HOW WE TRANSITIONED TO A TODDLER BED
To be honest, I was excited for but dreading this transition. Evie had started to try and climb out of bed (adorable, as it involved throwing her leg over the side while asking me "All done like this?", but scary) but I didn't know if I was ready for her to have run of her room. That's a big responsibility for such a little lady! It was after about 1 month of this that we had our 18 month check up, and when I shared what was happening with our pediatrician, she advised that we transition to a toddler bed.
Back in Evie's Nursery reveal, I mentioned that the crib we purchased could transform into four different stages - that's one of the big reasons we chose the Camden 4-in-1 convertible bed from Child Craft. We also really loved the quality, the price point (under $200!) and the color.
Once we knew it was time to transition, we went ahead and ordered the toddler guard rail. It was under $50, and provided Evie with a way to get out of the bed herself safely, but still had bumpers. Then we were ready to start the transition! Every child is different, but here are a few things we did that I think really helped the process be successful:
1) Talk about it for a week or so beforehand.
We spent the week leading up to changing her crib talking about what a big girl she was and asking if she was interested in a big girl bed. Once she expressed interest, we talked about how much more responsibility she would have, and asked if she was excited (also a yes). I think talking through what it was and what it meant made it less scary when the change happened.
2) Do it over a weekend.
G and I changed the bed Friday after her nap, so we had all weekend to work with her. That way, if the change resulted in sleepless nights, we didn't have 5AM work wakeup calls to deal with too.
3) Make it special.
Friday morning, Evie and I went out and picked out a new toy for her to have sleep with in her Big Girl bed. It was a celebration, and surrounding the change with joy and encouragement really helped all of us transition.
4) Keep everything else the same.
We didn't change our bedtime routine at all. We stuck to the normal routine and schedule as if nothing was going to be different. It was still bedtime, and we were still getting into our bed. We snuggled her the same, turned on her sound machine, said the same good night, and left assuming everything would be fine.
I know you're all wondering, and it seems I was apprehensive for no reason. Evie transitioned effortlessly, climbing into her new bed by herself the first night, falling asleep in minutes, and never gets out in the morning until I go get her. Same with naps. She's in and stays put until I go get her. I think the key to this was having a really consistent sleep schedule & method from when she was little. We always followed the same pattern (bath, book, hygiene, bed) and go to sleep at roughly the same time for naps and bedtime. Since she knows how to sleep, it made it easier for her to sleep in a new environment.
And if you're looking for a crib, we love our Camden convertible, and would highly recommend it to any mama who's searching! It's beautiful, and we love the way it changes with our little lady. I've also linked a few other favs for our bed, like these adorable stuffies from Anthropologie, our favorite crib sheets, and the blanket Evie choose for her bed, which is beautifully done with natural dyes and machine washable.
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