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How to transition from a crib to a Big-kid bed

We are about to embark on lots of changes for our daughter, beginning with moving into a big bed. For the past several months we have had 2 beds set up in her room, making her room look ridiculous. My husband was a little anxious to have her in a big bed, so we tried it during the summer. After 2 nights of her screaming (she learned how to open doors the first night) we decided to try later. Well I think now may be later.

I would like to know any tips or tricks you use when putting them to a big bed. We've got those white plastic things to go over the door knob so she won't be able to open the door, but other than that I am planning on taking down her crib, so that's not a temptation for her (or me...) and just bearing through it.

How did you make it a good experience? Or was it not a good experience? Would it help to get rid of the binky before or after the big move?


Bridget said...

I really don't have any great advice, but if it was me I would definitely keep the binky until after the big change. Our boy was a ton easier to get into a big bed because he was a thumb sucker and could sooth himself in the bed, whereas we'd already taken away binkies from our girl and it was a serious struggle to keep her in the bed. Other than that I would just plan on either letting her cry it out or putting her back into the bed a ton of times for the first few nights. But, if it makes you feel any better, our boy was seriously a breeze, so it might not be that bad! Good luck - I can't believe she's that big I just remember her being a newborn!

Shalee said...

We made a big hoopla about it and had our daughter help us assemble the bed so she felt special. Maybe you could ask her where she wants her bed in her room (where the crib was?) and she'll feel some ownership in the decision.

I also suggest waiting to pull the plug on the pacifier until after the change. She'll need something familiar.

My plan when my son moves to the toddler bed is to have a new special blanket for him to use in his new bed. He's 2.5 though and I am hoping to keep him in the crib as long as possible (aka until the next baby comes.)

Good luck!

The Mortensens said...

I would for sure keep the binki until after. With Will is has been an up and down process since day one. We just started out closing the door, he had no choice but to stay in his room. Yes, he cried and we would go in to soothe him a little bit but after a couple times we had to just let him cry. He would cry and cry, but finally slept in his bed.

Now, we have to leave the door open, per his request....but if he gets out of bed then we shut the door, that usually keeps him in bed for the most part.

Now that we've been in utah for 7 weeks, all sleeping habits have disappeared, so we are starting from square one with the three year old and the newborn... yipee.

Shan B. said...

We just moved in with my m-i-l so my youngest had to move from the crib to a bunkbed with my oldest...sniff sniff. The cool thing is that the bottom bunk is a full size so he has lots of room. The 1st night we didn't put up the side rail & found him sleeping on the floor in the morning. We put up the side rail & he's done great. Now on occasion he does find his way into our bedroom & I let him snuggle with me for a few minutes & take him back to his bed. Now he takes himself back to bed without me. Good luck. Definitely suggest the side rail & those white things that go on the door knob seem like a good idea & I like the idea of keeping the door open until they keep getting out & then closing it. I hope she's easy breezy for ya :)

Rachel said...

Closing the door seemed to panic both of my kids. So, we did the bedtime routine, put them to bed, tucked them, etc. the first time. Then, each succeeding time they got out of bed, we did less putting them back in - first time, tucked her in again, second time put her in bed and said good night, third time and up, we didn't say anything or do anything other than lead her back up the stairs to her bed, turn around and leave. It worked great as long as we were consistent.
As others have said, we made a big deal of taking down the crib and decorating the bed as she (he) chose. In both cases, the child had an old comfort blanket and we added a new Big Kid blanket of their very own. Whatever works, though, right?

sofabellie said...

I left the crib up while we were transitioning. That way, if it was just a bad night, and my daughter didn't want to stay in her big girl bed, we could easily lay her in the crib.

As far as rails go, I bought the rails for my older daughter, and she still managed to fall off the bed. She just worked her way around the rails while she was sleeping. With my younger daughter, I put the mattress flat on the floor, and put some soft blankets beside it. It took maybe only a couple of nights until she was able to sense her own boundaries and stopped rolling off. We then added the box spring, and after several weeks of no rolling, we were able to set up the frame. After those first couple of nights, she's never fallen off the bed, not even once.