Watching your baby sleep is one of the most heart-warming things I can think of as a parent. It gets me every time. There’s something about seeing your baby’s chest rising and falling, her eyes fluttering, her mouth doing that cute little sucking thing, and hearing each and every soft breath she breaths. It’s not only peaceful for her, but peaceful to you as well.
But… sometimes babies don’t sleep… peacefully anyway. Sometimes they’re not tired or maybe it’s that they’re too tired. Either way, sleep doesn’t come for them… or for you. This sort of situation can end with a grumpy baby and a grumpy mama.
So what are you to do?
Well since there are already plenty of people out there willing to give you some advice on how to get your baby to sleep well, I’m simply going to show you a quick little something that can help them to relax once they’re in their beds for the evening.
I’m going to show you how to make an easy, no-sew dream pillow using herbs and essential oils that can help relax your little one and get them to sleep soundly tonight.
The first thing you’ll need for your dream pillow is an unbleached cotton muslin bag with a drawstring. This way you can put your herbs and oils directly into the bag and tie it up without ever having to lay a hand on a sewing machine.
If you don’t have a muslin bag around your house somewhere you can take a clean rag, put your herbs and oils in it, then tie it up with a piece of tight string. It should look like an old-time coin purse. You can also do the same thing with a sock.
When it comes to choosing herbs that help put babies to sleep, hands down, lavender and chamomile are the first that come to mind. I love the colors and fragrances of these two herbs on their own. They have a nice light, floral scent to them. I also like to throw in some rose buds as well. You can do rose petals if you wish, but I find that they get broken up easily and don’t last as long.
You’ll need to combine equal parts of each of these herbs. I usually shoot for 1 TBSP of each herb.
After you have your herbs combined and mixed well, it’s time to add in your oils.
When it comes to choosing relaxing, sleep-promoting essential oils, you have a few options to choose from.
First, you can go with a single oil like those found here:
- Ylang Ylang
DIY Oil Blends
You can also combine oils to make your own scent.
One of my signature scents used in the products in my Etsy shop is called Sleepy Head, and it’s a combination of Ylang Ylang, Lavender, and Vanilla. It’s one of my favorite scents, and I love using it on my boys before bed to help calm them down and rest well during the night.
If you want to try creating your own blend all you need to do is order several of the oils above that sound good to you or go to a store that sells essential oils and smell the tester bottles to see which scents you like.
When it comes to blending them, you’ll want to start with only 10 drops (1 drop of your strongest scent, 5 drops of the lightest scent, and 3 of whichever scent is in between the others), let it set overnight, and then smell it again in the morning. This resting period allows the oils to mix and mingle so you get a true scent. If you like the smell in the morning, use it on your herbs, and make more of it to use for later. If you don’t like it, start over. By starting with only 10 drops you have room to experiment and not worry about wasting large amounts of your precious oils.
If you want to learn more about blending your own essential oils, you can read a post I wrote here called Blending Essential Oils For Beginners.
If you want something a bit more than a single scent, but you’re not up for combining oils and making your own blend, you could always go with a pre-made blend of oils usually referred to as a synergy blend. Many companies make synergy blends that you can buy and use in whatever way you choose.
Here are a few of the most common.
- doTERRA Serenity blend
- Young Living Peace & Calming blend
- Eden’s Garden Relaxation blend
- Plant Therapy Relax blend
I’ve used Eden’s Garden synergy blend called Relaxation in my dream pillow. It’s a combination of Lavender, Marjoram, Patchouli, Mandarin, Geranium, and Chamomile. No matter what oils you choose, you’ll need to put around 5 drops directly on your herbs and mix them up a bit. This will allow the oils to soak into the already scented herbs and give them a bit more “umph”!
Putting Your Dream Pillow Together
Finally, carefully pour your herbs into your muslin bag, cloth, or sock and tie it up where it’s not easily opened. Not too tight though… you’ll want to be able to get it open to add more oils later on.
Place it next to your child’s bed where they can’t reach it, but where they’ll be able to smell it well. For small children this may be right next to their bed just out of arms reach, but for older children it could be on a table next to their bed. Just show the dream pillow to them so that they know all about it and aren’t curious anymore. Then remind them not to touch it, but to leave it alone so they can smell it while they sleep and have sweet dreams. You don’t want them opening it up in the middle of the night and getting herbs and oils all over their bed! What a mess!
Okay, so that’s it. It’s that simple. All you need is a bag, some relaxing, fragrant herbs, and some relaxing oils to make your very own herbal dream pillow and help your little one rest well tonight.
Do you have a tip to help your children get a good night’s sleep? If so, share it with me in the comments below! You can never have too many tips!
Meagan Visser is the owner of Growing Up Herbal on Etsy where she offers natural, herbal skin care products for children. She also teaches parents how to take charge of their children’s health naturally on her blog, GrowingUpHerbal.com, and she’s enjoys living a simple and healthy life with her husband and 3 little boys in the southern Appalachian Mountains of East Tennessee. Connect with her on her on Facebook and Pinterest.