Routines for babies and toddlers can go out the window over Christmas holidays. A lot of times we pre-empt stuff that might not actually happen. We can build it up to be a bigger deal than it actually is. Just breath! There might be loads of new places and faces but if you have a start as you mean to go on you should be fine.

  1. Stick to Routine. Stick to your routine as much as you can. That way kids can know what’s coming and it’s a sense of security for them.
     
  2. Nap Times. Some people are obsessed with having their kids sleep in a certain place. Sleeping in the buggy for naps every so often isn’t the end of the world, just make sure they get their snooze in.
     
  3. Visiting Family. If you’re able to, travel when it’s naptime for your little one so that they can get their snooze in then. For an older toddler who doesn’t nap and is a bit more active in the car try playing games like eye-spy, bring some food and take some breaks so they can have a run around at some stage along the way.
     
  4. Overnight visits. Try to do the same sort of stuff that you do at home. It’s easy to get caught up and say ‘we’ll bring them into the bed this time’. Try to stick to normal routine otherwise, you might have some problems getting them back into their own beds but for a few days, it’s not the end of the world either!
     
  5.  Visitors. Even with visitors who will be keen to see the kids as much as possible try to get children to bed in a reasonable manner and at a reasonable time. They’re not going to get up late just because they went to bed late.

Niamh O’Reilly is a sleep coach and owner of thenursery.ie. She’s also a baby and childcare guru, a ‘parent nanny’ and the answer to many a weary parent’s woes. A regular in the Irish media, Niamh’s book, ‘No Fuss Baby & Toddler Sleep’, is now available to buy now.