Well… it happened, my first child gave up their nap… I went through all the stages of grief… denial, anger, sadness… the sting of what I’ve lost still feels painful everyday around 1 pm. Fortunately I have these amazing Mommas I know who are a few years ahead of me in their Momma roles that I frequently send SOS texts too… such as “my potty training isn’t going so well… because my “trainee” keeps throwing the Elmo potty at my head! HELP!!!!”
Or “how do you get rid of the perpetual smell of urine in your bathroom when you have a 3 year old who misses the potty and a 22 month old who is learning how to potty?” This is how I learned about the wonders of this Urine Cleaner and also decided to admit temporary defeat and just use a plug in. I also took to the awesome Parents of Facebook I know and got many great responses!
This Mama mind trust and Facebook community also gave me many great ideas in how to give Caden a “quiet time” everyday that he actually looked forward to, and could give me back my favorite hour of the day!
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1. Make it special! At first I was having a hard time getting Caden to stay in our guest room for a quiet time. One of the Mamas suggested letting him play with toys that had already been put away or in storage because than it would make it feel more special. I realized that there were a lot of small toys and even workbooks and activities that I had been storing in the cupboard and rarely had been used. I made bins for each day of the week, using these inexpensive -mine are from Target but you can find them here- plastic boxes. I only had 5 at the time so that is why it’s only M-F. I let him pick out a toy from our toy closet on Sa/Su, and also got him Reusable Sticker sheets for the weekend.
In each bin I put the following type of item:
⁃ Small toys
⁃ Activity to develop their fine motor skills
⁃ Everyday he also used washable markers to work and color in his activity books.
A lot of the above items I got from the Target dollar spot, The Dollar Store would also be a great place to look. The workbooks are on Amazon. I have linked the info below along with similar items available on Amazon, in case you don’t want to leave your house… which has definitely become harder with 3 kiddos!!!
3. Incorporate a special privilege only for “big kids.” I don’t let my boys normally use scissors because my 2 year old would also want to use them… and since said 2 year old likes to use plastic forks as weapons, I am thinking that’s a bad idea. So I got some kid scissors and have been letting Caden use them at rest time only and sometimes he sits and cuts paper for 30 minutes.
4. Audio Books. I also have him listen to recorded books while he is quietly playing or working in his workbooks. A great way to do this is through Audible or you can also find them on You Tube. Currently he is listening to Winnie the Pooh recordings and absolutely loving it.
5. A separate space. Caden has really looked forward to this time everyday! I think part of what makes this time a success is that he is in an area separated from everyone in our office/guest room, as he shares a room with a younger brother who still naps. Even if you don’t have an extra room, even just carving out a special spot in your main living area by spreading out a blanket would work, or you could put them in your room.