When I was practising yoga during my pregnancy, I remember the instructor kept telling us, “the child lives in the mother’s aura 3 years after it’s born.”
I thought that this was an interesting thought at the time, but now I have a 3 year old girl and I am convinced she has been in my aura since she was born. Pregnancy is an incredible thing. Your child begins as a part of you and slowly grows until it no longer needs your nourishment. I think the meaning of my Yogi’s statement was that it takes time for us to separate both physically and mentally.
Our three year old has been sleeping in our bed since she was born. She was a fussy newborn and extremely colic. It was the easiest solution for us, as parents, to have her between us during the difficult times and somehow it’s been that way since.
I once read some research where scientists monitored a baby's heartbeat while they were sleeping. They observed both babies that slept on their own in a bed in their own room and babies that slept close to their parents where they could feel the presence of the parents.
The heartbeat of the babies that slept in their own room had consistently higher heart rate and it was interpreted as stress by the conductors of this study. This research stuck with me and is probably the biggest reason why I haven’t pressed the issue of her sleeping in her own room and bed until recently.
Knowing the benefit of the child being close has proven to help us with our child’s development, but it is has also become clear that it’s probably not the healthiest for my marriage to always have your children in between you. It’s easy to lose the intimacy with your spouse when there is literally always something in between you. She turned 3 a few months back so we feel it’s time for her to sleep on her own.
Comforting closeness is also important for kids, just like adults so we tried the Lulla doll. She has taken extremely well to the doll -- as in, the first moment she held the doll she began to mother it.
She treated the doll as if it were her child and showed the signs of caring for a baby right away. This was amazing to see because it normally takes a little bit of warming up to a doll before she acts so motherly towards it. With the Lulla doll she was behaving differently from the start.
I think it gave her a sense of caring for someone and it made her feel more independent. It is incredible, she has had the doll for a week and she is now requesting to sleep in her own bed with her new sleeping companion. Truly remarkable. She seems to be creating her own aura now and that is a beautiful thing to watch.
And it does wonders for the marriage!
Photos: Owen Fiene
We received an email in May, last year, from a happy customer of our one of a kind sleep companion, the Lulla doll. We receive many of those emails every week, telling us how well the doll works for their child, be it in sleeping longer, falling asleep or as a comforting companion. We appreciate these stories so much and they truly make our work worthwile! All of the stories are unique and special but some stories become extra special to us. Jody's story has become one of those, especially since she has been updating us since we received the first email in May.
We want to share Jody's story with you as it shows how Lulla doll can help in the long term.
"My sweet little boy (14 months) is not a "sleeper". I had been getting up with him several times every night and as a working mom, I was exhausted. I bought Lulla doll out of sheer desperation. While we haven't had any miracles (like instantly sleeping through the night in his crib) we have made improvement! He will now sleep for longer stretches of time before becoming restless and goes back to sleep faster and easier. The best part is he LOVES his "baby night night" and instantly bonded with the doll. I am hoping we continue to make progress as he is definitely comforted by his lulladoll."
We love getting honest feedbacks. Often it takes some time to get adjusted to the doll, as with all new things. We therefore encourage our users to give the doll some time, although it doesn't do any "magic" in the beginning and even if it seems like it's not helping at all. Of course all children are different, just as we adults are, and we do not guarantee that the doll works for everyone. However, we have seen Lulla helping children more and more over a few weeks period.
"I just wanted to send you an update. About a month after I sent my original comments, my son started sleeping through the night for 12 hours! I think that the Lulladoll was key to this success. On nights when the battery dies or if Lulladoll needs washing, he is much more restless until things are restored to "normal". He even puts himself to bed by getting his blanket, paci, and "baby night night" and telling us he wants "night night". The difference this has made for me as a working mom has been amazing. I get much more rest and am able to relax in the evening knowing I will likely get a good night sleep. Thank you for creating such an amazing product. I recommend Lulla doll to all of my friends with babies."
We were so happy hearing from Jody again when we received this second email in August. Not only were we happy that her son was sleeping better but also to hear that the doll was helping Jody feel better. We feel that it is so important for parents to keep doing what they love to do after having children. It is vital that we keep our "identity", that we are not "just" a mother/father as well as being able to have fun without our kids. For some of us it's important to keep engaged in our hobbies, for others it's important to keep meeting friends regularly and for many of us it's important to continue working. Whatever it is that we want to do it is vital that we don't feel guilty leaving our children with another caretaker, whatever the reason is for feeling that way, or that we are too tired to be even able to go out of the house. We believe Lulla might help in these cases. Jody is one of the working moms that has told us how the doll has helped them. In her case with feeling more rested and ready to go to work.
