Sadly, my 2-year-old daughter is starting to fight her afternoon nap. I'll be damned if I let her give it up, though. Naps are just too important: for her, for me, and really for our entire household. If I'm being honest, a sleep-deprived baby or toddler is not a person I want to spend an extended amount of time with. Thankfully, the ways a mid-day nap will turn your toddler into a different mini-human are as real as they are life-saving. So yes, in my house naps are sacred.
I'm a schedule-loving kind of mom. Like, I have a printed out plan for every single day (on Tuesdays, I clean the kitchen and we go to work and preschool). Once my daughter was past the newborn stage, I started structuring our days around naps. I really wanted her to go to baby bookworms at the local library, but it conflicted with her morning nap and it just wasn't worth it to me to throw off her routine.
Baby girl consolidated into one afternoon nap at 18 months old. These days she's fighting daytime sleep, but I'm content to have her be in her room in her bed quietly reading books. Sleep would be better (and she still does, occasionally, fall asleep right on top of My First Book of Girl Power and Corduroy), but the downtime seems to have a similar effect of a midday nap. With that in mind, here's how your kid's mid-day nap can turn them into a pleasant mini-human: