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Goodnight Bubbles

September 6, 2010

Ever since the birth of our second, a year ago now, we’ve taken the divide-and-conquer approach to bedtime.  For awhile Bubbles was going to bed at 6 (sweet!) and waking up at 4:30 (not sweet!), while Boo was going to bed at 9:30 (yuck!) and waking up at 8 (beautiful!).  It was a disaster.  These days, after much discussion and fiddling, we aim for 8 for Bubbles and 9 for Boo and it all feels much more cohesive.  We are all in the same bed so a staggered bedtime allows the baby to be sound asleep before her sister comes in to fidget and whisper her own way to dreamland.  It also gives Boo some quiet full-attention-from-papa time and we’ve noticed that really helps her go to bed easily.

There was one rough spot in our rhythm.  After I gave Bubbles her bath we would get her dressed in the bedroom, and Boo and Papa would come in to say goodnight.  Except that Boo would start running and jumping all over the bed and get everybody wound up.  I would try to shoo them out the door, which made everyone even more tense.

This week we started reading Bubble’s goodnight books all together in bed.  It didn’t add much time to the routine, but it has been really nice to have that relaxed ten minutes together as a family at the end of the day!  Both kids are calmer, and I can see now that trying to rush them through saying goodnight to each other was just adding my own negative energy to the mix.  It’s amazing how a simple little ritual can turn things around.  Here’s to peaceful bedtimes!

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