"Almost 2 and still loving his Lulla Doll!
Thank you for this wonderful creation that has turned my nighttime nightmare into a dream! Most nights he goes to bed with very little fuss and sleeps all night with his baby (10-12 hours).
After receiving the third email from Jody we decided to share her story with you all. We truly feel that everyone should be aware of the fact that there CAN be a solution out there for you and your child. Whether it is Lulla or something else we highly recommend that you read honest reviews from parents that have tried those things. And from working moms to other working moms: We REALLY love our children, but we also REALLY love going to work, especially after a good night's sleep.
- RoRo team
Lulla imitates closeness with its soft feel, humanlike features and soothing sounds of real-life breathing and heartbeat. Lulla's unique design is based on scientific research on the positive effects of closeness, especially the sounds of heartbeat and breathing. These are:
• Falling asleep
• Staying asleep
• Self soothing
• Longer naps
• Comfort on the go
• Transition to their own room
• Switching to a bigger bed
• Feeling more safe and comforted
… and so much more.
We at RoRo will be at the 2017 LA Baby Show, on November 4 and 5, at the Magic Box at the REEF, in downtown Los Angeles with our beloved Lulla doll in booth #1-34. It is a family-friendly mega-event featuring everything to do with maternity, baby, and toddler – from top products to trusted parenting experts – the LA Baby Show will be welcoming thousands of expectant and new parents from Los Angeles County, and the surrounding counties, and beyond! We are very excited to be a part of this.
You want to come see us? You can order direct through this link, and enjoy 25% off your ticket with discount code BabyShowV.
We did a little interview for the LA Baby Show that you can read here:
For someone unfamiliar with Roro, how would you describe the company’s mission and core offerings?
RoRo is dedicated to helping babies and their caregivers feel better.
Tell us about the company’s background. When did it start and how has it evolved since then?
The company name RoRo originates from the Icelandic word “ró” which means calmness and comfort. RoRo was founded in 2011 around a single idea: to make a product for babies that imitated closeness when their parents needed to be away. Indeed, the idea of the Lulla doll was born when our friend had her baby girl prematurely and had to leave her alone in the hospital every night for two weeks.
Lulla doll is the first product of the Icelandic company RoRo. Lulla doll is a truly unique sleep companion for preemies, babies and toddlers. Lulla doll aims to promote a more stable heartbeat and breathing that can result in better quality sleep, longer sleeping periods, less stress levels and overall wellbeing. For some, the doll also works to help babies calm down and to fall asleep.
What sets the Lulla doll apart from other baby toys ?
Due to its comforting abilities, the Lulla doll has been praised by parents around the globe as it’s hailed a lifesaver and priceless, with one parent commenting, “The Lulla doll has made a huge change in our lives. We have all had a better night’s sleep and wake up feeling rested and happy”. The Lulla doll has also won numerous awards and just recently was voted as the Best Baby Comforter in the Loved by Parents awards. Thoughtfully created by an Icelandic mother, with the guidance of health professionals and based on a number of scientific research studies, the Lulla doll is truly one of a kind. Using naturally calming recordings of heartbeat and soothing yoga breathing sounds from a mother at rest, the Lulla doll ingeniously imitates closeness, a vitally important feeling that has been scientifically proven to improve sleep, stabilize heartbeat, reduce stress and improve well-being.
Unlike many other comforters available that use mechanical white noise, music or sonar sounds playing in short stints with the aim of helping children fall asleep. The Lulla doll aims to help children stay asleep with unique real life sounds that run for up to 8 hours. The Lulla doll is purposely created using neutral colors, with a super soft cotton outer layer, the Lulla doll is not only machine washable and gentle on skin, it will also absorb scent from caregivers, giving children an added feeling of comfort and security.
What can parents expect from RoRo at the LA Baby Show?
The Lulla doll has been wowing parents around the world, having sold out globally last year, which led to a frenzy on eBay where it sold for more than six times its retail price. Lulla doll has been featured in various media such as the Today Show, US weekly, Popsugar, Babble, Good Housekeeping & Country living. Parents at the LA Baby Show will be able to meet Lulla up close and purchase on a special offer for the show. The team at RoRo is visiting all the way from Iceland is looking forward to present Lulla and also new product lines coming out in the next year.
We want to start this blog by thanking everyone that we met at the LA Baby Show! So many people visited us at the booth and we once again saw how many are interested in our product and what a great invention Lulla doll is. We had such a great time answering all your questions and being able to introduce our product in LA.
