An unfiltered fire hose of flaming condemnation

Only because the shipping was free

Recently I have received many concerned emails from people who do not understand why Leta was, up until a week ago, still sleeping in a crib. I think I’ve covered this maybe once or sixty times, but I am very busy being lazy, and generally if you want to know why anything is the way it is, I’ll get around to answering you once I have recovered from all this blinking I have to do.

I knew that transitioning Leta from a crib into a regular bed was going to be intense, and I have put it off because she didn’t seem to care that she was still sleeping behind bars. Not once has she ever tried to climb out of the crib, and yes, I am fully aware of how lucky we are because of that. My sister’s twin boys started climbing out of their cribs when they were 10 months old, would walk into the kitchen in the middle of the night and throw skillets down the stairs to the basement. Because they liked the way it sounded. To survive life she had to chain them to a radiator at night. And whip them with long slabs of raw beef.

Leta just hasn’t ever been physical that way, hasn’t ever understood the need to go exploring like that when all she has to do is repeat a few annoying sounds for several minutes to summon her personal chauffeur. She isn’t a kid who climbs dressers or scales kitchen counters or jumps from the top of the piano. And so there really wasn’t any danger in leaving her in a crib for as long as we did. In fact, I think she would have very much liked to live inside of it if we would occasionally stop by and refill her sippy cup.

I was also loath to buy any of the toddler beds that I have seen in stores around here, beds with large butterfly-shaped headboards or frames stenciled with flying unicorns. There is a dearth of stores that sell both good-looking and affordable furniture in Salt Lake, and it wasn’t until I was browsing a few of my favorite interior design websites a few weeks ago that a brick fell out of the sky and knocked me awake. I realized I could find what I want online and have it shipped to my house. Also? Did you know? You can buy a loaf of bread THAT IS ALREADY SLICED?

So I ordered this toddler bed online (free shipping!) and within seven days someone had dropped it off on our porch:

We didn’t hear the delivery guy knock, and as we were walking out of the house to run a few errands we noticed a large box leaning up against the side of the house. Jon turned to Leta and asked in a hyper, animated voice if she had any! idea! (!!) what this was because Plan A was to convince her that the toddler bed was none other than Jesus Christ. She acted completely uninterested, and as she rolled her eyes into the back of her head she answered, “Um, Dad? It looks like a box.” Like, whatever. And then she got in the car and drove off to college and now she doesn’t call me anymore.

Plan B: Start drinking at noon.

The following morning we took down the crib, and Jon assembled the new bed. I thought I was going to have more emotion around this milestone, but it just didn’t happen. I don’t miss Baby Leta, although I do have many great memories of her, that little screaming frog who screamed a lot every day with the screaming. I’m just really in love with Toddler Leta, and maybe I’m too enthusiastic about what’s happening right now to be sad about the fact that so much has already passed. Maybe it’s because Plan A finally worked, and she got so excited about the new bed — the BIG! NEW! BED! LOOK AT THAT BIG NEW BED! — I was really happy to see the crib go.

When I got her ready for her nap that afternoon, I talked to her about what was happening, that she was going to sleep in this new bed, that it was pretty much just like her other one, except it was a little bit closer to the floor. Her eyes got really big and she said, “THIS IS GOING TO BE SO FUN!” Oh, Leta, I know. Wait until I introduce you to tequila.

And then, the struggle I expected never happened. There has been no crying or getting out of the bed in the middle of the night. None of it. Occasionally she will wake up and not know where she is, and her response to this is to scream out, “WIPE MY NOSE!” Which means, please come show your face, woman. It’s not exactly an I love you, you are my everything, I recognize all that you have sacrificed to give me this life, but it’s close enough.

  • candemommy

    The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends keeping kids in their cribs until age 3. I dreaded moving my 2.5 year old into a big boy bed, but we had to because his four-month-old sister finally needed it. Our transition was smooth, thankfully, but if I hadn’t had an infant who needed a crib, I sure would have kept him in that crib as long as possible. He has rarely napped in the six months he’s been in that big boy bed….grrr.

