Our bedtime routine starts at about 5 o’clock each evening.
By this time I have given in and Angelina and Hugo are watching Cbeebies, I’m in the midst of finalising dinner. Then Max starts chasing me around and “shouting”, more like cockatoo screeching, for me from the pouffe that blocks the passage between the playroom and the kitchen. My littlest wants a quick aperitif.
We have a quick cuddle and my darling little boy has a quick suckle…after which he doesn’t want to be put down.
Dadonthebrink often comes to the rescue at this point, for which I am grateful.
Dinner is a hectic affair- conversion in 3 languages flying around; Max demanding more and more food, then more drink, then spotting the bananas and sweeping everything off the table in front of him. Demanding those.
Angelina and Hugo being asked to get on with eating. Hugo starting to dance in his chair and jumping off as soon as I say “go have wee!. (That’s despite having been asked to go before sitting down.)
Max finishes first all messy the whole dinner menu on him. Mostly Dadonthebrink takes him up for a bath, the Littlins follow as they finish. I clear the table and go upstairs. There’s often squeals and laughter filtering from the bathroom.
After a while Max wants out and the Littlins stay while Dadonthebrink pops up with Max.
It is my quiet time with Max. He has a breastfeed… the amount depends on how much he ate and how much he snuck onto the floor for Joshy. We start of on the left, then I lift him over to my right.
When he’s done I give him his dummy and he flops backwards.
In the meantime we hear snippets of the chaos that reigns downstairs. Giggling, instructions on what to do, arguments, till it quietens there too and we know it is story time.
Max snuggles in my arm, I tell him a lullaby, perhaps hum a tune. As he is falling asleep in my arms, arms occasionally clutching for something, prodding my eyes, mouth or my nostrils. I watch him and listen as his breadth gradually slows. He snuggles in more and becomes heavier. Often he holds my hand. I will sometimes drift off to sleep too, as it’s just so relaxing embracing this wonderful little being.
When Max is deep asleep I put him in his cot in our bedroom. Switch on the monitor and head downstairs giving the Littlins a kiss, tucking them in and telling them I love them on my way.
Bedtime is frantic, yet so peaceful as they all settle to rest ahead of another busy, exciting day. I get a bit of me-time afterwards.
… and then it’s bedtime for us too and a new day awaits.
That’s life! 🙂
…and variations of that play out in most families.
However, sometimes it’s very, very different …. read on