Sleepytime

April 19, 2010

I loved bedtime when I was young. LOVED it. I loved getting a bath, and playing in the warm water. I loved crawling into my big, fluffy footy pajamas (pajama making companies, why do put an age limit on footy pajamas? I would really still dig a pair, even at my age). I loved my parents reading to me, and crawling into my yellow bed with my stuffed animals.

Bedtime rocked.

Of course, as a parent, bedtime does not always seem so serene when your kiddos are overtired, over sugared, over spent. Transitions have been very important to our family, and without them, we never seem to be able to enjoy moments like bedtime with any ease.

When the boys were both infants, we would bathe together in the evening, so quietly they almost fell asleep, and then it was time for their massage, breastfeeding, and bed.

Of course, today some things looks different, but some things remain. Our evenings always follow the same rhythm, which everyone seems to crave. I think that in many ways, it helps Joel and I as much as the boys.


Instead of nursing, the boys now opt for a honeyed GF biscuit, and a cup of herbal Sleepytyme tea.


The quiet and serene baths of their infancy have been replaced with rambunctious deep sea explorations, often requiring goggles and full snorkeling gear


Their massages have stayed almost identical, and they never let me get away with not giving one. Rubbing their back when they are tired, or their tummy when they are not feeling well is the quickest way for me to get them into dream land.


The stories that I once told are now replaced with one child reading to another, as I simply sit and listen.

One thing that has not changed is when the lights have gone off, the prayers have been said, and the kisses given, I am still there to snuggle them to sleep. As I said, some things have changed, but a few I still hold onto.

Happy Monday

{ 27 comments… read them below or add one }

jessica April 19, 2010 at 11:14 am

My night time routine is something I love as well. There is nothing more wonderful than snuggling into bed with a cup of tea and a good book in my world. Yours is full of such sweetness–the perfect time of day!

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Lise April 19, 2010 at 11:59 am

Looks so lovely and cozy! Check out Big Feet pajama company; they have footy pjs for grown-ups! (not affiliated; just found them for a gift one year)

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samthehamsmom April 19, 2010 at 12:14 pm

Oh, I love that they now read to each other~how precious! I am sure there are lots of funny stories! Sam is partial to a back scratch and "don't forget the bunnies Mommy" before bed. P.S. I have seen the footie PJ's for adults at Target, and I am sure they have them other places. Have a great Monday! Laura

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Joy April 19, 2010 at 12:27 pm

Very sweet routine! My olders like to read to my little as well, but they still want me to read to them. We generally read classics or books they might not pick up on their own. I'll be very sad when they don't want me to read to them at night any more! What lucky boys to get a massage every night! :)

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Sarah Jane April 19, 2010 at 1:11 pm

I love that they have bedtime tea. What sweet little guys.

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mamawild April 19, 2010 at 1:18 pm

My children are 8 to teens and bedtime has changed so much for us. One thing that I remember vividly is how it was the tie that binds. No matter how the day went, we could always reconnect over the bedtime routine. There are just certain moments in life when you know that all is well…bedtime is one of those. Thank you for sharing your story. It is nice to be able to recognize universal truth. Have a great week.

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Lynnette April 19, 2010 at 2:53 pm

Grandpa Lop is my favorite by Stephen Cosgrove.

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Valarie April 19, 2010 at 3:07 pm

Bedtime is one of my favorite times as well. What a lovely tradition you have. I love the transitions in our day and they have been so important to keeping calm over here. Beautiful post. Thanks so much for sharing.

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Angie April 19, 2010 at 3:27 pm

I love our nighttime routine as well…it helps ground all of us.
Two thoughts that came in reading this:
-the childhood memory of being lulled to sleep by the sound of pleasant adult conversation, usually tucked upstairs at my grandmother's house, with my cousins.
-the power of massage to open up a child emotionally…my kids will "spill their guts" when they are being loved on like that

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Healing Hillary April 19, 2010 at 3:33 pm

Stretch, yawn…makes me want to snuggle up for a nap. Thanks!

