Wednesday, January 7, 2009

WFMW: Simplifying Toddler Bedtime

About eight months ago, we decided to work on getting Wendy to sleep in a toddler bed. Her crib is convertible, so we took about an hour and put the special rails on the front so she wouldn't fall out. We tried and tried to train her, but it was like her bed had become a trampoline - she'd just bounce right out when we tried to put her to bed.

We switched the toddler bed back into a crib, and left it that way for several months. Then James had the brilliant idea of just taking the side panel off of the crib, instead of going to all the work of switching it over to a "toddler bed." The side panel is easily removed & put back, and we've used that to train Wendy to stay in bed. If she gets up once, she gets a good scolding & gets put back in bed. If she gets up a second time, the side panel gets put back on & she has to sleep in a "baby bed."

Another brilliant idea that James had is to send Wendy to bed with a board book. She can't really damage a board book, and it holds her attention as she gets drowsy & ready for bed. She likes the routine of picking out a book, saying bedtime prayers, and getting tucked in to "read."

Those are two tips that have really simplified Wendy's bedtime. Right now the big struggle is getting her to bed on time, but we're making progress!

For more great tips, head over to Works-For-Me Wednesday at Rocks in my Dryer!


Lisa@BlessedwithGrace said...

I'm just wondering how old your daughter is? I have a 19 month old girl. We still put her in the crib and haven't messed making it into a toddler bed, yet. So I am just wondering where you are in the timeline. Thanks for the info. It is really helpful to hear from someone going through this stage of life.

It Feels Like Chaos said...

That is a great solution! When my first child began sleeping in his "big boy bed", we did something similar. We left the crib set up in the nursery because his new sister would need it soon anyway. He thought his "big boy bed" was really cool and wanted to sleep in it, but if he got out of it too many times we'd put him in back in the crib. He eventually got it!

Hillary Dunham said...

Hi Jeni,
Thanks so much for your comment on my blog. Your site is ADORABLE! Who designed it? I love it!
We went babywise from the get go with both of our kiddos and it worked well for us. I say that as I'm watching our 3 year old giggle to himself in the monitor in his room at TEN O'CLOCK!! His bed time is 8. Ugh. Oh well. At least he's quiet in his room, but you'd think he'd go to sleep by now! I can go to sleep as soon as my head hits the pillow!
I digress.
Love you blog and I'll visit again! I'm in Huntsville, AL, so I'm pretty close to TN depending on where you are!
Have a great night!

Anonymous said...

That's neat! We did a similar thing but ended up going back to crib. It turned out our firstborn was just too young at the time and wanted the comfort of the crib. The next was ready to go straight to the toddler bed. Later, someone told me children need to stay in a crib until they are three for emotional security, at least from one psychological perspective. In hindsight, I agree and it is really not worth it to rush them out of the crib unless they are leaping out and getting injured. Ours ended up curling up at the top of the bed to make the toddler and then twin seem smaller and comfortable. The very best thing for us has been to always have a consistant bedtime and routine. It is such a nice wind down time, and if we rush it, it doesn't help.

Pasifik said...

sometimes we as a parent has to be creative when dealing with toddler. And you did it well to her.

Happy blogging,

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