Sunday, March 13, 2011

Dare I say it?

Just as an update, I think I may actually be onto something with the cow clock and timer system we have going on at bedtime.

I first mentioned our KID'Sleep Alarm Clock back in September. I feel like it has been successful over the last 6 months, but the concept of staying quietly in bed until the "cow is dancing" is really sinking in. I would say that most mornings of the week, Ells wakes up before 6:30am (dance time!), but she stays relatively quiet until she sees the cow dancing. Then she promptly yells out, "Mom! Dad! Come get me! Cow dancing! I go downstairs!" and we're off for the day. I have been sneaking in before I go to bed to put a stack of books in her crib to keep her occupied, but she only gets her loveys and stuffed animals at bedtime.

I was a bit concerned about daylight savings, and this was really the big test. She got in bed about 8:00pm, so 9:00pm new time. I was afraid she would wake up, see her cow at 6:30am, and be awake for the day, when it was really 5:30am old time. I moved the alarm to 7:30am, and she didn't yell out until 7:34am. So, while this was still her "usual" wake time, I felt like it proved she was paying attention to the dancing cow and we didn't have any hitch with daylight savings. I'll take it!

As for the timer, I'm still pleased with our progress. The 20 minute window seems to be working and, while she might protest when the bell goes off, there is no longer a protracted tantrum and she (pretty readily) turns out the lights. We rock and sing in the chair for a bit, then into bed. I've noticed she is trying to draw out the scratch my back / covers / lovey routine once she gets in bed, but she is easier to quiet once her room is dark.

Prior to the timer, we had gotten into a bad habit of going back up to her room several times a night when she called out for any number of "necessary" things before she fell asleep. As a bonus, most of that has gone away since starting the timer. I'm not really sure the two events are related, but again, I'll take it!


Bets said...

Can we push back the cow dance party on the one day I have to get up with her this week?
My little toddler doesn't start barking until 8:30! ;)

Marie Hooker said...

So glad it is working! Our kid continues to manipulate bedtime into a 6 hour process...think I may pick up a timer at Target tomorrow...