We are also thrilled to tell you that after the show Lulla doll was chosen by the LA Baby Show (selected by a panel of industry experts) as one of their honourable mentions in their best in show picks this year!
At the LA Baby Show we hosted a fantastic giveaway. Two gift baskets full of wonderful Icelandic products to be enjoyed by the whole family were up for graps and we drew two very happy winners at the end of the show. The winnings went out to the expecting Ines Susanto & the mother of two Roxanne Morris. We collaborated with the Blue Lagoon, iglo+indi, Tulipop, Villimey, Amikat and OmNom.
Here you can read more about the companies that participated and the products they gave:
Villimey started out as a hobby at the kitchen table over twenty years ago. Today it is a thriving cottage industry, its lovingly formulated salves largely derived from traditional Icelandic remedies, passed on by word of mouth from generation to generation over hundreds of years.
All the Villimey products contain specially selected Icelandic herbs that have been hand picked in the pure, untainted environment of the West Fjords. Villimey products contain no added preservatives, fragrance or colour. The natural preservative properties are derived from the herbs.
Villimey gave a Charm Set for children and a Belly Charm for the mom, total valued at 161 USD. The Baby Charm is a particularly mild and comforting massage oil that nurtures sensitive skin and the Baby Bottom Charm is known to be effective for minor burns, skin abrasions and eruptions. The Belly Charm is known to be effective for the prevention of stretch marks during pregnancy.
iglo+indi is an Icelandic childrenswear brand founded in 2008 by fashion designer Helga Ólafsdóttir. With strong Nordic roots, iglo+indi is all about crisp colors, unique prints and playfulness. “I love designing kids wear. Every child I meet is an inspiration. I admire their honesty, purity, humor and their natural joy of life.” says Helga about her inspiration. The iglo+indi AW17 main collection is entirely organic and made with certified organic cotton.
iglo+indi gave a beautiful PUFFIN PEARL GIFTSET valued at 92 USD. Our native Iceland is the breeding home to over half of the world's Atlantic puffins, with a total population of between 8 to 10 million birds each year. Approximately 60% of the world’s Atlantic Puffins breed in Iceland.
This giftset is GOTS certified which requires it to contain at least 70-95% organic fibers. GOTS is the strictest certification for organic material on the market today and include rigid controls of, among other things, chemical use, salaries and working conditions for everyone involved in the entire manufacturing process, from raw material to the final product. These products are designed in Iceland and made in portugal.
Tulipop is an Icelandic character based lifestyle brand founded in 2010 by illustrator Signy Kolbeinsdottir and marketing mind Helga Arnadottir.
The magical world of Tulipop is inhabited by quirky and playful characters who appeal to all those who are young at heart. The Tulipoppers are all quite flawed but still lovable – just like us humans. In Tulipop traditional gender stereotypes are challenged, and mutual respect for nature and each other is given high priority.
The world comes alive in a variety of high quality products, ranging from collectible vinyl figurines and plush, to lamps, stationary and tableware.
Tulipop gave the winners a stylish embossed cutlery set valued at over 37 USD. A three piece set containing a spoon, fork and knife, perfect for kids up to 10 years old. The set comes in a beautifully illustrated box.
Amikat loves everything magical, colourful, adventurous and fun!
The first collection came to life after peeking into the world of two little boys who love jungle animals and woodland creatures.
They each picked their three favorite animals and their mom, and Amikat's illustrator and designer Íris Halldórs, had them dressed up in watercolours and took the animals to the medieval Venetian Carnival.
Amikat is located near Reykjavik, Iceland, in the beautiful old town of Hafnarfjörður.
Their prints will always aim to lighten up a mood and add a little spark into the world!
Amikat gave an artwork valued at 50 USD. This dreamcatcher artwork makes sure that all the good dreams go through to its owner!
Omnom is a small batch, artisan chocolate maker based in Reykjavík, Iceland. It was founded by Kjartan Gíslason and Óskar Þórðarson in 2013. As a chef, Kjartan was already familiar with dark chocolate from a single origin, so he started experimenting with flavours and textures that could be achieved in small scale batches. He teamed up with his childhood friend Óskar and they started bringing the finest cacao beans from around the world to Iceland.
Omnom started as an experiment, a challenge, to see if they could truly understand chocolate and how to make it. Very early on in their experiments, they received positive feedback from their tastings of bean to bar chocolate. In little to no time, they set up a small production lab inside a converted petrol station in Reykjavík.
Omnom’s mission is to make the best chocolate possible using the highest quality ingredients.
