It’s getting to that time of the day again.
That time of the day where you are losing your last nerve as quickly as your children are unrolling the toilet paper all over the floor.
That time of day where the light starts fading and your kids think that you can’t see them hit their sibling on the head with a light saber.
That time of the day where their tantrum (brought on by tiredness or because you wouldn’t let them suck the soap), is so epic-ally out of control that you consider hunkering down and losing your **** right along side them.
That’s right. We lovingly refer to that time of the day as “suicide hour”. Although suicide is not a thing to make fun of, the phrase really encapsulates the un-fun-ness of that time of the day. I’ve also heard of it referred to as “witching hour” but that reminds me of Harry Potter and that’s fun, so basically entirely not appropriate for this situation at all.
Don’t know what I’m talking about? Basically it’s the hour of around 5pm till the child’s bedtime.
That said, for some unfortunate parents this is most often (much) longer than an hour and may even start earlier. Not speaking from experience or anything. Oh no wait, I am.
If you’d told me about 5 years ago that I could actually do something about it I would probably have throat punched you. Seriously?! Can you not see me doing something about it everyday?! I feed them, I bath them, I put them to bed, I drown my sorrows then I repeat every night. Every single night.
I freaking hated bedtime. It literally left me with a sense of dread – having to get the kids to sleep. Especially when Seth was working late. I just wanted bedtime to be quick and over so it could be done. They hate sleep. I love sleep. We couldn’t seem to see eye to eye on the subject and that left us all miserable.
But here’s the thing. Our bedtime routine sucked. There was nothing fun, I wanted them in bed and asleep as soon as possible, but obviously they didn’t want that so we were left to butt heads. There was nothing for them to look forward to. Since I spiced up their bedtime routine, they can’t wait to hop into bed and I’m enjoying bedtime so much more now too.
Here’s our bedtime routine:
- We all kiss, hug, high five and low five each other before we get into bed. Saying a proper goodnight to each other is so special, the kids also go through the process with each other so they have a chance to show affection that they don’t normally do during the day.
- Then we settle in and I read a couple chapters of the latest book that we’re reading. This single point has revolutionized the bedtime routine. Having a story to look forward to makes getting into bed exciting. They can’t wait to listen to the what happens next. Having read nearly all the books in my primary school library, this is a passion that I want to nurture, so we make sure that we read new books as much as possible. (If you’re looking for new books to read with your kids, try the subscription with Kids Book Club)
- Lights out and pray. One of the highlights of my night is listening to their prayers.
- Play their favourite song. This part of the routine started by accident but has become a necessary step. They each chose a song or two that they love and we play it on our phones as they fall asleep. Kyla has chosen All Of Me – John Legend and Ballerina Girl – Lionel Richie and Riya has Somewhere Over The Rainbow and Too Young (our wedding song). They will NOT go to sleep without it.
- Quietly creep out of the room. At this juncture they should be asleep. So we quietly sneak out of the room and then silently, but violently curse the bike that happened to be left in the middle of the passage that we stubbed our toe on as we walked out.
What else do you have in your bedtime routine?
Also, a bit more on Kids Book Club. The concept is simple – they deliver new, age appropriate books to your door every month. This month we received two kids books – one story and one factual AND two magazines for me to read once the kids are in bed. Win – win!!
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