I have a confession. I let my kids stay up really late. Wait, that’s not fair. I don’t LET them stay up late, I just DON’T put them to bed very early. Actually, we all go to bed at the same time. Let me
shamelessly defend myself explain. By the time I get home from work it’s 5:00. Then I have to figure out what to make for dinner (did you guys know I suck at this task?) so by the time I’ve actually finished cooking and eating it’s usually later than 7. Then I have to clean up which makes it around 7:30. Being the lazy ass good mother that I am I like to plop myself on the couch and watch TV for a bit spend time with my kids. All of a sudden it’s 8:30 and they aren’t in PJ’s, their teeth aren’t brushed, and they are running around screaming and horsing around. (I’m awesome like that.) Then, as any mother knows, it’s not a simple walk upstairs, swiftly changing into pajamas and putting your groggy but happy child gently down on his or her pillow before softly closing the door to the sounds of “I love you Mommy!” No, it’s more along the lines of this.
Both of you, get up here and brush your teeth!
BUD, put the iPod down!
BUD, so help me god
I will beat you senseless if you don’t put down Talking Tomcat and come brush your teeth! You will never play with my iPod again!!
Babe! Come over here so I can change your clothes!
B-ABE!!!!!! (yes, two syllables!)
BABE! Your toothbrush does not go in your pee pee!
BUD, stop making funny faces in the mirror and just brush your teeth!
BABE! Get your fingers out of your butt!! NO! Don’t put your fingers in your mouth! GROSS!
Bud, please get naked (he sleeps naked – it’s a decision he has made on his own).
Babe, get the floss out of your toes!
Bud, please get naked!
Babe, stop putting on Bud’s underwear from the laundry basket!
Bud, please, for the love of God, GET NAKED!
Ok, let’s get into the bedroom.
Ok, guys! Time for bed. Let’s go!
Babe, put down the toilet brush!
Bud, enough with the iPod, shut ‘er down!
IF YOU BOTH DON’T GET IN THE BEDROOM RIGHT NOW I’M GOING TO
BREAK YOUR FACES HAVE TO PUNISH YOU!
Once we finally get teeth brushed and PJ’s on (or not on) Bud is pretty good about giving Dad goodnight kisses and letting me tuck him in to his own bed. Babe…not so much. It’s generally a 1 hour process that involves books, made up stories, singing, peep-a-boo from her bedroom door, and mumbled threats.
I know this routine is my fault. I know it can be fixed. My problem is I don’t know how. Time slips away. I want to spend time with them but I also must feed them. I can’t do both at the same time. Yes, they can be in the kitchen with me, and they generally are, but I can’t read them a book or do arts and crafts (those who know me probably just laughed at the thought of me doing arts and crafts – lets change that to playing outside). Plus, our kitchen isn’t that big and they get in the way. I’d prefer not to spill boiling water on them or have them get bumped into the oven, thank you very much! I also can’t see putting them to bed at 7:30. They aren’t tired. I can convince Bud to stay in his room but he wouldn’t fall asleep, and Babe would have nothing to do with staying in her room if she’s not tired.
The problem is Bud has to wake up for school now. Babe starts tomorrow and will have to as well. My mornings aren't any better as I haven't fully recovered from the nighttime routine. Something's got to give. I just haven't figured out how to fix it yet.
So tell me, what time do your kids get to bed? Are you June Cleaver or Peg Bundy with your bed time routine?*********
While I say that I let my kids go to bed so late, my friend Smidge insists that I'm an old lady for going to bed by 9 every night. Sooo sorry, Smidge, not everyone can stay up until 2am watching Zulu movies!