Omnom gave a selection of their favourite products valued at 64 USD. The package includes: Chocolate Covered Malt Balls with Lakkrís + Sea Salt, Hazelnut chocolate, Caramel + Milk chocolate, Sea Salted Almonds + Milk chocolate and Lakkrís + Sea Salt.
The beneficial powers of geothermal seawater were first discovered in the early 1980s in Iceland and Blue Lagoon Limited was founded in 1992. The company was dedicated to the research and development of the water's primary elements. In 1993 Blue Lagoon's first 5 products were introduced. Initially, the line consisted of products for treatment purposes as the lagoon had become famous for its healing effects on the skin. Today, Blue Lagoon skin care encompasses a dynamic spectrum of products that cleanse, boost, nourish, and heal.
Harvested by way of a zero waste process, Blue Lagoon skin care adheres to the highest mandates of eco-friendly sustainability. With patented formulas and elegant packaging, Blue Lagoon skin care enables you to experience the wonders of the Icelandic Blue Lagoon anywhere. Alls products are Paraben-free, cruelty-free, microbead-free, eco-friendly and vegan.
Blue Lagoon gave the winner a set of skin masks valued at 217 USD.
We want to thank all of our fellow Icelandic companies for their great gifts, all the staff at LA Baby Show for their hard work and for everyone attending this great show! We hope to see you all in the future, hopefully with Lulla doll in hand :)
Another sleepless night? Those can be hard to get through. The baby cries and cries, no matter what we do. Here are some advice that we have found helpful and tips to help your baby sleep better and longer.
Some nights are harder than others. Those long, dark nights when the baby cries and nothing seems to work. I've been there. Oh, my, how I've been there. In fact, most parents have. The mornings after are even worse, when you sit by the kitchen table and all you can do is hope that the second cup of coffee will wake you up. But then the baby smiles and giggles and you forget all about it.
However, there are a few things that you can do to help your baby sleep better and longer. Most of these you're probably doing already. Somehow, these things seem to pass on from mother to daughter, only to be solidified with scientific research. After all, we know our babies, right?
When I had my first my mother came to me and said: "Make sure to you keep schedule. Babies love routine." And I still remember when my baby girl was 4 months old, after a week of sleep deprivation, I phoned my mother up, exhausted. She calmed me down and asked what our sleep routine was like. After a short pause, she explained to me what my sleep routine had been, one she had learned from her mother.
By setting a short and simple sleep routine from about three months, you teach your baby when it is time to go to sleep. Half an hour before I put my baby girl to sleep I turned off the TV and bathed her. While we bathed I sang or talked to her, then put her into her pajamas. After I had put her to bed I sang a lullaby and kissed her. All in all, this took about 30 minutes. And by golly, did it work!
A consistent bedtime routine will gradually let your baby know that it’s time to go to sleep. Finish the bedtime ritual in the room where your baby sleeps.
My mother-in-law is a piece of work. She raised four boys mostly on her own (my father-in-law was a seaman) and she's as tough as they come. There was one thing she taught me that made wonders to my baby girl's sleep habits. And in fact, it's so simple yet brilliant.
Make daytime feeds social and lively, and night-time feeds calm. Your baby will learn, simply by watching your behavior the difference between night and day. This will also help your baby set her body clock.
She was adamant in that there were no deviations from this, because mothers needs their sleep as well. And I can imagine, having a lot of boys running through the house would make my hair turn grey, not to mention if I was also sleep deprived.
Make daytime feeds social, night-time feed calm and quiet.
Here's something I found out for myself! Ok, you've probably discovered this as well. I was young when I had my first, so wet behind the ears (weren't we all?) and I had no idea how, why, when or what of anything. I had my mother on speed-dial and I swear, I could sometimes hear her rolling her eyes on the other end of the line. When I called her to ask for how long I needed to boil water, she firmly told me to relax. Otherwise I wouldn't enjoy these first months of the baby's life.
So, I gave it a try. Whenever my girl started crying in her crib I would be at her side to see if everything was alright. Some nights I even lay awake, just to hear her breathing because I was terrified she might stop. But, I needed to relax and take it easy. And I did.
What astonished me was, that my baby didn't need me as much as I thought she did. Sometimes she would wake up and fall back asleep on her own. Other times she would wake up but settle again by herself. If she cried, sometimes all she needed was to feel the touch of my hand.
Give your baby chance to fall asleep on her own. Wait to see if she settles by herself.
Ok, this is perhaps something new to you, but did you know that babies have incredibly strong sense of smell? I did not know that when I had my first. Your baby can recognize you by your smell, so having something near it that has your smell can actually soothe the baby. How awesome is that? Just keep in mind, do not have anything loose in the crib when they are little. Safety is important.
