The Naptime Game

The 3-year-old has mastered the art of naptime shenanigans.

Anna Burgess Yang
4 min readFeb 1, 2021


Pop art image of a sleeping sloth
Image created via Midjourney

In a pre-Covid world, I would occasionally pick up my children during naptime for an appointment or some other reason. The room would be dark, soft music playing, and the children would all be lying quietly on cots with their favorite stuffed animal and a blanket. So I have had this vision in my head that naptime is this orderly, routine-based part of the day.

Now going on 10.5 months at home, my 3-year-old daughter has turned naptime into some kind of sporting event.

Due to our work schedules, my husband and I “switch” at 11:30 in the morning. He is with the 3-year-old until that time, and I take over at lunch. She eats with her two school-aged brothers who are home for remote learning, and then plays for a bit until noon.

At noon, I announce that it is naptime. She can’t do anything without setting a timer for two minutes. So we ask the nearby Alexa to “set timer for two minutes” and then she is ready to go upstairs to her room for nap when the timer goes off.

Except first, she has to say goodnight to both of her brothers. She will yell their names as loud as she can and demand elaborate kisses and hugs from both.

Then she will sloooooowwwwly climb the stairs to her room.

She refuses to nap in her clothes. I don’t know why this is a thing. She napped in clothes just fine when she was at day care. But no, at home, she insists on wearing pajamas for her nap.

But first, she has to strip completely naked and use the potty. Again, I don’t know why this is a thing either. I told my sister about it once, and her response was “Yeah… I hear that some adults like to be naked when they use the bathroom also…”

So she’ll use the potty and then come out saying “MOMMY! I TINKLE TINKLE!” And even though she has been potty trained for over a year, I have to praise her like it’s the first time she’s ever successfully used the potty and give her a high-five.

Then — still naked — she will set about “closing up” the master bedroom. Which is completely unnecessary since I don’t nap during the day (at least, not in the master). She will close all of the curtains and make sure that the doors…



Anna Burgess Yang

Productivity geek + solopreneur with niche expertise. #5amwritersclub frequent flyer. •