I am the mother to three young children. My oldest is five and a half, so beyond that age? I am clueless.

I am, however, a bit of an “expert” in the Under Five category. Not for your kids. Nope. Not going there. And not really for my kids either. I have had three children, and the fact that they are all so utterly and completely different proves that I am no expert whatsoever.

What I am an expert in is the “stages” that my children go through. Let me tell you what I mean.

The first six months of my children’s life was amazing. Sweet, soft, silky newborns. New babies are miracle. So squishy and loveable to boot.

Except that it is not my favourite stage. It is all full of concern and worry. Are they eating enough? Too much? Are they sleeping enough? Or too much? (Emily was the uber-sleeper. I always sometimes worried that maybe she was sleeping way too much. That much sleep must be something I should worry about.)

SERIOUSLY? She slept. AND WAS HAPPY. But still, I worried.

My favourite baby stage is when they are sitting unassisted. They are immobile, and you can scatter toys around them and they are happy! Yay! Happy, happy, joy, joy…

Then they start moving. Which is good! They move around, getting to where they want to go. The yelling and screaming are (somewhat) abated. They keep growing and moving and exploring. It is great.

I am currently back in a stage which I abhor. The not-done-napping-but-up-too-late stage.

Both boys were done with the “afternoon nap” shortly after their second birthday. It is not that they did not want one. I just did not give them one. Why?

Because I like an early bedtime.

Some people have no problem keeping their kids up until all hours of the night. Good for them. Really. I (and Matthew), however, like our kids to be asleep between 7 and 8pm. That gives us an hour or two to have some kid-free time to work in the shop or edit photos/write a blog post.

*HI*

The kids then wake up (or are woken up) by 8 in the morning. It works for us.

The issue we are having lately is the whole nap deal with Miss Emily.

She would sleep all afternoon if we let her. We have cut her nap back to two hours, and that has worked. Until recently.

Now, if we let her sleep two hours, she is up until about 9. Which sucks. And blows. I am not a night owl by any means. I need my kids in bed at a decent hour so that I can have some “me” time that does not occur after midnight.

She still needs a nap, though, or she gets quite grumpy. Even more that usual.

It is that awkward needs-a-nap-but-not-too-much stage. It is lame. I don’t like it.

Good thing she is so cute.

Outtie

Did you know that she has an “outtie”? Now you do.

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  1. Hannah April 29, 2008 1:27 am edit

    I believe I wrote a very similar post not too long ago! Tyler gets grumpy without a nap, but I don’t want him being awake until 8.30 or 9 either. Bedtime here is 7pm. Period.

    I know we’ll both get through this stage, but you’re right – it BLOWS while you’re in it! ((hugs)) from someone who is right there with you!

    Hannah’s last blog post..Reunited

  2. Beverley Warwick April 29, 2008 2:48 am edit

    I’ve discovered a new stage with my third – the other two didn’t do this.

    She turned four in Feb, we did the whole cut the nap thing way back when she was two. (We like our ‘adults only’ evenings too) Anyway, she’s been doing the wide awake at 9 or 10pm thing lately – it’s just like she needs to cut the afternoon nap, but she doesn’t have one! I’m thinking she just isn’t getting out enough during the day – hanging at home, doing the housework etc just isn’t wearing her out enough.

    Two weeks and counting till she’s at pre-school five mornings a week – that should get her out of this stage … I hope.

    Hope Miss Emily moves through this one quickly too.

    Beverley Warwick’s last blog post..Moving

  3. witchypoo April 29, 2008 3:39 am edit

    One of the good things about winter is that you can point outside and say “But it’s DARK out”

    witchypoo’s last blog post..This Week in Comments

  4. Danica April 29, 2008 5:26 am edit

    I remember that stage with Adora. It’s trying times for sure. I’ve been lucky with Grace. She just started napping every other day when she was about 2 and a half, and then napped progressively less often. Last month she was down to one nap a week, but I don’t think she has napped at all lately, except when she was sick.
    This stage won’t last long. Transitions with kids are so much fun aren’t they? Hope you find a few snippets of ‘me time’ in the in-between time.

  5. sizzle April 29, 2008 6:48 am edit

    I wish I could sleep like Emily. Seriously!

    sizzle’s last blog post..Out of Balance

  6. Kami April 29, 2008 7:05 am edit

    I am so with you on this one! Early bedtime is a MUST around here for the mommy and daddy’s sanity.

    And the whole nap or no nap thing?

    Been there, done that.

    :-)

    This too shall pass.

    Kami’s last blog post..Fame has a price

  7. Amanda Brown April 29, 2008 7:22 am edit

    I feel you! Avelyn slept for 3 hours at the babysitter’s yesterday afternoon and was up till 9. I was ready to saw of my arms with butter knives.

    Amanda Brown’s last blog post..I’ve Got A Fat Suit On And I Can’t Take It Off

  8. hills April 29, 2008 7:30 am edit

    Ha – love the picture! Just wait til she’s 16 and pulling that pose … won’t be so cute then, will it?

    hills’s last blog post..We’d Spend The Whole Weekend Lying In Our Own Dirt

  9. Vicki April 29, 2008 8:46 am edit

    tell me about it….

