Implementing naptime for 2 year old? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 3 Old 11-09-2011, 11:13 AM - Thread Starter
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Hi there,

I am wondering if anyone has some ideas for how I can break the habit of car rides for napping and start (I know it is rather late in the game for this) getting 2year old DS to take naps in his bed?


Background: DS used to go down for naps at home pretty easily, and when he is at daycare (3x/week) he apparently goes down no problem.  But I was heavily pregnant and utterly exhausted over the summer and somehow got DSinto the habit of going for a car ride to nap.  I'd then transfer him into bed. 


I am now on maternity leave w/ a newborn and DS.  All 3 of us could use the nap, DS is an exhausted bear by 5pm if he doesn't nap. 
I've tried lying down w/ him, but to no avail. 


HELP!  Any ideas?  Want to do this gently with respect and love. 



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#2 of 3 Old 11-09-2011, 04:34 PM
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I don't really have personal success with naps because DS seems to have outgrown them or something... but I did read in Sleepless in America that in a situation like yours, one of the big things to do would be to replicate what they do at daycare. That would mean putting him down at the same time they do, in a similar environment to his daycare nap space (lighting, background noise, blankets, etc.), and with a similar pre-nap routine (lunch, book, back rub, sleep -- or whatever they do). Also, the book stressed keeping other key parts of the day on the same routine every day, like meals and snacks at the same time, outdoor time at the same time, etc.

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#3 of 3 Old 11-11-2011, 10:03 PM
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Routine is key, but it also sounds like he may be over tired when you are trying to put him down.  Try 30 min. to an hour earlier than what you are doing now.  My son usually falls asleep in the car and I transfer him, but on days that we are home in the morning, he goes down for naps easily unless I miss the window of opportunity.  We do have a routine, lunch then immediately afterward we go upstairs and I close the shades, the door, turn on the fan, make sure he is in comfortable, dry clothes and dry diaper.  Then off to his bed.  Very little talking, and when I do I talk, it's quietly and I move carefully.  No stories either because he will not relax if I do.  Sometimes I have to rub his back or hold his hand, but he loves to go to sleep in his bed, so if it is not beyond the window of opportunity, then he'll fall asleep easily.  Sometimes he gets upset briefly and wants to read or do something and I just stay firm and focus on soothing.  Once in a while he refuses and if that is happening I rock him in the rocking chair or in my arms while standing (very exhausting, 35lbs.) and he goes to sleep.  Only once or twice in the past 6 months a has he refused completely to nap.

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