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Childhood Magic April 19, 2010 at 3:47 pm

bed time in my house is sometimes wonderful and sometimes a bit stressful! Oh gosh, I am so inspired to give up the frustration and turn it into bliss like you've shared here.
Thanks!!

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Maeghan April 19, 2010 at 3:58 pm

Sleepytime is the best. I have let Patrick take over the last bottle of night with Henry. They both so look forward to it. If I do it on rare occassion Henry is always looking for daddy.

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Merrie April 19, 2010 at 5:02 pm

If you ever shop at Target, the ones by me usually sell some Nick & Norah brand footie PJ's for grown ups in winter. There are some online companies that sell them, but they are generally really expensive. The Target ones have held up well for my college daughter and I paid less than $30.

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Shivayamama April 19, 2010 at 5:04 pm

Oh I love how many great resources you all have given for adult footie pj's! I never even really realized that they made them. I am off to research :)

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Nina - Tabiboo April 19, 2010 at 11:30 am

That sounds sooooo comforting and relaxing I could nod off myself Heather – though as it is only lunchtime in the UK that will not be happening, not today that is.

Isn't it funny, how so many bedtimes, across the world are similar in their ways, but with their own little touch or twist – it is so heartening.

Have a wonderful, wonderful day,

Nina xxx

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Lindsey April 19, 2010 at 5:32 pm

Would you mind passing on that biscuit recipe? It looks great!

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Jennie April 19, 2010 at 6:25 pm

I second the request for the biscuit recipe. :)

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Julia B April 19, 2010 at 7:43 pm

As you should…this time while they are young is so short. Thanks for this gentle reminder, it helps confirm a litte choice I needed to make for the coming month.

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kerry April 19, 2010 at 8:13 pm

We love bedtime around here too. A healthy bedtime snack is part of our routine as is reading the latest chapter in our read-aloud all together in the big bed. The little one still turns in early and she is nursed and rocked to sleep with lots of cuddles and songs.

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Emmalina April 19, 2010 at 10:07 pm

Inspiring as always, this is wonderful. I think I will try some massage for my guys and a home made massage oil to make it really work. Thanks for the nudge and the lovely, comforting post. I think I'll go off to bed now!

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Adrie April 20, 2010 at 2:23 am

The sweetest ever. And a great reminder to try bedtime massage with my girl – she usually won't let me, but I'm game for another try!

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kyndale April 20, 2010 at 3:15 am

Those are two of the luckiest boys on this planet. You're a great Mama!

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Nicola @ Which Name? April 20, 2010 at 6:35 am

You and I are thinking a lot alike lately, Heather! I just wrote a post (not published, may never be, actually) about sleep. I am reading a lot about it. We are struggling with it. (My being here instead of asleep at 11:34pm is a big part of my problem!)
Your boys are adorable. Have I said that lately?
nicola

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miri April 20, 2010 at 9:10 pm

Would you mind sharing what kind of massage do you practice with your boys? Thank you!

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Shivayamama April 21, 2010 at 12:55 pm

Hi Miri,
We began practicing Infant Massage with the boys when they were just a few days old. The original book that we used was called Infant Massage: A Handbook for loving Parents,http://www.amazon.com/Infant-Massage-Revised-Hand… In the book, there is a section on how to transition into massaging children as they get older, and we have really just followed those recommendations. We do focus a lot of time on the boy's backs, neck, legs and feet. It is great to have these quiet moments to ensure some relaxation, and it is honestly something that they never let me go without. Hope this helps :)

________________________________________

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AG Ambroult April 22, 2010 at 1:22 pm

Sounds like some great rituals. goggles are involved in our bath times, too. And your boys just loos so precious all snuggled up in bed together.

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annie April 23, 2010 at 7:13 pm

Such a sweet post. We too put on the goggles at bathtime. It has the perfect place for us to get comfortable with "swimming".

Annie

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