We've created a (red-headed) monster. We learned long ago that kids like non-toy toys way better than toy-toys (have you ever seen a kid choose a toy cell phone over a real one? and what's more fun than playing with the remote?).
Every time Traci folds the laundry, Tate clamors to get in the basket. He loves it when I push him around the floor in the basket or shake it (like a Polaroid picture). A couple of weeks ago, he realized that he could transform the laundry basket into a relaxation station. He got his blanket, his bottle, and a pillow. You've never seen a happier kid.
I jokingly asked if he wanted to sleep in there. Stupid question. Of course he did.
"Sorry, kid, you can't really sleep in the basket."
Paige--ever the helper--chimed in. "But dad, he really wants to sleep in the basket. Why don't you just let him?"
"Because I don't want him all scrunched in there and because I don't want him to tip over in the middle of the night and get trapped under the basket." And, for good measure, I added,"And suffocate and die."
But it was too late. The seed had been planted. Every night before bed, Tate asked if he could sleep in his basket. And every night I'd say no. Until one particularly crappy night where Tate was (again) refusing to go to bed. I gave in and put him in the basket. Problem solved. He went to sleep.
Problem created. Now he'll only sleep in his basket.
So every night, we go through the following routine:
- Put Tate and all of his accoutrements (blanket, pillow, stuffed monkey, books) in the basket
- Hoist the basket into his crib
- Wait long enough that he's asleep - but not too long that I fall asleep - before going into his room, taking him out of the basket, and putting him in the crib
There have been a few nights when I've forgotten that he was still in his basket, only to be awakened by a screeching two year old at 2 a.m. Luckily, you just have to rescue him from the tipped-over basket and he goes right back to sleep.
We're great parents.