To give you a brief background: all three kids have their own room, I split the twins up when they were about a year old because they were waking each other up and just having too much fun overall when they were supposed to be sleeping (resulting in not enough sleep for me). Splitting them up may have been motivated by pure selfishness, but when you have to go to work after zero sleep it starts to get old. The twins have been pretty good at going to bed. Both for naps and bedtime, there is limited crabbing and fussing. They only ever get upset if there is really something wrong such as an earache or I forget to turn on their nightlight. Their great sleep pattern is not by accident, however. Jeremy and I have had to work pretty hard to get them to go to bed and stay asleep. *As a side note: I am writing this post so that I can look back later and see (hopefully) how our sleep situation has improved ;)
Our bedtime woes started a couple weeks ago when Cate turned 5 months old and Claire escaped from her crib. Yes, my two-year-olds are still in cribs. At least they were until this incident. I put Matthew & Claire up for their daily nap at their normal nap time (Jeremy was at work) and proceeded to complete my nap time chores which include laundry, closet straightening and picking up the toy room (or any other tasks that don't make too much noise). I was just about to head upstairs with a load of clothes when I heard a little voice that seemed to be getting closer and closer. I looked toward the stairs and here was Claire (much to her delight, by the way). She had obviously figured out how to climb over the side of her crib, open her bedroom door, close the door behind her, and descend the staircase. Sigh. So I put her back upstairs in her crib, but no dice. Needless to say, naps were over for that day (Matthew could hear her laughing and playing so he wanted out, too).
The rest of the day we spent upstairs. Cate hung out in her bouncy seat, the twins played with all their upstairs toys and I went to work. I disassembled their cribs and turned them into toddler beds, changed all the sheets, put plugs in all the outlets, turned dressers around backwards, cleaned out closets and made sure there were no other hazards. I still need to go back and anchor the dressers to the walls so they can face forward again, but the anchors aren't sold in stores and are currently on-order.
That night went very well. I placed a gate outside each of their bedroom doors, placed them in their new beds and they were out like little lights. The next three days went surprisingly well, too! Naps were pretty decent, bedtime went well, etc, etc. But then, they started the door slamming, not sleeping, running around, playing, and trying to escape. I guess the trend couldn't last forever. Claire tested the situation for a couple days and gave up, now it's Matthew's turn to test the boundaries. Look for updates (hopefully positive ones).
When we brought Cate home from the hospital, I decided the way our household would get the most sleep is for me to sleep in Cate's room on a spare twin bed we have. Well, it turns out this has worked great for everyone in the house. Except me. Jeremy gets a full nights sleep, the twins are undisturbed, Cate seems to enjoy having me right there at her beck and call. Since Cate is now 5 months old, I decided it was time for her to sleep in her crib, on her own, all night. She still gets up 2 to 3 times a night, I stumble through the dark into her room to feed her and then she goes back to sleep, so it's a work in progress.
Here's to the next week of potential sleep! Wish me luck!