Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Baby to Toddler Transitions / Potty training, big kid beds, & bye bye binky

Sloan and Phayre are just a few days shy of being two years and three months apart.  Our third baby is due about two and a half weeks after Phayre turns two.  So, all of our babies are about two years apart.  The timing of their birthdays makes for a lot of transitions before baby arrives!

I remember when I first became pregnant with Phayre and Sloan still seemed like such a baby!  I was overwhelmed at the thought of having two babies.  Little did I know, Sloan would change and mature so much over the coming months and wouldn't seem like such a baby once her little sister arrived.  Before Phayre was born, Sloan potty trained, moved into a big girl bed (and passed her crib down to baby sis), and gave up her pacifier.

As Phayre approached 18 months (and I was already pregnant with our third), I knew that she had lots of transitions and changes ahead of her.  Just like with Sloan, I started looking for signs that she was ready to make these transitions and sure enough, she did.  I've gotten so many questions about all of the transitions that Phayre has been through lately so I thought I'd share what we've done and how things are going.

All kids do things at different times, even my girls have done things at different ages.  Obviously because we're expecting another baby we have been motivated to help the girls through these transitions.  Don't fret if your child does things sooner or later, I'm just sharing our experience and what has worked for us!

Remember, I am not an expert or some guru in motherhood (if you know me well, you know this for sure!  Haha).  So maybe take an idea or two, but don't worry if these things don't work for your kiddo.  I also have to mention that Phayre is a really easy going kid.  She's not super stubborn and she wants nothing more than to be a big girl just like her sister.  This has REALLY worked in our favor through all of these transitions!  P is also considered "hyper verbal" which has made these transitions really easy.  She can very clearly communicate with us and really understands us when we're speaking to her.

Potty Training: 20 months
I already shared all about our potty training experience and listed my best tips and tricks in this post.

Big Kid Bed: 21 months
Once P was potty trained, we decided it was time to start working on her big girl bedroom (so that we could also start working on baby brothers nursery).  We decided to move P into our guest room and keep the nursery for brother.  We finished her room big girl room, but weren't in a rush to transition her over.  Once she saw the big girl bed and her new room, she was so excited she immediately started begging to sleep in it.  So we decided to give it a try and she has done amazing!  Not forcing her and letting her decide she wanted to sleep in her big girl bed definitely made the transition easier.

On Phayre's first night in her big girl bed, Eric and I sat on her bed and had a "talk" with her :).  We told her that big girls stay in their beds for sleep and if she wants to sleep in a big girl bed like her sister, she can't get out of her bed during sleep time.  We also told her that if she got out of her bed, she'd have to go back into the nursery and sleep in the crib.  We didn't make her feel like she'd be in trouble or punished, we just laid out what the rules were if you're a big girl.  Phayre is super verbal and made it clear that she understood what we were saying.  Like I said before, she soooo badly wants to be a big girl like her Didi (sister), she's followed the rules and getting out of her bed has never been an issue.

Phayre sleeps in her Dockatot Grand in her big girl bed and I really think that has made the transition super easy for her.  She slept in it in her crib so it's very familiar and still makes her feel surrounded and secure.  She also sleeps with blackout curtains and a Hatch Baby Rest (night light and sound machine).  She moved into her big girl room about three weeks ago and we haven't had any issues at all!  I think making a huge emphasis on it being a big girl room has really excited and motivated her to make the transition.

Bye Bye Binky: 22 months
The binky, or the "tink" as Phayre called it, was the last babyish thing to go.  To be honest, I wasn't in any rush to get rid of it.  Phayre only used it for rest and it never ever left her bed.  Selfishly, I loved seeing it in her mouth while she slept because she looked so tiny with it.  It was her one last little shred of babyness and I just wasn't ready to let it go.  I even texted my best friend Lauren and said, "Ya know, I don't think I'm going to take P's tinks away.  She only uses them for sleep and it's just not a battle I want to take on right now."  It was like Phayre heard our conversation and was like, "Fine mom, I'll be the grown up here and get rid of my tinks." because two days after I text Lauren that, Phayre handed me her tink after nap and said, "Tinks fo babies mama!" I asked her if she wanted to be all done with her tinks and she said, "Phayre Bear all done.  Phayre Bear a big girl!"

