I'm wondering what other people's strategies are for getting 2 kids to bed when you're alone with them. My son will be 3 and a few months when the baby comes. He's weaned, he sleeps in his own bed now but joins us in our bed about every 3rd or 4th night at some point in the night (which is more than fine with me, I didn't want him moving to his own bed, he did!). He goes to bed around 7:30 and I lay with him (twin bed) for anywhere from 15 minutes to an hour depending on the night.
When he was a new baby, at that time of night we did our nursing camp outs on the couch. He pretty much just stayed with me on a lambskin on the couch, sleeping and nursing whenever he woke, then coming to bed with me when I went to sleep.
So, obviously, I can't figure out how to do this with 2 if his routine stays the same and if the baby needs a lot of early night parenting like he did. I am usually alone at bedtime because Dad and I both work FT opposite shifts so that we don't need childcare.
Do I try to get my son involved in something while I put the baby to sleep for the first time? Maybe in a wrap, then try to transfer baby to my bed while I lay down with my son in his bed, then bring baby back out with me when baby wakes?
Do I try to get my son asleep first, and keep baby in there with me? Nurse baby in my son's twin bed and hope baby doesn't make enough noise to keep him up? (He is, of course, VERY distractible at bedtime and uses any excuse to start a conversation.) Maybe be lucky and baby falls asleep?
Try to get them to sleep together in my bed, and get dad to move toddler back to his bed when he gets home? (Which would wake him up and then he's want to stay with us.) Tell my son no more sleeping in his big boy bed? ;-) We have a queen and sidecar and he is a crazy sleeper, so probably not the best option. We do also have a twin pull out sofa in our room for him, but he actually really likes going to bed in his own bed. It's a cool bed.
I'm leaning towards having them both in his room, maybe transition to me sitting in a chair next to his bed nursing baby rather than laying down with him until he falls asleep.
For nights Dad is home, this will be easier because he goes to bed just as well for Dad.