Before we moved I would frequently wake to hear Bella chattering away to herself in her room, contentedly playing, happily absorbed. Since we’ve moved. Maybe once or twice. Generally she wakes up screaming and doesn’t stop until I pick her up.
At first I thought she was upset from the move. But as time went on it became apparent that she’d settled in fine except for the waking. Finally moving her bedtime later has gotten her to sleep in later. But she still wakes screaming.
Then yesterday I was thinking about it again and I remembered that there was one toy that used to hang in her crib that I’d never got around to putting back up. It’s a sort of cloth book my mom gave her at Christmas. It folds up like an accordion and can be unfolded into a long strip. When unfolded, it can be hung up, tied to the crib bars by little cloth ties at either end. On one side is a series of cloth flaps with pictures on them that lift to reveal numbers: under the flap with the baby is 1 baby, under the flap with the cat are 2 cats, etc. On the other side is a series of clear plastic pockets that hold cardboard cards. It was this that used to keep her so occupied.
Sure enough, last night I dug through the boxes and found the book and tied it in the crib. Immediately she begged to be put into the crib to play with it. And sure enough this morning not only did she sleep in, she also got up and played with the cardboard cards. She did cry a little, but not as hard and as soon as I came in she started playing.
Right now she’s bopping around the crib, removing the cards and begging me to put them back into the pockets, lifting the flaps and laughing at the pictures underneath. Suddenly her bed is a fun place to hang out. And I might have just gained myself a bit more calm in the mornings.