Like Linus clinging to his blanket and sucking his thumb in the Peanuts comic strips, lil ones love the sense of security that a transitional object provides them during times of stress. Many sleep experts encourage the introduction of a "blankee" or "lovey" to help tots learn to soothe themselves back to sleep rather than crying out for mom. For some, the object takes the form of a blanket or stuffed animal, while others turn to more unusual objects that have been with them since birth.
While my kids have turned to particularly soft stuffed animals to help them through rough patches, I've seen wee ones cling to everything from dad's tattered undershirts to baby socks to provide them with the comfort they seek. What do your children call a lovey?