The first two rules of having happy toddlers are:
1. Don't change anything.
2. If you do change anything, talk about it for days or weeks in advance with great enthusiasm.
I'm not very good at following these rules, but I do know them and I try. Nonetheless, we decided rather on the spur of the moment to move D2 out of his crib this past weekend. It was getting to be a hassle to lift him in and out, he sleeps soundly enough that we weren't worried about nighttime wandering, and we just thought it might be time.
So, trying to follow Rule #2, we asked him if he would like to have his mattress on the floor like D1's. Indeed he would. They have a great time jumping and playing on D1's mattress, which is why we've never bothered to set up actual beds for them.
We pulled the mattress out shortly before naptime on Sunday, and they played happily on both mattresses for awhile. Then it was naptime. He asked to go back into his crib. Apparently he had not realized that moving the mattress out meant no more place to sleep in the crib. So DOB dealt with this oversight by gently setting him down on the springs left in the bottom of the crib. Sure enough, he decided that sleeping in the crib was no longer a good idea.
He slept well that naptime and bedtime, so when DOB's family showed up for Labor Day, we asked the boys to take apart the crib and put it in the attic without a second thought. In the busyness of the day, I didn't notice an immediate reaction. A few hours later, though, I was discussing the change with someone else in his hearing, and he suddenly said, "They bwoke my cwib!" and began to cry. I tried to reassure him that it was only taken apart, like his Duplos, and could be put back together again.
He settled down then, but at lunch he started to cry again over his broken crib. Fortunately by that time the boys had taken the crib upstairs, so at least the carcase wasn't lying around to distress him. I took him in on his new bed and told him a long story about a little boy named D2 who started out as a little tiny baby and slept in a crib and then he got bigger and bigger until he was too big to sleep in the crib anymore so they took the crib apart like Duplos and put it up in the attic until some new little tiny baby might need it.
So far we've heard no more about the broken crib, although he did take an awfully long time to fall asleep yesterday. Now we must deal with the new realization of the ease with which he can get more toys in bed with him. Just because you can take your bike to bed with you doesn't mean you should.