What To Give A Sleep Deprived Parent for Christmas?!

Nearly two years ago I wrote this post about sleep deprivation and how I was over talking about it.

Well guess what…I’m still talking about it.  So NOT over it at all then.

title of post sofa

Things came to a head a few weeks ago when I realised just how ridiculous it was trying to function on the small amount of sleep I was getting.  I decided to make a concerted effort to help everyone in our house get some more sleep.

Now things are still far from perfect on the sleep front but improvements have been made since I took this shot of my sleep tracking app a few weeks ago.

sleep tracking

Seeing as one of the key principles central to mindfulness is self-care.  And fundamental to self-care is sleep…I knew something needed to be done.

So what did we do?  Well this post isn’t a blow by blow account about sleep training – you can find loads of excellent posts from other parent bloggers about that.  This is about three obscure things that have helped some people in our house get more sleep of late.  These may help you.  Or bearing in mind I am trying to stop myself buying pointless ‘stuff’ for people they may be a useful pressie or tip for a sleep deprived friend.


I know this is a bit random and I was extremely sceptical at first too.  But since putting halved onions in our daughters’ bedroom, twin 1’s cough has not disturbed her half as much at night and has definitely meant less wake ups.  Just be prepared for your house to whiff a little!

A Nightlight with a Red Glow

None of our children like a pitch black room so we’ve always had some light for them at night.  However, I only just found out how good red light is for sleep and I can confirm it does seem much more restful.  The girls have some Ikea red heart fairy lights and the eldest has a plug-in nightlight with a red bulb which I picked up easily and cheaply from Amazon.  So from now on try to avoid night lights that are blue and white lights and encourage others to do the same.

A White Noise Machine

I had thought white noise was just for infants but we bought a white noise machine for our son’s room and it has definitely helped him.  He seems to find the silence of the night scary.  I remember being the same too.  The good thing about a machine as opposed to an app is that he has control of choosing what type of noise is played – he tends to pick sounds of the ocean or rain as opposed to ‘pure’ white noise – and can choose when it’s on or off during the night.

Of course the best thing you can give someone who is sleep deprived doesn’t cost anything.

It’s simple – give them a chance to catch up on some sleep by looking after their kids for a couple of hours.

Make it clear that they should use that time to rest NOT to catch up on chores and personal admin and you will be someone they will feel immense gratitude towards.  Kindness and gratitude are two cornerstones of mindfulness after all :-).

What helps people to get to sleep and stay asleep in your house?

I’d love to hear some more tips and tricks.  Please fee free to add them to the comments box below.

Here’s wishing everyone a good night’s sleep!

handwritten Hayley

The Pramshed



  1. December 5, 2017 / 8:12 pm

    These are great tips babes, love the onions tip, red lights…fascinating! Glad things are improving

    • onamindfulmummymission
      December 5, 2017 / 9:20 pm

      Thanks poppet xx

  2. December 7, 2017 / 10:09 pm

    Have never heard of that onion tip before!! #ablogginggoodtime

  3. December 9, 2017 / 8:26 am

    Ouch, those were some sketchy nights sleep! Thanks for the tip on red night lights – my son (who can take up to two hours to go to sleep of an evening) has a red night light that we don’t use. We’ll give it a go tonight 😁

    • onamindfulmummymission
      December 9, 2017 / 9:09 pm

      Oooh good luck xx

      • December 9, 2017 / 9:29 pm

        Ha, turned out he’s been playing with it, the batteries have run out! 🤔 Ah well…

        • onamindfulmummymission
          December 10, 2017 / 10:25 pm

          Typical 🙂 xx

  4. December 9, 2017 / 8:33 am

    Something to stop my husband snoring would be really appreciated! #thesatsesh

    • onamindfulmummymission
      December 9, 2017 / 9:08 pm

      Ha ha ha! xx

  5. December 9, 2017 / 10:12 am

    I remember those days so well and talking about lack of sleep in the staff room with another mum colleague! Haha it will get better one day, I promise you! Until then, I love the idea of the white noise machine. I have also used onions in the past and they really work! Good luck….almost end of term! Xxx #thesatsesh

    • onamindfulmummymission
      December 9, 2017 / 9:00 pm

      Thank you! I hold on to the comment that it WILL get better – hee hee xx

  6. December 9, 2017 / 8:16 pm

    I’ve never heard of using onions to reduce a cough! I am very lucky that sleep isn’t that much of a problem for us, normally it’s me laying awake because i sometimes struggle to switch off mentally. #satsesh

    • onamindfulmummymission
      December 9, 2017 / 8:59 pm

      Ooooh then you my friend need some mindfulness in your life xx

  7. Caroline
    December 10, 2017 / 7:57 am

    I have been using onions since my twins were babies (5 now) and have colds and blogged noses. I was skeptical but it does seem to help. Depending on what age the kiddies are half a banana with their last meal of the evening seems to help as full tummies help to sleep. (Never worked on my son as did not like bananas 🙄)…good luck. Even at 5 it’s still not a full night sleep but it’s defo better….

    • onamindfulmummymission
      December 10, 2017 / 10:24 pm

      Thank you so much for the comment and the banana tip xx

  8. December 10, 2017 / 4:48 pm

    Lots of empathy here for you right now- thankfully we do ok now for sleep but there was a time of every 30 minute wake-ups throughout the night which went on for months… those were bleak days and I really feel for any parent going through a similar stage. The onion trick is great- will try that one out! #thesatsesh

    • onamindfulmummymission
      December 10, 2017 / 10:23 pm

      Thank you for the kind words and so pleased to know these days do pass! xx

  9. December 10, 2017 / 8:26 pm

    I would maybe add to this one of those glo clocks. The glo clock worked with both of mine. #thesatsesh

    • onamindfulmummymission
      December 10, 2017 / 10:22 pm

      Oooh yes – good point – it works for the twins but my eldest just ignored it – maybe I was a bit more of a pushover in those days! xx

  10. December 11, 2017 / 9:25 pm

    I had never heard the onions tip. That’s really interesting. I’ve been sleep deprived for ages now with my youngest and it is so so tough! Great tips here x #fortheloveofBLOG

  11. December 12, 2017 / 8:09 pm

    I’m so glad you know about the onion and it’s not just me! Sleep deprivation is a killer but I’m glad that it’s getting before for you. Thanks for linking up at #fortheloveofBLOG. Claire x

  12. Kel K
    December 13, 2017 / 6:28 pm

    Great tips. I’ve been desperate for sleep for over 10 years now, so I’ll have to try some of these. I’d love someone to offer the gift of sleep this Christmas! #thesatsesh

  13. December 13, 2017 / 8:24 pm

    we’ve got the white noise and the red night light so im off to buy a sack of feckin onions tomorrow – i need sleep!
    Thanks for linking to #ablogginggoodtime

    • onamindfulmummymission
      December 13, 2017 / 9:30 pm

      Hee hee – good luck Mrs xx

  14. December 14, 2017 / 7:17 pm

    We have had the opposite problem whereby our daughters would sleep all day and night if left alone! So we had to wake them as babies and urge them to eat. Setting alarm clocks for feeds and showing determination and will power to get them through #thesatsesh

  15. December 16, 2017 / 10:38 am

    Onions? Well I never would have thought of that! Glad you are getting a bit more rest now, life’s so hard when you’re sleep deprived zz #thesatsesh

Leave a Reply