Take your kids outside so they can sleep at night

In March, we moved out of the city and into the ‘country’ next to the Cuyahoga Valley National Park to be close to nature. My husband and I love hiking new trails and just generally being outdoors.

When Elijah was born, I read an article about how to straighten out newborn’s internal clock to be awake during day time hours and asleep at night. The key to setting a newborn’s internal clock is being outdoors at least 1/2 hour before noon. It’s the morning sunlight and activity in the morning that resets their clock. When babies are in the womb, their clocks are the opposite of ours. We rock them to sleep during the day with all of our movement. Now, we’ve gotta get them moving during to the day to stay awake.

So, my son was born in January but that didn’t stop us from taking daily walks. My husband came home at lunch time from work and we’d bundle up Elijah and take a walk in the stroller. People thought we were crazy or adventurous at best but we were just desperate to get some sleep! Guess what! It worked.  The picture above is my sweet Elijah at 3 weeks bundled in his stroller.

That being said, I still feel that my kids are better behaved, sleep better, more cooperative, and happier when they spend time outside during the day. I’m so happy that warmer weather is finally here. As the weather warms up, we spend more and more time outside.

After dinner tonight, my kids wanted to go outside again. This is after we were outside all afternoon. We finally came inside after they were both splashed with the mud that THEY made. I knew that they would sleep better if they got the last bit of energy out of them so we headed back outside. They headed straight for their new Backyard Discovery playset which was no surprise. They love all of the different activities they can do on this playset.

After swinging for a while they headed for the sandbox. Kids love sand! We put about 7 bags of sand from Home Depot in this sandbox but I think we need another 3 – 5 bags to make it what it needs to be. I’m not sure if I didn’t buy enough or if a few bags escaped via kid’s shovels. I wish there was a magic trick to keep sand in the sandbox. Can you tell in the below picture that my kids are making it “rain” sand?

picture of Backyard Discovery SandboxWe love our Backyard Discovery Patriot playset. It is really like a small miracle. Anything that can keep 2 kids happy for extended periods of time is definitely Heaven-sent. My kids really do enjoy digging and building sand castles in the sand. Tonight, they kept burying their toy bear in the sand and then letting him break free after he was done hibernating for the winter. I feel like that is exactly what we’ve done this Spring. The moment the weather warms up above 60 degrees, we burst out of the house and into the yard!

picture of kids play together in a Backyard Discovery SandboxWe ended up being outside an extra 1/2 hour past bath time tonight because they were having such a good time in the sandbox. My bet paid off in the end because once they took a bath to remove at least another bag of sand off of them, they were good and tired. Story time and tucking the kids end took no time at all and they were in bed and sleeping right on time! You gotta love nights like that!

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Founder and Lead Blogger at Akron Ohio Moms
Cindy is the top Akron Blogger with her own take on awesome brands for families, where to vacation for families, a beat on local activities and family fun, a knack for getting moms to share , and a house that is always 2 weeks away from a complete remodel!
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3 thoughts on “Take your kids outside so they can sleep at night

  1. TammyLyne says:

    we are the same way..once the weather gets warm we are at the park, bicycling, playing ect. When my little one was born I did the same thing up during the day at the park or if cold the mall, by time she was 3 weeks she was sleeping through the night 🙂

  2. Donna says:

    We are the same way, Outside any chance we can get. I love the outdoors and love doing lots of fun stuff with my kids, Hiking, going on walks at the park, biking, playing nature games.Or just hanging out in our own back yard. There’s so much to do. I love to watch them learn and explore all the nature around them. And I agree the kids sleep so much better after a fun day outside. And so do I! 🙂

  3. Penny Myers says:

    We do the exact same thing with our kids! If it is nice outside; we are outside hiking, biking, playing, exploring, etc. Guess what? It stays with them when they get older. My 23 year old will see the sun and ask my 10 year old if he wants to play basketball, go golfing, go fishing, etc. I love the idea that the great outdoors is our classroom!!

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