Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Baby Monitors {Plus a Giveaway!}

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Baby monitors

When Brayden was a baby, we lived in a small space with no bedrooms. When he was about six months old, I finally had the bright idea to put him in the large bathroom to sleep so that our open concept house didn't go on lockdown every time he had a nap. It was all one floor and a small space overall, so the next part is comical. I used a baby monitor. Yep. I was never more than 50 steps away from him, but I felt compelled to use a baby monitor so I could hear every deep breath he took. And of course you know if I was using a baby monitor, it was up as loudly as it could go. Clearly I love baby monitors.

My love for baby monitors has not diminished over the years. As our family has grown, we have moved into larger homes, and the home we are currently in actually warrants a baby monitor. If my baby cried, I wouldn't be able to hear my baby without the monitor. 

A baby monitor definitely is a double-edged sword. When you can hear every breath your child makes, then you probably aren't sleeping as well as you could, and your baby likely isn't, either. For example, when Brayden was a baby, I prided myself on being at his side the second he made a peep in the night. I am a very light sleeper, and I have found being a mother with a newborn only makes me more light. 

As more babies came my way, I came to realize that babies make noise while sleeping. Lots of noise. While sleeping. This means that many times, those peeps were made while asleep. I learned with my girls to wait a bit before jumping to pick them up. I would wait and make sure they were actually awake and not just making noise in their sleep. So having a baby monitor can lead you to reacting too fast to every noise your child makes

As time went on, new things came to be common for the nursery list. Among those was the video monitor. If the baby monitor was something to magnify sounds, the video monitor added a whole new dimension to the parenting picture. I came to realize things. Things like, times where I thought a baby had quietly drifted to sleep and then woke 20 minutes later crying were actually times the baby was awake for 20 minutes before crying. That is a game changer because it changes how you approach waketime in the future. One way means waketime was too long, the other means it was too short. That is helpful and vital information! 

It also helped me know with Brinley, my fourth baby, that often she cried in her sleep, even as an older baby. She didn't just do that as a newborn. She did it as a "veteran" baby. Now, I had been around the parenting block enough times to know to not rush in right away, but the video monitor helped me know to not rush in at all. She was still asleep. She would cry for a couple of minutes and then quietly continue sleeping. 

Baby monitorsSome people like to stop using monitors as soon as baby consistently sleeps through the night, which isn't necessarily a bad idea. It will probably leave you sleeping better at night. But like I said, I like baby monitors. Brinley still has both her sound baby monitor and her video monitor in her bedroom. If you worry about removing the monitor all together, you can always turn it way down. And I get it! Monitors can disrupt your sleep.

When McKenna was a baby, I had to put the monitor as far across the room from me as possible, on the lowest volume setting, covered by a pillow, and I slept with ear plugs. I still heard her just fine. My husband never heard her before I did. So I get the trouble monitors can cause with sleep. If you live in a home with a setup where you can ditch the monitor, it can definitely be helpful to your sleep!

By the way, let me throw  plug in for the baby monitor we use for Brinley. It is a VTech Safe & Sound Digital Audio Monitor. It still works as well as it did the first day we got it (four years ago). Also, something very helpful for me is that it doesn't send every peep over the monitor. It waits until the sound is consistent. So you don't hear unless your baby is really, actually crying. Fabulous. 

I have come a long way since my days of using a baby monitor basically needlessly. Despite any sleep I may have lost with the monitor use, it has been instrumental in me recognizing patterns and deciphering cries for my babies. It has helped me get to know them faster and address their needs with more accuracy. So I am a big believer. 

For fun today, we have a giveaway! The prize is a $50 USD gift card! You can use that $50 to buy a monitor or something else you need for your baby. 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

“This giveaway is a partnership with Nakturnal, with a prize of a gift certificate”

Entry Rules
  • You must enter the giveaway to have an entry.
  • You must fulfill the requirement to enter. Commenting on this post is mandatory.
  • Entries will be accepted until 12:00 AM October 7, 2016.
  • The winner will be randomly selected through Rafflecopter.
  • The winner will be announced sometime after the winner is chosen. I will email the winner.
  • Once the winner is announced, you will have one week to contact me or another winner will be chosen. Be sure to check back and/or check your email. The only thing worse than not winning is to win but not realize it in time.
  • I will not use your email address for any purpose other than contacting you if you are the winner (and FYI, I don't have access to the email addresses except for the winner).

25 comments:

Swest said...

My son is 4 and I still use a monitor!

