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A really rocking goodnight

By By Leada Gore, Editor
There’s a scene from the old television show “Murphy Brown” that has been in my mind lately. On this particular episode, Murphy is trying to come up with a song to sing her new baby. She doesn’t know any lullabies, so she begins singing the Carole Kine/Aretha Franklin anthem “You Make Me Feel Like a Natural Woman.”
Unorthodox? Yes. Effective? Sure, at least on the television show.
The Murphy Brown episode popped into my mind a couple of nights ago as Greg and I were going through the nightly wrestling match known as getting 1-year-old Sutton to go to bed. We’ve tried lots of things, from special stuffed animals that play soothing noises to reading books to her about going to sleep. Nothing really worked until one night, I started singing. I’m no singer but somehow, it worked and Sutton was soon snoozing.
That’s when we started the ritual of singing her to sleep. We went through every lullaby we knew. We sang them all three or four times a night and then turned to non-traditional songs, such as the Three Dog Night tune “Jeremiah Was a Bullfrog.”
While Sutton did go to sleep, we were soon hoarse. We then opted to turn to a CD of soothing music. She liked it OK but as soon as I put in “Beatles for Babies” and tried to leave the room, her eyes would pop open and I would see a little blonde head come up off her mattress.
It seems CDs didn’t have the same effect as mom or dad. That is until one night when I happened to put in an old CD of mine, hoping to at least have something to sing along with. The CD is called “Sounds of the ‘70s” and features such classics as “Rhinestone Cowboy,” “Seasons in the Sun” and the theme to “Hair.”
We were listening to a song one night (the not-so-baby appropriate “Afternoon Delight”) when I realized I wasn’t singing and Sutton was still drifting off to sleep. She slept through “Afternoon Delight” and then through “These Eyes” and even through the last song on the CD, “Brandy” by Looking Glass.
I laid her down and she stayed asleep. A miracle had occurred.
Since then, we play “Sounds of the ‘70s” every night. And every night, it works. I’ve memorized every song, every note, ever vocal twitch and twitter. Still, I will not – and I dare anyone else to – change out the CD for anything else. As strange as it is, “Sounds of the ‘70s” works for us. Murphy Brown may have Aretha and her “Natural Woman.” I will take Melanie and her “I’ve Got a Brand New Pair of Rollerskates.”
And, thank heavens, it works.

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