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The Girl Who Got Out Of Bed…and a “Give-Away”

June 18, 2013

Well, folks, they’ve done it again.  Betsy and Dan have added another powerful weapon to our arsenal of parenting tools.  This time they’ve tackled the Achilles heel of parents everywhere, the arch nemesis of youngsters, that great quagmire hour commonly referred to as…BEDTIME.  If it has been awhile since you have been around young children, you may have forgotten what happens at bedtime.  As soon as the clock strikes bedtime, the sweetest, most innocent, most helpless of toddlers inexplicably transforms herself into a diabolical mastermind with no end of tricks up her sleeve. The parent of the toddler-turned-genius will find himself scratching his head as he looks for evidence of invisible injuries under bright lights.  He will search darkened bedrooms, set traps, even lie in wait for wild critters (spiders, birds, bats, squirrels) described in vivid detail but only ever seen by the clever toddler who swears on his life there is something flying around.  He will turn the house upside down and inside out looking for a certain pacifier or stuffed animal known only the tricky toddler.  (I have on occasion found myself  squeezing under a crib in my search for the elusive object, and exhausted from crawling around, decided  to just stay for a short nap.)  All toddlers all seem to understand that they can make their exhausted parents do almost anything by holding out a carrot called sleep.

Enter Betsy and Dan with the power of the pen fighting the good fight for sleepy people everywhere.  I present to you:,


Although the book is available on Amazon (click on the picture above to see it), Dan thinks it would be a great idea for me to ask readers to respond with a comment and then pick one to receive a free book.  A “Give-Away” as bloggers liked to say.  We lay in bed last night arguing about this.  I keep telling him that this is not that kind of blog and if I hold a give-away I am certain that only three people would respond and two of them would be Aunt Brenda and Mary Olson.  Then I will feel embarrassed.  But he REALLY wants to have a Give-Away and I hate to burst his bubble.  So, here it is, please respond in the comments if your child has ever had bedtime issues.  One lucky reader will receive a free book.  The odds favor Aunt Brenda and Mary Olson, but anything could happen.  Please, please, respond, Gentle Reader, and save me from embarrassment.

I do have to issue one disclaimer about the book.  Our children loved it so much that they each wanted their own copy.  Charlie begged to buy one with all the money in his piggy bank.  (Dan took him up on the offer and made 30 dollars on one book!)  However, I have to be honest,  one night shortly after buying her own copy, Miss P appeared at the top of the stairs OUT OF BED and wailing that she couldn’t sleep without her book, The Girl Who Got Out of Bed. A frantic search ensued.  Well, more accurately, one of us was searching frantically.  One of us just slithered under the crib for a nap.

28 Comments leave one →
  1. June 18, 2013 1:10 pm

    I would be thrilled to have a copy of this book. One cannot be over-prepared for the issue of bedtime.

    • Betsy permalink
      June 18, 2013 2:25 pm

      Uncle George, that’s an ominous avatar you have there.

  2. Bea permalink
    June 18, 2013 1:20 pm

    LOVE the book! So true to life with the excuses she devises and the way she slithers out of bed. This was a much needed help for my grandchildren; although, with my own children bedtime wasn’t such a terrible ordeal. My advice, let them sleep with the dog and keep their pacifier until college (but only in the bed) and they will always LOVE bedtime!

  3. Kari permalink
    June 18, 2013 1:40 pm

    My oldest daughter had a great deal of trouble learning to stay in her toddler bed after being moved from the crib. After trying everything we could think of, we tied her bedroom door to our bedroom door to prevent her escape. (Don’t worry we’d always untie it after she fell asleep! : )

  4. June 18, 2013 2:30 pm

    Not having had troubles like these with my own kids (they loved bedtime, and they both still love to sleep, something I think they inherited from me), I do, however, sympathize with you both. What caught my ear about this was the fact of you two arguing. I suspect that your version of an argument would last about two seconds, and consist of maybe three sentences? Particularly if it was held past lights out. So sorry, that doesn’t carry any weight here. You’ll just have to agree to disagree, and have fun with your give-away! Congrats, and good luck!

  5. Cecily permalink
    June 18, 2013 3:08 pm

    Is there a follow-up edition for the slightly older child to be released soon? Or perhaps even for the baby-sitters of the world? I distrinctly remember that the best time to get out of bed after bedtime was when babysitters were over: a near-guaranteed ice cream for the Cannot Sleepitis that often beset me. And a much less involved excuse than having one’s tonsils removed.

    As a current auntie, I’m looking forward to reading this to the kiddos when it’s our turn to watch them!

  6. Sarah Fremont permalink
    June 18, 2013 3:25 pm

    I met you last year when my son and daughter were in your children’s preschool class. Then I ran into you at the co-op and remembered you had a blog so I had to look it up! Your writing makes me chuckle out loud! (And I can be a reading snob!) happy to enter your big give-away! Blessings from Asher and Elinor’s mama! (We now live in Austin, TX!)

