Musical Beds - Sleepless school nights • Featuring Slumberdown
I will admit we have a cosy bed. We have a king size big enough for the two of us plus a small one, we have a thick duvet whatever the weather, which feels like a quilted cloud nestled around your body come 3am, and brush cotton covers that are as smooth as silk. It's warm and cosy and the ultimate treat for our two young brothers.
They love nothing more than a night in our bed, with me. Not with Rich, he finds them too wriggly, like little hot water bottles with tentacle like legs that wrap around him like a spider's web. They like to be with their mama, quite literally on me, using me as a pillow, a safety net a cuddle blanket.
They love my mis matched pyjamas, my old bobbly t-shirt that feels familiar and loved.
I sit with them stuck to my chest with the light of the iPhone and a packet of baby wipes to take off my make up and try one handed to put my hair in a messy bun, the other pinned around them like like a protective shield. There's no bad dreams anymore, the horrors of the night terror phase have passed and they aren't waking up cold, they just like to be in our bed.
We had thought that it was just a phase, and every now and again we get a run of a good few nights with no footsteps down from their attic bedroom, no blurry eyes at our door and a little voice. But I don't think it is a "phase" I think they want to be close to us.
Starting school, being away from their home for much longer days, busy weekends seeing friends and family makes them crave time at home, ironically in their own beds. But not their own bed, our bed. We can be locked together for hours and hours and yesterday when the alarm went off, Sammy was still snoring like a grizzly bear. I crept to the bathroom, cleaned my teeth and as I tiptoed back in, he stirred, stretching his arms up high above his head and cried out. "I put my arms out for a cuddle but you weren't here!"
I look at the big boys going into school and wonder how much longer my boisterous boys will long for a night in bed with their mama. It doesn't feel indulgent to let them creep in, it feels quite special. Like we have this secret code, a look they give me, with such twinkle in their eyes. A look that is saved especially for me, that only we get to see at 5am, or 6am or 7am whenever they first start to blink like newborn kittens.
Even the dogs are desperate to get in on the action!
Over the summer we had lots of days out and a good few trips away and they stayed on and off with my in laws. They love it with them, they have their routine and a couple of times they have just flopped when they came home, almost depressed to be back!
And when we get them home we always let them have a treat night in our room. We drag their stinky bed up to the bedroom but by 3am I feel a couple of paws on the duvet, begging to let them up on the bed.
I am such a pushover. But you can literally hear the happiness, a great hurrumph from Moose as he collapses into the goose feather!
So we now have the perfect bed for dogs and boys! With our princess and the pea set up. Hotel like pillows, which cup your head like you are being cradled as a newborn, we've even decided to make over the bedroom next to give us the space it deserves! No more bare boards and unloved walls without our favourite photos and pictures, baskets of clean washing strewn all over the floor.
It's a real haven for our small boys and we want to make it a haven for us too, not somewhere to crash out in when you close the laptop lid. We foolishly ripped up the carpet when we moved in, in my hurried attempt to sand and paint the floorboards. I hired a sander, struggled and gave up. And for almost a year I've looked at a half finished floor which still has the remnants of the underlay backing all around the skirting. So a quick makeover is in order before the winter sets in.
Our Slumberdown Airstream Mattress Topper has saved us from buying a new mattress, at 6cm thick it feels like we sleep on a giant pillow! Our little hot water bottles are even feel less of a problem as it's Airstream Technology is designed to keep you cooler through the night. So instead of hundreds of pounds on a new mattress we can spend that on carpet!
It's a half-way measure – a sort of temporary makeover – until we have the budget to strip the lining paper, touch-up the plaster, and re-paint properly. Our heavy dark wood furniture that we bought to fit our old bedroom dominates the smaller room and detracts from the beautiful old beams that span the width of the room. Would it be too stark to blast the walls with white? Be brave and paint the dark wood? Persevere and paint the floorboards? Help!
And do you know I'm not going to rush them out of our bed. I'm going to enjoy these cuddles, those midnight glances and wry smiles. My baby went to school this month and already any last hint of the toddler years is vanishing before our eyes.
So if their happy place is our cosy bed, how wonderful. Yes I could do with an uninterrupted night, and so could they, the new school routine of swimming and sports every day means that bedtime has been brought forward almost an hour during the week, but it takes seconds for them to settle and they sleep through til morning.
Has anyone else found their routine changing since they started back at school? The new regime after those weeks and weeks of summer holiday laziness have hit us hard! There just doesn't seem to be enough time, especially on days when the boys stay for after-school club until 5:45pm, to squeeze in homework, reading, and relaxing! In bed and asleep by 7pm is tall order for our pair of boys in their twin beds, and the novelty of starting school is keeping Ollie chatting way past lights-out time.
New school mums – are you finding the same? What's working for you?
So what would you do? March them back or let them cuddle into you?! I don't know whether I'm helping or hindering their precious sleep by letting them snuggle in. When Sammy started creeping in at around 3 years old I never thought he'd still be doing it at 6. Should I save this "treat" for a Saturday night? Or can it not be a treat, can it just be what it is, that they want the warmth, the security and the love.
Sometimes I think it would be an idea to have a double bed in their room too!
I'd love to know your sleep routines in your house, is it musical beds with you too?!
I am a Slumberdown Mum this year, testing their range of products and sharing our family sleep patterns and problems! You can find Slumberdown's wonderful products in the following Stockists.