Toddler Transition From Crib to Regular Bed

Why transition now?

This past weekend my husband and I transitioned our 2.5-year-old out of her crib and into a regular bed. We decided to do this for multiple reasons:

  1. When travelling, our daughter slept in her PlayPen, but recently she learned to climb out of it. Therefore, we needed an alternative.  
  2. She has learned how to climb out of her crib. 
  3. We have been hearing her hit her arms and legs on the crib throughout the night, which was now causing her to wake up. Another indication that we needed a bigger sleeping arrangement for her.  

Truthfully, we wanted to keep her in her crib for as long as possible, the crib made our life much more comfortable, but we knew it was time to make the switch.

Preparing for the Transition:

Our daughter is good at napping for extended periods and sleeping right through the night (we are fortunate, she is a good sleeper), BUT she always throws an absolute fit when she realizes it’s bedtime. The only reason she stays and eventually falls asleep is because she can’t get out of her crib. She loves her sleep, but she doesn’t love going to sleep. Therefore, we knew that this transition could be a tough one for us. We knew we needed to have a plan for how to transition her so that she stays in bed and goes to sleep. I turned to my friends and did a bit of research to get some tips for this transition.   

 Below are the tips we followed and seem (so far) to have worked for us:

  1. Getting ready for the transition: We began talking to our daughter about her new “big kid” bed. We also read her a children’s’ book about a little elephant transitioning from his crib to a big bed. The book was called “A Big Kid Bed is Coming” by Liz Fletcher. She loved the book! I think this step is pretty important; they can visualize the change and understand it a bit better.
  2. The excitement factor: Many people suggested enticing her to her new bed by adding lots of stuffed animals and colourful bed sheets with some of her favourite books. This will hopefully convince her to go to bed and stay there. We did this, and she loved it! She lined up all her stuffed animals and put her new sheets over them so they could sleep with her.
  3. Getting the room ready: Babyproof the room, like REALLY baby proof it. They will be walking around enjoying their new freedom and wanting to check out their surroundings. We took out lamps, toys and anything she could climb. We basically left her books and her dresser (which we bolted to the wall). We also added a night light because I didn’t want her walking into anything when she got out of bed.  
  4. Protecting her from rolling out of bed: I had bought one bed rail but realized once the bed was constructed, I needed two. I panicked a bit, but a friend of mine gave me an excellent tip. Take a couple of towels, roll them together in a long roll and put it under the mattress sheet along the side of the bed to help them from rolling right off the bed. So far it has worked just as well as the baby rail, so big win! Since this is a new transition, though, I have added lots of carpet and padding on the floor just in case. 
  5. When to begin: I was told to start this process during her afternoon nap; I was a bit weary because I love her nap time and my break time but, it was definitely a good idea. She walked out many times before falling asleep, but she was more prepared for bedtime that evening.   
  6. Make bedtime a bit earlier than usual: I started bedtime about 30 min early because I knew she would be getting up and walking around at the beginning. She left the room many times, but each time we held her hand and brought her right back to bed, reminding her it was bedtime, and she had to go to sleep. On night 1, we did this about six times. By the last time, she realized she couldn’t come out, stayed in her bed and eventually fell asleep. This was about 1 hour after her usual bedtime.

Some other things to consider:

  • Putting the video monitor back into the room to keep an eye on them as they explore their new freedom.
  • Lock the bedroom door if they don’t stop leaving their room. I know this is controversial, but they couldn’t get out of their crib before, so I don’t see a difference with locking their door now. 
  • If they don’t stay in bed for nap time, try quiet time. Tell them they still need a rest and can quietly read books in bed until mom/dad gets them. There are two reasons to do this: they are tired and need a little rest, and mom still needs a break.  
  • I haven’t nighttime potty trained my daughter yet; I am not sure how I will add this to the transition, but if you have any hints/tips, please let me know!

