Sleep Deprivation is NOT Good for a Mom

Okay, ladies. I have a question for you today!

How do you train your kids 
to go to bed earlier?

Daylight Savings is killing me! We have no problem getting the older kids to get to bed but the two youngest ones aren't going to bed until 11pm or later. I get up every morning at 5:45am because I teach early morning seminary. Getting only about five to six hours of sleep at night is taxing. Sometimes I get a short nap in the middle of the day but man-oh-man I'd rather have more sleep at night! You would think after 10 kids I would be a pro (ha!). There are many, many, MANY things I am not a pro at. This is one.

I still can't get my camera to talk to this Mac laptop so you get a sleepy bedtime iPhoto instead!


Button - Everything ElseSo give me your best tips and advice. How do you train a 2 year old and almost 1 year old (in 1 more week!) to go to bed earlier at a more decent time? My husband takes care of the 2 year old and I am in charge of the 1 year old. The two year old shares a room with his older brother and gets out of bed, turns on the light, tries to play with his toys, etc. Not good for the older brother who is trying to go to sleep. Yesterday we tried skipping Ganache's nap so he went to bed at 7pm, then woke back up at 9:30 just as we were headed to bed and because he'd slept for 2 1/2 hours he was ready to play as he'd just had a "nap." Ugh! He finally went to sleep at 11:30pm.


Oh, and I do have a tip to share for Daylight Savings. I change the clock (either ahead or back) in the afternoon on Saturday so everyone (except the babies apparently) get to bed at the time they are supposed to and we don't 'lose' any sleep.  This is particularly helpful for those kids between the ages of 5 and say 8 who know how to tell time and are very rule oriented. Just don't let them see you changing the clocks!





10 comments :

  1. Ours is going well. The youngest of our eight kids are 3, 2, and 8 mos. One parent lays down with the 2yo Mason on his bed in the shared bedroom with big sisters. The other sits on the floor in the boy bedroom with the 8 month old, beside the 3yo's bed. (3 other brothers are in this room too). At 8:30 we start, lights out, booklights for big kids, audio book on in the hall. At 9pm the lights and book stop. By this point the 8 month old and 2 yo are usually asleep (8 month old with a bottle, so he gets trundled off to his crib.) That leaves mommy hanging out on the floor by the 3yo's bed reading a book until he falls asleep, which has been by 9:30pm every day so far. We had to alter naps. The 2yo goes to sleep at 1pm and is woken up by 3pm. I hate waking kids but it's the only way he'll adjust to the bedtime schedule so waking we are. The 3yo may or may not sleep during this time, but it is quiet time for the whole house. This week I actually am encouraging him NOT to sleep, but to look at books quietly. When he does sleep I wake him after 30 minutes or he's up to 11pm or later.

    Good luck!

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  2. Oooh. Even the fall time change -- when we are supposed to gain an hour, only means my babies suddenly are waking consistently an hour earlier on the clock. Sigh. Sigh. I dont know how much is pregnancy and how much is my own fault for being a night owl, but I feel nearly dead with exhaustion lately!

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  3. Oh it's so rough! Sleep schedules are hard! Keep on doing what you're doing. Sometimes there is no magical fix (unfortunately) but just a lot of patience, and repeating the process. We put our kids down at 7pm and for the most part they all go to bed. They don't always fall asleep, but they do know to stay quietly in their beds. For the little ones, when they don't stay in bed, we walk them back to bed without a word and although it takes a few days and a lot of trips back to bed, it does work.Good luck!

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  4. Ugh, we've been dealing with the time change misery too. We've had 2 really bad days this week because we aren't used to the change. I sat up late last night watching a baby video with my baby because he couldn't sleep.
    I think what Tristan said is the best approach- you have to sit right there by them with quiet things like stories until they settle down. Do that for a couple days and make sure everyone gets up at the right time and doesn't nap too late. In 2-4 days I think the change would be complete.
    I need to get a book on CD or something for the kids to listen to so they will hold still and go to sleep. The baby is a whole different story. I'm thinking of trying to do something really stimulating in the evening tonight so my baby will be good and tired at bedtime. He was SO tired this morning but I held off on his nap until the normal time and I hope he'll stay "out" for several hours. ( :
    Good luck!

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  5. I am so sorry to hear you are having problems with this. We have been very lucky about this with our oldest three. In fact, our oldest (now 15) slept so much as a young child, I actually thought something was wrong with him! I had a 5 year old that would sleep 11 to 12 hours at night and still take 2 to 3 hour nap!! I now think that was God's sense of humor at work...."see how wonderful it is to sleep at night? they are all like this, let's have some more" Not the case....the others are/ have been good sleepers with about a week of adjustment at daylight savings time. The youngest, though, is by far the worst. She can put off sleep for hours! I finally just starting letting her sit in bed with books and she eventually puts herself to sleep. Good luck!!!

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  6. I have no idea how people can get their kids to bed at 7 pm with it still being light outside and with church activities at 7 pm like scouts. I feel so accomplished if we are all fed by 7 pm. My 2 year old sleeps in a play pen so when it is bed time that is where she goes. She doesn't climb out so getting her to bed is easy. She usually doesn't cry, but even if she does she is in bed. My older kids are the ones who won't sleep. I wish they made huge play pens :) Well, it is nice to know that I am not the only one with kids up at 11 pm. When we get little Davuts on a regular schedule I am sure it will get easier, but then the sun will be out until after 9 pm.

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  7. The only way bedtime isn't *insert worst word you are willing to say* hard is during the summertime when everyone spends all day in the sun and falls asleep at the dinner table at 6:30. During winter, despite getting dark earlier, the kids just don't use up enough energy to fall asleep as quickly. I don't think there is a fix for this!

    On the other hand, we locked one of our children in at night. That sounds harsh but she would get up at all hours and create mass chaos (like dumping out a dozen eggs on the carpet) AND we were worried she'd escape the house altogether while we slept. We took everything out of her room but the bed and locked her in from 7:30 to 6:30 the next morning. Only thing that saved my sanity while she was two and three.

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  8. I've been a mom for almost 24 years (9 children and the youngest is now 6) and sadly I don't have the whole sleep thing figured out. However, I will say that waking them up early (and not letting them nap too late--but we're totally out of the nap scene now) seems to help the most. We get everyone up at 6:30 for scriptures and that seems to get the internal clock reset. That being said, my 8th child nearly made me crazy when she was about 4 and I could not get her on a good sleeping schedule. The doctor suggested melatonin and that was a huge help.

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  9. Honestly I have a little 3 year old who has struggled with this a lot. I finally decided that moms sanity was worth her playing in her room or reading after our nights routine and falling asleep when she is ready. She likes the control and usually ends up in her bed. Her older sister has just learned to fall asleep with a lamp. Surprisingly she has improved at falling asleep and now most days falls asleep after our routine.

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  10. My children are 8 and 11. When they were younger the trick that helped was putting books in their beds. We started this when they were 6 months old. Nap time or bedtime they would have quiet time looking at books, then they would fall asleep. I do remember having my son in his crib and listening to him scream for 3 nights in a row because he didn't want to go to sleep. After that the book worked well with him. Now bedtime is by 8:00 and it seems like it is after 9:00 or 9:30 before they really go to sleep - they love to read in bed. Good luck with it.

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