What's also interesting is that studies have shown that the sound of heartbeat and breathing can calm and sooth babies. After all, they've spent up to 9 months in the womb, listening to their mother's heart, voice and breathing. The Lulla doll is designed with this in mind.
Renowned pediatrician Dr. Harvey Karp and specialist in the field of infant sleep thinks white noise is vital. "Even for easy babies, white noise is a must. It makes good sleep even better. And it helps prevent the sleep disasters that may ruin your life between four and twelve months!" He says it is very common for an infant’s sleep to suddenly fall apart after threee to four months of age. Apparantly because a) the calming reflex fades away, b) babies become super social and wake up when they hear little noises in the middle of the night, c) they are weaned off being swaddled, and 4) they are teething. He says that all four factors can lead to a surge in sleep problems. However, he claims that using white noise can help sidestep these problems.
Use scent and white noise to calm and sooth the baby.
Now I have three kids. And I've come a long way. I no longer phone my mother every 90 minutes or so and I've come to trust my feelings and instinct. I guess that ist probably the most valuable lesson that I've learned. I've spent so much time with my kids, I carried them inside me, I've changed their diapers and feed them. I know these tiny human beings.
But I've learned more. I don't need to do this all, my husband helps me and we share the responsibility. I kindly ask him... ok, to be honest, I kick him under the covers and growl: "It's your turn!" when our youngest wakes up in the night, i.e. when it is his turn. It also helps teach the baby boy that there isn't always food involved.
And I admit, I sometimes break my own rules. Sometimes I don't follow the sleep routine and just cuddle up in our bed with the baby boy. Simply because I need it. Just keep in mind, if your baby is six months or younger, the crib is the safest place for her to sleep.
Tune in to your baby's needs. Let your partner share the role of comforter.
I hope that these advice and tips to help your baby sleep better and longer have been helpful. I'm not a doctor or specialized in this field. I'm just a mother like you.
- Contribution by guest blogger Anna
The psychologist Erla Björnsdóttir, who released a book about sleep this year, is a specialist in sleep problems. She has a Ph.D in medical sciences and spent years studying the effects of sleep deprivation and insomnia. She is the founder of the Icelandic company Betri Svefn, literally meaning better sleep that provides specialized cognitive behavioral treatments and education on how to improve sleep for all ages. Erla is also a mother of four and recognizes, like all of, us how it is to have children that do not want to sleep or have difficulties sleeping, at one time or the other. We ask Erla: What are the main symptoms of childhood sleep problems and are they different by age?
“Sleep is very different depending on age. For the youngest children they usually do not sleep through the night and wake up often or stir, which is quite normal during the first year of life. When the children grow older they can start fearing sleeping alone. Children get nightmares, are afraid of being alone or sleep walk. They can also have night terrors where they wake up terrified and remember nothing about it the next day. Some children simply have trouble falling asleep and take a long time to settle in the nights. Many children also wake up often at night and some even climb into their parents bed. There are a lot of different things that affect the quality of sleep for children, but in many cases these are things they automatically grow out of. Especially sleepwalking, night terrors and multiple wake ups during the night. Sometimes, however, they need a little help to sleep better. As an example, if they suffer from fear of sleeping alone or having trouble falling asleep in the evening" says Erla. The question is though: When do sleep problems stop being normal and become a problem that needs to be addressed?
"The most important thing to consider is whether this affects the child's well being and behavior throughout the day. When children are tired they usually show different symptoms than adults. We get sleepy and tired, but children are more likely to be annoyed and restless. In some cases they can also show symptoms similar to ADHD behaviours. It is difficult to estimate when sleep problems are progressed outside of what would be considered not normal. You must take into account the impact this has on the child's daily life, as well as the family's" says Erla, adding that sleep problems can cause behavior in children that is usually just written off as misbehaviour.
"It's this effect on their mood that makes it hard for parents and the whole family. Moreover it can have a lot of impact on parents if the child can not sleep alone and always sleeps in bed with them. Children’s sleep problems can easily interfere with the parents' quality of sleep."
Erla however points out that there are various things that parents can do to promote a more quality sleep for their children. "Number one, two and three is establishing a routine for their sleep. Children should always go to bed at the same time and wake up at the same time. Preferably also on weekends. It is helpful to start settling them down to calmer activities one or two hours before bedtime. As an example, turn off smart devices and the television. Rather take a hot bath, read together or listen to quiet music to calm body and mind. Children are naturally very active. In the evening they may be watching cartoons that are colorful, or playing exciting video games, and it's not good to have that kind of stimulation just before they need to go to sleep. Then of course, the diet also has an affect on sleep. It is important that children eat healthy, eat regularly and do not ingest much sugar or drink caffeine. Some children and teens drink soda and energy drinks that can also negatively affect sleep" says Erla.
