This post about bedtime routines (and Hungry Caterpillar pajamas!) was brought to you by Gymboree, who provided a product sample to facilitate our review. All opinions are our own.
Of all the changes that came with parenthood, the one that rocked my world the most was the change in sleep habits. Bedtime can be a serious challenge, and one that differs with each new child that comes along.
For years, we struggled. Finn has always been a light sleeper, waking often to nurse and only really sleeping well when he was in bed with me. Elliette began sleeping for long stretches at 12 weeks, although she loves to sleep with Mommy, too. Our biggest challenge now is that we live in a small house and I stay up late to work, so we often end up with kids playing musical beds a few times each night. We never know where they might end up, and that doesn’t make for the most restful night’s sleep.
But, as with all things parenting, you learn as you go, and we’re getting better. Now, bedtime is an exercise in peace, comfort and ritual, and it’s working better than ever.
It goes a little something like this: run the bath, brush all the teeth, then put them in the bath. That was a suggestion from the dentist since Elliette has been getting pretty worked up about brushing lately and the bath seems to bring her back to happy.
Then, we rub both kids’ feet with lavender essential oil, which is pure magic and just about puts me to sleep, too! After the rubdown, you can almost visibly see the kids start to relax, so we choose pajamas and a book. This part is always fun, but it’s been even more fun this week since the new Eric Carle™ line of sleepwear has debuted at Gymboree. We’ve always loved The Hungry Caterpillar, and now he’s an even bigger part of our bedtime routine!
Not only is the story a big part of our sleep puzzle, but my baby girl’s lovey is, too! She’s relied mostly on her thumb since birth, but lately she’s pretty attached to her caterpiller. (Or callerpitter, if you ask her brother.)
He gets more kisses than Mommy these days…see?
She’s just tickled to see that her little green buddy is showing up on her Gymmies, and I’m happy to find characters from classic children’s literature rather than TV characters that come and go, with no real connection.
There are lots of other Eric Carle friends, too. Zebras, giraffes, a fox, even a flamingo. The Gymmies we know and love, featuring the illustrations they know and love – and great gender-neutral designs, so they’ll make great hand-me-downs from brother to sister!
It’s brilliant, really. Since bedtime rituals often revolve around storytime, what could be better than pajamas that reflect those beloved books? It’s like laying them down to dream at night, all wrapped up in their favorite story.
My son loves his polar bear Gymmies, but he’s made it clear he also wants a pair with his favorite caterpillar on them, too. (Luckily, we just got some Gymboree coupons in the mail!)
To make things even more fun, the Eric Carle collection also includes playwear, featuring lots of other characters from the books.
My Elliette just swoons over this colorful butterfly, who also happens to make a special appearance at Gymboree!
And you didn’t hear it here (Ok, maybe you did…) but rumor has it that Gymboree has some adult-sized Eric Carle sleepwear, too. I will be the first in line, since I read his books as a kid, too!
The best in children’s books teaming up with the best in sleepwear? You couldn’t dream up anything better. But, in a pair of Eric Carle Gymmies, you could certainly try.
What is your favorite children’s book?
Do you have a specific bedtime routine?