  7. Anna Poythress Beall permalink
    June 18, 2013 3:29 pm

    We’d love a copy as we have dealt with all manner of bedtime issues. Our current issue is the 3 year old who wants to get in our bed in the middle of the night- any tips on this issue are appreciated!

  8. ostroms permalink
    June 18, 2013 3:45 pm

    This is wonderful timing, Joseph NEEDS this book 🙂 This is a new problem for us, and so far I haven’t figured out a way to tie him in the bed. Kidding (sort of). We can’t wait to read it! While I’d love to win a book, I will definitely buy a copy!

  9. Beth Saav permalink
    June 18, 2013 4:44 pm

    Oh, pick me, pick me! We’ll even be in the U.S. in a week and able to pick it up in real life. Either way, we would really enjoy seeing you while we’re up. I feel it would be almost like meeting the characters from Downton Abbey – the most entertaining blog children come to real life!

  10. June 18, 2013 5:42 pm

    This looks great! Kids are so tricky. Mine know just how to pull my strings. Can’t wait to read it!

  11. Nicole Winsliw permalink
    June 18, 2013 6:00 pm

    I would love this book!! As a mother of a7 year old and twin 4 year olds that have figured out ever one of our tricks we could use some fresh ammo! The only thing that works for us now is to go to bed at the same time and lock the door!! Wait….that’s really not such a bad thing after all!!

  12. June 18, 2013 6:02 pm

    we have had our share of bedtime issue as well. my oldest daughter went through a stage when she would not go to bed unless she had many band-aids on herself as well as all of her stuffed animals. after 4 years we are still trying to get those band-aids off those animals. the book looks great!!!

  13. Courtney Wisdom permalink
    June 18, 2013 7:21 pm

    Me me, pick me, pick me! With three Kids, there is no end to the bedtime-averting antics they have tried over the years. Usually they stick to the old classic I-need-water-I’m-dying-of-dehydration routine. But they have also pulled some other interesting tricks out of their hats such as claiming a rat was outside their room clawing at the door–Oh wait, that really happened.

  14. Liz Stewart permalink
    June 18, 2013 7:36 pm

    We are long since past such challenges in our household. If fact, (come to think of it) we are even past the stage when you can’t get them out of bed. However “back in the day” it was young Gregory who loved to get up and toddle down the hall for a visit. In my desperate, sleep-deprived state I prayed for help (also had a new baby at the time, so he really needed to be done with this). I really think God answered my prayer because the idea that came to me was better than I, in my already-mentioned sleep deprived state was capable of. Greg was really into road signs, books about road signs, drawing road signs, etc. So I says to myself, I says, “This young man needs a couple of road signs.” So I made him a U-turn and a left turn only sign. That mean he could come down the hall as far as the bathroom and make a left turn if he needed to. Otherwise he had to make a U-turn and go back to bed. It worked.

  15. Aunt Brenda permalink
    June 18, 2013 8:27 pm

    I’m entering my comment even though I don’t expect to get a book. I’d be happy to give up my favored position to someone who is having bedtime issues now. My children have finally learned to stay in bed at night, and would be happy to, but my grandchildren are about ready to start getting out of bed.

  16. Mandy McCaulley permalink
    June 18, 2013 9:06 pm

    Your blog consistently makes me laugh ever since Anna (your cousin) told me about it. My 5 year old was/is the boy who cried over everything and his almost 3 y/o sister is the chief instigator of most getting out of bed at night. Sometimes she doesn’t even have an excuse she just come out, goes up to her daddy and smiles asking for a kiss. Lord help us when she is 16!

  17. Angela permalink
    June 18, 2013 9:48 pm

    We are making plans to move our oldest into a toddler bed sometime in the next few months. Your book would be so much fun to read as we make this transition! Hope you’re all doing well! Miss you guys!

  18. Katie Kelley permalink
    June 18, 2013 10:05 pm

    How fun! I was just about to log out of my husband’s facebook & get on mine, when I saw this post, so I decided to click on it. This book looks so cute! I had no idea that Dan is an illustrator… with 4 kids! We are currently on our way to 4 as well. 🙂 And our two year old is currently our “boy who gets out of bed”. Hoping this “phase” ends soon. 🙂

  19. Jill Giesbrecht permalink
    June 18, 2013 10:21 pm

    It’d be very fun to have one of Dan’s books on the shelf. I’ll also be in town over the 4th of July weekend, so if I win I can pick it up and save you postage. 🙂
    We currently have 2 kids that find ways to get up after bedtime, and one that probably would but recognizes the futility of trying to get out of the crib. The most ingenious way, I have found, is to need to use the washroom. And then one must read a book to relax there… it takes forever, and I can’t very well deny the opportunity. Well played, young Giesbrechts, well played.