One final piece of advice:

Like everything with our little ones, you’ll have to be patient. Some toddlers may fight this change, and their sleep may get negatively affected for a while; some may love this new change and go right to sleep; there is no telling how our children will respond, so don’t beat yourself up if it isn’t going as you anticipated. With these transitions, I have learned never to have any expectations, just make the change, and roll with whatever happens. Changing your toddler’s routine is hard on your little one, but it is also hard on you. Make sure you give yourself a break from time to time, eat a slice of cake, go for a long walk, whatever it is you need to do to reset. Also, if my tips aren’t working, then ignore them and make your own. You know your child better than anyone, and there is no perfect process! 

Good luck!

If you have any additional tips or would like to write about your experience with your baby and their transition, please comment below! 


My First Week Potty Training my 2-Year-Old

*The picture above is what my bathroom looked like after Day 1*

This is the 3rd post regarding my potty training journey, to read from the beginning please refer back to Potty Training…Ugh and Oh Crap! Potty Training.

Day 1

I went into day one very anxious and nervous about how the day would go. I knew I had to be watching her every move, all day, and I had to keep her entertained inside. My daughter loves to be outside, so I knew trapping her in the apartment would be challenging. I was also really concerned about how she would handle this change. Would she resist it? Would it take her a while to register her need for the toilet? I really had no idea.

I am happy to report my daughter did very well today! I followed the direction Glowacki laid out for Block One of her method. My daughter didn’t mind being naked all day; I think she kind of loved it. She, of course, had a couple of accidents, but for the most part, she would give a signal that she had to go pee and would hold it until she got to the bathroom! I really thought it would take her a couple of days before she would get poop in the toilet, but she even surprised me here. She said poo poo ran to the bathroom and tried to push it out, but nothing came out, this happened 3 times. By the 4th time, she had pooped successfully in the toilet! I did a happy dance!

She far exceeded my expectations of the day. Although this excites me, I’m making sure not to get too ahead of myself because, as Glowacki points out, many children do well in the first block, but it’s the second block that seems to cause the most difficulty.

There are some things that I did a bit differently then Glowacki laid out. For the first pee of the day, I did sit her on the potty for a while, hoping she would pee. This was a bit of a challenge because my daughter didn’t like sitting there but, she did eventually pee. For the rest of the day, I followed Glowacki’s plan to allow my daughter to either begin to pee herself or make a signal to pee before I brought her to the toilet. Admittedly this did seem to work out better. As well, I did not use a potty. I used the toddler toilet insert with steps, that you see in the image above. My daughter did well with this; she climbed up to the toilet herself and sat well on the insert. 

I had many reasons for choosing this toddler toilet, one being that I didn’t want her to get used to the potty and then go through another teaching process to get her on the toilet and two if we are out in public or at someone’s house the big toilet is the only thing she will have.

There are some things that didn’t go exactly as planned. For one, my daughter thought it was fun to say “uh oh” and run to the bathroom, so by the end of the day, this was happening every 3-5 min, and obviously, she didn’t have to go each time. I wasn’t sure how to handle this, so I decided it was best to go with her each time and if she did nothing, just walk away from the bathroom. I tried to make it an uneventful experience so she wouldn’t keep wanting to go back. As well, she loves washing her hands, so I wouldn’t let her wash her hands unless she actually peed or pooped. I am interested to see if this continues tomorrow.

Lastly, I found it difficult to entertain my daughter in our apartment, ALL DAY, so I often turned to Netflix… don’t be ashamed if you have to too. My daughter learned something new today, regardless of how much TV she watched!

Day 2

Before I get started detailing my 2nd day of potty training, I wanted to mention that after yesterday I was a bit concerned about my daughter always wanting to go to the bathroom.  I decided to email Jamie Glowacki about it and see if she had any helpful tips.  I wasn’t expecting a prompt response as I am sure she is a very busy person.  However she really surprised me, she responded to me immediately (or her secretary did)! She showed me she really cares and this made me more confident about choosing her method to potty train my daughter.  

