Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Bed Transition

I thought it was time for me to do a POSITIVE post about Annie Banani and I've been meaning to blog about the bed transition since we moved her, which was about a month ago. I feel like she's totally got it down now, so I can really talk about it! [That said, she had a terrible time going down for her nap yesterday, but I think she was just overly tired from skipping one the day before. She's kind of a slave to her routine sometimes, but we are just not going to be a family ruled entirely by toddler nap schedules.]

I have to say that really, moving her to a big girl bed was MUCH easier than I anticipated. We knew we wanted to move her before we moved Graves into her crib so it wouldn't be like he was stealing it from her. Originally, I had thought we'd just wait until he got here, since I knew he'd be in our room (in the Pack N Play) at first anyway. But then we thought about it and I decided that would just be too much (for me) at once. I didn't want to be getting up with TWO children at night, so I decided that even though we didn't have much time, we'd try it. I'm SO glad we did because that first week was a little rough and I think I would throw in the towel at this point.

I guess there's not really too much to say about it. We did decide to use a twin bed because it was already in her room and really we'd have no place to store it if we got a toddler bed. She can't get in it by herself, but she can get out. We just told her from the beginning that she was not to get out unless one of us came to get her. The first few nights she'd get out and come to the door and cry and we'd just put her right back in. We just kept taking her back to bed and taking her back....lots of times. We tried to make it fun, but one night I did have to get really stern with her. After several nights of that, it just clicked.

She does take a LOT longer to go to sleep in the big bed, for some reason. Her bed, like her crib, has lots of "entertainment" in it. We put her favorite stuffed animals and books in there and her new favorite thing is looking at her birthday cards in bed. She loves talking to them. Ha! I kept them beside her bed and it's the only time she really plays with them. I know some people don't think a crib/bed should be the same as a play pen, but it's worked for us. She gets plenty of sleep! I actually kind of like it, too, because eventually I know she will give up her nap, but I'd like to still enforce some sort of quiet time in her room and I feel like that it good practice for that time. The one thing I will not do (and this is just a sidenote) is ever put her in time out in her crib or bed. I know it works for some people, but girlfriend LOVES having alone time in her bed and I don't want to ruin that!

She also REALLY likes to be covered up with blankets, which Peyton thought was an indication she was ready for the transfer. I know one family that suggested just using a baby blanket to make it more like her crib, and I had originally planned to do that, but I think the idea of being under the "covies" (i.e. the comforter) made her feel really grown up and special, so we went with it! Obviously, it's a very individual thing.

We're also not very strict about us not going in there, at least at this point. She really doesn't come up with "excuses" yet, and if she calls for us, typically it's a genuine "need" (she's dropped a book, something scared her, the fan cut off and she's hot, ect...). Right now, it's just more important to me that she learns the importance of staying in the bed until we come to get her, so I'm happy to go in there and help her if I need to.

Peyton is kind of a sucker for getting in the bed with her, but it hasn't really become a habit, so I'm okay with it. She will not let him rock her to sleep (she prefers him a lot of the time, but at bedtime baby needs her momma) and so I don't blame him for wanting to get a few snuggles. If she's upset she'll let him, but she's so possessive of her bed that normally, after a few minutes, she says "Papa Out!". It's too funny!

It's nice to have a child that loves her bed, but it also makes us so curious about her personality. As much as I don't seem like an introvert, in some ways I am and as a little girl I loved sitting in my room by myself and reading. After school, I just needed that time to "unwind" and not have an "audience". I was really independent and I enjoyed having time with just my books and my thoughts (and later my journals). Of course, there's no way to know, but it makes me wonder if she'll form similar routines. Even on the hard weeks, watching her grow up and change is so much fun!

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