the one about the rules of nap time

My husband and I were among the first in our friendship circle to have children. This was not ideal for a bunch of reasons. 

First, we didn't have a bunch of friends we could call with questions like, "What's the best cleaner for getting baby poo out of the carpet?" 

Or, "When will my nipples stop chafing?"

Second, we felt approximately two decades older than everyone else. Not only did we feel much older, but we looked it, too. Sleepless nights gave way to dark circles under our eyes and our skin reached a new color of pale that is better recognized as transparent.

Lastly, our lives revolved around our baby's nap schedule, and this was hard for some to understand. 

Now that we are on our third child, most of my friends at least have one baby of their own. They get it. We are all on the same page, and we can share the highs and lows of parenting together. 

While my parenting style has always been pretty laid-back, there is one thing I will not loosen up on, and that would be nap time.

When it comes to napping at my home, I have a few rules I like to abide by. And when I say "rules I like to abide by," I really mean, "rules I like everyone else to abide by." Because, clearly, I am never the problem. 

I guess, here goes?

Friends, I don't know how to put this kindly, but short of your house burning down, your emergency is not really reason enough for me to wake my napping children up, put them in my van (I said it!), and do whatever it is you need me to do at that very moment. If you are still bleeding or barfing or having a breakdown in approximately 2 hours when they wake up, I will be right over with Starbucks.

If you ring my doorbell during napping hours for any reason other than to tell me that I have won the Publisher's Clearinghouse, or you are Justin Timberlake doing his Mastercard surprise home visit thing, you will be subjected to a wrath of Elsa-proportions. Did you see what she did to Arendelle? Back away from the doorbell and no one gets frozen. Or punched.

Certain appliances are not to be used during nap time. The vacuum. The sewing machine. The dryer. Anything that makes a loud humming or high-pitched dinging noise. The only exception is the microwave, so long as you catch it with one second remaining and open the door before the ding. This addendum was created when I realized that waiting 25 minutes for my mini corn dogs to cook in the conventional oven was just. too. much.

Do not use the bathroom that is closest to the children's room. Do not shower in there. Do not flush the toilet. Do not turn on the faucet. There is no silent way to do whatever it is you're going to do in there, so just don't even try.

Be careful with the TV. It is best to keep the volume muted until you find a boring, grown-up show to watch, because if you're just flipping through channels and happen to land on Disney Junior for even the shortest amount of time, a tiny snippet of a catchy theme song (let's say...Jake and the Neverland Pirates or Mickey Mouse Clubhouse, for example), can wake my children from the deepest slumber and put them in a Disney Junior rage. You don't want to see that, and you don't want to see me. None of it is pretty.

Do not even attempt to whisper the following list of words in my home during nap time. 
Cookie
Cake
Swimming
Pizza
Princess
Noodles
If you say any of these, in any context...even if it is, "Man, I stepped in a big poop cake when I was walking my dog," my daughter will hear only the word cake and she will fling her door open and beg for a piece of it. 

I think you get my point. Nap time is sacred and protected in this home. Violating any of these rules turns me into a crazy person. 

I'll save my bedtime rules for another day. 

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