Day 2- Beginning Block Two

Glowacki reminds her readers that moving from one block to another is not counted by days.  You can spend many days on each block; it is all about the signs you are getting from your child as they learn to use the potty.  My husband and I felt that our daughter was ready for Block Two on day 2 (we checked the checklist in the book, and our daughter checked all the boxes).  

Block Two introduced clothing to our potty training toddler.  They go from being naked all day (block one) to now wearing clothing.  As Glowacki recommends, we didn’t put underwear on our daughter during this stage.  When my daughter woke up, we took off her nighttime diaper and took her to the potty for the morning pee, which she did! Then afterwards we told her it was time to put clothes on and we dressed her for the day.  

The clothes did not seem to bother my daughter; she pretty much followed the same pattern as yesterday.  She would mostly give the signal to go potty or pee herself a bit then hold it until I got her to the toilet. It didn’t seem like the clothing changed anything at all! When she woke up from her nap, and I took off her diaper.  Her diaper was pretty dry, which hopefully means she’s also learning to try and hold her pee during sleep (we won’t be night training her anytime soon).  We continued to stay home for the rest of the day, and she continued to go to the bathroom.  She only had one small accident today!

I have to mention that my husband and I got a bit too confident in our daughter and watched her less carefully today.  When I was cleaning up later on in the day, I found a puddle in her playroom.  This could have easily been water from her cup, or it could have been pee.  We tried to smell it or figure out if it was pee but, we couldn’t tell.  Therefore, she may have had an accident.  We were disappointed in ourselves because if we just watched her a bit more, we would know if it was an accident or not.   If it was an accident, it was our fault, not hers.  Regardless of this, we took today as a massive success for her.  Tomorrow we will continue Block Two with short outings. We all can’t wait to get out of the house! 

Day 3

Today was a big day; not only were we going to get out of the house, but we also decided to introduce underwear to our daughter.  I know Glowacki emphasizes not to do this for at least a couple weeks, but we decided we had to. Firstly, it is summer right now, and my daughter loves playing in the sand, and her shorts do not fully cover her.  I was worried she would get upset with all the sand in her shorts.  Secondly, we have her 2-year-old check-up tomorrow, and I don’t think the doctor’s office would appreciate her coming in without underwear.  Lastly, her daycare did not seem very happy with her not wearing underwear or a diaper.  For all these reasons, I thought it only made sense to introduce underwear to her now.

When we showed her the underwear, we called them “big girl undies.”  We gave them to her right when we threw out her diaper.  Right after putting them on, we also reinforced the idea of the toilet. I am happy to say she followed the same routine as yesterday and continued to pee in the bathroom.  

Today we finally went outside! 

In the morning we went to the park, and in the afternoon we went to the beach.  I am trying to get her into the rhythm of going to the bathroom before leaving the house but, she is reluctant to go unless she has to.  Very grudgingly, she went to the toilet before our first outing but refused before leaving for the beach in the afternoon.  I may try to just wait for a pee before going out if this continues.  

When we got to the park, we followed Glowacki’s suggestion to show her where the public washrooms were.  We also brought a potty in case the public bathroom freaked her out but, we didn’t show it to her.  She had no accidents in the park, and she didn’t need to go to the bathroom at all.

After her nap, we got ready to go to the beach.  We brought the potty with us (I pictured us having to take her swimsuit off to let her pee just like Glowacki mentioned but, I was also okay with her just peeing in the water).   On our walk over, she looked up at us and said, “uh oh poo-poo,” so we stopped in the middle of the street, took out her potty, and she went pee.  We both laughed at the sight of it but, it worked! Once we got to the beach, she played in the water, no mention of the potty, and after about an hour, we left to go home.  No potty stop on our way home, my guess is she peed in the water.

Once she got home, she got back into her routine of going to the bathroom when she needed to pee. She had no accidents today!! However, this is the second day in a row she has not gone poo in the toilet.  Yesterday she didn’t poop at all, and today she went poop during her nap.  Glowacki says this is normal, and she will go poo in the toilet again when she’s comfortable. 

Day 3 was a success! 