    Love the humor and style of your blog. I just discovered it about 6 weeks ago and am enjoying it!

  • Liz

    It still stuns me that people email you with ‘concerns’ about Leta sleeping in a crib and living in a clean house.

    When somebody makes a comment when it’s none of their business I just yell “BUS!” as in “I HOPE YOU DIRTY LITTLE NO GOOD BROWN-NOSING PATHETIC EXCUSE FOR A HUMAN BEING GETS RUN OVER BUY A BUS!”

    And if you’re a character from Lost then maybe it will work. Who knows.

  • I’m sure 8,000 people have already commented on this, but I’m commenting drunk, damnit, so:

    Sooooooooo many more Dora books to sleep with now. Sweet.

  • Thats What She Said

    Oh my god. My friend bought me the bacon bandaids! They are totally awesome. There is something great about making the papercut on your finger look like a giant, gaping, wound. Also, the tiny pig that was in my box is the best tiny pig I’ve ever seen.

  • reddirtgirl

    Oh, if only my child would be so estatic about the bright pink princess bed she was so delighted about–YIPPEE–that is, until it arrived. Now, she occasionally “calls” Santa and tells him to “ever, ever come back to my house.” Apparently, he f’ed up by delivering that tripe.

    This is a hilarious read.

  • mamalatte

    Holy cow, this made me laugh. My eldest was like Leta; would have lived in the crib had we let her, but we desperately needed it for her brother. I can still remember her pathetic little voice that first night saying “I think I’d just like my crib, guys…” Glad it went so well for you.

  • Loob

    Excellent bed! And the best possible result for you guys, she loves it!

  • Cheryl

    Our daughter slept in her crib until it literally began to fall apart. She was past three and a half years old before we finally moved her into a Big Girl Bed. The way I saw it, if she was happy in her crib, and she wasn’t trying to climb out, why stress about it? We had actually done a trial run of converting the crib to a toddler bed back when she was almost two and a half, and it was a NIGHTMARE. She would get out of bed upwards of 17 times before falling asleep. Yeah. Not worth it. But when she moved into her brand new Big Girl Bed last Fall, it was a breeze. Could not possibly have been any easier. I’m so glad we waited. All the moms who bitch about how often their 18 month old gets out of bed, and how their 2 year old doesn’t understand that they’re supposed to stay in bed at bedtime…yeah, I just have a hard time feeling sorry for them. I’m glad we waited as long as we did.

    Hooray for Leta! And her bed! Her BIG NEW BED! Love it!

  • Heather: How did I survive in a world without you? I live for new postings. Ditto to all the comments above (esp. the one about Catherine) and congratulations on a smooth transition!

  • minda25

    I am very, very happy for you. You’ve been through so much, had such a hard time with Baby Leta, and to learn that she is calming down and becoming a truly wonderful person to live with is so great. Congratulations!

    Also, thanks for the laughs.

  • Jezzie

    I wish my son was still able to fit so I could get him this bed. So cool.
    I just furnished my whole house via internet email order, I love to shop online, I save so much time and gas and have rarely found a better deal irl. Because I am a student I am broke, so being able to comparison shop on my own time is awesome. Have you been to If u have a Home Depot credit card ( and what homeowner doesn’t?) any purchase over 299 is no payments no interest for six months, and they have the best selection of everything I have seen on one site.
    Also, Overstock is awesome, and they have the most curiously amazing selection of books. Welcome to the world of free shipping. Orgasmic.

  • Yeah, I know what you’re going through (again). Elsa didn’t have any interest in climbing out of her crib, so we didn’t switch her over to a toddler bed until THREE WHOLE MONTHS after her 3rd birthday. You would have thought the world was going to end by the way other mothers were reacting.

    You know what? She loved it. She had apparently been coveting our bed things- like pillows and blankets, and now she had that very stuff in her very own bed. And she can get out any time and play in the morning, she doesn’t have to be released from the crib. We did put a good gate on the door to her room for two reasons: she could inherit the sleepwalking I did as a kid, and her room is on the second floor. If that gate wasn’t there I never would have gotten any sleep. She never had a fit about her new bed, she simply LOVED it.

