implementing this method? I just read the book and I am curious how the first few nights were when you implemented it and if naps are also better. 🙂

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