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Thread: evening / bed routine for 2 kids one adult

  1. #1
    angelfish Guest

    Default evening / bed routine for 2 kids one adult

    Our 2.5yo has a well established routine. We start at about 5:30pm and do cleaning up his toys and bedroom, eat dinner, brush teeth, shower or bath, into night nappy and PJ's, 2 books in bed, lights off, quick chat and cuddles, sleep. He's usually settled for the night at 7 or shortly afterwards, and most nights we don't even hear him again until 6am when he calls out asking whether it's time to get up.

    Now our 6mo. We choose not do do any strict sleep training, controlled comforting etc while she is little, so she has so far been allowed to do what she wants, which is generally to go to bed when we do. Sometimes she sleeps in a cot, most nights she's co-sleeping with us for at least part of the night, and breastfeeding as often as she likes. We're planning to teach her to sleep all night in her own bed when she's 2, same as we did for #1, but in the meantime I want to do some gentle techniques out of the "No Cry Sleep Solution" book.

    I would like her to go to bed earlier, so we can have kid free time for an hour or two a day instead of her being with me 24/7. I want to start a set routine with her, but the problem is that their dad is very often not home until 6:30, 7 or later, so it will have to be a routine that I can do on my own. But I don't want to disturb my son's routine too much as he sleeps so well.



    To any single mums (or mums with partner not home at bedtime) - how do you organise your routines for two or more kids? Do you bath them together or do one and then the other? Do you feed them together? What if one breastfeeds as well and the other only eats food? Suggestions appreciated!

  2. #2
    angelfish Guest

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    Bump (in case new people have any ideas?)

  3. #3

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    :-k I have a 7yr old & 4+month old...
    DD#1 has dinner around 6ish, then bath/shower, brushes teeth etc & goes off to bed around 7-7:30pm..
    DD#2 is breastfed on deman & so varies most night, she usually has solids while DD#1 is in bath, at 8:30pm I run her bath & she soaks plays in that for a while, then I dress her in her PJ's & we have a small quite play or she cuddles with Daddy on couch.. I make up a bottle of formula (as I have no supply this time of the day) about 220ml, which she drinks & then is swaddled or put into sleeping bag & carried to bed, usually around 9-9:15pm..
    DH & I then have an hour alone before we go to bed, I will gradually bath her earlier & get her into her cot earlier! But with reading readers etc it just works at the moment...

    HTH..

  4. #4

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    Something I do (because my littlest at 16 months gets tired before the eldest) is just slowly introduce cues - of course you can't just jump into a full blown system without some sort of freak out! So I started off with him going into his cot at around 7am and having a little quiet 'play' i.e. a few soft toys, books and his fave things, as he was an avid co-sleeper and didn't like the cot at all - it was tears all around if I tried to get straight into the cot. Once he was happy in there, I started working on sleepy things like singing and patting. He now knows when I say, 'Lie down Lijie' that he can lie down and I will still be there to sing / pat. He's gotten great at going down in the cot and it's only taken a couple of weeks, the problem is the older one interrupting. So if she is kept busy with colouring or watching a DVD while I settle and get the routine going for Elijah, then all is great. Then she goes through her routine a little later being almost 4, but it's all age dependant of course. So slowly, fun, and gentle is definitely the way to make bedtime fun and easier, I think... he now tends to get tired around the same time and it's been great. I also found taking them both for a walk after dinner helps burn that extra energy and they both go down much easier. It is so hard on your own, isn't it...?
    Kelly xx

    Creator of BellyBelly.com.au, doula, writer and mother of three amazing children
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  5. #5

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    I have a 2 year old and a 6 month old, and whilst I am lucky that DH is home most nights, when he is working late/away, I have no probs following our little routine.

    5.30pm dinner for all......Olivia sits at the table and eats, I eat, and I feed Charlie his solids.

    6.00pm we all sit on the floor to read books.....this is the cue for Olivia that we are heading towards bathtime.

    6.30 Bath for Olivia (I usually have Charlie sitting in his bouncer on the bathroom floor watching!)

    7.00 Cuddles and read story to Olivia on the couch whilst she has a cup of milk (again, Charlie in his bouncer). Brush teeth, bed. She happily goes to bed, as long as her music is on and she has teddy!

    7.15 Bath Charlie
    7.30 Final feed for Charlie
    7.45 Charlie in bed asleep.

    I have to be honest, Charlie usually needs to go to bed earlier than this, but if I swap them round, I hate to leave Olivia to her own devices whilst I do that final feed with him, and am reticient to use a DVD to "babysit her" that close to her bedtime.

    Charlie is, at this stage, happy and placid, so he is the one that waits patiently!

    I will also admit that I am v.lucky & have no probs with either of them going to sleep: they never fight sleep, as long as all the cues are there for them, they both drop off by themselves without a peep.

  6. #6
    angelfish Guest

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    Thanks for the input ladies.

    Lucy, that definitely sounds do-able, although since Milly started crawling, she won't sit still anywhere. I think my problem is that she will only fall asleep on the breast, and it can take anything up to 1 1/2 hours. So I have to introduce some other sleep time cues for her. How did you go about getting your 6mo to go to sleep so easily?

  7. #7

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    Angelfish,

    I am really really blessed that Charlie, pretty much from birth, has self settled and drops off to sleep by himself without a peep: no crying, no grizzling, no nead for patting etc.

    He gets pretty sleepy with his last feed, (which is in very dim light) and we play Peacebaby on his little CD machine in his room. He sleeps in a hammock, and once he is tucked in he occasionally chats to himself for up to 10 mins, but then just nods off, often bouncing himself to sleep in the hammock, IYKWIM?

    (Occasionally he gives a cry after about 15 mins, this is usually if he needs to get one more last burp up, so I go in and resettle him, and he goes off like a charm)

    Sorry, I am not much help. I can't really take the credit for him being such a great sleeper/self settler: he has always been like this. But the hammock, the music, the dim lights and the bedtime routine do help.

  8. #8
    colleeg Guest

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    Yes I agree, routine 100% it definetly something that helps them know what is going on. The older they get the easier it is for them.

    I have to admit I did a bit of Controled crying, my little man is 9 months and sleeps through perfectly. Since about 8 weeks. I only had trouble with day time sleeping. However the 'cues' are very important so whatever method you are introducing in your lifestyle try and stick to it for at least a month.

    colleeg

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