The Super Whites The ordinary life of a Super Mum

The Super Whites
Big girl bed and other milestones

A month or so before Christmas I was looking through some junkmail catalogues and came across a special for Dora the Explorer bed linen. Amy saw the pictures and said she wanted it. I asked her if she wanted a big girl’s bed for Christmas and she was very enthusiastic. Later that week we popped in to visit Santa and when he asked her what she wanted for Christmas she replied “a pink Dora bed” and so our plan was hatched. We found a single bed with a trundle and collected it the first week of December. I bought the Dora bed linen and sheet sets and a new pillow and duvet and we planned to put the bed together on Christmas day for Amy.
I am the first to admit that designing an amazing bedroom for a baby or a toddler has never been high on my list of priorities. Amy didn’t even have her own bedroom or cot, or wardrobe until we bought our house just before she turned one in 2007. Up until then she had slept in our room for the first six months of her life (and while we left the UK and travelled round South Africa) and then spent the next six months of her life in a room created for her at her Grandparent’s house. When we moved into our very own home we did buy a set of bedroom furniture for Amy’s room but thats really as far as the decorating went. My reasoning is that there will be many occasions in the future when my daughter has her own opinions about how she wants to decorate her bedroom so why not wait until she is old enough to tell me what she would prefer, dragons or fairies, nature or space.

Even though the move into a big girl’s bed has been long overdue as my pregnant belly makes it harder and harder to get Amy into and out of her cot, it didn’t make the change any less emotional for me. I have to blame pregnancy hormones for feeling so sentimental lately and this is no exception. I can’t believe my little baby girl is old enough to sleep in her own bed and that now this cot is empty and waiting for our next baby to fill it. On Christmas Eve I snuck into her room and took a photo of her sleeping in her cot, thinking it might be the last time she did.

On Christmas Day Ron raced to set up her new bed and it was all worth the look on her face when she came into her room and found a big pink Dora bed of her very own. She didn’t have a nap on Christmas Day and we were out late with friends on Christmas night so we just plonked her into the cot when we got home but the next day when it was time for her afternoon sleep she asked if she could go in her Dora bed. I lay her down, tucked her in and she went to sleep and slept for nearly three hours and when she woke up she called me like she normally does and I went in and got her up.

We spent the next two nights camping so Amy slept in the portacot in our tent (and happily went to sleep both nights, no complaints, before it was even dark!) so it was only when we were back on the Monday night that she went to bed in her Dora bed at night for the first time. We both crammed onto the bed for a story and then she turned over and went to sleep and slept all the way through with not a peep. The same thing in the morning, a little voice called us and we went in and picked her up.
We needed to rearrange the bedroom because the bed was set up on the opposite side to the cot which meant Amy could lie in bed and watch us through the door and also wake us up with her thumping on the wall as she turned over or played in the mornings. Yesterday we finally sorted the room out and I am so happy with the way it looks.
On one side is the baby station, the change table and cot which will stay in here until we decide what to do with the new baby. The plan is to room it in with us in a bassinet for the first few months. This worked very successfully for us with Amy being that I was far too lazy to get up and out of bed in the middle of the night to feed and found it much easier to have her right next to me so I could scoop her up, feed her lying down and pop her back into the bassinet without even needing to turn on a light or put my glasses on. We are under no illusions that our second baby will be just like our first and so will see how we go, if we need to we can move the cot into the spare room when my Mum leaves after the baby is born, or even attempt to room the children together, we are VERY flexible about this arrangement and Amy’s room is big enough to fit all the furniture in it right now.
The other side of the bedroom is Amy’s. Her big girl pink Dora bed and her dresser next to it as a bedside table so she can have all her books on it. We bought her a bedside light so she can read at night when she gets into bed and there is room to pull the trundle out at night just in case she falls out, which is exactly what she did on New Year’s Even when we forgot to pull the trundle out. Hmm, bad parents. We even joked that one of us had to fall out of bed on New Year’s Eve, this time it was Amy’s turn. It did wake her up and she had a cry and I gave her a cuddle until she fell asleep on my shoulder and I could tuck her back in, with the trundle WELL pulled out this time! Thankfully she didn’t seem to remember what had happened the next morning and it hasn’t happened again.

I love her bedroom now, its a lovely room, full of light and space and she has room to play and keep some of her toys under the change table. Its another milestone reached and taken in her stride which gives me confidence that we can achieve our next milestones with less fuss than I anticipate. I am also glad that we haven’t rushed these decisions, as we get closer and closer to the birth of our second child I am finding it hard to imagine how my life is going to change and I am feeling anxious about my relationship with Amy. I feel very grateful I have had such a long time with my daughter and I am in no hurry to speed up the milestones. 2009 is my year with my children because next year Amy will go off to pre-school and the balance of our lives will change all over again!
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