Thursday, October 04, 2007

Big Girl Bed - LFW

Princess is turning two in a couple of weeks! I can't believe how fast time flies. Anyhow, I have been thinking that it may be time to change her crib to a toddler bed. But then I talk myself out of it, because I like having her confined.

Yesterday, I was doing laundry in her room and she was playing. She likes to play in her crib. She kept saying, "Mommy, help". I guess I was taking to long because when I looked at her she was climbing up the side of her crib (to get in). She had a good grip on the bed rail, one foot on top of the mattress and the other foot and leg on top of the bed rail. Next thing I knew, she went flying onto her mattress. I think she surprised herself. I know she surprised me. (Maybe I should change her name to "Monkey".)

There have been times where she is in her crib and wants out so she will put her foot on top of the bed rail. I tell her "No. Put your leg down," and she will listen to me. So she has never climbed out. (Yet!)

The wisdom I am looking for today is how do you know when your child is ready for a "big bed"? Do you have any suggestions on how to do the switch over?


Jerri said...

For me it was when my child's safety was in question...due to them climbing in/out on their own. It started around the age of 2. It took quite an adjustment to get them in a big bed, but it was worth it knowing that they were safer. Plus I kept the monitor on, so I'd hear if they got out of bed...Good Luck!

On Fire For Jesus said...

The transition from crib to bed was rather easy for both my kids. I used a one of those things that helps them to not fall out (i forget what they are called). And I used spankings when it was direct disobedience, meaning if you get out of bed before mommy comes in then you will recieve a spanking. I only needed to do this a few times before they caught on.

Oh, and I transitioned them around 2ish for both kids. Z was climbing out of the pack n play and for EJ his baby brother was born!

Natalie said...

I have no advice. Jr is routinely putting his leg up on the side of the rail trying to get out. I'm just waiting for him to actually fall out and then I'll switch him. In the mean time, it's the only thing I can use to "cage" him.

Melissa said...

I moved all mine to a big girl bed when I got pregnant and needed the crib for the next kid!

I'm assuming that isn't an issue with you since you probably don't need another crib for Little Guy!

I agree with Natalie, it does make for a good cage and our transition wasn't so smooth when each of the girls realized they could get up. Any. time. they. wanted. to.

Not-So-Classic Husband said...

My Mom always said that when they can crawl out of the crib, it's time for a big kid bed.

Anonymous said...

Lower the mattress to the lowest position and let the side rail of the crib down and see what happens then. If she would happen to fall out (trying to climb out) it wouldn't be as far of a fall. BUT YOU ARE THE ONLY ONE WHO CAN DECIDE WHAT IS BEST FOR YOUR HOME.
Love you all!

TCC said...

The piece of wisdom I used myself was they are ready for a big boy bed when they are able to STAY in bed and not get out until they have permission from me. Now by big boy I mean twin bed. Jeter was able to handle this at the young age of 2. Barber? Not so much. Our crib allowed us to take off the one side and I put one of those bed-thingys that keep kids from falling out of bed (I can't think of the proper name this second) on the crib. This was transition for Barber before he was responsible enough to handle the freedom of a twin bed. That didn't happen until he was almost 3.

Hands-Free Heart said...

For my oldest, it was when I saw him hoist himself up on the rail of his crib... he was almost 2. Nothing seemed to work to keep him in the toddler bed, but we turned a lockable doorknob around and acutally locked him in his room, just until he fell asleep. Then we would unlock it. We had a gate he could not open nor climb at the top of the stairs, and a child-proof doorknob cover on the bathroom. (Hmm... I guess one of those on the inside of his door would have worked.) Oh, yeah... he had a really small room, so we removed the temptation of the few toys that were in it. We did leave stuffed animals and books in the room.

Our youngest, who is younger than your Princess, has actually been in a toddler bed for a good 3 months now. In the past couple of weeks he has been staying in bed at naps and bedtime (yeah!). I love what I did with him. For a long time, we kept a pack-n-play in the room. If he got out of his bed one time, we put him straight into the pack-n-play. In the middle of night or mornings, he comes straight to us, which we like, so we actually would move him from the pack-n-play back to his toddler bed while he was sleeping.

Oh, this pack-n-play idea was SOOOO much easier than any punishments we tried in the past with our oldest... and it has worked, because he would much rather be in his toddler bed (well sometimes he actually did want the pack-n-play... I would let him then, but usually he wanted to be a big boy).

The Gang's All Here! said...

I have to laugh - we never had a choice. As Melissa said, the arrival of another sibling always pushed the issue for us. I do agree with Natalie, keeping them contained as long as possible is the preference. Especially when they tend to be more obedient/compliant over staying in the crib a while.

We did employ the consequence of spanking for getting out of the toddler bed once we did the change-over, but only after allowing them some time to check it all out and get used to the feel of it.

On a note of long term perspective: One of my mentors reminded me that their rooms should feel like a haven, a safe place, and to tread lightly in the way I punished them using their rooms as central to that. We also translated that to later issues, and try not to do the "Go To Your Room!" shriek. (This goes toward the whole mentality of avoiding your teens/tweens retreating to their rooms and using them as a place to hide from the rest of the family or pout and stew in rebellion, mumbling under their breath!!!)

I was so convicted when she mentioned that concept (and linked it to how I parented them early thru the bed time issue!) - I did that a lot as a teen and was thankful to have a tool to help me steer my own around that particular land mine of teen life!!! said...

(found you off someone elses blogroll).

When the kids were capable of handing the big bed, we put them in the big bed. What I mean is: When we felt we could trust them to sleep through the night without completely destroying their rooms... we put them in the big bed. For my daughter, this was when she was nearing a year of age. For my son... I think he was about 18 months or so. Of course, probably would have kept our daughter in the crib longer (just because)... but her little brother was coming soon!

Sadly, we have to lock our oldest son (age two and a half) in his room at night.. because he could very well walk right out of the house in the middle of the night... or empty the fridge of its contents.

Trust your children to lead you to do things you believed to be cruel before you had children.