Big Girl Bed for a "Big Girl"

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

She's still my baby...but there she sits in her new (full-sized!) bed, with slicked-back bath hair.

She's completed over a full week's worth of nights in the new room/ new bed, and it's gone really well, thank goodness. She has not tried to climb out one time (my main concern), and has slept through the night each night.

Some nights, it's taken her longer to get settled than other nights (one night, over an hour), some mornings have been eeeearly mornings (eeesh), but she has not been upset at all or seemed confused by the new set-up in the least (PTL!). And really, since it's a full-sized bed, with two rails, it's almost like a crib when she sleeps sideways! She likes the pillows ("pehw-wohs"), and, along with the trifecta of DeeDee (the pink mouse pictured) the lovey and the paci, has slept really really well. She has not asked to get in her crib once.

We were deliberate about a few things (thanks in part to the wisdom of our wonderful pediatrician):

  • We "disassembled" the crib the day of the official switch, so it wasn't sitting in her old room, begging to be used. This mainly just involved taking off all the sheets/bumper and propping the mattress up over the rail.
  • We rearranged the furniture in the nursery, so it wasn't the same exact set-up as it was when it was her room. I also finished moving all of her toys and most of the books (except baby ones and duplicates) into her new room the day of the move. There is really nothing significant of hers (ie, things she absolutely loves to play with or read) in the nursery anymore.
  • We let her take 2 weekends' worth of naps (4 naps total) before making the switch at on a Sunday night....this way we weren't asking her to do anything she hadn't done before (fall asleep in the new room/new bed) for a whole night. 
  • The two or so weeks before we moved her into the new room, we read books on the new bed at bedtime, to sort of establish a routine of going in there after bath. 
I am in NO way claiming to be an expert on any of this, just sharing what we did. I fully believe Juliette herself deserves all the credit for handling this big change in the amazing way that she has. I can see easily where this could be a really difficult transition from many angles, especially for an 18 month old.

Why did we do this? I set my mind on trying this so early with her (and it really was a try) for two reasons: one, because she's been napping on a mat 5 days/week since 11 months old, and two, because Juliette's temperament has proven fairly adaptable to changes in routine, e.g., the changes they've worked on at day care--napping on a mat, no paci during nap, cups instead of bottles, etc. Obviously, all transition times vary from kid to kid! (I'm sure we have a steep learning curve ahead of us when we discover our second baby isn't an exact behavioral replica of our first?? Ha ha, laugh ye wiser parents of multiple kids.)

Side note: we intentionally let her keep the paci through this big change, and definitely will do so through the baby's arrival (an even bigger change!), though she only gets it at night and while in her bed. That transition will take some prayer on its own, my goodness. I am predicting we'll have more difficulty with that than with the bed (she loves her some "pah-cee").

As for her new room, I am excited to share photos of it, but we have run into a snag with the curtains, and I definitely want to wait to share after those are in place. Imagine: hormonal 8+ mos pregnant lady dealing with rude JoAnn workers and defunct coupons. Not pretty.

Tick tock (pass the rice crispy treats)! 

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