OK, I couldn't read your post and not answer. I actually never quite figured out a way to get both my boys to sleep by myself. My husband (or somebody) was always available to help. On the few rare occassions when it was just me, basically we'd all three end up crying ourselves to sleep. Particularly between the ages of one and two, it was brutal. The scenes you described made me laugh because I remember it well!!! I tried so many people's suggestions for routines, etc. Nothing worked. Nap time by myself was a complete nightmare. I'd put one in front of a video and lay down with the other and, inevitably, just when the first one was almost asleep, the other would come in and start jumping on the bed, playing a kazoo or something! I remember one night in particular, after giving them a soothing bath and going through my whole bedtime "routine", I was laying there, trying to read them a story, and they were literally trying to use my head to climb up on the headboard. I think that's the moment when i realized it just wasn't going to happen.
If my husband couldn't be there, I'd ask somebody to come over and help. If I could just have my attention on one at a time, it all came together relatively easily. Fortunately, I had a pretty wide circle of support.
Sorry...I know you wanted to hear solutions. I just never found any. Eventually it got easier for us, little by little. And I lived to tell about it! But, even now at almost 4yo, bedtime is still a heck of a lot easier when Daddy is here to help. Hang in there, mama!
Amy â Unschooling my twin boys, born April 2006 (12 weeks early at 2 lbs each). Astrology for Parenting -- helping parents attain authentic and respectful relationships with their children and families.