I’m going to preface this post with the statement that my child, with the exception of her toddler tantrums lately, has been the easiest kid in the entire world! I like to think that it has a lot to do with my parenting style, but the fact is; I lucked out with a very low maintenance kid!
This would be my wonderful daughter Miss Amelia, she just turned 2 and every milestone has come and gone with ease and the transition from crib to “Big Girl Bed” has been no exception. She has never been fed, rocked, held, swayed, or sung to sleep, just given her “blankie” (a cheese cloth swaddling blanket) and violet (leap frog stuffed dog) kissed good night and left on her own to get herself to sleep. She did have a pacifier till she was one year old and once her first birthday came; both bottle and pacifiers were gone. We do however, have a very strict routine before bed each night, she gets a bath, has a cup of milk and a small snack while she watches a Mickey Mouse Clubhouse and 1 (only 1) Minnie’s Boutique episode, at 7:30 every night she gives her dad and dog a hug and kiss, we brush teeth, go to her room, read 2 books, and by no later than 7:45 lights are off and she is falling asleep. I believe the never changing routine each night has also helped with this transition. I know that every kid is different and by all means, do what is best for your kid, but this is what I did and what worked for Amelia!
The first thing I believe is making your little one’s big kid bed a safe, comfortable environment! This is her big girl bed, yes, it’s a queen sized bed! I’m sure someone has something to say about putting your child directly into a big bed, but this bed was free!! Only thing we purchased was bedding, paint, and bedrail! With another child coming in July, using the toddler bed option with the crib was not an option, and I did not want to make her feel that she had to give up her bed for the new baby coming, so we went with something completely new to her!!! The bed rail was made by my husband with PVC pipe, ratchet straps anchor it to the mattress, and I sewed the removable fabric cover. So far we have not had any issue with her except when she got stuck between the wall and mattress, which I think every kid does, so I just shove pillows in the crack to avoid this.
She absolutely LOVES her big girl bed!!! I started napping her in it about 2 weeks before we made the full transition, I wanted to let her get used to her new big girl bed and we were waiting for dad to finish the bed rail. I know not everyone has this option because many kids aren’t in their own homes for nap time, I really don’t think this helped or hindered the transition.
She sleeps very well in her big bed, as you can see (forgot to remove the books and other stuffed animals, looks like she had a good time before she fell asleep! haha!) Since moving her to the bigger bed, I believe she’s actually getting a better night’s sleep, I really think that those crib mattresses start getting really uncomfortable to those little ones as they get bigger! Not to mention my little one is very tall and I really don’t think a toddler bed could have been an option because she was using every bit of space in her crib!
There really haven’t been any issues with her getting out of her bed through the night, or any fighting her at bed time. She’s always been expected to lie in her bed until she falls asleep and I believe that is why there haven’t been any issues. There have been some challenging nights, but those nights were the result of sickness or bad dreams. I would say this transition has been a success!!
Now on to potty-training….