Transitioning To A Toddler Bed

transitioning toddler bed transitioning toddler bed

I knew this day was coming I was totally dreading it: transitioning Ford to a toddler bed. This is what worked and didn’t work for us. I hope it can be helpful to others who are working on transitioning to a toddler bed.

I recommend if your kid is happy in the crib do not mess with success unless you’re planning the timing with a big event like a sibling coming.  Ford really slept amazingly in his crib. We’d put him in fully awake he would play and then fall asleep, but one day right before his second birthday he started crawling out of his crib.  Once he had the technique there was no stopping him. Some of you suggested putting him a sleep sack or putting a net over the crib, but we figured we just get it over with.

The Bed
You have two options: you can have your toddler go and pick out a big kid bed, which we’ll eventually do or if you have a convertible crib you can take the side off. We chose the latter cause Ford is kind of on the younger side and I felt like he would appreciate having three walls of coziness. He seemed so excited for his new bed and so were we until his first night….

Ford would not go to sleep and kept coming out of his crib. I tried guiding him back what felt like 1 million times. He was keeping Presley up and because Ross travels at the end of the week I actually found myself at 11pm putting both kids in the car and driving them around until they fell asleep listening to Frozen. So we decided to sleep train.

Sleep Training
We did his bedtime routine which includes rocking to relax him, putting him to bed and then held the door shut while we watched the monitor. As expected he came and tried to open the door. To my relief when it didn’t open he didn’t try to run all around the room he just kind of scurried back to his bed.  He cried for about 30 minutes 3 nights in a row, but thankfully it was more whining than hysterical. After the third night it just clicked and he got it. Like this is “time to go to bed, I don’t have the option to run out there. We were really excited. He’s sleeping again he was in his room from 8:30 – 7…


Ford started waking up from 4-4:30 in the morning and coming into our room. He wasn’t upset; he was super happy. He started putting together sentences in the past week, and I always think that when something big is happening developmentally kids find it much harder to sleep, but we’re getting there.

He’s made a lot of progress and at least is going to bed and down for naps. We just have to fix the morning issue! 😉  

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Elle Walker is a co-founder at What's Up Moms and the mom to three kids (10, 7, 5). In her spare time, she loves testing out kids activities (often muttering, "Pinterest, you lie"), to find the best activities that minimize set-up, reduce costs, and uses stuff up around the house. Follow her behind the scenes at Instagram @whatsupelle. {{Privy:Embed campaign=591322}}