Laura said...

I didn't need one for my daughter since we had our rooms so close to one another. That said, I did have one on hand if I was going to be on another level of our house for a while. With my son, I used one if I was on a different level as well as to help differentiate between his crying and our very similarly sounding space heater!

Kim Dreisbach said...

We LOVE our video monitor. We have one in each of the kids rooms (3 kids). For the baby I love it to see if he is really awake, 2 year old, see/hear how she is sleeping, 3 year old watch her in her big girl bed and see if she is sleeping-also helpful for her to talk to us to say if she needs to use the bathroom during a nap or at night.

AmyB09 said...

We had a small house with our first two, so I only used a monitor when I was outdoors, but I have used a video monitor during roomtime to see what they were up to!

Leah C said...

We do use a video monitor. We registered for an audio monitor, but my brother and his fiancee got us a video monitor instead, and we love it. It's fun during the day to watch how she settles down for a nap, but it's really nice at night, to peek and see if she's sleeping or not.

JC Overfield said...

We use a vtech now, and actually would like a video as our 1 year d transitions sleep crib and bed in the future.

Krysten Traylor said...

We have a video monitor for my son and an audio monitor for my daughter. I love them both!

Ginger Meyer said...

We use an iP camera as our monitor. It was only 70 bucks on amazon. It has video and audio and you can talk into it. You view the video from your phone which is nice. I have two, one for my 5 month old and one for my 2 year old. I like being able to accurately know how much sleep they are getting.

Erin Hoffman said...

I've used a video monitor since our little guy moved into his own room. I'm obsessed with it. Though I keep it on the lowest setting for sound, I just like checking in on him after we put him down for the night or for nap. It's part of MY bedtime ritual to kiss his pudgy little cheek via the video before I go to sleep.

Catalyn Crookston said...

At first we had an audio baby monitor but it was so hard for me to figure out what was happening with my daughter; if she was sleeping or not, why she was crying. So we switched to a video baby monitor. I loved it. It gave me such peace of mind. Once my daughter became a toddler we switched back to the audio monitor because my she developed a fear of robots (except Wall-E and Eve) and no matter how much we explained or showed her how it worked and that it was mom or dad using it she would freak out when it moved. Thankfully by then she was well into established bed routines and schedules that it wasn't necessary.

EK said...

We used audio-only monitors with both of our kids; we turned the volume down as they got older and slept more consistently.

Aubrey said...

We use an audio only monitor with both of our kids. I have always heard good things about video monitors though.

Corie said...

My son is almost three and we still use a video monitor. I don't have the video on at night though. Just the sound. I am addicted. I admit it. Can we start a support group? Baby two is due in January and I will use a video monitor with her too.

GingerG said...

I still use a monitor with my toddler. I just feel like it's necessary. Plus when she sick it's nice to be able to see her and make sure she's fine.

Ginny said...

I have 4 kiddos and never used one but my youngest are 1 year old twins. They are interacting more and have actually been thinking a monitor could actually be nice to not get out of bed to see if someone is actually awake and trying to wake the other or transitioning and if I should go get the one making noise to not wake the other up!

Ashley said...

This was such a helpful post, it definitely makes sense to not run in after every little peep! Love your blog :)

Tricia Dukes said...

Using a monitor was what finally let me LET my daughter sleep! HA! I don't know where we would be without ours! And I still use it 4 1/2 years later!

Mara Kreiling said...

We used a monitor off and on with our twins. I think if I had bothered to buy a second camera I might have used it more regularly 😊

Andrea said...

We use a video monitor for our seven month old but nothing with our four year old. But it's time to work with him on stopping his thumb sucking so we might need to rethink our approach.

Megan and Gregg said...

We use an audio monitor and turn it down low, but I do like having it since I can't hear across the house!

Jensen Journey said...

I have the vtech audio monitor and love it, but have been thinking a video one would be nice. But felt silly thinking I needed both. Thanks for your information it really helps in making the decision.

Sophie said...

I use a monitor during the day for naps but not at night since our room is right next door!

Elle said...

I do use a baby monitor. I don't see any downside to having one and they provide peace of mind.

Sarah said...

I use a monitor, but mostly for when I'm downstairs or outside with older kids during baby's nap time.

Alicia Espinoza said...

I used the same monitor for all my kids. It had volume or lights to show how loud they were crying. it was battery operated and could be plugged in. This made it easier to travel with when visiting family and friends. I had peace of mind and could enjoy myself because I had it with me.

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