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Bedtime rituals...


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#1 megkc03

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Posted 28 February 2012 - 10:42 PM


DH and I rotate putting the kids to bed. Every other night. It works fairly well. When dh puts them to bed, there does tend to be more meltdowns... <_<

In any case.... when we say, "Ok kids, time for bed" they go crazy wanting a drink. I don't see a big deal with it...go to the bathroom, have a small cup of ______, brush teeth, bed. When they say they want a drink, dh instantly gets upset and says NO! And he is adamant about it. They have water bottles upstairs, he said they can have them. All they want is a small sip of milk.

So, all three melted down, screaming, crying for a good five minutes. I told them daddy was putting them to bed, his rules. I don't see it as a stalling tactic like he does. Shoot. I grab a large glass of milk before bed myself!

I'm thinking the compromise is having a set bedtime, a set drink/snack before bed time. Or, I do it on my nights and he doesn't.

I just don't see the big deal of a little sip of milk before bed-it really is a small sip. I bought 1000 2 oz cups from Costco lol. I also don't see it as a battle worth fighting. LOL!
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#2 cheezewhiz24

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Posted 28 February 2012 - 10:52 PM

Meg, I'm siding with your DH on this one. I don't think a drink of milk before bed is necessary- if it's a sip it's not really filling them up and they do have liquid available in bed. If its a whole glass why not make it apart of snack time? :tomato:
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#3 ddancerd1

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Posted 28 February 2012 - 11:16 PM

though the "sip" of milk might seem pointless, i think it's really just a part of their bedtime habits... it's a habit for the kids to take that sip, and to change up bedtime routine (no matter how little you change it), well, that could upset any kid. so i say either you guys both agree to keep routine the same every night, or maybe explain to them that when daddy puts them to sleep, he may not allow any "sips" of drinks, and when he puts them to sleep, he's the boss, we have to follow his rules, etc etc... hope i helped in some way!
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#4 megkc03

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Posted 28 February 2012 - 11:26 PM

No tomatoes. No worries! Lol! They don't even have a snack before bed. Or, ever really. Lol. I'm lucky I can remember three meals let alone snacks! Ha!

Like Dannielle, I think it's part of the routine. Ever since they were little, they would wake up and get a sippy of milk and a bowl of dry cereal. Well, dh is sick of doing that and says no-no more. Wait until breakfast. The problem with that is-there is no set time for breakfast. We have no place to go in the morning. So breakfast can be at 7:30 am, or it could be at 9:30 am!

I think he just doesn't want to be bothered with it. I say it's a long time to go from 6p-9a before they eat anything. They are growing kids! I watch an infant three days a week, so I'm usually running around last minute cleaning up, etc. Breakfast those days are around 9 when she is dropped off.

I definitely think we need to get on the same page-whatever it is. I don't think the drink is necessary. Now that I think about it, if I put them to bed and don't feel like getting three cups of milk, etc etc, telling them they have water in their rooms-works. I think they may be playing mommy! Lol!

And I really think we need some "schedule." Maybe them starting school will help that.
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#5 danibell

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Posted 29 February 2012 - 12:01 AM

I kinda agree with your hubby Meaghan. When I say "It's bedtime" my kids know they can get a sip of water from the bathroom, but nothing else. The kitchen is officially off limits. Because they totally use it as a stall tactic ;)

However, I think a compromise of yours and dh's bedtime routine would definitely help. Kids thrive on routine. They love knowing exactly what's coming next. That's not to say that spontaneity doesn't work either, but for something like bedtime, a routine is comforting and helps to calm them down and get them into the "bed time" frame of mind faster. That's about our only real routine we've had since all the kids have been born, and I have 4 fantastic sleepers ;) The rest of the day is pretty much up for grabs most of the time!

Try seeing if you and dh can come to an agreement on how to handle bedtime issues. Make a chart for the kids to follow (I'm going to do this with my two oldest kids, trying to cut down on some of the dawdling they do at bedtime). See if that might help some of the meltdowns when daddy is on duty ;)
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#6 cheezewhiz24

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Posted 29 February 2012 - 12:34 AM

Yes, 6-9 is a long time to go between meals- I'd add in a snack to their bedtime routine like at 7:15 or conversely, commit to an am schedule where they wake up, get dressed and eat breakfast around the same time each day. I'm surprised they don't beg to eat in the am- mine go from 7:30p snack to 8:30a breakfast and whine when they get up at 8 to eat. (I'd feed them at wake up but Orion's acid meds need 1/2 hour to really be effective). I'm actually moving them to getting up at 7:30a so they can eat 1/2 an hour earlier.
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#7 mama23boys