Day 4

I wanted to try and have a typical day today to see how my daughter would do.  

In the morning, she went to the bathroom before leaving the house for her doctor’s appointment.  I brought the potty to the car but did not bring it into the doctor’s office.  

When we got to the office, I took my daughter straight to the bathroom, and she had no problem using the toilet. The doctor was also a bit backed up, so I knew we would be spending more time in the office then I had planned.  We were there for about 2 hours.  She used the bathroom a couple more times while we were there, and she had no accidents! 

When we got back home, she continued her pattern as before.  However, right before her nap, she went to the bathroom, peed a bit, but then got up as though she was finished. She wasn’t finished and continued to pee on the floor.  She said “uh oh” and sat back down, but she had nothing left at that point.  This was a bit worrying because I feel like she tries to rush herself when she is peeing.  I try to get her to wait and sit on the toilet until she is entirely done but, she doesn’t like to sit there.  

The rest of the day went pretty well until about an hour before bedtime.  She wasn’t in the best mood and seemed a bit bored.  She then began to pee herself while saying, “uh oh”.  She stopped, and I rushed her to the bathroom, and she peed a bit more in the toilet.  This was a bit of an odd accident; I was cooking while it happened, and I worry she was trying to get my attention by peeing.  I hope this isn’t the case, and we will see how she does tomorrow at daycare.

Day 5

Today I brought my daughter to her first day of daycare since beginning potty training.  Luckily, her daycare was very supportive of this transition and assured me they would make sure to bring her to the bathroom throughout the day.  I was a bit worried about how the day would go.  My daughter loves daycare; she loves playing with the other kids, eating with her friends, and so much more.  I was worried she would forget about the potty or she just wouldn’t want to go due to all the fun she is having.

Unfortunately, my daughter did not do well at daycare.  She had three accidents, two times peed her pants and once pooped in her pants.  I was a bit disappointed by this.   However, her daycare was very supportive.  They felt that she did very well regardless of the accidents.   Each time the accident happened, she brought it to the teacher’s attention and was taken to the toilet to continue peeing.  When she began to poop herself, she also told the teachers, but by the time they got her to the bathroom, she had already pooped in her underwear.  Hopefully, tomorrow will be better.

Luckily once she got home, she got back into her routine and used the toilet to go pee.  However, we are noticing that she doesn’t really want to go to the bathroom anymore.  In the beginning, it was a fun new game that excited her, but now it’s not as fun anymore, and I’m beginning to see some resistance.  Hopefully, this doesn’t last!

Day 5 was not a great day, but I am staying optimistic that tomorrow will be better!

Day 6

My daughter woke up a bit early today, which was a bit difficult to manage with her potty time. She went pee right when she woke up, but then when we were leaving for daycare, about 45 min later, she refused to go again.  Luckily, she made it to daycare with no accidents.  The moment we got to daycare, I took her to the bathroom, and she peed.

My daughter did very well for most of the day at daycare.  She peed and even pooped in the toilet.  However, after she woke up from her nap, they went outside and then she seemed reluctant to use the bathroom again.  Her daycare teachers took her, but she didn’t do anything, only to have her pee herself 10min later.  They told me she peed herself three times within 30min.  I am worried that she will now think it is okay to pee outside.  I hope this was just a little bump in the road, and this doesn’t continue every time she’s playing outside.

On our way home from daycare, she peed in the car seat, which she has never done.  It made me feel a bit discouraged about her progress.

Luckily, when she got home, she continued in her routine.

Day six did not go as well as I hoped but, tomorrow is day 3 of daycare and day 7 of potty training, so crossing my fingers tomorrow is a good day!

Day 7

Today was my daughter’s last day of daycare for the week.  I am excited to report that she only had one accident at daycare! She went to the bathroom almost every time she had to pee.  This is so much better than her first couple days at daycare, and I think this will continue to improve the more accustomed to toilets she becomes.  