I was so surprised that Phayre had decided she was done with her tinks, but decided I better just go with it and follow her lead.  We went around and collected all her tinks and put them in a little basket.  I told her that if she gave all her tinks to the tink fairy, that the tink fairy would give her tinks to tiny babies that need them (thank you Aunty Lauren for the tink fairy idea!!).  I also told her that if she did that, the tink fairy would leave her a little present for being such a big girl!  Phayre was thrilled and started repeating the story about the tink fairy over and over.  So I knew she understood what was happening and was totally on board.

We put the little basket of tinks on our front porch and waited for the tink fairy to come.  Finally before bedtime she came!  Lucky for me, I had just bought P a little baby doll that I had planned on giving her for her birthday.  I threw in a bag of skittles and a couple sticks of gum (yes my almost two year old knows how to chew gum, but we only let her do it supervised!).  Phayre was absolutely thrilled with her gifts from the tink fairy and kept saying, "Big girl presents!!!"  She named the babydoll "tink baby" and cuddles her so tight at night.  I think replacing the tink with a lovey or some sort of comfort item for sleep is really helpful.

Phayre hasn't asked for a tink once since giving them away to the tink fairy.  The transition was her idea and she did it when she was ready-which is much different from when we took it away from Sloan and she screamed at sleep times for a week.

I think my best advice for any of these transitions is to really look for signs that your child is ready and then follow their lead.  Phayre has transitioned from a baby to a toddler seamlessly, but most of these things have been her idea and we've just help support and excite her through the process.  Make sure you talk them through each transition (and that they're verbal enough to have these conversations) and that there are prizes or rewards to help motivate them along the way.  And always remember, consistency is key.  Once you've made a change, stick to it!!  

I hope that this has been somewhat helpful.  I feel so incredibly lucky that Phayre is an easy going kid and wants to be a big kid like her sister, it has made all of these transitions so much easier on her and on Eric and I.  Remember every kiddo is different and will do things when they're developmentally ready!  Good luck mamas!  Let me know if you have any other specific questions in a comment below and I will get back to you!




  1. This is brilliant my friend, and so proud of your big baby girl!! I think taking their lead is the best way to approach these changes because they will really do it when they are ready! Our little Ellie moved into a big girl bed at 22 months, got rid of her paci at 2y7m and we are still potty training for number 2 at 3!! All so different! x

  2. Such good is advice girl!!! Waiting until they are ready makes it so much easier. Elouise needs to get on board with the potty training thing now lol

  3. With every kid having a different personality and different circumstances it's totally best to wait for them! Which is apparently my excuse for not forcing k away from her pacifier (can I still blame cancer?).

  4. Seriously. I could listen to you talk about this stuff all day. Finn is 18mo and I'm like, am I behind? When do I start? How do I do it! Thanks for sharing!! You're my motherhood hero!

  5. Such good advice mama! I'm so impressed with what a big girl P is! I'm still hoping onto every ounce of baby-ness I can with Diego.

  6. Awesome advice mama! I blogged about the binky too. My oldest loved her binkis but when we told her the story of the binky having to go back home with her mommy, it sealed the deal. ��

  7. Awesome! What about weaning/getting read of bottles?!

  8. What are you doing to help P get ready for her new sibling? I'm due 2 weeks after you and my daughter will be just shy of 22 months. I'm not sure if I'm doing too little, too much or all the wrong things to help get her prepared!

  9. Seriously such good advice! + she is taking these changes like a champ!

  10. That is awesome you took the pinky away then! We waited until Oliver was 3 and it was way to old!

  11. I can't believe how big she's getting. I'll be coming back here for all your tips soon.

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