10 Ridiculous Things Parents Will Do to for a Few Minutes of Sleep

This past week parenting publications everywhere commenced a full-on freak out about the new Lulla doll, and the fact that incredibly overtired parents everywhere were willing to shell out $100+ bucks for it. I’m still not quite sure why this is news, considering American Girl Dolls cost like $150 million dollars (not including clothes), and those have been around forever. Not to mention they don’t even breathe or have a fake heartbeat that makes your kid stay asleep longer.

Wait, what? Sleep longer?

Got your attention now, don’t I? And yep – you heard right. The Lulla doll (which blew through its original 5,000 doll release in less than a minute and sparked a full on eBay bidding war with the sort-of-ugly dolls selling for over $300 a piece) supposedly keeps kids asleep longer by simulating a parent’s breathing and heartbeat. The comforting noises are said to trick small children into thinking their parents are still in the room, and convinces them not to freak the eff out every 45 minutes.

Photo: Roberto Caruso
Photo: Roberto Caruso

Understandably, parents across the country (and around the world) are willing to do basically anything to get their hands on one. This is only surprising to anyone who has never had small children.

The news of the Lulla doll was perfect timing for me, a mom of a now 3-year-old who only recently started sleeping though the night, and a 5-month old, who appears to be following in her big sister’s footsteps.

Last week, after a particularly brutal night series of short naps, Dan and I agreed that sleep training would commence on Sunday. And not any of that no-cry, gentle training, soothe and repeat BS. We were ready to pull out the big guns. And by that I mean benedryl, err, sorry – I mean the Ferber Method.

You can save your outrage, anti-Ferber-ites. Ain’t nothin’ you can say that will convince me my child is being harmed by learning how to sleep. And also, it never happened.

Miraculously, in the days between deciding we were going to sleep train (which is similar to deciding you are going to go on a diet…you have to choose a start date like 16 times before actually following through) and us actually starting sleep training, I received something called The Zen Sack in the mail from The Nested Bean. (Yes, I got this for free and am reviewing it on my blog. No I wouldn’t have reviewed it if didn’t actually rock my world. You guys know me better than that!)

Zen Sack

When the Zen Sack arrived I was mostly just excited to get mail that wasn’t a bill. I feel like every time I check the mail these days I get another unexpected bill for something relating to Lucy’s birth. Last week I got a bill from the guy who held the door open for me on our 468th lap around the maternity wing.

Just kidding, but I wouldn’t be surprised if I did.

Anyway I took a couple pictures of the packaging because it was pretty cute. It’s basically a regular sleep sack with a beanie baby attached to the front (or back, you can wear it either way) that supposedly feels like a hand on your babies back or chest to comfort them throughout the night. Anyway I photographed it and then let it sit on Lucy’s changing table for 3 days because I was worried about changing up her sleep routine.


I was worried about changing up the sleep routine of a baby that hadn’t slept more than a 3 hour stretch in 3 weeks.

Motherhood really does mess with your head.

So 3 days later I finally got the guts to try it and OMG you guys, this thing actually works.

Lucy Zen Sack

Like, really WORKS.

I don’t believe in anything that claims to make babies sleep better. Seriously I don’t. I call BS on any and every person, product or brand that thinks they can make a baby sleep that doesn’t want to sleep.

As the parent of two non-sleepers I can tell you that the only thing that makes a baby sleep is when mom goes away and dad is in charge for the night.

That’s not a joke, BTW, that’s real.

But anyway, I was incredibly skeptical when I read the insert that came with the Zen Sack (which also has a swaddling version called the Zen Swaddle) stating that it had been proven to improve infant sleep. I rolled my eyes and thought, well I guess it can’t get any worse.

And then I put Lucy in it and laid her in the crib and went to sleep.


And I didn’t wake up for 7 hours. SEVEN WHOLE HOURS.

The first night in the Zen Sack Lucy slept from 730pm-230am. Then I fed her and she went back to sleep until 630am.

I was in shock. Complete and utter disbelief.

I wrote it off as a fluke and tried it again the next night.

Same thing. 730pm-2am, then 2am-7am.

And then again the next night, and the night after that.


We are now 4 nights in with the Zen Sack and I haven’t been this well rested since college.

Believe me when I say that I would never endorse a product that I didn’t actually think worked, no matter how many free ones they send me. Especially not a “baby sleep solution,” which we all know have been the butt of 90% of my jokes over the past 3 years. But this little bean bag blanket thingy is ah-maze-balls.


So go buy one and tell them I sent you so maybe they’ll send me like 20 more. And maybe they’ll make one for toddlers, too – so my 3 year old can stop screaming at me in the middle of the night that she has to go potty because a monster drank her milk and there’s a spider in the house 2 blocks away.

In fact, maybe they could make one for adults…like with noise cancelling headphones or something built in?  Now THAT I would join an eBay bidding war for.

Speaking of eBay bidding wars, here are 9 other ridiculous things I’ve ACTUALLY DONE in an attempt to get just a few freaking more minutes of sleep:

  1. Put my 18lb 10-month-old in an infant swing.
  2. Put Daniel Tiger on the iPad at 3am.
  3. Pretend to have food poisoning and sleep on the bathroom floor (for the record, my stomach DID hurt, I just wasn’t puking).
  4. Offer a significant other “favors” in exchange for naps.
  5. Take a “conference call” in the bedroom while my husband watches the kids downstairs.
  6. Put the noise machine in MY bedroom.
  7. “Accidentally” forget to turn on the monitor.
  8. Put black trash bags over the windows of the nursery I spent $1000+ decorating.
  9. Contact a sleep consultant (which, for the record, did actually help so maybe try this one if you’re really getting desperate).

So what do you think insanely overtired mommies (and daddies)…what’s the craziest thing you would do for a good night’s sleep?



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