When Sophia is overtired, Pat and I have a term called “Team No Nap.” Team No Nap, in parenting terms, essentially means “our child decided not to nap, she’s grumpy and cranky and will cry over anything. Go hide in a closet while you can.“ Now, it doesn’t happen often. Even though she’s 3 we still enforce a midday nap and if she’s not going to nap, she at least has to lay down and watch a movie…quietly. Sunday, however, none of those things happened. There was no peaceful nap. There was no “quietly” during the movie. There were squeals of joy, conversations with her security blankets, rolling over to see what the kitten was doing, lots of snuggles onto my chest, legs flailing in the air….I’m sure you get the picture. Nap time Sunday was. a. fail. SO! We stopped trying. But that didn’t mean we modified our day.
After the period of no napping, Sophia’s uncle stopped by for a bit. And let me tell you. She was excited! She sat in his lap and made him play trains with her while the kitten batted the train off the tracks and made her erupt into the wonderful toddler belly laugh, every time. They played catch. Meaning Sophia threw the Foam football at the ceiling and then chased it and caught it herself. And again, belly laughed. She “hid” in the plush cat cave. She did, however, have a mini meltdown. She stormed up the stairs and slammed her bedroom door. We thought that maybe she would fall asleep but maybe 10 minutes later she came back down and was ready to keep playing. By the time he left, this is the face she had: The face of a seriously happy toddler. Can’t tell that she didn’t nap, right?!?….WRONG! No sooner was he out the door, she was whining because her crayons were on the floor and her cars weren’t organized “just right..” the list goes on. SO! I get this fantastic idea to go on a short hike. No sarcasm intended in that comment. It was seriously a fantastic idea. I quickly pack up our water bottles and a package of graham crackers (because by this point it’s super close to dinner time) and we’re off. We head over to Sunny Brook State Park in Torrington. It’s a quick little in and out type hike. Maybe it’s a mile in and out? Maybe. But there’s cute little bridges to cross awesome looking mushrooms and a huge field/pond at the end. It’s the perfect place to stop and have a snack before heading back to the car! And a side note, apparently a year ago on Sunday (according to Facebook) we went for a morning hike here in which I took this picture: and while we were there this year, I snagged this one:talk about super ironic!! Anyone else think that maybe she’s still the same height?!? Poor girl has no chance of being tall!
Moving on! We head back to the car and head home. On the way home, there’s a meltdown because she had already eaten a graham cracker and didn’t want to eat the same snack. And didn’t understand that there was nothing else. When we got home, there was a race to whip up dinner (it was only 5pm and we actually don’t eat dinner until closer to 7). We decided dinner needed to be almost instantaneous. So I throw on some sauce and pasta and whip together a salad and cut up cantaloupe while everything is cooking. Talk about fast thinking! Actually, hubs suggested the dinner idea because he’s awesome like that.
While the water is boiling for pasta, hubs goes to take a shower because it was just humid and gross out. I venture into the living room where Sophia is playing with her cars. This is the dialogue she is giving her cars. And if I haven’t mentioned before, each car has its own voice and personality as played by Sophia.
“You’re a girl car! You can’t play with the boy cars.”
“Oh that’s okay. I’m just going to play with the boy cars anyways.”
Seriously proud mom moment right there. Like, you go girlfriend. Don’t let anyone ever tell you you can’t do something. Period. I don’t care if they say it’s because you’re a girl or not.
After that glimpse of proud parenting in an emotionally charged, tornado of a day, she’s back to having a difficult time existing. After what seems like forever, the pasta is finally done. A watched pot never boils, right? Probably why my dinner took so long to make! But finally….FOOD! Food is magic sometimes with a toddler. But clearly not when she wants macaroni and cheese for dinner and you make pasta with marinara sauce. She pulls a chair right next to the cabinet so she can get it out, shakes it in air and yells about how much she wants it and how I won’t make it for her. She even brought the box into the living room to show hubs that “mommy won’t make this!” There were tears. Lots of tears. And a refusal to eat anything. Even the cantaloupe. There were exchanged glances between hubs and I. You know the “do I cave in?” “You should cave.” “No, she needs to learn.” “She won’t starve.” “What so we do?” Yeah, I know you know the glances. But we didn’t cave. Because team no nap or not, she doesn’t run this house. And just because she’s tired doesn’t mean she gets to be mean or disrespectful.
So we stand our ground and like magic, her meltdown about how “mommy is going to make me eat dinner and I don’t want to.” Turns into “but I’m going to go to bed hungry. And I want my dinner now.” WIN! She happily eats her dinner and we talk about the “plan” for when she’s done eating: go upstairs, change into jammie’s, brush teeth and wash face, then snuggles. Two bowls of pasta and a bowl of cantaloupe later, she’s ready for this plan. No sooner was she snuggled up in our bed, because trying to convince her to snuggle with me in her bed was not a fight I was willing to have, she was out. I’m not talking about a light sleep. I’m talking about I lifted her arm up about 6inches from the blanket and let it go and it just flopped, like dead weight. Girlfriend finally gave in and was totally tanked. So I pick up sleeping beauty, seriously, a tanked out sleeping beauty, right? Well I pick her up in this weird awkward inbetween stage of cradling her like a baby and having her head snuggled on my chest. I make my way down the hall like quazzymodo, trying not to move any muscle too fast or abruptly because I want her to stay sleeping, lay her down in her bed, tuck her in and slowly back out the door. Success.
Goodbye Team No Nap. Until next time…