Right now Riggs is 15 months old and Ryker is almost 4 (which he is VERY excited about) We have been following this routine for about 9 months and have loved it. It works well for our family and stage of life.
I have found that consistency is the key. When you have changes (like a new addition to your family) you want a quick fix but it takes time. We found that when Riggs joined our family, and we initially changed our routine, we required a solid 2 weeks before we could see our kids adapting to the schedule. Now the benefits are amazing and our kids thrive off the routine. Trust yourself and find what works best for your family.
5:00pm – Usually Cameron is home or walking in the door. He takes time to play with the boys while I start dinner. When I was super sick the first four months of my pregnancy, Cameron cooked and I would lay and read books with the boys or they would run around in chaos like little wild beasts while I laid down – real life 🙂
5:45pm – We set the table and start eating. Dinner usually takes a little longer since Riggs is experimenting with how to feed himself and Ryker loves to talk with us and gets kind of distracted. We are totally okay with this stage of life and want to establish family dinner time at a young age. We don’t use phones or toys at the table and we all sit till excused.
6:15pm – We finish up eating and the boys go outside to play. Ryker is responsible for putting his dishes in the sink and then he can go outside. It’s so hot during the summer in AZ that we usually are not outside at all and stay inside to play but around this time our backyard is shaded and the boys love to run around. Cameron and I clear the table, load the dishwasher and chat about how each of our days went.
6:30pm – We call the boys inside and start baths. This is their favorite! Sometimes baths remain simple and other times we have bubbles, bath bombs or bath crayons to play with. We keep a handful of bath toys nearby – around 5-10 small toys. Cameron usually does baths while I set out jammies, vacuum or make lunches.
6:45pm – Divide and Conquer! Basically we each take a kid 🙂 We know this will change once baby girl arrives but this has been a great routine for us for the past 9 months.
I usually take Ryker because Riggs still requires more of my attention during the day or Ryker has had school. I still want one-on-one time with Ryker so I do his bedtime. He can get dressed by himself and we talk while he does. I let him pick one book and we read together in bed. He puts the book away, we say prayers, cut out lights and I sing him one song of his choice. I kiss him goodnight and shut his door. Cameron does a similar routine with Riggs but Riggs doesn’t like to cuddle much anymore once he is in jammies and just wants to go to sleep. Fine by us 🙂
7:00pm – Both kids are asleep and for the most part sleep 12 straight hours. Ryker has been waking up a little earlier but he comes in my room and we just cuddle or talk till Riggs wakes up.
I love learning how other moms handle nighttime routines. We did keep this same routine for the most part during the summer and while we were gone for a month. Consistency y’all, I swear by it. I am interested to see how things adapt with three kiddos. Any recommendations for me?