- Make sure your baby’s nap space is drowsy-ready. Pare down the room to bare essentials: a crib or toddler bed, a changing table, simple wall décor, diapers, supplies, and clothing. Ditch toys, games, and electronics. (Blackout shades are optional; white noise is fine.)
- Pre-game your strategy. If you want your little napper to snooze at, say, 10 a.m., start your wind-down activities 15-to-20 minutes beforehand. Snuggle into a cozy chair, share a calming book or a sleepy song. Make a habit of putting your tuckered out tot to bed when he’s drowsy—not fully asleep.
- Watch out for unexpected schedule busters. Teething, colds, flu, or a trip to the doctor or market can knock a smart naptime routine off kilter. Don’t let short-term interruptions detonate an otherwise viable plan.
- Evict obstructions—especially for the tiniest nappers. Place your infant on her back, on a firm mattress, in a crib cleared of all toys, blankets, and pillows. For tots who are toddler-bed ready, a few button-free loveys or treasured blankies are fine.
- Style a shut-eye wardrobe. Jammies aren't required, but do make sure your sweetie’s clothes are safe for mid-day napping—nothing too loose, too heavy, too light or too constricting. No clothing with strings.
- Be boring. Except for when you’re out-and-about (and your cutie conks out in the car seat), try to have your sleepyface nap in the same location. The “instant connection” to a familiar place can make it easier for your sleep-meister to catch some zzzz’s.
- Make a promise … and keep it. Never bribe your cutie to hit the sheets. Instead, explain that a good rest will give her more energy to have fun later. Schedule an activity to forward to—a trip to the park or library, or a play date, and let her in on the plan.
Parents Talk Back
How many books do you currently have in your house? Include books on tape, audio books, and eBooks, as well as all hard and soft cover books that you own or have borrowed. Select one answer below.
1 to 10
3% (3 votes)
10 to 20
4% (4 votes)
20 to 50
11% (10 votes)
50 to 100
15% (14 votes)
More than 100
67% (63 votes)
Total votes: 94