My Toddler is Sleeping Later and Napping Longer After Transitioning to One Nap

by Meghan Yost

We finally made the leap to a single nap and the results have been better than we ever expected. Like ever. I’m happy to say my ordinarily nap-averse 19 month old toddler is sleeping later and napping longer after transitioning to one nap.


A few months ago I wrote about how I unsuccessfully tried to transition my daughter Grace to one nap. She was around 16 months old at the time and we thought she was showing signs of being ready. Well it didn’t quite go so well.

Yes, she ended up sleeping longer at night — 12 hours total — but her daytime nap was only 30 minutes. So at 17 months we went back to the two nap schedule.

As I wrote in my previous post, Grace has never been a monumental napper. She’s also always woken up ridiculously early — usually between 5am and 6am. If there was a random day she slept until 6:30am, we were astonished.


Well something significant has happened over the past week and I’m hoping these changes are here to stay. But let me back up just a bit…

Grace has been taking one nap for about a month now. Some days she would need a quick nap in the morning and a longer afternoon snooze. But gradually she dropped that morning snooze and was just taking a mid morning nap, usually around an hour to an-hour-and-a-half long.

Then we started pushing her nap a bit later. Our goal was for her to make it to 12:30pm, which is when the other toddlers at her daycare go down for their nap. We did that for a few days and then the most amazing thing happened…

my toddler is sleeping later and napping longer after transitioning to one nap


Last week it seems as if Grace all of a sudden figured out, “Hey I really like this sleeping thing.” She decided to sleep in until 7:30am. Yes, you read that right. Our once wake-up-before-the-rooster-crows toddler slept in until after the sun rose. Then, a day or two later, she slept in until 8am! (Are you feeling my excitement?!) That means she slept a total of 12.5 to 13 hours at night. I was gobsmacked.

I figured her daily nap would suffer but amazingly, it didn’t. It actually started lengthening. Grace went from napping about an hour to an hour-and-a-half to two-and-a-half hours. And at nighttime she has no trouble going to sleep around 7-7:15pm. We read her a few books, I sing Twinkle, Twinkle Littler Star and then put her in her crib and off to dreamland she goes.

I’ve heard so many moms say their toddler has a schedule similar to this, and it always sounded like a dream. I honestly never thought it would happen for us. I’m not sure if this is a lasting thing, but I’m going to soak it all in for as long as possible.

I’m not writing this post to brag or boast, but I do want to give the moms out there who are in the same boat as I was hope. It took us 19 months for Grace to get on a good schedule, so my best advice is to stay consistent and not give up!

I still can’t believe my toddler is sleeping later and napping longer after transitioning to one nap. Did you have a similar experience? Share in the comments below!

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