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Has anyone sucessfully moved a morning nap later and preserved an early bedtime???

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 

Hi All,

My daughter is 2.5 and in the fall will be joining her older brother in a mixed age Waldorf kindergarten. She will be going for full days (until 2:30) which means she will be taking her nap around 1:00 PM (at school). She is also doing a little bit of camp this summer with her brother, and since we're picking her up at 12:00, she is also having to nap at around 12:30- 1. Her normal routine is to nap around 11:00 in the morning (sometime even a little earlier), and then to bed around 7 pm. We are having the exact same issue with her that we had with our son when he was this age...by pushing the nap time to any time after 12, she is unable to fall asleep in the evening until almost 9! We never solved it with our son...instead we ended up "taking away" the nap at age 3, and his bedtime has remained steady at around 6:30-7. Has anyone had this problem and successfully solved it? I feel like the only person in the world whose toddler naps in the morning. I've read that right after lunch is the "best" time for a nap given our natural rhythms, and also that having too long of a stretch between nap and bedtime can cause early waking, which is an issue we have with her...but I just don't know what to do! Even if I keep the afternoon nap short, she simply cannot fall asleep in the evening. Our children have always been "parented" to sleep, so when this happens it means one of us is laying with her from 6:45- 9:00 every night. That is not really a sustainable routine for us! Please help!

Thank you so much for any advice!


post #2 of 9

I have no real suggestions to offer, but lately my 18mo moved his nap way later and way longer (on his own), so instead of a nap from 11:30-1 or 2, he naps from 1-4 or 4:30.  He had been going to sleep around 9, and now it isn't until 11.  I would kill for a 9pm bedtime!

post #3 of 9
Luckiest, can you wake him from his nap earlier? 3 hours is awfully long - especially so late in the day. 1-2:30 or 3 would help your bedtime out.

As for the original poster, how long is she napping?
post #4 of 9

DaisyMae - I'm incredibly reluctant to try to wake him up.  He is very high needs and always fights going to sleep, never sleeps for more than two hour blocks, and never more than 10-11 hours in a 24 hour period.  When he naps that long he's waking up once or twice and going back down...anyway, only in the last two months is he starting to nap for more than 45 minutes TOTAL, and I'll trade a late bedtime for a longer daytime break.  For the last two days though he's shifted back to an 11-2 nap, 10pm bedtime.  He was up at 6:15am though, so I'm not sure which mode I prefer!

post #5 of 9

10 - 6:15?  That's just over 8 hrs./night.  Is that his usual nightly total?  Was his nightly total greater when he was only napping for 45 minutes?  Too much daytime sleep can mean less nighttime sleep, but I know what you mean about the break during the day.

post #6 of 9

In the winter months he slept longer at night and less during the day (maybe 10 hours overnight and 1-2 during the day), but overall his total number of hours spent asleep doesn't vary much, so I'm inclined to think it's the longer summer days that are shortening his nighttime sleep.

post #7 of 9
Do you have blackout curtains? That helped my son's nighttime sleep immensely. If you can make things really dark at night and try to gradually shorten his nap, you may be able to get back on track.
post #8 of 9

For the OP.

In our experience, if DD isn't tired when we try to put her down for the night it takes much longer.

So if we wanted her down for 7PM and started trying at 6:45, but she wasn;t ready yet, it too would take us until 9 or 9:30 to get her down.

If we instead waited until 7:30pm, when she was a bit more ready, she will be out and us back downstairs, by 8PM.


Maybe trying looking for her cues instead of the time. And then not wait until she is really tired, but just starting to get in the zone.

Maybe the school and playschool will get her tuckered out enough to sleep eariler in the evening?


Also, our DD doesn't nap anymore, but we did have success with her having an afternoon nap and then still being able to sleep at night. She got to sleep a bit later, like 8:30-9:00, but then she slept in a bit later too. (until 8:00-8:30).

We now need her up by 7:00am, and she started fighting the nap and nighttime sleep, so we dropped her nap all together.


Good Luck.

post #9 of 9

My 2 year old (25 months) naps from 12 or 12:30 until 2:30, sometimes a little later and still goes to bed at 7. Some days it takes longer for him to fall asleep but usually no more than 30 minutes, most often much less. We have a very predictable bedtime routine and he goes to daycare most days and is very active. If he naps later we can stretch his bedtime to 8 pm but I hate to do that because he always wakes before 7, usually 6:30 am. School and summer camp may tire her out enough to accomplish an early bedtime even with a later nap. GL!

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