Saturday, May 7, 2011

The Elusive Dual Nap

yeah, I've got problems, but one of the few things working out well in this house is nap time. I've got dual napping in the bag. I insist. Through creativity, persistence and faith (in the nap), I've been able to make it happen day after day. Much to the benefit of all our peace of mind!

Faith. You have to believe in the nap. It helped knowing my kids were napping at daycare, as do all the kids there.  Sure it is easier with the peer pressure, but not impossible to make it happen in your house.  The first few days I started taking care of them during the week I could not get them to nap.  I went and asked their daycare owner if they still slept during the day!  Once she confirmed that they did, my faith in the nap was born. This is critical. I may have been convinced into believing they were not 'nappers' otherwise.

Persistence. If one of them gets out of bed, I will physically pick them up and put them back in bed, repeatedly, until they tire. I have not had to do this often, because they learned. They need to stay in bed during rest time. I do so gently, lovingly, and firmly. No anger involved. "Come on, head on the pillow."

Creativity. Getting the kids into their room and their bed takes some freestyling. If they are playing or transitioning from lunch, sometimes they do not want to stop and rest. Just the word, "nap" and they balk, "No!" So it takes some mommy magic to make it happen. Like, "grab on to the mommy train, all aboard, next stop your room." or sometimes I take Nene first and then Kaio follows on his own. Or, 'I'm going to catch the little fishes and put them on my boat." Lately the bed has been anything from a boat to a castle to a mountain cave (where we hide under the covers together).

We have a space heater fan that I turn on for some white noise. Close the curtains or put blankets over the windows. Hand them each a book of their choise to read.

I used to stay in the room with them, reading a book until they fell asleep. Being careful not to make eye contact. I don't usually get them things like water if they ask. I do let them get out of bed to go potty.

But lately the kids needed a change of scenery and we now nap in my room. We all get in bed together, read Peter Pan, and then drift off to sleep. That has been the routine for the last two weeks. Today they were hyped up after a long walk with other kids, so even after reading Peter Pan, they wanted to play. I just kept placing them back in bed and hugging them. At first they thought it was funny, but then they slowed and shut their eyes. I Surrounded by love, I always wake up after a couple winks, quietly sneak out of bed, close the door and go off for me-time in the kitchen. Me-time: indulge in coffee, chocolate, facebook, prep dinner, or do some work stuff. It's lovely to have moments of peace to catch my breath alone.
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  1. it's wonderful isn't it!? I have dual nappers most the time. sure helps!



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