It’s week 5 in my process of making life simpler using One Bite at a Time. For this week, I chose “Establish an evening routine.” As with any “routine” it is something that has to be established, so we’ve actually been working on this one for a while.
When I was visiting Mama Train recently, I was quite impressed with the evening routine they have. Every night when the toddlers are jammy-clad, they head to the living room for family Bible Time, songs and a prayer. They’ve done this since their oldest was itty-bitty.
I came home inspired. If 2 year olds could follow a bedtime routine that involved Bible study, so could my girls. In the past, our bedtimes have been a bit hairy. As the kids have been involved in more activities, the bedtime routine gets a little crazy. Add that to the fact that we’re now homeschooling and I don’t make them get up at 6:30 in the morning to get ready for school, and we’ve become a little lax in letting them stay up later and later.
So, I decided to establish our Bedtime routine as such: Showers (they have a schedule they rotate who goes first, second and third), brush teeth, and then we gather as a family to read a Bible story, discuss it, and say a prayer. I have been trying to start the first child in the shower around 8, because it usually takes about an hour to get all three through the process of showers, pjs, etc. For the most part, this has been going well. I like the added time with Daddy, because since he gets home late some nights, the kids go ahead and eat without him, so we miss out on the family meal.
Of course, last night, I told them at 7:30 to start the bathing process, and somehow the entire crew wasn’t ready for bed until 10:00. Mama wasn’t a happy camper. I’m going to blame it on an excess sugar left over from all the candy they had yesterday. Sure, that’s it. I’m not going to give up, though. I’ve been pleased with our evening routine. We also have a rule in our house that once you’ve been tucked in, you’d better be bleeding or throwing up if you’re coming downstairs. It’s nice to have a little quiet time in the evening before retiring to bed ourselves.