January 9, 2009 7:00 am

Earlier this week, I wrote this post about how I’ve been racking up the miles on my car to keep my kid asleep. We’re having a pretty hard time here since Graham isn’t napping (unless he’s in the car) and isn’t sleeping at night either. Any kid free time that we previously had is gone. I got a lot of useful suggestions in the comments of the post, thanks!

Jim from Irregularly Periodic Ruminations suggested that if I’m destined to drive my days away, I should find someplace to park the car and sit while Graham slumbers. We’ve tried this at home but he wakes up shortly after turning off the car. As frustrated as I’ve been with him lately, I’m not going to leave my kid in the garage with the car running so that he can suffer from carbon monoxide poisoning. This left driving around as the only option until Jim’s brilliant suggestion. It’s too bad we don’t live in NYC or I’d hop on the subway and go for a ride.

For today’s napfest, I wised up and took my laptop on the trip. When Graham drifted off, I headed towards the airport, about a twenty-five minute drive from my house. If you’re thinking I hopped a plane to the Bahamas, sorry. That would be nice but I’m hardly in bikini shape and I couldn’t bring myself to ditch my family. Instead, I parked in the airport’s cell phone waiting lot. For those of you who aren’t familiar, the cell phone lot is where you can park your car and wait for an arriving flight to show up before driving to the terminal. The lot has FREE WIFI. SCORE!

The next hour was pure bliss. I sat in my car and browsed the internet. Any time Graham started to stir, I took a lap around the parking lot to give the impression that the car was still moving. I tackled some of the unread posts in my reader. I know I’ve been slow to respond to the blogosphere this week because frankly, I’m drowning over here. Today’s multitasking experience helped me dig myself out of the hole a little bit. I got some adult time while taking care of Graham’s nap simultaneously.

I’m fully aware that napping in the car isn’t a permanent solution. We’re at our wit’s end trying to get Graham back on his pre-surgery sleep schedule. He’s having night terrors and is completely terrified to even go in his room anymore, let alone his crib. We’re trying several things to get him through it but for now, I’ll take whatever sleep he can get. I know how much he needs it. I’m thinking maybe I can start my own airport shuttle service and make a few bucks in the process. Does anybody need a lift?

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  1. K

    Awesome solution.

    It’s amazing what a difference even a little “alone” time can make.

    I hope the sleep stuff gets better soon.

    Ks last blog post..10 Reasons Why Blogs are Cooler than the News

  2. Michele

    That Jim! He’s a clever one. You are too. The cell phone lot. I never would have thought of that. Nice!

    Micheles last blog post..The Frugal Pantry

  3. WickedStepMom

    We fixed the night terrors with a “guardian tiger.” Basically pick a ferocious animal that you can get in a stuffed animal form. Tell him that the animal were help him fight off the bad dreams. I know it is kind of like lying to your kid but if they feel protected they will feel better.

    WickedStepMoms last blog post..10 * 10 = 100th Post!

  4. HeatherPride

    Bless his sweet baby heart! Oh Casey, I feel for you. I’ve been there. Dang that surgery! I wish I had a solution, but you’ll have to settle for my support! We’re still trying to get back on the pre-surgery sleep routine (2 years later!). Eeek.

    Good luck!

    HeatherPrides last blog post..FOURTH Time….and Still Waiting to be Charmed

  5. Cape Cod Gal

    Girl, that child looks angelic! Good thinking on the airport stuff. I bet all the noise makes him think the cars still moving! You’re a smart chick!

  6. Heather

    Oh I’m so glad you found some kind of temporary solution….at least until you decide that you’ve had enough 🙂
    Here’s one solution I used for my boys when they were younger…because I am totally NOT into the idea of having your kids sleep in the same bed as you. So, I took their mattress and layed it next to my bed and told them that as long as they were quiet and good that they could sleep in mommy’s room. (I made it seem like a special treat for them) For nap time I would just get in bed and pretend that I was going to sleep too and when they were fast asleep….mommy time.
    There’s my “stupid” wisdom of the day.
    Hang in there!

    Heathers last blog post..Trying to Fool Mommy and Daddy

  7. Laufa

    At least you learned to multitask. Maybe one of those stops, you take a nap too. Then everyone will be refreshed. Hope you have a great day!