  • kristieco

    I am so jealous that it’s been so easy for you guys! Happy for you though! My 3 1/2 year old has been in her big girl bed for more than a year and she still gets up at night. Sometimes half a dozen times. She just wants to be put back to bed…I’m contemplating the tequila idea as a remedy to our problem….

  • Foolish Braidwood, that’s what kids are for: grooming them into world-class athletes so you can reitre early. Like I call my kids: Daddy’s Little Retirement Funds.

  • I kept my kids in cribs until they were 3, yes 3. There was no way I wanted them up and about on their own getting into whatever. And they never tried climbing out of the cribs, they’d just call me and wake me up – then I knew what they were up to.


    I actually truly LOLed at that, which means I can use the letters.

    And I LOVE! that toddler bed. With the little bench at the end!

  • I love you for posting this today!! I know you don’t like extra exclamation points, but that sentence needed them. I have had a horrendous day, and I laughed out loud a lot in this post, so I just wanted to say thank you again for sharing your lives with us…and for being so damn funny!

  • YEA LETA!!! Yea Big New Bed!!
    Heather I love love love the bed.
    Where did you get it??

  • …let the flood of hatemail from butterfly-headboard-addicted chuckleheads commence.

    “How DARE you put your child in such a linear piece of furniture!”

    “Do you want your daughter to grow up lacking the joy that is the commercialization of juvenile furniture?”

  • Wow, that’s awesome! I have a 7 year old that still won’t stay in her bed all night.

  • Tracey

    That bed is so awesome! I just switched my almost 3 year old, too…same results. Nothing! And I get the “I NEED A TISSUE!!!” calls too. Weird.

    BUT just to warn you. My son transitioned fine, too, and then when he was about 3 1/2, he WOULD.NOT.STAY.IN.BED. For six months he got up a billion and three times a night. So I’m trying not to get too excited about the girl staying in bed at this point. But it IS nice to be rid of the crib.

  • This will make it so much easier for her to come in to YOUR room to throw up in the night all over YOUR bed and YOUR hair.

  • Braidwood

    What I LOVE about you, is that you just see Leta as a real person. This is big in parent world. It’s radical. I know this isn’t neccesarily directly related to this post about the bed, but I really admire you for it, and that is why I like reading your blog.

    I love that it is not: my child isn’t very physical- we are starting a training regimine to make her more physical- or the just as common- my child is very physical, (despite evidence to the contrary) what do you mean? Oh yeah, and she only likes pink. So, thank you for letting your little human creation be her little human self.

  • Oh, you do make me giggle…

  • AnneMG

    We had one of those cribs that converted to a toddler bed, by taking the bars off. The kid didn’t even notice that they were gone for 6 months. She’d still wake up every morning and yell for me to “get her out”.

  • gribblelite

    What a fabulous bed!

    I’m expecting my first child this August, and will be 4-in-1 crib shoppig this weekend. But, unlike you, I will probably give birth to the-child-who-climbs-all-obstacles, and wind up having to buy a stainless steel cage to keep the little booger in.

    If not, I plan to use the ‘crib’ until the proverbial wheels fall off.

  • I have to admit, my daughter’s transition from cot to bed was easy too. But that was because our tomcat Louis liked to sleep in her room. And while he couldn’t sleep in a cot, he could sleep at the end of her bed. Awww, she adored that cat. He helped her to learn to read.

    Anyway, glad to hear it went well with Leta. Phew! Oh by the way, meant to say, we have the calendar of Chuck hanging in our kitchen, right above the cat food bowls. The cats are not impressed.

  • Thanks for sharing that. Love the bed by the way, is it convertible for when she is pre-teen Leta?
    I always enjoy the random things Leta yells from her room – I’m Okay, Whipe my nose! She is a hoot!

