No Sleep Til Bedtime

I don’t know if I’ve ever said this out loud before but we are officially a no-nap household. Neither kid – the 3 and a half year old or the just-turned-2 year old – naps anymore. It a) SUCKS and b) isn’t so bad.

Back in November I took ALL the advice I got on my post about Caroline refusing to sleep if I gave her the iPad, which was the only way to get her upstairs and into nap-time mode without a fight. I tried putting a time limit on it, which was about as effective as just punching myself in the face. I tried just taking it away and letting her cry/play on her own, but she responded by murdering several library books and a stuffed rabbit. I tried lying down with her, which lead to being actually punched in the face.

None of it really helped and fighting about napping is even more exhausting than not napping – so I gave up. I let her win. We went from 3 hour naps to no naps, which also means Evan almost never gets a chance to nap on the couch or floor so there is NO SLEEPING in my house between the hours of 6:30 am and 7:30 pm.

(Well, unless I turn on some Mickey Mouse Club House and leave the snack drawer open and let the kids fend for themselves while I lie on the couch and periodically shout “Stop jumping on your sister! We do not ride Brutus like a small horse! No, markers do not go in your nose!” with my eyes closed. That’s not exactly restful, although it does save me from going totally insane at least once a week.)

Since they’re not napping anymore other than an occasional car nap between errands, bedtime is almost always cake. Delicious, quick, easy cake that involves me sitting on Caroline’s bed playing on my phone for 30 seconds before she passes out. Mornings are also pretty good, unless a certain ginger wakes me up at 5 am by staring at me silently until I jump up mumbling “OMG I’M UP WHO WHAT TACOS”.

I’ll also admit it’s sort of awesome not to schedule our day around naps. Blocking off 3 or 4 hours a day really put a cramp in our activities, especially in the winter when nothing is open until 10 am and it gets dark at 4 pm. OK kids, let’s go have fun for exactly 43 minutes before we have to head home for lunch and Caroline’s nappy nap! I now have the freedom to lounge around in my fleecy pants all morning, take a shower and noon and THEN drag the gingers out to the totally deserted (no seriously, we were the ONLY people there at noon on a Wednesday) Children’s Museum or to run errands or whatever.

On the “SUCKS” side of the no napping is everything else you would expect. Yesterday Evan fell asleep in the car in the 15 minutes between the museum and his super quick second flu shot (NOT EVEN A SHOT just the nose spray) appointment and he turned into a monster. Thrashing, screaming, throwing himself down in the parking lot, trying to kick me, trying to kick the nurse, shouting “I DON’T WANT A POKE!” etc etc someone please bring me a large bottle of wine etc forever. There are meltdowns. Sooooo many meltdowns. Not to mention the amount of TV the kids are watching some days. It’s disgusting. I’m ashamed. But not quite ashamed enough to cancel Disney Junior and declare us a screen-free household. Nope.

To sum up: I love my kids, I love spending time with them, and I am absolutely signing them both up for preschool over the summer.


p.s. New blog header!! I’m going for clean and modern, although I’ll probably go back to copious ginger photos in a few months. I can’t help myself.


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10 Responses to “No Sleep Til Bedtime”

  1. molly says:

    Landon is almost 4 1/2 and still naps but I think we are quickly coming to the end of that. I mean, I really can’t believe he still naps. But when his nap days are over, I see him sleeping in more in the morning. So you’re right. There are pros and cons.

    I hope Brigham naps forever . . .

  2. Meagan says:

    Andrew dropped his nap shortly before his 2nd birthday. Crazy town! It made it so much easier for him to fall asleep in his big boy bed at night though. I loved it. But my Caroline neeeeds her nap. I’d be crushed if she stopped napping. But Andrew usually watches TV during most of C’s nap. Sometimes I feel a little bad about it, but I’m with you – not bad enough to not do it! Glad y’all are on a good schedule!

  3. Amy says:

    Spencer gave up his nap right around 2.5 and preschool has saved my sanity ever since. It is so nice to have a mental break or time guaranteed to get things done during the day.

    Love the header and the stripes!

  4. Robyn says:

    I really resisted Rory giving up naps too, but I think it’s better without them, all things considered. Like you said, bedtime is super easy now, she sleeps in later, and no more ruining a whole Saturday because of the nap schedule. And now that she’s getting older, I can actually get stuff done while she’s up, so I don’t need to count on that naptime anymore. But then i ruined it all by having another baby. Back to square one.

  5. My daughter has given up naps and the baby is a portable sleeper. I actually love it because it means we’re not stuck at home on weekends!

  6. jen schoeph says:

    we are more napless than nap-full and i have to admit i do not like it. weekend naps went out the window a long, long, long time ago. ben napped until his very first day of kindergarten. i could even cajole him into taking the occasional nap last summer before he entered into 1st grade! emilia is a different story maybe it’s just part of second child syndrome. she naps here & there. i’d prefer she did it more often but i thank my lucky stars that when she is tired in the evenings, she just asks to go to bed. when she does nap she gets maybe a good 90 minutes no more 3-4 hour naps like we had in the past. i love nap time and swear by it. even on the days she doesn’t or won’t nap we have quiet time. sometimes it’s in her room where she plays or we turn the tv off, turn on the music, she does her thing, i do mine and we are simply ships passing in the night. it’s quite nice.

    should we decide to go for #3, we will be singing a new tune…but that’s neither here nor there at the moment.

  7. Brigid Keely says:

    We are still a napping household! Niko is just awful without one and gets into that stage where he’s super manic and on edge and wild and unable to settle down and then he wakes up super early the next day. I’m very lucky this works for us, but I tell him he has to be in his room with the door closed and lights off and he can rest in his bed and play quietly or read, but he can’t come out. He has to rest. He usually winds up falling asleep.

    Our schedule will really free up when he’s no longer napping and I am looking forward to that, but wow does he still need them.

  8. When Brayden dropped his nap, I was certain that the world was ending. But like you said, bedtime is almost always cake– and I actually prefer that to fighting him to stay in his room and take a nap.

  9. Agh. Libbie is 4 and while SHE would prefer not to nap, she really still needs one. She is painfully aggravating if she doesn’t nap. We’ve taken to bribing her, etc, to try to get her to nap. (New rule: no nap, no TV after naptime.) She will stay in her room USUALLY when she’s supposed to be resting, so Pregnant Mama can take her nap … but dude, Mommy needs rest time. I understand the schedule stuff, though. I’m wary about having this baby and having to go back to 2-naps-a-day ruling all our outings. Which basically equals no outings. Booo.

  10. Michelle says:

    Thank you for posting the good, bad, and ugly. You make me feel like my kiddo is normal. And I love the Beastie Boys reference. That one runs through my head all the time. What about putting them down earlier at night? I read all over the place that is the solution to sleep problems. Let us know if you try that. I’ve been thinking mine needs it but it’s hard when i work until 5.

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