    Laufas last blog post..Glutton for Punishment

  8. feener

    i did carrides for a good year, it was the only way to keep my sanity. i would get drive thru and sit in a parking lot and eat it while they slept, sometimes i brought my book. i felt like such a loser BUT it seriously was the only way i was able to stay sane.

    feeners last blog post..Dutch oven

  9. Katie

    Oh man that’s tough. He’s so cute though!
    You’d better watch yourself…next time you try to fly somewhere you’ll most likely be on a terror suspect list for hanging out in airports so much 😉

    Katies last blog post..Lord, let me not eat cake.

  10. Sherrie

    Awww…sleep issues are no fun. We’ve had our own set of sleep issues at our home, too. Here’s hoping that the “driving around” will work. You know…you gotta do what you gotta do. That’s my philosophy when it comes to sleep. So, that’s why we have sleep issues (did I mention we co-slept…lol).

    Enjoying your blog!

    Sherries last blog post..YEAH…I did it!

  11. Debbie

    What a GREAT idea! Not only do you get nap-time in, but you also get some quiet ME too at the same time.

    Who says nap-time can’t always be this way?

    Debbies last blog post..10th Anniversary

  12. Sprite's Keeper

    Oh yay! You outsmarted the toddler! Hopefully, he’ll grow out of the night terrors soon. Sprite’s only had them once, but freaked the freak out of me. Frak. (I know. I want to curse, but I feel like I’m mucking up your site.)

    Sprite’s Keepers last blog post..HASAY: Weak Week

  13. Shangrila

    I feel your pain (although your situation is more serious as my little guy isn’t sleeping due to incoming molars rather than recovering from surgery). I have spent many hours driving up and down a road or around (and around) town to keep one of my boys sleeping. You’re right-the second the engine is turned off kids wake up! I’ve always brought a book, but in the future will remember your genius and bring my laptop-lol! Hang in there, and I hope Graham resumes his regular sleep schedule soon! 🙂

  14. Petra

    Aw baby, I am so sorry to hear about the trouble with sleeping and especially the night terrors. Poor little guy and poor mommy and daddy!

    Pretty cool that you got some computer time in though. You are one smart lady!

    Petras last blog post..The Spin on Guilt: Me, Guilty?

  15. FoN

    Pre-surgery!? I’m new – he needed surgery? I’m all invested now so suddenly I’m worried…

    FoNs last blog post..God Bless America

  16. Michelle

    I’ve done those drives, but I never thought to go to the airport (and it’s only 10 min away). Great idea! I think most toddlers go through the night terror phase around this age. Peanut did a couple of months ago. It must be much more difficult when they’re sick. I hope things get back to normal soon!

    Michelles last blog post..Spinning into a Vortex of Guilt

  17. jenni

    That’s a brilliant solution, brilliant. And, one cute kid. They are so nice when they’re asleep, aren’t they?

    jennis last blog post..A Question

  18. Julie@Cool Mom Guide

    Well, look at you, Mrs. Smarty-pants! I worked in the airlines for 8 years and I had NO IDEA there was wi-fi in the cell lot! I’ll let my husband know, he’ll be thrilled. I travel all the time so it’ll be something nice for him while he waits to get me!

    Julie@Cool Mom Guides last blog post..I Need Your Advice

  19. mrsbear

    Whatever works. Especially if it helps on multiple levels. The napping two year old, the catching up on blog time. It’s win, win. Now if you can just resolve your nighttime issues, that would be awesome.

    Aren’t they sweet when they’re asleep?

    mrsbears last blog post..Insert Guilt Here – Spin Cycle

  20. DeeMarie

    That’s a totally brilliant idea!!! And you’re lucky about the lot. Cleveland doesn’t have a cell phone lot. You just have to drive around until your person is out on the road. If you try and park at “Arrivals” people get feisty.
    I’m really hoping Graham is back to his normal sleep schedule soon!!!!!

    DeeMaries last blog post..How Old Am I???

  21. Krystal

    oh honey, sosorry to hear that this is your current solution. it will work out in the end and by that time, you will know the ins and outs of the airport so well traveling will be a breeze for you in the future.

