Our little one just turned 18 months and looking back over the past few weeks, the development in speech, motor-skills and understanding has been significant. With this extra awareness has also come a lengthened bedtime routine with Charlotte clinging to us and trying to distract us from putting her in her bed. As a result of going away on holiday and being out of our usual environment, we realised we had defaulted to rocking her to sleep - which worked beautifully, but was not a habit we wanted to continue at home. We really wanted to get to the stage of just being able to say goodnight to her and let herself self-settle to a beautiful full nights sleep (too much to ask?!) We tried putting her in her cot and leaving quickly, but this really wasn't working anymore, as she worked herself up into a crying state that we didn’t feel was conducive to quality sleep. She also started waking in the night at irregular hours, so we felt like it might be time to think about her sleep habits again. We have never chosen ‘cry it out’ as a sleep training method, alternatively choosing a gentle approach where we hold her until she is calm, before leaving the room. I decided to talk to Alexandra Bartscht at The Restful Nest to see if she had more advice on this.