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Posted 29 February 2012 - 06:15 AM

How about giving them a small snack and a cup of milk 15 or so minutes before bedtime and telling them that they get a snack and a small drink and in a few minutes it will be bedtime? That might start a new routine and everyone can maybe be happy. :)
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#8 Happy June

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Posted 29 February 2012 - 07:25 AM

I just wanted to add that DH and I have similar but not identical naptime and bedtime routines with the children. We use a similar framework, e.g. at bedtime we both read to them and do prayers, but DH will do something energetic right before bedtime (not my cup of tea, but I do not have to calm them down) whereas I will also sing to them once the lights are out. Our children know what to expect on mom bedtime days and what to expect on dad bedtime days and have do not ask for things the other parent usually does. We have quite a few situations where we have dad's way and mom's way of doing things, and they know it is no use appealing to the other parent for support.

For us, this works really well, but if it is confusing or upsetting your children I agree with trying to find a compromise on the routine. I like Jori's suggestion for that.
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#9 Fran27

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Posted 29 February 2012 - 08:22 AM

Your dh can't have it both ways... can't stop the pre bedtime milk cup and the milk/dry cereal in the morning. My kids eat as soon as they get up too. I think it's pretty normal at this age. Personally I'd fight that more than a cup of milk before bed... or insist to have a set breakfast time (frankly here the kids' breakfast is pretty much dry cereal and some drinkable yogurt anyway).
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#10 mama_dragon

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Posted 29 February 2012 - 10:02 AM

My boys get a sippy of milk with their nighttime story. It is a part of their nighttime routine and it doesn't matter who puts them to bed. After they put on their jammies, they get milk with their two stories, brush teeth, lights out and we sing them two songs. Since we have had so many bedtime issues with one of the boys we both keep the exact same bedtime routine. I like the idea of starting a snack/milk time about 15 minutes before bedtime is announced.

I would be very insistant about the breakfast first thing in the morning. Or have a set breakfast time shortly after they get up. It doesn't have to be a huge breakfast. Dry cereal, banana, milk.
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#11 beendbee

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Posted 29 February 2012 - 05:40 PM

How about giving them a small snack and a cup of milk 15 or so minutes before bedtime and telling them that they get a snack and a small drink and in a few minutes it will be bedtime? That might start a new routine and everyone can maybe be happy. :)


That is what we do. 7pm milk and some Cheerios or goldfish. Bedtime is 7:30pm.
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#12 itsnancycozzi

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Posted 29 February 2012 - 08:34 PM

Meaghan, I can tell you the way I put my kids down for bed is different then the way my DH does. Whatever happens when he does it, is for him to handle. I don't intervene.
We do milk either with dinner or after dinner, if the kids want a sip of something right before bed, they are allowed a little cup of water.
Since your kids are expecting the you to do what Daddy does and Daddy to do what you do, I would definitely try to get on the same page with him and make bedtime consistent between the both of you. It would be less heartache and headache for everyone involved.
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#13 megkc03

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Posted 29 February 2012 - 08:41 PM

Thanks Ladies! I put them to bed tonight, so there were no issues. LOL! That said...I did have a snack at 7 for them-a banana. I wanted them to split it, but they all wanted to eat them like monkeys :laughing: so that didn't work. LOL! And two out of the three only ate half of the banana. :aggressive: So then I said, "Bedtime!" to which Nicholas replied, "but I'm still hungry." :aggressive:

In any case, I didn't give into it. He has me perplexed, but that's for another post. LOL! They all got a sip of milk to drink, and then proceed to drink water when they get upstairs. So daddy will have his rituals and I will have mine. I would like to keep a healthy snack in the mix about an hour before bed. I think that will definitely help the hunger pangs.
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#14 mommylaura

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Posted 01 March 2012 - 09:16 AM

I think it's all about the ritual - kids love rituals, especially at bedtime. I work with sleep disordered kids where we have the caregivers write out the bed time routine so any caregiver can follow it.

