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Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Putting the Kiddos to Bed Early - This SO Works for Me!

I decided to jump on board Works for Me Wednesday, so here's mine:

I put my little darlings to bed at 6:30pm, and boy does this work for me! I have the whole evening to spend with hubby, to write, read, watch a movie, or do whatever I please! Plus, having my evenings free keeps me sane. I able to face the next day refreshed. Here's how I trained my kids to go to bed early:

  • I bought "The Baby Whisperer Solves all Your Problems" (um, she really does!)

  • Around four months old, I lay down the law. Babes to bed at 6:30pm, even if they cry.

  • My son was easier to train than my daughter, but I learned to keep at it and be consistent - they will go to bed early if you don't give in. Granted, they will get up around 6:30am, but for me it's worth it! (And no, I am not a morning person, but because I am an evening/night person, I would rather sacrifice sleeping in.)

"But my baby just doesn't seem tired." Trust me, they are, at least if you get them up at 6:30am and only give two-hour naps (not only one two-hour nap, but no more than two hours in length in any given nap.)

You may think I sound cold hearted when I say I let them cry, but I do have a nurturing spirit (hello, I'm a mom too!) And yes, I have gone in to their room and held and rocked them when cry and cry, but I don't give up. Both of my babes were very different when I worked with them. I never thought my little Ella would ever go to bed early, but she did, and today, at almost three years old, she still does. My one year old does too.

One more thing. I do want to enjoy my evenings with my children when they get a little older - I even look forward to it.

If you want to have your kids go to bed early, remember, YOU are the parent and YOU set the rules. Be patient, be consistent, try not to get discouraged (it can take awhile!) and your hard work will pay off.

I'm rooting for you!


Jeni said...

Wow - 6:30. Our goal is 7:30, but that's because Hubby doesn't get home until 6. If 6:30 works for you, then more power to you!! I think a lot of childhood behavior problems begin with exhaustion - so I try to make sure my girlie gets plenty of Zzzzs.

Anonymous said...

We do 7 for our 2 year old and 8 for our 4 year old. It works really well for us. I am a big believer in sleep training also and think it makes a world of difference!!

Llama Momma said...

We also had a 6:30 bedtime when the kiddos were babies. Well, with the twins anyway.

Our current toddler goes to bed at 7:30 with the big boys...keeping the bedtimes the same works well for us!

I loved those early years with the babies asleep early! (I actually started doing the early bedtime because my boys got up at 6 a.m. no matter what time they went to bed. So I started pushing bedtime earlier and earlier and finally settled on 6:30!)

Tara said...

I usually put my 3 1/2 year old down between 6:30 and 7... thats usually just to get him used to the idea that its BED time...lol If he isn't really tired.. I deal with the excuses for the next hour...so usually technically he is asleep by 8 or so lol :)

Hannah a.k.a.Topiary Lady said...

I'm all for kids getting enough sleep! I always did this when my boys were little. Now soccer practice gets in the way!! boo hoo. I truly miss my evenings, but I guess that's life as they grow up. My boys do so well when they sleep enough. Since we homeschool I don't have to wake them up, they get up when they are rested. They often sleep close to 11 hours a night, normally.