Monday, September 15, 2008

Now I lay me down to sleep

When we were growing up, it was always stressed to us how important sleep was. Mostly from Mom. She had 5 kids, so obviously, getting enough sleep ranked pretty high on her list. I remember thinking it odd that she would actually want to take a nap in the middle of the afternoon, and I vowed that when I was all grown up, you would never catch me taking a nap. Ever. Who wants to sleep when they can be up playing?

Except, when you are 4 years old, you fail to realize that mamas aren't playing. Especially when they have 5 kids. Working themselves ragged is more like it, and that 20 min. nap during the afternoon might be the only time they get to slow down all day.

I only have one kid, but for the record, I have totally changed my position on afternoon naps.

Anyway, back in the day, there were things that would happen, both outside and in, that had the potential of waking us up too early from naptime. Tractors going by, neighbors mowing. Ringing doorbells and phones. So Mom solved this problem by running noisemakers and box fans to drown out the noise. She ran them at night, too. Ah, that soothing white noise...that was all it took to put us to sleep.

When I moved away, the love of the box fan had been firmly implanted within me. Of course, it wasn't too practical to run a fan at college with 3 roommates living with me, so I learned how to deal with it and fall asleep on my own. Then I moved again, and got married.

And I found out, rather quickly, that the love of the box fan does not abide in my husband. In fact, he thinks that running a fan for noise is a purely silly idea. A waste of electricity. And instead of lulling him to sleep, it apparently has the opposite affect on him.

For me, it doesn't just have to be a fan. I like any kind of constant soothing noise...our waterfall outside, the dryer, whatever. He hates it all, and has to have utter quiet. If the dryer is on, he goes and makes sure all possible doors (all two of them) between our room and the laundry room are shut so that the hum is muted.

The summertime is the only time that he relents and agrees to a fan, because he gets hot. So from about April until October, I get to have my white noise. It is glorious...I sleep like a baby, and the sounds of motorcycles and helicopters (we seem to have an over-abundance of both swirling around our area) are beautifully muted.

And now that I am a mom, I totally get why my mom ran the fans for us in the first place. There is a lot of noise that happens during naptime, even in a seemingly quiet house. But my hubby is dead-set against me running any kind of fan or noisemaker for Savannah. "She'll just get used to it, and won't be able to sleep anywhere else." He sort of has a point.

But I am curious...is this just a weird thing that my family does, or is there anyone else out there that likes to have some nice soothing noise to put you and your kiddos to sleep?

And if I am alone in this, make me feel better by telling me some other quirky thing your family does. Please?

26 comments:

Anonymous said...

Now that we are parents, we have been trying all kinds of tricks. We didn't get a white noise, but that thought definitely crossed our minds. I think we're making our son dependent on lullabies though. Dan filled up ITUNES on the computer and we set his laptop next to Ethan's bed every night. It has pretty much become Ethan's music box. So, now I think I just might be getting dependent on the Baby Einstein lullabies. Oh and I guess I also do have the white noise of our loud air conditioner. It blocks out all of those little Ethan noises I really don't need to hear! If he really needs me he'll cry louder than the air conditioner. haha :)

Lizz @ Yes, and So is My Heart said...

We love white noise. Two of the kids have a sound machine that sounds like the ocean. The baby's sounds like a rainforest. We run the humidifier in our room. So, you are definitely not alone.

THE ROOST said...

That is SO funny.... You just described me in your post. I grew up with the box fan....I always ran a fan for my kids to sleep and they got good long naps. I just traveled with it and bought one for the grandparents home. They all sleep with them now and I do too! Even Mr. Perfect has one! There is just to much to drown out if you don't :-) Sorry hubs

Casey said...

Totally with you on this one. Always have to have a fan or noise of some sort. It takes me a long time to fall asleep so I do not like to be awoken unnecessarily! :) And we have a Ocean Wonders noise maker for Jaron. He falls asleep at night to the synthetic sound of ocean waves! :)

Jenn said...

We use ceiling fans for the older boys and Joel and myself. Lauren gets a box fan to drown out the noise of 3 brothers!

Tracy said...

We need a sound machine because our house backs up to a road that is busier than what we thought it would be when we bought our house. We are often jolted out of bed by people gunning their engines. It is like nails down a chalkboard in the middle of the night. My mom brings a little fan to block out the noise when she visits.

Rachelle said...

So Kerry said you and I shood meet...I am a CFNI GRAD of 1997. What is your CFNI connection?

SarahHub said...

We play the same song over and over and over ALL night. People think we're crazy, and we probably are, since Evie is still a terrible sleeper.

Jamie @ Purposeful Pursuit said...

I never did a fan for my kiddos, but I have to have one going in my room every night!

Queen to my 3 Boys said...

Just today I was thinking of the irony of the children not wanting naps and the adults wanting them. *sigh*

I used to run the dishwasher. Now we have a new, quiet dishwasher. Hate the quietness...although the salesman thought it was quite the feature. *wink*

We've just decided...the children are each getting a fish tank. You know, lights in them, bubbling sounds. Tell your hubby you want a fishtank for your little one - for the responsibility of having a pet, of course. No wasted electricity there!

Rachelle said...

You will have to tell me your sisters last name so I can see if Phil remembers her. Good to connect with you. I love your blog! I am going to add you to my blog roll if you don't mind?