  • My son was well past 3 before we moved him out of the crib. He, too, just didn’t seem to care and in fact, seemed to like the perceived security of the crib. We only moved him out of it because he is so tall that he had to contort his body every day to sleep. He was so tall we had to skip the toddler bed altogether and he went straight to a double bed with guard rails. Leta’s bed is adorable – I wish my boy had been able to use a bed that size!

  • silvermine

    People need to stop telling you how to parents. Egads.

    Anyway, I was still in a crib when I was 3, I believe, and then I went straight to a normal bed. I only had to fall off once or twice before I learned not to. 😛

    My son moved to a real bed when he was about 2. He fell off sometimes. He’s not broken. 😀 I moved him that early because it would be easier to read to him and let him fall asleep there. He’s impossible to put down without waking him up. I wish I’d waited a little bit longer until he’d learned to not get up at night. We spent the next year and a half with him wandering in our room and crawling into bed with us. 😀 Not that waiting necessarily would have helped. Plus he thrashes a lot and kept hitting his head and feet on the sides. (Now he just hits his head into the wall. Oh well!)

    There isn’t one right way to do things. It’s not like there’s a schedule.

    Don’t worry about how other people do things. Do what’s right for you and your kids. 🙂 And if you’re wrong, you’re wrong. It’s just a bed. 😛 My son will figure out what to do with one before he moves out. 😀 Who cares if he figures it out now or in a year?

    Best of luck with her pooping, too. I have no help for that, though. Just tell everyone to back off. My son wasn’t potty trained until he was 3.5. 😉 There’s no race to be potty trained.

  • christy

    I know it will probably just bring a new onslaught of emails from haters, but we need new photos with the new SUPA DUPA BIG GIRL BED!

  • Congrats to Leta!!!

  • My sister went out of town when her daughter was 13 months old, only to come back to find that her husband had transformed the crib into a bed. The baby loved it. My sister? Not so much. Her baby had disappeared and had been replaced with this person who was now sleeping in a big kid bed. I know my brother in law purposely waited for her to be out of town to get the kid in a real bed, because if it were up to her? Yeah, her baby would have stayed in a crib a lot longer.

  • My little brother was breast-fed until he was three. My little sister is now three, and my father and stepmother are 62 and 55 respectively (my sister is adopted from China). I hear all the time about how unfair it is that she has such old parents (I know, aren’t they cruel?), and how crazy my stepmother must have been to breast feed my brother for so long.

    I’m sure you’ve heard this before, but I only recently found your blog, so here’s my first comment – screw the critical. Screw ’em all. These are the same people who believe gay marriage is somehow causing Global Warming.

    Your daughter is absolutely, gasp-inducingly beautiful. I cannot possibly fathom that some of your readers have so much time on their hands that they can write in expressing “concern” that your daughter is (well, was) still in a crib.

    I wish I had that kind of time.

    Congrats on the milestone. I’m jealous of the bed. Mine doesn’t have a cool bench on the end.

  • heathabee

    yo… I want that bed!

  • Amy

    That is the best looking toddler bed I’ve ever seen. Excellent choice…

    Now all you have to do is get her potty trained and you’re done until she wants to drive (I have to get rid of the pacifier and then I’m done)!

    Congrats to all!

  • Buendia

    LOVE that bed! I’m an architect, so I can say this professionally: the bed is well-designed, well-proportioned, not fussy.

    It was such a pain in the butt trying to create a little girl’s room in our contemporary home… finally settled on a purple shag rug, one green wall and these cool wall stickers called freckles

    When our daughter is ready for the big-girl bed, we have Leta’s bed bookmarked… it’ll be perfect!

  • “…many great memories of her, that little screaming frog who screamed a lot every day with the screaming.”

    i laughed until someone walked by and made fun of me for seemingly laughing at nothing.

  • Love the bed. I was even more excited about it until I realized that I vastly exceeded the weight-bearing capacity of said bed and that it did not come in a king-sized version. Still, it’s awesome.

    I love the bench at the end. Perfect for holding Dora New Books, Elmos, and several sippy cups of tequila.

    Leta’s progression up the ladder of childhood is so amazing to watch – thank you for including her in your blogging life. I want a child that effervescent. WITH TEQUILA.