She also did pretty well when she was home; she only had one accident close to bedtime. As she began to pee herself, she stopped to continue peeing in the toilet. This shows me my daughter at least knows she shouldn’t be peeing outside of the bathroom. 

She only had two accidents today, and I am very happy about that.

My Final Thoughts…

I loved using Glowacki’s method for potty training.  I think it has worked very well for our toddler. I recommend her book, Oh Crap! Potty Training to all parents about to take on this new milestone.

I must admit, this has been a very challenging week.  I felt mentally drained at the end of each day.  Additionally, there was added tension between my husband and I as we both try to maneuver this new challenge.   Luckily, my husband also read Glowacki’s book, so we agreed on most aspects of how to support our daughter in this transition.   It was exhausting for us both, and it was especially exhausting for our daughter. However, we are thrilled that we started this journey, and we know now that the hardest part (we hope at least) is behind us.  

Whenever you decide to take on this new task with your toddler, it will bring challenges, but it also brings out a whole new side to your child.  Watching this new toddler emerge is pretty amazing.  Sadly seeing her in underwear does signify the ending of her baby stage but, we’re so excited to see what’s in store for us in this next chapter of our daughters growth.

I hope my journey potty training my daughter will help you when you decided to embark on this new adventure.  If you have any questions or comments, please write them below. 


Mom Truths – Book Review

By: Catherine Belknap and Natalie Telfer

Why I read this book…

As a new mom, I felt like my emotions were playing tricks on me. Some days I would feel great, and other days I would feel really low. I found myself feeling alone and isolated, and I was scared to express what I was feeling. None of my friends had babies, so I couldn’t really turn to them for support, and if I did vent to them, I ended up feeling like a terrible mom. I thought my friends would think I didn’t love my baby, so I stopped expressing my emotions. I needed an outlet; I needed another mom’s perspective and opinion on all the feelings I was feeling. That is when randomly (unless Instagram can hear my thoughts), I stumbled upon the Cat and Nat Instagram page. I saw some of their hilarious videos, and I knew I needed to learn more. I did some ‘Googling’ on these two moms and realized they had written a book about motherhood, and it included REAL feelings and perspectives on their motherhood journey. I was a bit apprehensive about reading any ‘mom books’ because I thought they would just tell me I was a bad mom, but I gave this book a chance, and I am SO glad I did. The book is called Mom Truths, and I recommend it to all new moms!

About the book… 

Cat and Nat speak so candidly about their feelings and emotions about motherhood. Motherhood is a wild ride, sometimes you feel like you are acing it (very few times did I think this way), and sometimes you feel like a terrible mom (I mostly felt this way). Cat and Nat make you feel amazing about who you are as a mother and give you helpful tips on how to go through your Mom journey in your own way.

Cat and Nat take the time to speak separately throughout their book and provide the readers with their different approaches to motherhood. They compare and contrast their methods, which was very interesting to read. Each chapter dives into vital topics about modern motherhood. For example, Chapter 11: Instagram is Bullshit; this is something every mom (actually everyone) in the social media world deals with daily. You’re having a bad day, you scroll through social media, and people are posting these glamorous amazing pictures of their fantastic baby. This instantly puts you in a bad place. In Chapter 11, they break down these thoughts and feelings that you have and how common it is to feel that way! I finished so many of the chapters in this book feeling absolutely liberated.

This book was a fun, sassy, humorous and, most importantly a REAL book about motherhood. I really recommend this book to all moms.

Some other things I learned from the book…

I learned some excellent tips for motherhood and raising children, but most importantly, I learned to trust my motherly instincts. I learned that every mom goes through the same thoughts and feelings that I have gone through and that I am not alone. I realized the importance of having people in my life that will bring me up, not down. I knew what kind of mom friends I wanted, and I felt more confident to be myself and to discuss what, I felt were, my shortcomings as a mom. It is so important to have the right group of friends, they will be there for you and bring you up when you’re feeling down. After reading this book, I began to feel much more comfortable in my new mom skin!

Follow Cat and Nat on Instagram for more real mom moments!