Thursday, October 7, 2010

5 steps to an easy bedtime - even with Daylight Savings

I've noticed a LOT of comments online this week about how hard bedtime is now that Daylight savings has started.

If you live in an area where Daylight Savings has begun, you may share this pain, or you may really enjoy having the sun out for a bit longer.

Either way, Daylight Savings seems to have an impact on most of us - good or bad.

The biggest problem I find with Daylight Savings is (obviously) that it's still light at 7pm when I put Soph to bed. Why would she want to go to bed when the sun is still up? There's still so much playing / crawling / laughing / reading / colouring / dancing etc to be done!

What works for us? A consistent bedtime routine. Whether it's dark or light out, it works.

So here's how I do it: Our Daily Bedtime Routine.

  1. 5pm: Dinner Time. I find an early dinner means no witching hour to worry about. We take our time, no rushing and I find she's usually finished around 5.30pm.
  2. 5.30pm: Quiet play before bath. I find this is works best when we have packed most toys away before dinner, leaving only 1 stuffed toy and a couple of books or blocks. Less toys means less chance of Soph getting a second wind and wanting to do noisy, lengthy play. And I have the TV on ABC2 - same show every night at this time, so it fits with the next part of our routine.
  3. 6pm: Bath time. After the ABC2 show's Goodnight songs, we have "Toys away" time - the rest of the toys go in the toy box, and Sophie helps put them in. The next step is really important - after "Toys Away", we close all the blinds / curtains and turn on a soft lamp in the lougeroom and her bedroom. I also turn on a lullabye cd in her room. Then we set out towels and pjs, and run the bath together. I like to do a bath every night because all the splashing and warmth uses up all her enegry and I find she's quite sleepy as a result. She listens to the lullabye cd while she's getting dried and dressed, and we never rush this process - it can take up to 10 mins.
  4. 6.45pm: Milk Time. She drinks a cup of milk, sitting with Mum, Dad or both quietly in the loungeroom. The tv is on really low, no toys out, no bright lights on - just the lamp with all blinds / curtains closed. It's not as dark as it would be at night, but it gets close. If we were going to read a story, this would be the time - in the lounge room, with 1 book, away from the bookshelf where she would be tempted to ask for another. After milk it's time to brush teeth, and then we are nearly done.
  5. 7pm: Bed time. Goodnights, kisses and cuddles, and into bed. No toys with flashing lights, no musical toys. No other chatting, just simple words - "It's time for bed, Goodnight, See you in the morning". Then door closed, and bedtime is complete.

The added benefit for Mum and Dad is that after this routine, we are calm and relaxed as well!

How does your bedtime routine run?

xo Marissa

1 comment:

  1. Marissa, this is so mega planned out.. I LOVE IT! im going to make something similar in the distant future when i have a bub :)



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