I thrive on routine. Set time to leave the house each morning for school run, set time to have dinner on the table by and when my kidlets were little, a set time for a nap each day and feeds. However, this whole routine thing has slipped, a LOT! I try to reign it in and it all falls down in a heap, with one fowl swoop.
For example, the kidlet’s bedtime was getting later and later, they pushed for more time to watch a certain TV show; they fluffed around and fought over brushing their teeth and getting into bed; they spent longer to wind down each night and it just got out of control.
For someone who LOVES the quietness of an all-sleeping-but-me night, this was pushing out my bedtime and pretty soon I was living on a few hours sleep each night. This makes for one very CRANKY Mumma and it showed in all and every aspect of our lives. Not to mention the extreme crankiness of the less-slept kidlets.
So, what did I do? I wanted to throw my arms up in the air and say “I give up! Just do what you want to , I really don’t care anymore”, yep I had got to that point. Instead, I decided to get regimented. There would be a Bedtime Routine and they were going to STICK TO IT!
The idea was a simple one, 7pm and Bubba Boy, the youngest would brush his teeth and settle into bed, followed closely by my daughter, then Junior Perfectionist last. They should all be well and truly settled and have had a generous amount of ‘lights on time’ before I tell them/turn it off for them at 8pm.
And it worked. One person in the bathroom at one time meant no reason to fight, the fluffing around still happened but to a less extent and one or even two of my kidlet’s would even be asleep by the lights out mark! Success!
Albeit a short one .. Every month the 4wd Magazine comes out with a new DVD and Father-In-Law gives it to Hubby, who then brings it home and declares to the kids “I’ve got the new DVD to watch tonight!” Excitement is shown and they all sit down to watch, and watch, and watch… 7pm comes and goes, I remind Hubby of what time it is, by clock time and by what should be happening at this time, but no … routine schmootine!
Okay so it was one night and I did speak to Hubby and explain how important it is for a less cranky Mumma and kidlets that the Bedtime Routine be NON-NEGOTIABLE! And it was for a while, till the next time Daddy wants to excite the kidlets with a night-time viewing, this time with a replay of the last weekends events on home video.
I understand that it is only one night in the whole scheme of things and that some people can do flexible when it comes to routine and bounce back the next day to continue said routine as usual, this household is not like that, not do it one night and very shortly we are back to square one again.
I understand that these kind of things can be very exciting and therefore one may not be able to contain that excitement and wait until a more appropriate time.
I also understand that my Hubby gets home most nights barely within an hour of set ‘wind down’ time and he would like to spend more time with the kidlets.
I am a very understanding person but really, if it works why mess with that?
With kidlets in bed on time, I can get stuff done and settle down earlier myself. I have set myself a deadline each night. By this time I will have put away any laptop or phone and snuggled down to watch half an hour to an hour of TV. I find watching TV sends me to sleep and have often woken up in the wee hours of the morning (or Hubby wakes up) and find my glasses still on. Now that I have set myself a turn off time, most nights within half an hour of ‘settle time’ I flick the TV off, take my glasses off and fall asleep almost instantly. Hooray for small victories and Mumma getting some good sleep!
Another area needed regimentation is General Household Chores. At the moment there isn’t much of a routine. I had set a ‘deadline’ for certain weekly tasks as in by Sunday the clothes should all be washed, folded, ironed and put away but it just wasn’t happening, general household upkeep is my greatest downfall. Each and every morning we find ourselves digging through clothes baskets making a great big mess and I find myself ironing the uniforms for that day. It is a major source of stress and frustration!
This is all my fault. I like having clean pressed clothes, I just hate the process it takes to get them and I really want to do better things with my time! However, if I want things to run smoother of a morning and ease the stress that my
laziness procrastination causes, I really MUST start giving more attention to these things. This is going to be a new key focus in this house with deadlines enforced and new habits to be formed, once again a little visual reminder can help. I had made up these lists a little while ago and they lived on the pantry door. Obviously that did not work, doesn’t help that the door is left open half the time anyways. I reassessed them, tweaked a few things and have relocated them to the fridge, they tend to close that one a little more often! Now I just need to pay attention to these deadlines and get on with IT!
Do you have a set routine when it comes to children’s bedtimes or general household chores?
What works/does not work for you?
So now I am off to tackle Mt Washmore, Mt Foldmore and Mt Iron. Hmmm, that’s a lot of mountain climbing … no wonder I keep putting it off!
Linking up for Week 19 – Routines: