Keda’s post about bedtime reminded me I was going to write about our routine. Just thinking about writing the routine out is making me realise it might sound pretty crazy, but here goes.
6:00pm – dinner for Lil. Sometimes Dave and I eat our dinner at the same time, sometimes we just have an ‘entree’ because Lil seems to eat better if someone sits and eats with her.
6:45pm – if we’re on time we move to the couch and one of us reads books with Lil while the other tidies the kitchen etc. (It’s all one open room anyway.) Lil drinks some milk at this time too.
7:00pm – we start bath around this time. To get Lil to willingly go to the bathroom Dave usually holds one hand of Holly (her doll) or teddy and they all go together. Holly usually has to turn the light on in the bathroom. After this I’m not sure what exactly goes on in there. There is a whole tooth cleaning and undressing routine that I am not part of. Lil has her bath in a big plastic tub in the shower and Dave usually has a shower at the same time.
7:20pm – I get called (by the bath frog or hippo) to come and get Lillian out of the bath. This involves Lillian yelling at the top of her lungs, “Madeline!” I go in and she hands me each of her bath toys and I dry them and line them up on the shower ledge. Then she will sometimes get out willingly or sometimes I have to start counting. I normally don’t get past 2 and she’s out. I dry her off and she tells me to hang up the towel and then she says she’s going to run to her room and I have to chase her. I must also run.
7:30pm – Once in her room we fight for her to lie still while putting her night time nappy on. Once the nappy is on her pjs go on and then I let her bounce on the bed a little bit. (This is a single bed we use for nappies/dressing, she still sleeps in a cot.) I catch her and we go and brush her hair. Near her hairbrush is a bottle of hand sanitiser and we have to spray this on both our hands (“Like at school.”) Then we go and sit on the yoga ball and press the button on her night garden clock/night light that makes Upsy Daisy go away and Iggle Piggle comes in his bed. Sometimes Holly has to press the button. Then we go to the door and call Dave and he comes to say goodnight. Lil (or Holly) turns the main light off, then on again, then off. Dave and Lil do finger shadow puppets on the wall (Baby Moster and Daddy/Mummy Monster, including the monsters kissing goodnight.) This is followed by boofo kisses all around and Dave leaves. Lil and I go back to the yoga ball and sit and have a cuddle, she drinks some water from the pink bottle and then some more from the yellow bottle. Sometimes we sing songs, sometimes she does bounces into bed. This means she sits between my legs on the ball and counts to 20 (skipping the numbers between 14 and 18) and then I put her into bed. I rub her back for a bit, I tell her I’m going to go and talk to Daddy, we talk about any noises Dave is making in the kitchen and then I have to say, “Night night Lillian. Love you lots. See you in the morning when Upsy Daisy comes back.” If I leave out any of those phrases she corrects me. And then I leave. If it’s a good night that’s it. If it’s a not so good night I go back once and rub her back some more. If it’s a bad night she gets up again to go to the toilet. After which she goes straight back into bed.
So that’s it. On a good night I am out of there by 7:45pm. Bad nights are closer to 8:30.