I am probably a little too interested in everyone else’s parenting styles. I want to know what you feed your kids (and honestly how in the world do you get them to eat anything other than chicken nuggets and grapes?), how often you bathe them, what their nap schedules are, how you put them to bed, and whether or not they actually sleep at night. I think I might possibly make people uncomfortable though, when I ask personal questions. Those conversations usually go like this.
Mom in the park, who I literally just met: How old are your kids?
Me: They are 4 and 2. What about yours? I see that you’re expecting, when are you due? Are you doing a natural birth? How was the first one birthed? Does she know she’s going to have a new brother or sister? How did you tell her? Are you going to coordinate their nap schedules so you can get a break in the day? Will you breastfeed?
Mom: Ummmm…. (slowly backs away)
Yep. I’m nosy. So I decided to use my blog for my questions. That way I won’t have to see your uncomfortable-ness. So let’s talk about bedtime. Our bedtime routine is a little crazy. And changes constantly of course, as I’m sure yours does too as our children grow. Let me map out for you what it looks like right now.
At 8:something either Tim or I will look at the clock and exclaim, “Oh, it’s bedtime. Pajamas, everyone!” Then begins the great pajama dressing which involves a lot of clothes flying around and boys running away and being chased and caught and pinned down while pants and shirts and zippers are put into place. Whew.
Then we read a book that each child picks. They are starting to realize that the longer the book the longer they can put off bedtime. They pick books like, A Fly Went By, The Digging-est Dog (seriously the stupidest book in existence), or anything written by Virginia Lee Burton. Sneaky boys.
Next comes a song and then prayer. Every. Single. Time we pray, bedtime, mealtime, naptime, random times throughout the day, Little brother wants to pray for Aubree (his cousin) and YaYa (my mother-in-law). He doesn’t just tell us this. He screams it.
Daddy: Okay, time to pray. Who do you want to pray f-
Little Brother: I WANNA PRAY AUBREE YAYA!!!
Then to bed. They share a room but can’t be put to bed there at the same time unless we want shenanigans. Therefore one kid goes to his bed there, the other goes into our bed (Jim Gaffigan refers to this as the “holding cell”). If you think this is the end of bedtime, you probably don’t have kids. Or maybe you drug them (no judgment here, the end goal is sleep, right?). For the next hour we put up with giggling boys who have sneaked into their brother’s room, multiple appeals for water (I’m always amazed that my kids survive the night as they are most definitely going to die of thirst if I don’t let them have one more drink), diaper changes, and requests for us to “tuck me in again,” or “put my blanket back in a square.”
They finally go to sleep. We get an hour or two of peace before we turn in. Then the real fun begins. Most likely one or both boys will end up in our bed at some point in the night. Sometimes I roll over and almost scream because there is a child standing right by my bed watching me sleep. He then will silently climb over me and snuggle in between us. Sometimes I’m not even awake enough to know which boy this is. After a few hours of getting kicked in the back or head, we will move said boy back to his own bed. This is just in time, of course, for the next one to silently creep into our room and end up between us before we realize what’s happening.
Somehow, somewhere in all of that we manage to get enough sleep to make us coherent.
How does your bedtime routine go? This is your time to interact with me. I honestly want to know what your bedtime routine is. If it’s as silly (or worse. Or longer. Or somehow incredibly short and easy.) maybe I will let you be a guest writer on the blog and share it with everyone. So don’t be shy, hit the reply button and let me in on your ways.
Otherwise I might meet you in person and corner you at the playground. Awkwardness will ensue.