If it makes you feel any better, my DH and I have arguments like this too. A recent example is that when my girl twin wakes up in the middle of the night, I go in her room, turn on their lullaby cd, cover her with a blanket, and kiss my boy twin on the way out. The other night DH did this the other night and didn't do the music or the kiss and it was WWIII in our house. The kids freaked out, I got mad at him for not doing the music and kiss, he got mad at me for coddling them so much...sigh...nothing like a little 4am excitement to get you off to a great start to the day.
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#15 KCMichigan

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Posted 01 March 2012 - 02:41 PM

I kinda agree with your hubby Meaghan. When I say "It's bedtime" my kids know they can get a sip of water from the bathroom, but nothing else. The kitchen is officially off limits. Because they totally use it as a stall tactic ;)

However, I think a compromise of yours and dh's bedtime routine would definitely help. Kids thrive on routine. They love knowing exactly what's coming next. That's not to say that spontaneity doesn't work either, but for something like bedtime, a routine is comforting and helps to calm them down and get them into the "bed time" frame of mind faster. That's about our only real routine we've had since all the kids have been born, and I have 4 fantastic sleepers ;) The rest of the day is pretty much up for grabs most of the time!



Yup, I agree here.

We have a routine.

I would not do a sip of milk either and slowly get rid of it from the routine. #1 if it is after brushing teeth, that is a lot of sugar to sit over night on baby teeth! Plus, a sip is not going to take care of hungry. If they have water in bed, that should be good.

Mine do not do a snack either, but we eat at 5:30 and they are in bed at 7:30 so really it is a short while. After dinner, our kitchen is closed to under 18 set! lol. I dont eat after dinner, but DH does.


DH and I do bedtime together or if he is working I do it alone. We have the same rules, routine, time frame ,and consequeces. DDs are good sleepers, DD1 is a great sleeper. DD2 hates to go to sleep- but she knows it is going to happen, happen a certain way,and so - be-it! LOL.
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#16 vtlakey

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Posted 01 March 2012 - 09:48 PM

They all got a sip of milk to drink, and then proceed to drink water when they get upstairs. So daddy will have his rituals and I will have mine. I would like to keep a healthy snack in the mix about an hour before bed. I think that will definitely help the hunger pangs.


I always offer our boys some kind of healthy snack at 7pm while they watch some cartoons in their toddler chairs in the living room. If we have fresh fruit then I push that, but if not then its something like cheerios, mandarin orange wedges, raisins, or goldfish. Basically anything that doesn't make a huge mess because I don't feel like putting them in booster seats at the table that late in the evening, LOL. But we don't usually give them any milk after dinner, unless they ask/whine for some while eating a snack. But after we brush teeth around 7:20pm we don't budge and never give them anymore snacks or milk, just water. Though they seem pretty content just drinking water most of the time after dinner, and we leave a sippy of water in their cribs in case they get thirsty at night. We go back to their bedroom around 7:30pm and read/play/snuggle before bed at 8pm. Our boys also always ask for a slice of raisin bread first thing every morning at 7am. I don't know if its because they are truly hungry or if its just a habit, but its another non-messy snack that quiets them up while we get ready for work so I don't mind :) And that morning snack usually holds them off until they get to daycare where they have their real breakfast at 8:30am. They would never make it that long without some kind of snack!
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#17 seamusnicholas

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Posted 01 March 2012 - 10:27 PM

Around 4 bedtime became a nightmare. If we allowed something one day, they would want it the next of course. I would suggest having the same very simple rules.

"Ok kids, time for bed" they go crazy wanting a drink. I don't see a big deal with it...go to the bathroom, have a small cup of ______, brush teeth, bed.


Bedtime is always tricky and I think eliminating 'extra' steps in the process is good! So I would do the above, minus the small cup of milk. The water is in the bathroom. They are already in the bathroom brushing teeth and going to the bathroom. No reason to leave the bathroom which is part of their bedtime routine to go out (or even be brought) milk.

I think if you guys do things differently, that is going to cause trouble for one of you (most likely dh)...he will be the bad guy and they will give him a hard time and then they will be out of sleep mode and take longer to go to sleep because now they are upset.

Our breakfast times varied like yours because we had no where to go. If I knew they would be eating a later breakfast, I always gave them dry cereal and juice. Actually dh would give that to them before he left for work if I was still sleeping. (those were the days when they could be up alone watching morning tv with dry cereal and juice when I got an extra 30 min of sleep!...not now with baby...Im up at 6!)
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#18 Christel

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Posted 05 March 2012 - 09:58 AM

My solution is that dh always does bedtime. :good: That way there is never inconsistencies. Then again, my idea of a bedtime routine is saying "10 minutes til bed," and then, "time for bed"
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