"Make your child's sleep environment cozy and comforting, so that the child is more likely to feel at ease when it is time to go to bed. Firstly, it is important that the lighting is comfortable and not too bright. It should be dark in the night, but if the child is afraid of the dark you can have a soothing and faint night light or give the child an item that makes them feel more secure, such as a comforting plush toy. Something that gives them a sense of security and comfort. It is also recommended to keep the bedroom in order. For adults it is recommended that the bedroom is only used for sleep. However, for children it is different as their bedroom is usually their play and study area. Just make sure there are no toys on the floor and not a lot of stimulus that can interrupt them. Electrical appliances should not be in the bedroom and it is not advisable to let the child fall asleep from the television. Rather, the sleep routine should be a quality moment, where a parent and child read together, sing songs, pray together, or do other activities that help them wind down. It's also good to encourage children to sleep in their own room when they are old enough. It's not a good solution to allow children to fall asleep in the parents' bed and then carry them to their own bed in the evening. As the child grows and becomes more independent you want the child to learn to sleep in their own room and feel comfortable sleeping in their room. However, what is most important is routine and a healthy lifestyle, that the child is exercising and is well nourished. This as we know applies to adults as well, but children have more of a need for routine than we do."
Erla says that young children rarely sleep in on weekends, even if they go to sleep later than usually the night before. Therefore, is is not advisable to allow them to stay up in the hopes of them sleeping longer the next morning. “In fact, they are usually up early in the weekends and end up being more grumpy and restless if they do not sleep well enough. The routine can often be irregular during weekends and children get sugary treats. It is therefore necessary to make sure that while you are enjoying the weekend, it is not necessarily the best for the child to go to sleep late. Of course, older children and teenagers can handle better staying up on weekends and are more likely to sleep in. I am rather referring to children in primary school and younger” Erla adds.
If all else fails, where can tired parents turn to if they can not turn around their children's sleep problems? "Here in Iceland Arna Skúladóttir, a nurse at The National University Hospital of Iceland, has been writing books and giving parents help with the youngest age group. If you suspect anxiety or other underlying problems with older children that may explain sleep troubles, you should talk to a child psychologist. It may very well be that anxiety is causing sleep problems, especially if the child is also experiencing anxiousness during the day. If the problem is physical, for example if the child snores a lot, I recommend taking the child to your GP" says Erla.
We here at RoRo would also like to add that when sleep has become a problem in the household we recommend to seek out advice with your pediatrician or sleep specialists. There are numerous sleep consultants online that provide great services and can also help recognizing situations where you need to seek medical or psychological assistance.
Erla herself has four lively and energetic children of her own. We ask if getting her kids to bed has always been a smooth ride?
"No, not always" Erla confesses and laughs. "However, I think this has improved with every child, so to speak. I have learned a lot and matured since I had my first child when I was only 21 years old. At that time I was spending a lot of time getting my first to sleep. My youngest, who is three years old, has always gone to bed at 7.30 pm and fallen to sleep right away, just like clockwork. I think it has a lot to do with routine and us sticking with it. I also have older children and we are a little more relaxed with them. As an example during our summer vacation, my 11 and 13 year old were allowed to stay up longer and then they would sleep in longer. Of course, I try to keep all such irregularities to a minimum because I know how important this is. Especially that they get enough sleep. I try to adhere to these principles, but of course sometimes that does not always work, just like in all homes I think" says Erla.
Erla with her husband Hálfdan and their four beautiful children.
*Article originally published in Icelandic at: www.mbl.is
Fast Company is one of the world's leading progressive business media outlets, with a focus on innovation in technology, leadership, and design. Fast company released a feature about our Lulla doll, telling parents how to obtain the gift of sleep with purchasing our one of a kind sleep companion for their little ones. We are thrilled to be featured in such a prestigious magazine and proud of how much we have grown in the past year.
You can read the full article in Fast Company here.
With the winter well underway, we wanted to put together a list of key items you can buy for every new or parent-to-be.
Being a new parent is exciting and nerve-racking enough on its own—imagine throwing the cold weather and long nights that winter brings into the mix. We’ve put together some great gift ideas to keep winter babies snuggly and comfortable all through the season:
Maternity/baby wearing jacket extender:
Jacket extenders are not only an amazing way to keep your little one warm and close to you, but are also a great way to baby wear while you’re getting your holiday shopping done.
