My DD is starting to drop her morning nap, the trouble is when she only takes one nap she ends up needing to go down around 11:30 am and sleeps through lunch hour. She eats breakfast at 7am and then a snack around 9 am and then she isn't interested in eating lunch before her nap. I've tried cutting out the snack and giving an early lunch at 11 am but she turns into a miserable starving monster without that snack! We could do lunch when she wakes up, but it would mean missing out on playgroup or swimming which we usually need to leave for as soon as she wakes up, and we only get to go to these activities twice a week so I don't want to sacrifice activities for lunch. I've been doing on the go type things like cheese cubes and fruit and stuff so she can eat while we are out, but I really want her to eat a proper meal sitting at the table. How do you all time your lunch meal when your toddler takes a midday nap?
Where we live most of the activities are scheduled in the morning so it wasn't a problem. Do you think she'd sleep if you pushed her nap a bit earlier? Does she wake up at the same time every day? Would it be possible to shift her whole day so she goes to bed 15minutes earlier and wakes up 15 minutes earlier. That way she might want her nap earlier?
I would do lunch after nap most days, but on days when you have somewhere to go, assuming it's not more than a couple days a week, I'd just do a snack before and after your activity. This awkward phase doesn't last forever and I wouldn't do that every day, but a couple days a week is fine. If she'll sleep in the car I'd probably put her in there for the nap, drive to wherever you need to go and then have a cold picnicky lunch together when you get there.
Gracie usually naps at lunchtime so we have small tupperwares made up with to-go snacks. She gets maybe three tubs per day but they are all balanced and healthy.
Examples of what I put in the tubs are:
- Sliced sausage, boiled egg slices, quartered asparagus spears
- halved grapes, yoghurt drops, rice cakes
-dry cereal, fruit and almond slices
- vegetable sticks, breadsticks and leftover meat
-olives, cheese and crackers
I make up several of these every few days and then we can just grab and go. I also always have chopped vegetables, yoghurt, and bananas, and suchlike close to hand. We are a pretty busy family (as I'm sure you are too) so she eats a lot of meals on-the-go. We did blw so she usually self feeds anyway.
my first son did this - woke up at 6:30-7, snack around 9:30 then napped at 11:30-1 or 1:30ish. i just gave him lunch after. i figured his little body was telling him he wasn't hungry during "lunch hour." his internal clock was just a little later than mine. he would eat around 2, and would eat dinner around 6, bedtime around 7:30.
Thanks for the suggestions, I've been doing a fairly substantial snack in the morning and then on the go foods after nap like smoothies/cheese/fruit/veggies/etc. It can take her an hour to eat a meal when we sit down to eat, so doing a sit down lunch after her nap takes up a large part of our afternoon. She barely eats anything at dinner time so I am always pre-occupied with making sure she has a substantial lunch, but I guess if she didn't eat enough at lunch she would be more interested in dinner so I should just follow her lead.
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