Bedtime Shenanigans

sleeping

A month ago we transitioned our 2.5 year old from the crib to a big boy bedroom complete with his own twin bed.

With another one on the way, we wanted to give ample time for BabyBird to adjust to a new room and not feel like he was kicked out of the nursery because of his sister. Just so they don’t start off on the wrong foot and all.

Now before I go on – I have to say that he loved his crib and was a great sleeper. He went to bed every night without a fuss {we had a set bedtime routine that we’ve been doing since he was 4+ months old} and usually once we laid him down in his crib he was out and we didn’t hear a peep out of him until the morning. And for how tall he is, he never once climbed out of his crib. Not once. So foolish me thought the transition to a big boy bed wouldn’t be much of a problem. Ha!

I know he is just testing his boundaries and at this point he fully understands what is going on and what he is doing. He is a professional procrastinator and he is using every delay tactic known to mankind to push back bedtime – can I blame him? Not really. It’s part of growing up.

Every night he will tip toe out of his room, and slowly and quietly walk down the stairs to find us. We usually hear him and tell him to go back to bed. He will protest and tell us what is wrong and asks for us me to come upstairs and tuck him in again.

Here are some of my favorite reasons as to why he is out of bed:

:: I’m having a hard time sleeping

:: I need to blow my nose

:: I need a tiny sip of water

:: I’m just a little bit thirsty

:: I’m still hungry

:: Fix my pillow

:: Fix my blanket

:: One more story

:: I need to go potty

:: I can’t find Sophie/MeMe

:: I need a bandaid

:: I need a kiss on my boo-boo

:: I feel down and broke my crown {courtesy of Jack & Jill}

and my all time favorite…

:: I’m mad at you {directed at me – stab to the heart kid}

Some nights it takes several attempts and can last hours. While other nights it takes just a few and he falls asleep. But he knows how to work the system. But once he is asleep we don’t hear from him until the morning when his SleepBuddy {toddler alarm clock} turns off and he happily marches into our room & loudly proclaims that it’s morning all the while being just 2 inches away from my face.

 

Toddler’s Creed

If I like it, it’s mine

If I want it, it’s mine

If I think it’s mine, it’s mine

If I have it in my hand, it’s mine

If I give it to you and change my mind later, it’s mine

If I can take it away from you, it’s mine

If I had it a little while ago, it’s mine

If it’s mine, it will never belong to anybody else, no matter what

If we are building something together, all the pieces are mine

If it looks just like mine, it’s mine

If you really think it belongs to you, it is most definitely mine

 

O, Toddlers.

May I never turn off a light switch, close a lid, move a toy, or clean a plate without asking first. The independence is both refreshing {my baby is growing up} and equally frustrating at times {can we make it down the stairs sometime today?} I refrain myself from wanting to just jump in and do the task that would take me only a second.

We are starting to see the light at the end of this epic butt kicking cold that we all caught last week. Shivering, coughing, snot running cold. All three of us. We hunkered down and stayed in the house all week. Which also meant we missed BabyBird’s Christmas Concert at school, which I was totally bummed about. He’s still singing the songs and practicing… I haven’t had the heart to tell him that he missed it because we were sick.

Poor little guy was so miserable, he’d wake up to eat a snack and then would ask to take a nap. We ate dinner early each night and he would be in bed by 6pm. On the bright side, because of our sicky week, his bedtime has moved up an 1.5 earlier than usual and he is actually waking up later in the mornings. I know it doesn’t make sense, but going to bed earlier has actually resulted in sleeping in. Go figure.

 

sickbaby

When Your Toddler Sleeps Like a Newborn

Something happened the last few weeks. This kid stopped sleeping through the night. We had one week when he woke up multiple times at night ::yawn:: so that was just brutal. Sometimes he was twisted in his sleep sack, or a lovie couldn’t be found, or just needed a drink of water. But he was waking up and needing something. I contemplated sleep training again, but just didn’t have the heart to be firm with it. It’s much harder to try any of the sleep training techniques when your kid can talk and cries out asking for mommy in the middle of the night.

It never took long for him to fall back asleep, but the constant waking and getting out of bed for me was having it’s toll. I’ve completely forgot what it was like those first 8 months.

I couldn’t quite figure out what was going on. teething? growth spurt? nightmares? I quietly said to myself, it’s just a phase, it’s just a phase, & drink coffee. And surely after a few weeks it passed and now {thankfully} he is sleeping through the night again.

Then that darn daylight savings deal happened and this kid and the sun are synced. So that meant he was waking up at the crack of dawn all bright eyed and bushy tailed and ready to play. While I zombie walked into his nursery every morning with one eye open.

Well, at least he’s sleeping through the night, again.

 

 

How My Toddler Sleeps

We have had a consistent bedtime routine with BabyBird since he was only a few weeks old. Dinner, bath, piano, books, bed. Now that we are a full blown toddler, the routine has pretty much remained the same, just with a few tweaks along the way.

First, no more bottles. I used to warm up a bottle of breastmilk while Daddy gave BabyBird a quick bath. He’d gobble that down in the glider and then it was off to bed. I’d nurse him sometimes but I soon realized that he would just snack and then wake up a few hours later and would seem to be hungry again. I learned that giving him a bottle of pumped milk guaranteed that he ate enough and therefore sleep longer. An infant mother’s wishful thinking, right? Later on, when my supply started to dwindle and we used formula for a few months to bridge the gap before we started cows milk it made for an easy transition. A month or so after his 1st birthday, we stopped giving him bottles. Now we just bring up a sippy cup of water to leave on his nightstand.

Second, we now have lovies. His beloved sock monkey Me-Me. The “early” version of Me-Me was a wubbanub monkey pacifier and as we approached 18 months, we gradually weaned him away from his paci. This was an okay process. We were never a big paci user, just every now and then for fussy nights, long trips, new sleeping arrangements, plane rides, waiting in line to see Obama… you know, the situations when he needed a little extra comfort. Now he snuggles up with his sock monkey friend at night. These were originally the party favors to his 1st birthday party and we had a few left over. I am so happy and relieved that they are interchangeable and he does not have a preference for a certain one. And just recently, he has grown attached to his glowing seahorse.

Third, he can talk. He’ll wake up in the middle of the night and call out for me, or ask for a drink, or for a hug, or for a another kiss, or to turn on the fan, or to say that he’s stuck, or call out for Me-Me {which he threw out of the crib}, or ask for a drink again. Oh, toddlerhood. It’s hard to ignore or think that he’ll settle back down when he’s standing up in the crib calling out momma. How do you not go in, when your toddler calls out, ‘Momma! Hug?’ He knows how to work me.

So let me explain the picture above. After a rough night of multiple wakes and an unrestful night for the both of us, when morning finally came he woke up all happy and bushy tailed. So I went in, turned on the light {keep in mind that the sun wasn’t even up yet}, changed his diaper {hence why he isn’t wearing pants} and gave him a few books to look at while I left the room to get dressed. He usually babbles, reads his books out loud to Me-Me or just jumps around and sings. But this time, it was quiet after a few minutes. So after I got ready, and I went back in and found this. Poor thing was tuckered out and crashed again with Me-Me clutched under his arm.