On school nights, the boys go to bed at 7:30 while on weekends we've upped it to 9. Our oldest has the option of going to bed at 8:00 during the week but he seems to like going to bed with his brothers.
Our routine is as follows:
- Brush teeth and floss. George picked up toothbrushes for them that have lights that let them know when 2 minutes are up. They love them and hopefully we won't have to deal with any cavities in the future.
- Read a bedtime story. Usually it's a 5 minute fairy tale, or a nursery rhyme. Lately we've been getting into chapter books, which they seem to get a kick out of.
- Thumbs up / Thumbs down. Our case worker suggested we spend a few minutes asking the boys to reflect on their day and to give one "thumbs up" moment and one "thumbs down" moment. The idea behind this is to get them to really think about what they did well and alternatively, what they didn't do well. This is absolutely brilliant! You can literally feel the energy in the room change as the boys think. And 9 times out of 10, they'll give an honest answer (for example, a thumbs down was when boy #1 hit boy #2.) Of course, we sometimes get answers like "My thumbs down is that today isn't Christmas."
- We then tuck the boys in, give lots of kisses and say goodnight.
The only problem, and it's not really a huge problem, is that they like to talk when the lights go out. Unfortunately it would sometimes go on for 30 minutes or more. So we came up with a solution. Boy #3 was given a watch for his birthday from Grandma and Grandpa. Before leaving their room, we look at the watch together and say something like "when the big hand is on the 10, you must stop talking." He knows he's in charge of this and we think the responsibility he's been given has made a huge difference because we no longer here them talking!
Now if we could only get them to sleep in past 7 am on weekends.
Do you have any tips or tricks around bedtime? Would love to hear them.