Have you heard of this?
When I say napping outside, I’m not talking about letting your child finish thier nap in the stroller after a walk or Â letting them fall asleep in a pack while you hike – although those are both great ideas. I’mÂ talking about people who put their children outdoors to take nap every single day, no matter what the weather. No matter where they are, which is often right outside their own home.
I first read about this idea on DesignMom, in a post about a trip she’d taken to Sweden. She described the country as “one bigÂ Waldorf school” where kidsÂ spend a lot of time outdoors. They play outdoors, spend school time outdoors, and yes, their kids take naps outdoors.Â It’s sounds like the OutsideMom’s version of a utopian societyÂ to me.
After reading this I was intrigued, so I tried it out with one of my own children when he was just a few weeks old. I put him to sleep in a babyÂ Moses basket and set him outside under the trees in the yard for a nap.
To be honest I think I would have felt more comfortable putting him to sleep off the side of the trail than I did in my own backyard. I didn’t have aÂ porch, so he wasn’t right next to the house where I could keep an eye on him. I was constantly checking on him and eventually just went and sat outside instead of staying in the house and doing anything productive – which is whatÂ nap timeÂ is usually for.
I’m not sure where I went wrong. Was it just my good old AmericanÂ supervisionÂ geneÂ kicking in?Â I was worried about the neighbors dog eating him. I was worried about the ants finding him, a bird pooping on his face, a sudden gust of wind, a loud motorcycle driving by, a rogue kidnapper…
Maybe I was just paranoid because I it was so… unconventional. If it were a good idea why wasn’t everyone in my neighborhood putting their kids outside for a nap?Â
Probably because I don’t live inÂ the Nordic Countries.
A fellow blogger friend of mine (and nativeÂ Norwegian and outside baby napper)Â Kari SvennebyÂ recently brought the idea of napping outside back to my attention when she sent me the article:Â Babies Who Nap in Subzero Temperatures.
Apparently “the theory behind outdoor napping is that children exposed to fresh air, whether in summer or the depths of winter, are less likely to catch coughs and colds”. Â Of course you’ll need to dress your childÂ properly, maybe get one of these cool napping buggies, but itÂ actuallyÂ seems like a pretty good idea.
What do you think?