Rachelle said...

It's me...last time I promise...did your sister play keys? He remembers her if she played keys....

Krystal said...

You are sooooo not alone! Just yesterday when my husband went to get Griffin up from his nap I commented about how long it takes to get him up (or put him down) because of all the noise makers we have to turn off (or on). He has always had a noise maker. Since the beginning of summer we have had an fan in his room. And for the past month we have had croup twice so he has a humidifier now in his room. So we have 3 noise makers at the moment. I have been seriously thinking about buying box fans for EVERYONE's room! We have several friends that use them in their bedrooms!

SO NO you are no alone! We are right there with you!

Thanks so much for checking in on us. We had no damage to our home! We had one house in our neighborhood that had a huge tree on their house. He looks like it cause a ton of damage to it. But nothing at our house. We were just with out power for 28 hrs. But we still have friends in this area without power. Yikes!

I use a Digital Canon Rebel XTI. I absolutely LOVE my camera! My hubby has to tell me to put it down sometimes!

As for eating Griffin up...I could to! He is my chunky monkey! When I took him last week to the doctor for our 2nd round of croup he weighed 28 lbs...he isn't even 15 months old yet!

Have a great day! I look forward to getting to know you and your sweet family!

Krystal in TX

Marci @Finding Joy in the Journey said...

My boys totally fall asleep faster if they have music going. Lily at 10 still needs her radio. I too prefer the fan and seem to sleep better when there is one running.

We do turn off everyone's radios when we go to bed. They don't wake up right away, but Dax still ends up in our bed at some point!

I personally think siestas for moms should be written into our contracts!

Elena said...

I love white noise too. My mom didn't run a fan for us kids to go to sleep with but she did use a box fan in the summer. When I turned 40 I started having trouble sleeping I guess because of my hormonal change. Anyway I started running a fan and I would fall asleep quickly. My daughter loves white noise. So I do run a fan for her at night to fall asleep but I shut it off after she has gone to sleep and she does fine.

Lisa@verybusymomwith4 said...

I just keep my kids very very busy so when it is finally time to climb into bed, they are out! It works the same for me too ;)

Jennifer @ Taking My Time said...

I'm glad you brought this up because Luke could benefit from it. He cries at bedtime lately... and I'm worn out. I love fans and white noise and just hadn't used it for so long that I forgot about that tried and true method.

Oh, and thanks for the comment. I'm feeling okay, not wonderful. I'll tell you more about it sometime. Between that, school, and a lack of blogging material, things just aren't happening.

Thanks for checking on me! You're a sweetie :)

Genny said...

I'm SO with you. I have to have white noise to sleep. When I used to travel a lot, it was always hard to fall asleep in hotel rooms because it was so quiet. I'd have to turn the bathroom fan on! LOL.

Amanda said...

i'm definitely a fan girl...but not for the noise...for the air movement. i HATE to get hot at night...but insist on being under a heavy blanket...thus the fan!

Chel's Leaving a Legacy said...

Girl, you got a BUNCH of response on this one! :-)

We don't use anything in particular...hubby and I are both the kind that when our heads hit the pillow, we're OUT.

But your does have a point. Kids do tend to "find" ways to put themselves to sleep and they get used to a particular way. But I've known lots of people that have to have their white noise.

And as for a nap, I am FAMOUS for my 20 min. naps. Seriously, not 18 mins. or 22 mins; it's always exactly 20, and I feel like a new woman!! :-)

Blessings From Above said...

Your family is not weird! My mom always had a fan running when/if she napped while I was growing up. Now IF I ever get to nap (which is not very often) I like to have a fan running as well. But, for some reason, I can not sleep at night with a fan on. So maybe I am the weird one?!

Colored With Memories said...

our girls' white noise fans travel with us wherever we go. if they don't fit in the suitcase for a particular trip, we just buy them at our destination.

hopefully it won't annoy the heck out of their husbands. i need to add that to my prayer for God's mate for them...must like white noise.

IA said...

I remember reading an article on white noise sometime when I was pregnant. The author was saying we shouldn't keep it so quiet around the house with a newborn, or babies for that matter, because in the womb, they're used to so much noise from our body processes. So with us, we didn't drown out the noise that comes along with daytime, i.e. cars and trucks rumbling by the busy road by our house, drilling sounds from construction works nearby, etc. Didn't really matter to our son whether it's noisy or quiet anyways. He liked to play from birth, and no matter what we did when he wasn't ready to sleep, he wouldn't sleep.

I can identify with your husband...I like it completely quiet when I sleep because my sleep is always very light. I wake up at one touch, or just a slight noise.

Kelley said...

When I was little and had to share a room with my sister I would run a vaporizer all night so the hum would cover her "breathing loud." My kids, who all share rooms, also can't stand the sound of loud breathing siblings so they run fans to cover the noise. I hadn't ever really thought about it but I guess not everyone has these kinds of problems...

Wendi @ Every Day Miracles said...

Wish you could see the big smile on my face. :) I make fun of Dave because he is adicted to the air conditioning - for the noise. Even on the cool nights we've been having he has to have it on. :) I laugh at him, but I have gotten pretty used to the sound myself.

Gretchen said...

Not to start any marital discord, but I'm siding with you. :) If the fan works, use it. I think we often make things harder on ourselves than they have to be because we overthink them. At least I know I do. :)