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If you have kids you know how hard getting them ready for bed can be. I used to dread bedtime because I knew it meant lots of arguing, tears and trips back up stairs to get water or tuck them in or listen to a story or whatever else came to their mind so they didn’t have to go to sleep. But that all changed a few months ago. Thanks to GoodNites Bedtime Pants and a fun routine that is all kid-ran bedtime is now a breeze and something I (and my boys too) look forward to.
I’ve found that keeping to the same routine every night has given my boys a sense of comfort and reliability. I’ve always been a big fan of routine during the day; I’m not sure why it took me so long to figure out at night it was important too. The most important thing that we’ve found with our bedtime routine running smoothly and having everyone fall asleep happy (and fast) is letting my boys make all the decisions. Let me show you what I mean.
Step 1- Get Dressed For Bed. I’ve learned after having two boys that they like making their own decisions. Part of the problem we were having at bedtime was the fight over pajamas. One night they want ninja turtles, the next night its firetrucks, the next night who knows what. Before I was just picking out whatever was at the top of the drawer and putting it on and nine times out of ten they didn’t want that. The first change we made to our bedtime routine was to put their pajamas in their nightstand drawer and let them pick what they wanted to wear to bed each night. We’re also diaper free now (YAY!!!) but still have some night time accidents. So we put GoodNites Bedtime Pants and TruFit Underwear in the drawer for them to pick too.
I had never thought of letting them pick out their own bedtime undies until I was at Walmart a few months back picking up diapers and a few other things and my youngest saw the Iron Man GoodNites Bedtime Pants. He loves Avengers and we were having a tough time with potty training so I thought anything that would get him excited about it would help. They actually feel like underwear (according to him) and are more absorbent compared to the other brand we were using. Big brother got some new night time undies too with the GoodNites TruFit Underwear. These look just like real undies so he doesn’t feel like he’s wearing a diaper at all and the disposable pads make washing and clean up a breeze.
About an hour or two before bedtime we (the whole family) don’t drink anything. Of course we hear “I’m thirsty.” right before bedtime and we let them have a little sip of water but we’ve found that if we stop drinking long before bedtime it really cuts down on bedwetting. Also, making sure we go right before bed makes a big difference.
Step 2- Brush Teeth. The fun of tooth brushing begins at the store for us. Three or four times a year we make a special trip to the store so they can pick out their very own toothbrush. It may sound silly but when it’s something they picked out on their own they are much more willing and excited about brushing their teeth. At bedtime we all go into the bathroom, they get out their toothbrushes, get them wet, then mom or dad puts toothpaste on the brushes and they brush their teeth. We stay in the bathroom with them and help them at the end to make sure they got everything cleaned well. They then rinse their brushes off (with a little help from mom) and rinse.
Step 3- Sing A Song. I never thought of singing as a good cool down activity but it has made a huge difference at bedtime. We let the boys each pick a song (it’s usually ABC’s or Twinkle Twinkle) and we clap and sing together. What this does, I think, is helps them get all their wiggles and giggles out of the way. It’s fun to sit with mom and dad and sing and clap and giggle and we give them time to do that. Then, when it’s finally time to go to sleep they aren’t worried about having fun anymore. They got all their play out and it’s time to just sleep.
Step 4- Read a Book. We had always read books at night and a lot of times it was a struggle to get the kids to sit still during story time. So again, we let them take the reigns here. They pick the books they want to read (one each) and they read to us. Are they reading all the words right? No, but that’s OK. Story time is for them not us and it’s a great way to help their imagination grow. It’s also another great way to get all the wiggles out and to help their mind be ready for bed.
After story time they put their books away and hop right into bed. We give hugs and kisses and head back downstairs (or sometimes straight to bed ourselves if it’s been a long day) for a little quiet time. We’ve been doing this same routine for about three months now and almost every single night they are asleep within five minutes. Occasionally they talk to each other a little bit before bed but the 15 bazillion trips back up stairs at night has ended. Giving my boys control of their bedtime routine has really helped make night time more relaxing and fun around here. And it’s cut down on the number of accidents we have at night too!
Do your kids have a tough time falling asleep or staying asleep? Is bedwetting a regular occurrence? Head on over to Walmart.com and print your $2 Off GoodNites Coupon while supplies last and give GoodNites a try! If you don’t see it keep checking back; sometimes they run out and more have to be added. And for more info on bedwetting and ways you can prevent it click here.