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I have been working on dropping that third nap with Kaitlyn since the beginning of January. At the time, she was 8 months old (approaching 9). We have taken the weaning process approach to dropping this nap (see Dropping a Nap: A Weaning Process: http://babywisemom.blogspot.com/2008/02/dropping-nap-weaning-process.html).
The nap is not fully dropped, but it is close.
First, I started to extend the time she was awake. She doesn’t really have sleep cues, so I just put her down for a nap when it is time. Instead of doing that for the third nap, I would wait until she got fussy. If she never got fussy, she stayed up the whole time.
The nap used to start at 5 PM. Slowly, the nap has moved back. Now, if she needs it, it starts at 6 PM. That makes it a short nap, but that is okay. It is just enough to get her through. Since I am breastfeeding, I like to make sure her lasts feeding of the day and first feeding of the next day aren’t too many hours apart.
Last week, she only took that last nap two of the seven nights. We are getting much closer to officially being done. With Brayden, I dropped it cold turkey. The whole process was not as drawn out, but we also had at least one week of rough evenings where he was just fussy during that time he would have been sleeping. The way I have done it with Kaitlyn has been very easy to accomplish. There are no nights of me walking around the house with her, trying to keep her happy. So although it has been about two months now, it has been an easy process for baby and parents. And at least baby is getting the extra sleep when she needs it.