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Christmas Sleep Tips and Tricks

Whether you are going away for Christmas or not I know it is a super exciting time of year and even more so for the children. At the end of the day Christmas does revolve around them mostly, but what happens to their sleep?


Those excited toddlers want to stay up later to perhaps catch a glimpse of Santa or perhaps you are going away for a few nights and they are going to be sleeping in a new bedroom.

Read on to find out some simple ways you can keep bedtimes on track over the holidays!



My 5 TOP TIPS to make bedtimes during the Christmas period a little easier...


  1. INFORMATION IS KEY! Toddlers like to know what is coming so talk to them about the holidays and that you will be going away for a few nights. Talk about the travel day, how you will get to your holiday destination, bring out the kids atlas or maps if you have them. Have a countdown chart so every day they can score of another day and see holidays are getting closer!

  2. GET VISUAL! Show your children pictures of the place you are going to be staying. Jump onto the hotel website and if you have plans to visit the area jump on those websites also and show them. If your child can visualise where they are going then they have a better understanding of what is coming!

  3. TAKE THE DIRTY SHEETS! Yup! You read that right! Taking the same sheets your child has recently slept on and use them in the travel cot or on the hotel bed as this will be familiar from home. The smell and texture is comforting to them. Don't forget their favourite comforter also and the white noise machine.

4. DON'T FORGET THE GRO CLOCK/HATCH No one likes an early start at the best of times but nor do we like it on holiday! Pack the Gro Clock or The Hatch (The Hatch is my fave!)



. 5. DON'T FRET!

It is the holidays and sleep will go a little pear shaped, it always does and that is OKAY! As long as you have your bedtime time boundaries in place when you return home then sleep will return to how it was before you left! And of course...Santa's Little Elves are always watching...!




Remember routine! The bedtime routine that is! We know children like to know what is coming next and bedtime routine is a time to wind down from the days excitement, perhaps read a Christmas story and relax. Of course there may be days when you are a little late home and you can maybe skip the bath but do try to have a calm 10-15 minutes in your child’s bedroom winding down. 2. Avoid over stimulating super exciting activities just before the bedtime routine. If you child gets super excited we know they will just want to stay up a little longer and have a harder timer winding down. There will be tears before bedtime and this can make the whole process a little more stressful. 3. Got to take a car ride to your holiday destination? It may be best to get up have breakfast and have some outdoor fun, stretch those legs, get some fresh air in everyone’s lungs and then jump in the car. Travelling during sleep times will help the journey be a little less stressful and noisy for all! 4. Pack a heap of snacks for the journey! A bento box is great to have a selection of snacks. Dried fruit, energy balls, finger foods are great for car journeys 5. Get back into routine as soon as you can as you do not want to throw off that great rhythm you got going! 6. Refrain from indulging the children with sweet treats and chocolate coins 2 hours before bedtime. Sugar highs at bedtime are no fun and then there will be a crash! If they get the munchies try offering some leftover turkey (which as it happens contains some of the magic amino acids we need to help induce sleep…tryptophan) a nut butter on wholemeal toast or some banana slices. ​

I wish you all the happiest of holidays, Peaceful nights to you all, Rachael, Your Paediatric Sleep Consultant ​ xo


(Disclosure, links in this blog are affiliate links. Should you make a purchase it will not cost you any more. I will just get a few pennies from the sale. Thank you)




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