  • Ah – the push for the big bed. I don’t know why so many parents are in such a hurry. My brother had both his kids out by 18 months…and not because they were climbers. It was like a race to grow up. And neither one of those kids sleeps very well.
    I must say, I give all the credit to the smooth transition to your parenting with the help of the Sleep Book. (Healthy Sleep Habits…). Our son is two and half and still in his crib and never fights bedtime thanks to that book (and our parenting). We’re expecting another so will have to move him at some point…unless we just get another crib. They could both stay in there until they’re five, right???

  • slouching mom

    Leta, Leta. She is a funny girl. (Well of course she’s funny, because you’re funny, and well, so.) My nine-year-old was the same way about his crib; he never tried to get out. This personality trait has endured — he’s a compliant, easygoing kid.

    When we did finally buy him a bed (last month), it took him ONE YEAR to realize he could leave it. One day he just appeared in the hallway during naptime, and he was as astonished as I was that he was there. He had this cat-who-swallowed-the-canary look, as if he had learned to build a suspension bridge while he napped.

    I wonder how long it will take Leta to leave her bed?

  • Max’smomSarah

    That bed is so cool! Thanks for including the link to where you bought it. I wasn’t going to consider a toddler bed for when Max transitions out of his crib until I saw the one you got for Leta. I’m glad she’s made the switch smoothly!

    Loved the tequila comment!

  • OMG!

    You mean you didn’t buy her this one?
    What kind of mother are you?

  • Man, I’ll never be able to introduce my kids to tequila, but that’s because tequila hates me. It hates me a lot.

    All my kids were in the crib until 2.5 or later, and only left it because they wanted to or were being booted out forcibly for a new baby.

  • Heather that is an awesome looking toddler bed. Enjoy the toddler bed years. They are so much fun.

    Our sons were like Leta. They never cared to climb out. Just one of life’s mysteries.

  • MDZ

    I’ve been reading you for months now and LOVE your tongue-in-cheek humor. So many of us have been in the same parenting situations you have, we just haven’t had the courage to post it on the internet for God and everybody to read.

    Leta is a beautiful child and in the photos you post you can tell she loves you and Jon with all she’s got.

    Leta’s new toddler bed totally rocks! I wish something like that had been available in my area when I needed one for my now 6 year old daughter. Totally cool. Shabby chic. Way better than the white metal tube looking thing we had.

  • great bed and so nice that Leta loves it. You see, this just might prove what an awful, horrible mother you are. though I was cautious to the point of scooting down a 2″ step to the patio I did manage to fall out of my crib. Turns out that this waa something that all the “gifted and talented” kids in my class had in common. Msybe it coulnt hurt too much to drop her on her head. God, or lack thereof, I am NOT evil. Ask your parents if you ever fell on your head as a toddler. I was much younger and flelxible than leta though….so maybe its just an obviously bad idea. See – now I might get hatemail instead of you 🙂

  • Man, that is an awesome toddler bed. I want that bed for me, forget any toddlers.

  • That is one nifty bed. I love the little bench at the end. And lucky, you, to have a little one that is not a climber!!

  • TJames

    Yay for the ease… I also had an easy switch after finding my 18 month old with one bare foot on each of the rails, naked except for a cowboy hat, holding his stuffie BabyPony and screaming “WHOOOO HOOOO! RIDE EM’ COWBOY!!” while he bounced like he was on the most buckingest bull in America. How he, or, more importantly, my nerves survived must have been part of the contract when I sold my soul to the devil. He was in a big boy bed that night with nary a complication.
    I’m glad that Leta has such a pretty bed to tumble into dreamland in.

Heather B. Armstrong

Hi. I’m Heather B. Armstrong, and this used to be called mommy blogging. But then they started calling it Influencer Marketing: hashtag ad, hashtag sponsored, hashtag you know you want me to slap your product on my kid and exploit her for millions and millions of dollars. That’s how this shit works. Now? Well… sit back, buckle up, and enjoy the ride.

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