    Vicki’s last blog post..The Happiest Place on Earth…

  10. Sharon April 29, 2008 8:54 am edit

    I used to nap all the time when I was in university. I was quite the night-owl, so in order to survive the many all-nighters I would often pull attempting to get my papers done, etc. I would have a nap in the afternoons. In one of my dorms we even had a scheduled “nap time” when everyone would tone down the noise a bit for an hour. LOL.

    I love Miss Emily’s little belly. So cute!

    Sharon’s last blog post..Blast from the past!

  11. Randi April 29, 2008 9:38 am edit

    A girl after my own heart;) Loves her sleep.

    I’m digging the belly!!!! (blows raspberries)

    Randi’s last blog post..It Feels Like Summer?.

  12. Michele April 29, 2008 11:43 am edit

    Love the picture!!! I think I’d like a two hour nap in the afternoon! Good luck with the “lame” stage, I can imagine it’s lots of fun.

  13. Shalet April 29, 2008 2:26 pm edit

    My kids are older 11, 8 and 4. Oh how I wish they’d go to be early. They outlast me any night and even as I’m trying to sleep I hear them stomping around in their rooms. Shockingly they don’t want to get up in the morning. They’ll be those sleep till noon sort of teenagers. Ah well, what’s a mother to do?

    Little Miss Emily is indeed adorable! Love the belly!

    Shalet’s last blog post..Now my kids think I’m cool …

  14. skiplovey April 29, 2008 3:10 pm edit

    Oh I love the unassisted stage too. Man, when we got there I thought, “Ok, I can do this.”
    9 is way too late of a bedtime for kids that age. Stay firm, and good luck.

    skiplovey’s last blog post..Diversions from the heat

  15. Mrs. Wilson April 29, 2008 3:38 pm edit

    1. That is the cutest outie I have ever seen!

    2. Oh man. I love nap time but even more I love bedtime! Okay, i hate bedtime, but I love when they’re in bed. Early. We usually aim to have them in bed by 8:00. For us, and for them. Because if they’re up any later, they will have to deal with Grumpy Mom who needs her quiet time!

    But yes, that stage sucks. I’m not looking forward to it!! (Oh, and good sleepers? Rule!! I just poke Liliana if she’s sleeping too long to make sure she’s still breathing, haha.)

    Mrs. Wilson’s last blog post..A Year of Liliana

  16. The Over-Thinker April 29, 2008 5:05 pm edit

    That little belly is just begging to be tickled! Such a sweetie. (And I’ll bet that photo was taken at 9pm when she was NOT TIRED–NOOOOO MOM!

    The Over-Thinker’s last blog post..Remind me to tell you about my accidental enthusiasm about a Strip Club…

  17. Cassey April 29, 2008 9:46 pm edit

    I’d take a few grumpy hours in the evening to get a few kid-free hours. Cute outie!

    Cassey’s last blog post..Deep Stuff

  18. Kristin April 29, 2008 10:09 pm edit

    I hear ya, it’s always hard when the change things up like that.

    That picture of Emily is really really cute!

    Kristin’s last blog post..Our weekend was…

  19. Carolyn April 29, 2008 10:47 pm edit

    How about this stage – Csilla doesn’t nap AND wants to stay up all night. It really blows. But, yes, Emily is really cute.

    Carolyn’s last blog post..on making babies and how to talk to god.

  20. trish April 30, 2008 12:11 am edit

    your favourite stage was the sitting immobile one? We didn’t have that – D crawled well before he could sit. And as for putting kids to bed at 8 and having them sleep until 8, it sounds like a dream. D wakes at 5:30 or 6 am every morning regardless of bedtime… yup – all kids are definitely different…

    trish’s last blog post..22. wonderful words

  21. gorillabuns April 30, 2008 4:52 am edit

    If the girls aren’t asleep by 8:30pm, I start going nuts by yelling, “you are on my time kiddos!” Sometimes the kids are OVERTIRED by not napping all day so, just to spite me, they stay up FOREVER!

    Yes, you are right. Thank god I love them or else they would be toast.

  22. Rachel Joy April 30, 2008 8:56 am edit

    I couldn’t comment when I first read this at 10 freaking 48 last night because Marty had JUST fallen asleep, in my arms. I don’t know what the deal was. He was so hyper! I’m just waiting for his two year molars to appear and then there will be some serious changes in this little boys life. Yarrrr!

  23. Lisa May 2, 2008 6:55 pm edit

    I LOVE the stage of 6 months to about 18 months. When absolutely EVERYTHING around them is NEW and EXCITING and they change so much.

    Then….then they decide they need to have this personality and independence. Of. Their. Own.

    Ugh. Why can’t they stay complacent forever? :D

    I hear you on the nap thing. Oh yes.

    Lisa’s last blog post..Happy Birthday to me!

  24. Kristabella May 6, 2008 1:41 pm edit

    I wish I could take 2 hour naps and could go to bed before 8.

    That is heaven to me right there,

    Stupid being an adult and having things to do! Hrumpf.

    Kristabella’s last blog post..Good Times Guaranteed

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