Sleeping kids are the cutest. And knowing that your kids will suddenly transform into the cutest, quietest, most-asleep kids ever means that the bedtime routine is the signal that any parents’ day is about to get even better. But that’s parenting 101, right? In any case, let’s talk about 3 reasons why (or how!) your kids love bedtime, too.
Reasons why your kids love a bedtime routine
My youngest boy, every night, will scream “BUT I DON’T WANT TO GO TO BED!!!” while I’m in the middle of kissing him goodnight. Basically, at this point, any future hearing loss I’m going to have is his fault. But even while he’s screaming about not wanting to go to bed, he loves the bedtime rituals we’ve got in place. And there are several main reasons for it.
1. Kids love your attention, and they get a LOT of it at bedtime.
My kids never get enough attention – or so it seems. It doesn’t matter how long we spend together – they always want more time together. And you know what? It’s super cute – even if sometimes it does grate my patience down to a tiny little nub of nothingness. But my kids love their bedtime routine because it means they’ve got my undivided, complete attention for a few minutes each day.
Now, our kids all share rooms, so we’re usually putting two kids to bed at once. But that means my husband is spending time with one while I’m with the other. Then, we switch.
So is it any wonder that my 3-year-old boy doesn’t want to go to bed? Um, not really. He wants to keep telling me about every detail of his day. And that’s kind of amazing – because when he’s a teenager, I hope that continues.
2. Bedtime means something special
Every family’s bedtime routine is different. Some bedtimes include reading a story – or singing a song. Ours means family time, complete with a family prayer, and spending a few more minutes altogether. My little girl adores her brothers – so she eats it up when they dutifully line up to give her a hug goodnight. Then they get excited, and all four of our kids end up hug-wrestling.
It’s cute to watch. And, it’s something special.
Now, your bedtime specialty may be completely different. And that’s just fine! What makes bedtime special may evolve as your kids get older – or as you have more children. That’s also completely normal. The point is, make bedtime special. And special doesn’t have to equal complicated – in fact, I’d recommend you keep it simple.
Now, if you don’t have that something special yet, don’t stress. You’ll get there. And if you need some bedtime pointers, make sure you get my free Ultimate Bedtime Checklist!
3. They love reviewing their day – and planning for tomorrow
Finally, my kids love that, at the end of each day, we talk about what happened. It’s equal parts preparing them to write in a journal (once they learn to write!) and teaching them to recognize and be grateful for the tender mercies of the Lord each day.
Then, we talk about what they can expect the next day. That way, they’ve got a reason to be excited to go to sleep – because when they wake up, they know what we’re going to do! Or, at least they know what the plan is! With four small kids, sometimes plans change. Or they get sick and throw a wrench in everything. But at least our kids know what the plan is – and they’re learning that sometimes we have to adjust our plans.
But… talking about the next day is the single best way to get my preschooler to stop yelling in my ear about how he doesn’t want to go to bed. Of course, then he’s yelling, “HOW MANY MINUTES UNTIL IT’S MORNING???” *sigh* One thing at a time, right?
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