A sleep aid is another key item especially for holiday travels. Keep baby happy and soothed with a portable sleep aid like the Lulla doll. Using its velcro straps, you can attach the Lulla doll to your stroller, car seat, carrier or leave it with baby to snuggle and play with while you’re out and about.
The Lulla doll can also help in aiding your little one sleep well through the night—especially when travels and parties may affect baby’s sleep routine.
Onesies, socks and jackets are essentials for any new babies. A new baby can never have enough warm and cozy clothes—any parent can agree. Warm, long clothes are even more important in the winter months to protect baby’s sensitive skin. Here in Iceland we let our babies sleep outside from a very early age in a baby carriage, during their day time naps. We know this sounds crazy but this is an old tradition as some also believe that it is good for their immune system. The fact is though, that they just often sleep much better and longer in their carriage outside in the fresh air. They sleep snug in their fleece onesie suits like this one from the Icelandic company 66° North. This is a must have here in Iceland for every parent. Some prefer wool and As We Grow, an awarded Icelandic brand makes these beautiful wool overalls that are just perfect for keeping warm.
Skin care products:
Baby skin is sensitive and best not use any harsh products. However, in winter their skin can become dry or they can develop uncomfortable rashes in any season. Villimey is an Icelandic company that makes organic skin care products that are perfect for sensitive skin. We love their products and have all used them for our kids. We particularly recommend their Baby Charm set, that is a must have for parents. Baby Charm is a comforting massage oil that nurtures sensitive skin. This mild blend of specially selected herbs includes camomile and chickweed, long considered to calm and soothe the skin & colic as well. In the set they also include their special Baby Bottom Charm, known to be effective for minor burns, skin abrasions and eruptions. The salve is calming for the skin and soothing for burning pain. Protects the skin against moisture and bacteria. Research also shows Baby Bottom Charm to be a particularly healing salve, that has an antibacterial effect and protects against skin damage. Sounds to good to be true right.
Portable bottle warmer & breast warmers
With the winter comes holiday travelling. Portable bottle warmers are perfect for those on the go. There are many available on the market that plug right into your car’s adapter and heat bottles up to the perfect temperature for your little one. For breastfeeding moms breast warming inserts are greatly helpful to keep warm and dry. By keeping the breasts warm it can help to prevent clogged milk ducts. The Swedish company ImseVimse has a passion for eco friendly and quality products. They a great selection of washable breast warmers woven out of silk and wool.
We hope that these winter baby essentials help you when shopping for the new and parents-to-be on your list this holiday season!
My daughter is a happy, energetic 7 year old- She rarely gives us trouble and really, she’s always been like that. Whenever I share my ‘when she was a baby…’ tales, I tell people that I didn’t go through any ‘challenging new mom phase’. Which is true. Sort of. But then I look at pictures of myself during that time and realize how challenging it actually was. What’s the term people tend to use – ‘death warmed over’? That was me.
Tired doesn’t describe how I felt. Sure, it was a joy being a new mom experiencing all of the wonders of a newborn but when it came to sleep, we just couldn’t find a routine that worked. And as result, none of us slept much.
We tried everything.
We swaddled her tighter than a drum (she likes to sleep like a starfish!), we tried the cry-it- out method (I think I cried harder than she did), we tried the ‘rocking & shushing’ method to make her feel like she was still in the womb (I got a headache – she got motion sickness). And because she didn’t sleep, I didn’t sleep. We eventually got into a rhythm but it took almost a year. A full year of little to no sleep. They always say it’s harder than it looks. I wish had listened. I wish I had known.
I wish I had known that when they say ‘nap when they nap’ is advice you should actually listen to. I wish I had known not to stress over about it as much as I did. I wish I had known that eventually we would figure it all out. I wish I had known.
And I wish I had known about the Lulla doll! Granted, it’s only been on the market for a couple of years now so it wasn’t even an option when my daughter was first born, but I sure wish it was. For the past 5 years, our daughter snuggles with her favourite ‘stuffy’ and that is how she finds comfort. And she sleeps through the night. I wish I had known! Had the Lulla doll been around when we went through our struggle, perhaps our story would have been different. Of course, it’s never too late to keep a good thing going...
- Contribution by guest blogger Marnie
Mashable is a global, multi-platform media and entertainment company. Mashable is the go-to source for tech, digital culture and entertainment content for its dedicated and influential audience around the globe.
