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Do you have a bedtime routine?

  • We keep a strict schedule- DC goes to bed the same time each night

    Votes: 2 9.5%
  • We have a strict routine, but no timeframe and DC goes to bed the same time each night

    Votes: 7 33.3%
  • We have strict routine, but DC goes to bed at various times

    Votes: 2 9.5%
  • No routine- we fly by the seat of DC's pants!

    Votes: 8 38.1%
  • Other- please explain!

    Votes: 2 9.5%
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Please answer the poll above-<br>
I'm going on a year of sleep deprivation now and I think it's starting to wear on me. DS is 13 months old, he usually goes to sleep when he wants to and that's no big deal- UNLESS- it's 11 p.m., or later, and I have to get up at 5 a.m.<br>
We don't currently have a routine (other than his getting a bottle and falling asleep on my chest in the living room) and I wonder if having one would help. I don't really want to give him a bath everynight, I worry about drying his skin out (or maybe I should be giving him a bath every night???) But I'm willing to try it if it'll help.<br>
We read to him all the time, but I don't really read the same book each night, and I don't always read one at bedtime, cause bedtime varies and sometimes he surprises me by crashing much earlier than I thought he would. There goes the story and any chance of a bath.<br>
Help me, I'm totally clueless here on bedtime routines. Are they really a help?<br>
TIA!<br>
Marcy<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/sleeping.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="sleeping">
 

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I picked choice two, that we have a routine but not a strict timeframe. My DS is 10 months old. Anywhere from 7-7:30 he starts fussing and getting clingy. That is the sign for bathtime. He takes a nice long bath and plays in the water. This is daddy time at our house. SInce my dh doesn't put ds to sleep, he is always responsible for bathtime. I relax or finish up a few things around the house.<br><br>
After bath it's jammies and nursing/snuggling until he falls asleep, usually 20-45 min. By the time he's getting jammies on he is usually losing it, crying and wanting to nurse/sleep. I have found that a bath everynight really gives ds a signal that bedtime is coming and he knows what is next. On the rare occasion he is not acting tired after bath, we read to him in our bed before he nurses, the main thing is that we are calm and snuggly. At 13 months, a big event like a bath might really give your DS a signal that soon it will be bedtime.<br><br>
I have found that a little predictability at bedtime has really helped my outlook as well, I thing it would be even more important if I was working out of the home right now.
 

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Voted for the third choice.<br><br>
Both of my dd's thrive on the routine, which has always been the same simple routine.<br><br>
Bedtime snack<br>
Wash Up/Sometimes Bath<br>
PJ's<br>
Stories<br>
Nursing (for younger dd)/Lights Out<br>
Mom snuggles to sleep, sometimes telling make up stories or drawing pics on older dd's back.<br><br>
That is our <i>strict</i> routine.<br><br>
Now the various times part is child led to some extent. I do not let them run around till they drop sort of thing but if they had late naps or no naps then the bedtime routine gets bumped later or earlier as they need.<br><br>
I know from experience that this is by far the best for my dd's.<br><br>
Dd1 will sometimes fall asleep in the car but if she wakes up not long after and finds herself in bed I can guarantee that she will be up asking for generally the whole routine and more often than not she holds me to it (except the washing up part of course!<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/rolleyes.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="rolleyes">: ) She will barely have her eyes open and will say "But where is my snack, I didn't have my bedtime snack!" Then she will go on to realize that "I dont sleep in these clothes, I need my night gown!" etc. So I try to stay away from that situation as much as possible, kwim, starting a bedtime routine at 11pm really isn't for me. Also, when she was a baby to toddler I always sang her lullabies to sleep, same order every night and nap time, as she grew older say by 15 months as soon as I would start singing the lullabies she would automatically lay her head down on my shoulder and go to sleep, this worked till she was just over 2 at which point she knew the gig would put her to sleep and would tell me to stop singing! LOL, unless she honestly didn't like my voice!<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/yikes.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="EEK!"><br><br>
Also, if Dd2 falls asleep in the car or something she invariably sleeps poorly. She isn't a great sleeper to begin with so I try to avoid that at all costs as well! This was a hard lesson learned...Just this summer we got a car, after not having one for about 5yrs. and dh and I were YES, drive around till the kids fall asleep, woo hoo. Didn't quite work out for us, in fact I believe that babies falling asleep in cars is nothing short of urban legend! But the rare instances they did fall asleep we ended up paying for it throughout the night.<br><br>
Soooooooooo, wether my dc depend on routine due to us inforcing it or it being a natural part of thier personality I will never know but I do know that it works for us. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/thumb.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="thumbs up">
 

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I voted other because what we do before bed, doesn't seem to count as routine. btw, I have 3 kiddos-a 5 yr old, 4 yr old and 9 mo old. So, minimal routine and standard bedtime. I think it helps kids to have cues for knowing what comes next, but it doesn't have to be a super involved routine.<br><br>
The other mommas have some great info!!!!<br><br>
Note: I've always been an early to bed person. 9pm seemed late to me.<br><br>
Our 'routine', since #1 - wash face, brush teeth, go to bed (nurse to sleep or nurse to sleepiness and rock some, then bed) as soon as babe shows signs of sleepiness, which has been usually around 8pm. yes, I go to bed with them (I worked outside the home and pumped for #1 and #2, now am at home but still do the same things, although I do sometimes get up after getting ds to sleep.)<br><br>
I never even changed clothes for the babes until they were around 2 years old and enjoyed pajamas. Up to that point, I tried to keep them in 'sleepable' clothes all day. And we always read and do music, but earlier in the evening. And bathing is about once a week.<br><br>
It never made sense to me to do things to/with my babe that I never did when they were in utero. It seems like some books suggest these elaborate routines that can last an hour or so!!!! If I started all that stuff when my baby showed signs of being tired, by the time I was done, they'd be ready for playing again!<br>
(My experience has been, that if I wait after babe shows signs of needing to sleep, that we're in for a long battle and late bedtime.)<br><br>
My theory is that babies are all different but are all used to what *we* did when pregnant. If you want to add a routine, make it simple - maybe one short book (and yes it needs to be the same book night after night, babies love repetition.) or one special song. don't get into an elaborate production that will stress both of you out. and you might try it at the most common time at which he gets sleepy, say around 8pm. do the same things at the same time, sometimes he might go right to sleep and other times not.<br><br>
almost forgot, I've sung the ABC song (yes, the one to Twinkle Twinkle Little Star) to all my babies for sleeping, while nursing or rocking. It's silly, but works (besides, I can't remember any real nursery songs.)<br><br>
Good luck!
 

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i have a 2 year old. we have had the same bedtime routine since he was about 4 months? he doesn't get a bath every night, maybe every other night, but that's not a big part of our routine.<br><br>
here's what we do:<br><br>
1. diaper change and jammies<br>
2. brush teeth<br>
3. read the same 2 books we've read every night<br>
4. nurse<br>
5. say 'good night, my sweet boy'.. same words, every night<br>
6. cuddles with daddy, then off to sleep
 

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I voted other. We have a flexible routine that occurs at approximately the same time each night, but we always adjust as need be.<br><br>
Routine generally starts with some play in a dim room with quiet music, followed by a bath (which takes place in the sink in the same dim room), upstairs for diaper and jammies maybe a book or 2 a little bit of gentle play then into bed for nursing, with some quiet classical music playing. DD generally nurses then for 10-30 minutes and is out. The process begins anywhere from 6:30-8 but ends no later than 9. (DD is 10 months old)<br><br>
Be
 
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