  20. Ellisha permalink
    June 19, 2013 12:25 am

    How long does the whole bedtime ritual need to drag on each night for us to admit “we have a problem”? Surely an hour and half is normal, right? Or maybe we can be a little more fuzzy on the parameters and muse that bedtime really starts the moment you wake up, doesn’t it? I, at least, already have my eyes fixed on the prize of getting back to my warm, happy, calm place, just moments after I’m wrested from it by a bounding child and a bright-eyed baby at dawn. I think the Give Away is a great idea. Except that I’m up too late entering my chance to win!

  21. Sharon permalink
    June 19, 2013 7:35 am

    Your blog always makes me laugh! As a mom of 10 children I can certainly relate to these bedtimes antics. Your new book sounds delightful.

  22. Angelina Joy Frohlich permalink
    June 19, 2013 8:32 am

    Don’t worry Lucy, this is for sure a topic on which everyone has a lot to say! I will add my two cents! (or 50 cents…) Last night after getting home late from toddler “soccer class” as Vinton my 3 year old calls it, we headed up to quickly do bedtime, quickly in my mind because I left a crying, hungry baby downstairs, which seemed the lesser of two evils, the other being letting my 2 and 3 year old run around and make crazy messes throughout the house while I nurse a sleepy baby for 15 minutes. Never underestimate the quantity if messes that can be made by a 2 and 3 year old in this amount of time. I shower once in a while, so I know. After a story and my decision to let them sleep in their clothes (something they rejoiced about!) It was decided they could have one more story after tooth brushing. (a bribe is always helpful where toothbrushing is concerned) during the final story my 2 year old chose to dance around the room, rather than listen to the book, which made no difference to me, since I was on a mission to finish bed time, prodded by the increase of cries making their way up the stairs from my sweet baby. Gideon decided to join the story time on the last page, then cry hysterically when I would not read the book to him again! I rocked and sang to him, all the while he continued to scream and cry, then put him in his bed and tenderly kissed his crying face. Meanwhile his big brother had run to the bathroom to go potty before bed, and was taking longer then I knew was physically necessary. I opened the door to find my 3 year old, shorts and underwear around his ankles, with a plunger sloshing up and down in the toilet. He had a mix of, “i’m caught!” and “what mommy?” On his face as I strongly emphasized that he should never touch the plunger again. Then he was repanted and plopped into bed (without a song). I left the room to his sighs of dismay and his little brother still crying, to the urgent cries of my 7 month old. At least I could help one of my children drift into peaceful slumber, and after nursing I left the baby’s room to a quietly sleeping house, so I would call that a successful bedtime when you have 3 kids 3 and under and your husband works late most nights.

  23. Vicki Schwab permalink
    June 19, 2013 12:34 pm

    I don’t need the book anymore, but there was a time, not so long ago, when my 4 boys made bedtime a crazy hour. I heard all kinds of reasons why they were not staying in bed including “God told me to get up.” Well, what can you say to that one? Anyway, “this too shall pass” and now they are teenagers and go to bed when they’re tired. Whew!!

  24. Lisa Ficker permalink
    June 19, 2013 2:16 pm

    I’d love to have this book. Like George said, one cannot be overly prepared for bedtime issues. 🙂

  25. June 19, 2013 8:14 pm

    I always thought once you got babies to sleep through the night the sleep deprivation ended. No one prepared me for the fact that at some point they would again wake needy in the night. Sebastian learned to climb out of his crib earlier than the others, early enough self control wasn’t a strong point. We tried discipline, we reversed the door knob until the latch broke, then I visited a friend’s house whose toddler slept in a tent that zipped up so she couldn’t climb out. I thought this was brilliant and went home and ordered one the same day. I waited anxiously for its arrival thinking I would finally be relieved of this ever appearing toddler when I wanted to relax. At long last (okay, only two days, but it seemed long) it arrived and I eagerly put it together had him crawl inside happily, zipped him in, and watched in horror as he quickly took hold of the zipper and unzipped the tent. Not to be easily defeated, I got the wire cutters and cut the zipper tabs off the inside of the tent. I had him crawl back in and watched and he wiggled his finger and slide the zipper up without the pull tab. With desperation I got a safety pin and fastened all three zippers together so they couldn’t be unzipped. I reasoned in case of an emergency we could shove the whole thing out the ground floor window, Sebastian and all. This worked for about three days and then the small Houdini appeared at my side after I had pinned him in. At first I thought it was a fluke, that maybe I hadn’t secured the pin well, but alas, he kept doing it. He has eventually grown out of the Jack-in-the-box bedtime routine. I have found half a milligram of melatonin quite helpful on the nights he relapses. Now if I can just get him to stay asleep (or at least let me stay asleep) all night.

  26. June 19, 2013 8:21 pm

    PS. The book is fantastic! Well done Dan and Betsy!

  27. July 8, 2013 8:38 am

    Is it too late to enter the giveaway. I have had bedtime issues with my grandson, staying at Oma’s for the night, away from his “nonnies”.

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