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What's your evening routine look like?

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#1 discomonkey

Posted 13 November 2012 - 05:17 PM

I have a (just) two year old who is pretty demanding and a baby who is 7 weeks old - so just starting to get into a bit of a routine. My DH is magnicently helpful and is home for bath, dinner and stories pretty much every night. But he is about to get back into going away for work for short trips here and there. He tends to take care of our toddler and I take care of the baby. At the moment it looks a bit like this:


5.30 dinner then bath

6.30 15 minutes of TV

6.45 bed and three stories and a few songs

7.15 - 8ish - call out for more water/more stories/more songs and get put back to bed several times. We are working on this but it's still a work in progress. rolleyes.gif


5pm feed

5.30 bath

6pm feed and put to bed (this generally takes about an hour but can be longer). Baby has reflux and we are waiting for the Losec to kick in so hoping things will be a bit calmer by the time he goes away in a week or so.

As you can see, the routines don't marry up at all so I need to work out a way to streamline this for when DH is away. I'm a bit overwhelmed by the prospect but I know it can be done and that very capable women are out there doing it every day! Would love some tips and advice from these women please.


#2 belindarama

Posted 13 November 2012 - 05:50 PM

I had to do it alone every night as DH is never home before bedtime.

It is manageable.

Can you move toddler's dinner forward so he can eat while you feed the baby? I put DS1's little table and chairs in front of the couch and he ate there facing me. I would chat to him while I sat on the couch feeding.

Then I would get him or her to help me bath the baby when food is done. Then I would move the tv part forward to coincide with settling the baby.

Once baby is settled you are free to focus on the toddler, play a game, bath, stories, bed. If you are worried about the earlier dinner time I would give some fruit or another round of food at this point as well.

#3 Nobody Cool

Posted 13 November 2012 - 06:02 PM

I have a 2.75 year old and a 6 month old and I have started to do baths in the afternoon rather than as part of the evening routine. Makes things so much easier.

Edited by Shady Lane, 13 November 2012 - 06:03 PM.

#4 SeaPrincess

Posted 13 November 2012 - 06:08 PM

When the boys were little, I used to feed them at the same time (5-ish) and bath them together afterwards as well.  I would take their pj's into the bathroom so I was right there, wash the children, dress DS2 first, then DS1.  I would read to DS1 while I BF DS2, then put them together at roughly the same time as well.  If anything, DS1 used to go to bed first.


#5 winkywonkeydonkey

Posted 13 November 2012 - 06:09 PM

I always found it easier to get toddler to bed first so i could cuddle baby to sleep for however long needed.

I would also try less stimulation for your 2 year old, no tv after bath and less stories and songs. he may be getting hyped up. well my Ds does if we drag out stories.
also what time is his nap because if you cut that out or limit it he may go to bed earlier which would be great!

What about
6:00- baths
6:15 ish story time, one story and one song and a cuddle
6:30- bedtime for toddler.
6:30-  feed time and bedtime for baby? ( would usually take me up to an hour breastfeeding at that age)

thats just how it worked in my house not sure if that is useful for you.

Edited by winkywonkeydonkey, 13 November 2012 - 06:12 PM.

#6 Cath42

Posted 13 November 2012 - 06:20 PM

I don't know if this will help:

I had my third and fourth children 16 months apart. At the time, I also had a 9-year-old and a 5-year-old and my partner was very lazy at home (we separated when the youngest was 12 months old). What I did was to put my third into the same routine as the older kids from day one, and then the fourth into the same routine from day one. So I would bath them one straight after the other, feed them at the same time and put them to bed at the same time. As soon as the baby was old enough to go into the bath with his brother at about 8 months, I bathed them together. Mind you, I never did stories or songs because I was too busy with multiple children. I actually tend to read to the younger kids on weekends because I have the time then.

I'm definitely someone who has found it easier to just impose a routine on the kids that enables me to get things done, and the kids adapted quite easily. My third did have terrible reflux, so I feel for you there! I can promise you it gets easier with time. Once your baby is about 6 months old it will be a lot easier. In the meantime, no kid ever died from eating a sandwich for dinner in front of the TV once in a while.  hhugs.gif

#7 Suz01

Posted 13 November 2012 - 07:19 PM

A different theory... could you either skip the daily baths for your 7wk old, or move bath time for the baby to the morning?

#8 discomonkey

Posted 14 November 2012 - 06:12 PM

Thanks everyone for your ideas and kind words. I think bringing the toddler's bedtime forward is a great idea, and giving him dinner while I feed the baby. I think the idea of it is probably more overwhelming than the actual practice but it helps to go in with some sort of plan.

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