    Krystals last blog post..Spin Cycle Fridays: Guilt

  22. Amber

    Oh my goodness, sister! That’s brutal! I think it’s time to talk to the doctor. Maybe he can give you some baby unisom or something. (Idk if they even make it, I’m just sayin)
    I really hope things improve for you. It’s gotta be hard on you, too.

    Ambers last blog post..Clarification

  23. Keely

    Aw, he is SO cute. When he’s alseep. I’m sure you’re not feeling the cute when he’s not.

    That’s a fantastic solution and hey, it’s not the coolest way to spend ‘you’ time but at least you GET some. Hope it gets better soon.

    Keelys last blog post..Or possibly you’re flashing me? Either way, UNHELPFUL

  24. cyndi

    Oh, looks at those sweet baby cheeks :wub: Sorry the sleep’s not working – I got a message from parentcenter about getting sleep back on target but can’t find it at the moment. I hope something works soon, and am in awe of your ingenuity with the phone lane – great multitasking, Casey!

    cyndis last blog post..Who says five’s not a real great time?

  25. Lydia @ On The Verge

    I’m sorry you are still having so much trouble. I hope this phase works itself out quickly.

    Lydia @ On The Verges last blog post..Happy Birthday Baby!

  26. anymommy

    Poor baby, it’s so hard to get them back on schedule when something small throws them off, let alone surgery! I’m glad you found a fun way to fill your driving time.

    anymommys last blog post..What Does ‘Kill Me Now’ Start With?

  27. The Stiletto Mom

    We used to have to put my oldest on the dryer while it was running to sleep when he was a baby. Yours is obviously too old for that but still, I feel your pain. I used to sleep on the laundry room floor…not comfy what with the linoleum and dust bunnies and all. At least you found a WiFi spot!!!

    The Stiletto Moms last blog post..Friday Funny

  28. jessica Bern

    it drove me nuts that Phoebe would wake up every time I tried to transfer her into the house. I think you’re idea to go that lot is brilliant.

  29. Jim

    Woo Hoo! Go you! I’m so happy it worked out for you. Hopefully he’ll get back on a good schedule for you, but at least this will help out in the mean time.

    Jims last blog post..The Other Church

  30. phhhst

    Isn’t it great when you can find a compromise when life is trhowing you curveballs? I’m new to your site so I don’t know about Graham’s surgery…hope everything is A-OK.

    phhhsts last blog post..Friday Foto: Winter Break, Oahu Style

  31. Christy

    Yes! How long will it take you to get to Cincinnati? I need the warmthe of Florida! 🙂

  32. Linda

    Oh, I feel for you. I’ve forgotten all about having to do that. My kids are in their 20s now and it brought back memories.

    Lindas last blog post..Darwen Fire Fighters Tackle Settee Blaze

  33. carrie

    OK, here are a few things we have done when we were at our end.
    place a towel on top of the dryer and then his car seat on top of the towel. Turn on the dryer.
    place a back massager (or anything that vibrates) in the back of his car seat adn strap him in the seat. Place seat in the crib or in his room.

  34. Toni

    That is better that driving around. I hate that you are having to deal with this and that Graham is having night terrors and is scared!!! I wish I had some wonderful solution for you. Good luck!!!

    Tonis last blog post..

  35. Monica

    How stressful. I was wondering if now he’s associating where his crib is with a scary place. Is there any way you can move it to a different room and make a big deal out of what a great new place this is (I like the ferocious stuffed animal idea too.)

    Or a different take on the dryer. Do you have a pack and play that he would stay contained in that you could put next to your dryer? The sound, warmth and vibrations could be nice. (Even on no heat might be good.) Just make sure it doesn’t BUZZ when it finishes. If he’s in his deep sleep state when it goes off he might just stay snoozing. I’m sure not looking forward to night terrors with Danny. Good luck Casey! Your kids are adorable! -Monica

    Monicas last blog post..Stay Tuned!

  36. Jonny's Mommy

    Ugh! How impossible of a situation this must seem right now. Poor little guy! I can imagine he is having night terrors with all that he’s been through! Hang in there and I’m glad you got some adult time. I know how precious that is with Jonathan also having sleep problems too before that is (not now thank God!)

    Jonny’s Mommys last blog post..It sat on my phone! And other weird occurrences

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