They recently featured us in an article, highlighting how our Lulla doll is “specifically designed to be the next best thing to being held by a parent.”
You can read the full article in Mashable here
Photo credit: From London to Brooklyn
There are many things that need to be thought of and prepared for before a new person comes into the world. One of the things that many feel is good to prepare in timely manner is the hospital bag. Especially since this new person doesn't tell us when he/she will exactly be arriving!
When preparing what to take to the hospital it can be good to talk to friends that have gone through this process before. Mommy groups (or pregnancy groups) also often share good information and Google can be handy, as in many cases. We also feel that it can be helpful to talk to professionals within your area or preferably within the hospital. It is different between countries and even cities/places what the hospital offers for the mother and the child.
However, in order help you in creating a somewhat ready list of what to bring to the hospital, we have put together a list of what we at RoRo brought ourselves and what our friends and the company's followers have told us they brought.
We recommend adding as much as you can to the bag early on (for example from week 35) but keeping a note on top of the bag with a list of things you are still using and can't pack already. It's also helpful to tell your partner that it is his/her job to pack those last few items when the moment comes, as you will have enough to think about at that moment!
We, of course, feel that Lulla is an essential item for the hospital bag. Here are some other things you might want to bring:
Your own birth playlist (might want to find out what kind of player is available)
Lip balm (this is a MUST)
Comfy clothes for the trip home
Bath rope and pyjamas
Underwear and/or sanitary pads/pants (if not provided)
Breast feeding clothes including a bra
Socks and slippers
Toothbrush and cream
Wet towels for the face or other cleaning products for the skin
Hairbrush, shampoo & conditioner
Other cosmetics, such as deodorant and hair products
Lanolin cream (can be used for more than the breasts, for example dry skin)
Powerade and/or other drinks and food
Massage oil (good to prepare some helpful massage tips for the partner)
Charger for the phone
Camera/video recorder if you own one
Money for vending machines and parking (in Iceland we have to pay for parking)
Reading material (or something else to do if things are going slowly)
Bathing clothes for the partner
Yoga ball/roller (some hospitals provide this today)
Towel (if the hospital doesn't provide that)
Hair stings and elastics
Extra clothes for the partner
Necessary papers and birth plan
Diapers (unless the hospital provides that)
Gauze pads (remember to used pre-boiled water for these) or baby wipes
Clothes for the trip home (consider weather conditions)
Baby car seat
Pacifiers (some hospitals don't recommend using those until going home)
Carrier (for new born)
Have fun packing!
- RoRo team
Whether by land, sea or air, traveling with an infant can be overwhelming at times. If it’s just a weekend trip to visit family or a week-long vacation that includes a connecting flight, there is a lot to keep in mind. You need to keep routines on track, keep baby safe, pack double and triple of many things and all the while – try to enjoy yourself. Is this really possible?
Traveling with baby doesn’t have to be a headache. If you plan in advance and plan for the ‘unexpected’ you may find you can catch a bit of ‘R&R’ after all.
Keep your destination in mind: is it a foreign country? Do they have the same supplies and necessities your local pharmacy carries? Are you staying with relatives with children of the same age? Asking these types of questions as you get ready will help you determine just how much – or little – you will need to pack.
Babies rely on the comfort and love of their mom and dad so give them lots of love and cuddles while traveling. Provide them a bit of ‘comfort’ from home as well by bringing something small from the house. Their favorite blankie and the Lulla Doll can easily be added to a diaper bag for easy access for bumpy flights or tucked into the car seat for long drives. The softness of the Lulla Doll will bring comfort to your little one and the vibration and sounds won’t disturb anyone nearby but more importantly, keep baby content.
Extended travel can be challenging for anyone, especially when it involves a full day (and night!) of driving or one connecting flight after another. When possible, plan ‘breaks’ in your travel to stretch your legs, get baby outside for a walk in the stroller and fresh air. Bring a blanket that can be laid out on the floor at an airport or somewhere where you can have some fun playtime in between the chaos of getting to your next stop.
Everyone needs to ‘refuel’ when traveling. Keep energy levels up by packing healthy snack options for the entire family. Including YOU and baby. Still nursing? Many rest stops, airports and travel centers provide family-friendly washrooms or nursing stations for a bit of privacy. Keep a nursing cover in your diaper bag for easy and private feeding no matter you might be.
If you’re traveling with baby, it often means you’re on your way to somewhere fun. The beach? Grandma’s? A family-friendly resort? Despite everything you need to keep in mind and everything you need to do to prepare, be sure to find the time to enjoy yourself and enjoy these special adventures and experiences with your little one.