My Big Boy Bed

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I laid down the law. If I heard any noise and discovered children out of bed after lights out, I would remove all books from the room. And, yep, I did it. I told my whimpering audience that if I had to come back and any child was violating his sleep rules, I would start taking out loveys. Can I be consistent and firm but totally kind and encouraging while keeping his cute little butt in bed?

1. Your baby is consistently crawling or climbing out of the crib

When we asked an expert for advice, these were her tips for keeping a young toddler in his new bed. We just transitioned by 2. It was generally ok, almost a non-event, until yesterday when I went to get him after quiet time and found crayon drawings all over his upholstered chair, walls, and closet door. I am totally a rookie mom — I probably should have seen that one coming.

We set up the toddler bed in the same room as the crib, knowing that the crib would soon belong to baby sister. When she arrived, she slept in a Pack N Play in our room, however, so our 2. Soon we had him start napping in the big boy bed and then sleeping overnight. We transitioned our daughter at 2 years and 2 months 3 weeks after I had baby 2…I thought having my husband home would be a helpful reinforcement …. She plays. Just last week we found her asleep 10 minutes after lights out which was a complete miracle!!

Good thinking that baby 2 will be in his crib until age 7. I had a friend who kept her twins in their cribs until they were 3 but moved her 3rd child to a toddler bed when she was just 2, and she regretted it. Rebecca, My two older sons had mad climbing skills but never realized they could do it. Oh well. We did. Stay as close to the bed as you need to, to start.

This eases the transition and lets your child learn to fall asleep in the new bed. Are you developing a bad habit? No, this is a transition, and you will be able to ease out of it, once your child is comfortable in the bed. Some children are very frightened of their parent leaving, and will cling to you.

In that case, remind yourself that this fear needs expression, and don't leave your child alone to cry. Instead, when she begins crying, stay with her and let her cry as much as she needs to. As she begins to stop, let her know that now you'll be leaving.

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In other words, you don't actually ever leave her crying. You simply remind her that you'll be leaving, and then help her with the anxiety that surfaces. Stay as close as you need to, to comfort her -- and move only as far away as you need to so that her fear comes up. After she "shows you" her fear, it will evaporate. Yes, that may take a few days, but sooner or later she will no longer be frightened when you say you need to leave.

Is this sleep training? It would be more accurate to say that your child was having a hard time separating from you to fall asleep, so you helped her surface and dissolve the fears that were causing her separation anxiety. Notice that you never left her alone to cry. Instead, you announced your plan to leave and then helped your child through her fearful reaction. You must be so proud of yourself. Soon you will feel so good in your new bed that you'll be able to snuggle right down and go to sleep all by yourself!

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The Control Freak's Guide to moving from a crib to a toddler bed - Rookie Moms

Then, stop holding his hand. This could take you a month, but it might just be a week. Toddlers have to pump themselves full of cortisol and adrenaline to stay up later than usual, and that makes it harder to fall asleep. Oddly enough, an earlier bedtime usually solves the problem when the child is just too wound-up to relax.

Keep your child in their bed

Another helpful thing to try: roughhousing. Not right before bed, because it winds the child up, but earlier, before dinner or before bath. Laughter reduces the stress hormones circulating in the body and helps the child relax at bedtime. Just say you'll be right back, and keep checking back. It helps to leave the chair in place, like a sentinel, to reassure your child if she looks for you. If you have a nightlight, or enough light from the hall, she can "read" herself to sleep. Lots of adults need to read a bit before they fall asleep.

It isn't such a bad habit for her to develop, as long as she actually falls asleep. Just be sure the light is very dim, so it doesn't keep her up. Lawrence Shapiro's book is specifically for kids who have been sharing the family bed and are moving to their own bed. Your philosophies are the only tools we've come across which offer practical advice grounded in clearly laid out lay terminology. Our family life day-to-day is nothing short of a miracle, thanks to you!

The photo itself is quite powerful, but once you know the story behind it, it takes on a whole new meaning. The guy on the left is my ex, the 3-year-old holding his hand is my first child, Cade, we had together. Madison's outlook on why this balancing act works is super impressive. Every child needs a mother and father figure and my son Cade just happens to get some extra love.


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Be civil and co-parent. If you made the child together it's both your job to raise the child. Of course, every blended family's situation is different—and some will have a much harder time with co-parenting than others—but we love this particular dynamic so much. And we're not the only ones: The image and message are going viral, with parents everywhere praising this blended family's ability to embrace one another. Madison isn't the only mom out there who has mastered co-parenting, but we are incredibly impressed by her outlook all the same.

When Brenda Wetmore Giffen's adult daughter asked her if she could remake her wedding dress into a play tent for her daughter, the grandmother was not sure if it could be done. But Grandma came through and the stunning results have gone viral.


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Giffen posted her creation on Facebook six months ago, but the internet has been very excited about it this week, giving the story a second life, just like the wedding dress. As Giffen explains in her Facebook post, her daughter asked her if she could make a play tent, memory pillow, and maybe a garter and a tutu for the grandkids as an alternative to just storing the wedding dress. But once this grandmother got into the project she found herself loving the challenge and trying to figure out how many new items she could craft from one dress. I made two garters so that each granddaughter will have her own.

It's not very likely that I'll be there for their weddings, but I hope they will give Grammy Giffen a thought on that day. I still have enough fabric and tulle to make a tutu for Elena's baby sister who is due in August. Jim helped with the engineering. We designed and he built stabilizers for the top and bottom of the tent, so it doesn't collapse on the girls while they are playing.

It's been challenging, a little scary, lots of fun, and probably the major creative project of my lifetime! With all the attention this post has been getting Giffen added a note to her wedding dress story: She is now creating memory pillows and other keepsakes for other brides through her website.

Think back to when you were a kid. Chances are, you struggled to find a doll that really made you feel like you were accurately represented. Maybe all the toys on the shelf had a different body type than yours, or maybe they were all of a certain skin tone, one that didn't resemble your own. Or maybe you had a challenge of some sort, one that wasn't represented by the dolls you were seeing.

Sure, we've come a long way since then: Toy manufacturers are finally realizing how important it is to represent diversity and inclusion in their products A California teacher understands this, and she recently stepped up to do something to make her students feel seen. Genesis Politron works with hearing-impaired children, and she realized that while many of her students wear hearing devices, there were no dolls on the market that represented this. So Genesis did something incredible: She decided to create dolls that her students could see themselves in Genesis added cochlear implants and hearing aids to existing dolls so her children could see accurate representations of themselves in the toys.

The dolls aren't just inclusive, they're also beautiful: Genesis used glitter and puff paint to increase the fun factor.

Books about Transitioning into a Big Kid Bed

Genesis tweeted about the dolls and, not surprisingly, her post has gone viral. I wish everyone could see their faces playing with these," she writes. I wanted my students to have the same opportunity, and to be represented in the toys that they play with," Genesis tells CNN of her decision to create these dolls. I wanted to allow my students to see themselves in toys for once, to feel accepted.

The teacher also explains that her children tend to gravitate to the dolls that best reflect their own identities : The students with cochlear implants reach for the dolls with the same device, while those who use hearing aids play with the dolls with hearing aids. As parents, all we can hope for when we send our children out in the world is that someone like Genesis will touch their lives and make them feel special. This wonderful teachers' students are so lucky to have someone like her.

Jessica D'Entremont got 15 minutes of fame this month after her trick for getting a few minutes of quiet time before bedtime went viral. As she told Today, she came up with an innovative way to transition her daughters, Emma, 4, and Hannelore, 3, from playtime to bedtime.