Even though it is Wednesday now, I am sharing this post - and I apologize to anyone who has been waiting to link up! I'd still love to hear from you.
Today during Toddler Time
Okay, maybe I'm exaggerating. We do have a routine. It just doesn't work out perfectly ever night, so it seems like maybe we need more structure. Andrew would be happier if we adhered to a very specific time to start the bedtime process every night, but it all depends on when we start eating dinner - which of course depends on when dinner is started - and so on and so on.
But, for what it's worth, here's our routine anyway.
Our general goal is to start bedtime around 7:15-7:30pm. We all head back to the nursery and turn off all the lights except the lamp. Both kids want to nurse before bed, so lately the process has started with this. Lincoln will nurse for a few minutes and then ideally, read a book with Daddy while Addie nurses.
In reality, while Addie is nursing, he is usually running around the room or jumping on his bed or dragging out toys that were just put away.
Addie usually does better about reading with Daddy when it is not her turn to nurse.
Once both of them have had the opportunity to nurse, we start changing clothes. Addie gets her nighttime diaper and pajamas on first, and then she and Daddy head downstairs until Lincoln is asleep. I have yet to figure out how on earth to get a child to go to sleep without me, so it's just part of our process.
Lincoln and I then head to the bathroom, where we brush his teeth, wash his hands and face, and try to go potty. We are on the verge of potty training, but I have not given it a real attempt yet. He's getting used to the idea, at least, by going once each night. We strongly dislike having to change diapers and sheets in the middle of the night, so it's an attempt to keep his diaper less soggy throughout the night. It doesn't always work, but hey. We're trying.
After he has gone (or tried to go) potty, we go back to his bedroom and get him into his pajamas. He usually is pretty insistent about which socks he is willing to wear to bed. Usually before we turn off the light, we say a bedtime prayer (some nights he contributes a lot to this, other nights he says "NO NO NO NO NO!") and his first Bible memory verse. Right now, he is obsessed with all of his Nintendo Super Mario Bros. plush toys, and insists that he needs "all the guys" in bed with him. Which is interesting, since he also wants me in his bed when he is falling asleep.
It gets a little crowded in there. Other necessities are his lion pillow and his firetruck blanket. He usually falls asleep pretty quickly once we are settled in bed.
I sneak away once he is sound asleep and take charge of Miss Addie, who could be in any state of emotion by that point - happy, playful, somber, or downright angry - depending on how much she has napped that day. She and I hang out on the couch, nursing until she falls asleep. This takes maybe thirty-forty minutes, after which time I am (lately) lucky if I can transfer her to the crib.
She tends to average somewhere between forty-five minutes and two hours in the crib, depending on the night. Last night, it was twenty minutes - thus why this post is a day late. Once she is awake, it's pretty useless to get her back down, so she just nurses back to sleep on me and hangs out on the couch until we go to bed.
Like I said - it's not really the best routine - as far as routines go. But it's what works for us right now, so I wanted to keep a memory of it anyway. One of these days, they won't need me quite so much and I will long for these times. I know this is true - even if I can't really see it right now.
Now it's your turn! Link up a post about your bedtime rituals below.