We have been blessed with babies that have been great sleepers and nappers. We started sleep training at an early age with both of our kids (Turner’s sleep training post HERE and Gracie’s HERE) which is never easy but has helped us tremendously and was well worth the effort! As a mom working from home, I needed my kids to be on a schedule so I could plan my “office hours”.
Now that Turner is 4 he’s transitioned to “quiet time”. That happened sort of on its own. He would still go to his room for his nap and I’d hear him jumping around and not actually napping, which told me his body didn’t necessarily need a nap. But this momma still needed time alone! So I had the conversation with him that he didn’t have to nap, but he had to play quietly in his room. If he didn’t he would get a spanking. I made very clear rules for this so called “quiet time”. And no I’m not crafty and didn’t make any fancy box o’ fun because ain’t nobody got time for that. I told him that this was Mommy’s quiet time and he needed to respect that (which surprisingly worked??). He would choose a few toys to play with, but he had to stay in his room until I came to get him. Occasionally he will pass out on his floor but I don’t love that because then he doesn’t fall asleep until 9 at night. Instead, I’d rather him stay awake during the day (in his separate space) so he falls asleep when we put him to bed around 7:30. By the way, he’s a total first born. He’s eager to please and doesn’t like getting in trouble. I expect a completely different outcome with Gracie!
Which brings me to Miss Thang’s naps! She has been taking two naps for a while. I tried to transition her to the one afternoon nap, but she was so exhausted that I had to cave and keep her at two. Recently I’d put her in her crib for her morning nap and she wouldn’t fall asleep. She was chatting away with all of her stuffed animal friends. That happened several days in a row. So here’s how I handled that! I knew she was still sleepy, but I wanted to work towards one nap for her. Usually, we go to the gym first thing in the morning before dropping Turner off at school at 9. She would doze off in the car for a few minutes at one point or another during that commute. That would buy me enough time to get her to the afternoon without completely falling apart. So I would pick Turner up at 1 and get them home and down for naps around 1:30. The fear, of course, is that she falls asleep on the WAY to pick up Turner which would completely throw a wrench into my perfect plan. That actually happens a lot. So, in that case, I put them down for their naps around 2. On days that we don’t go anywhere in the morning, I put her and Turner in their rooms around 12:30 for his quiet time and her nap. Now, mind you, we’re still in the transition phase from two naps to one nap for her. Eventually we will get to where she naps at the same time each afternoon. But it’s like exercise, you have to warm up and stretch first!
So here’s a typical school day for us now that we’ve transitioned to the one nap:
Schedule at 4 years old and 1.5 years old:
6:30 am — wake up/drink milk/coffee in our bed
7:00 am — breakfast (I have school lunch prepped the night before. More on that later)
7:40 am — out the door for the gym
9 am — Drop Turner off at school (Gracie cat naps in the car on the way)
9:15 am-12:45 pm– Run Errands if needed/Mommy works/Mommy and Gracie play time/eat lunch
1:00 pm– Pick Turner up from school
1:30 pm-4:00 pm — nap/quiet time/Mommy works
4:00 pm — Turner and Gracie play/prep dinner/Mommy works some more
5:30 — Daddy’s home!!! Eat dinner and drink wine
6:30 — play time before bed (sometimes a bath. I’m not gonna lie. We don’t bathe our kids nightly anymore. Judge if you will)
7:30 — Kids to bed!
I love a good schedule. It fills my need to control things. Of course, it’s not perfect and there are hiccups all the time! But for the most part, our days have a nice flow to them!