My Girls,  Parenting

Mr. Sandman 911

I was talking about kids’ bedtimes with another mom the other day and she told me her 6-year-old is in bed at 7:45 and lights are out at 8 on school nights.

After I had a disturbing, yet satisfying, fantasy about smacking her, I realized I’ve been drinking my own bedtime Kool Aid. I say the girls’ bedtime is at 8, but really that’s just when they are getting good and hyper tired and Miss A is starting to climb on to furniture and scream Hannah Montana songs and I start asking threatening them to put on their pajamas. Then we usually crawl in bed about 8:15 for a bedtime story and it’s about 8:45 before anyone is asleep. Miss A, especially, is a night owl and has been known to wander out into the hallway well after 9.

Last night hubby and I were determined to get the girls in bed by 8 as Miss C’s been fighting a cold. We have a beautiful classical music CD collection that I listened to while I was pregnant with both girls that Miss A even refers to as the “night nights music.” I started playing the CD pretty early and the girls were in their pajamas by 7:45. Teeth were even brushed before 8. Oh the insanity!

As I read the girls a Beatrix Potter book, The Tailor of Gloucester, hereby known as the longest freaking book in the history of children’s literature with words on every page, such as pippin, that I had to stop and define and couldn’t help but do so in a fake British accent, I noticed Miss C’s breathing was becoming heavier. I tucked Miss A into her bed and told her I’d be back in five minutes  to check on her.

Ten minutes later Miss C called out that she wanted the hubby to come check on her.

Twenty minutes later, after the hubby had checked on Miss C, I peeked in on Miss A. She was awake but in a thumb sucking trance so I snuck down the hallway to Miss C’s room, certain she’d be sound asleep.

“Mommy come lay down with me. I can’t fall asleep,” Miss C begged in her most pitiful voice as I popped my head in her room.

“Miss C I thought you were really, really tired. You need lots of rest so you feel good for Halloween night.”

“I know mommy, but we went to bed too early. I can’t sleep if I’m in bed too early. This is what happens!”

Kids…can’t get them to go to sleep before 8:30 p.m., can’t pump them full of Benadryl.

What time do your kids go to bed and what are their ages? I don’t get Miss C up until about 6:50 in the morning since I don’t take her to school until 7:40, so I supposed I could get her up earlier, but that’s my morning solitude with uninterrupted coffee time and it’s precious people.

I'm Jamie, a 50-year-old Nashville working mom desperately seeking a few moments of Zen and zinfandel. I love to travel, find great deals, and talk with my hands. My husband and I have two daughters, three dogs, one cat and too much laundry. Email me at blondemomblog @ gmail.com.

22 Comments

  • Jennifer

    I have Morgan in bed by 8pm. She is 5. Emily, we had her going to bed at 7pm, but she was waking in the night, and the ped told us to change it to 8pm. She is 2.

    We start the routine at 7:15. PJs, teeth and stories, usually ending by 8pm. Some nights Morgan is fartin around till 8:30-9pm, but usually she is asleep by 8:30.

    I tell her that quiet time is important to help her get to sleep as well. Even when she can’t sleep. Sleep begets sleep. If I wait too late, its murder getting them to bed.

    Morgan gets up by 7:30am, Emily is up anytime after 7am.

    Jennifers last blog post..Longing for another land.

  • mayberry

    Jo is 6.5 and we try to get her to bed between 7:30 and 8. She falls asleep instantly and we usually have to wake her at 7 a.m. so she definitely needs the sleep.

    My little one is 3.5 and in that fun stage of “damned-if-you-do-nap, damned-if-you-don’t.” If he does not nap he will go to sleep 8ish, if he does nap all bets off!

    mayberrys last blog post..The story of a small Singer sewing machine

  • Amy

    My 6 & 11 year olds go to bed by 9 pm, 14 year old by 9:30 pm. They are up by 6:50 am. I keep threatening to change it to 8 pm cause they don’t get up easily (that’s why 14 year old’s is now 9:30) but once the time change takes effect they do start earlier. Of course lately I have been in bed by 9:30 myself. I’m sleepy.

    Amys last blog post..I wish

  • mamatulip

    Julia and Oliver both go to bed at the same time (they’re 5 and 3 respectively), but Julia almost always falls asleep first. Julia wakes up very, very early, every single freakin’ day; she always has been an early riser. She’s usually up by 6; sometimes she is up earlier. For the day. For her, sleeping in consists of her sleeping past 6.30.

    Oliver usually gets up between 4-5am to pee and thinks it’s time to get up. He goes back to sleep, but it’s a light sleep and he usually wakes up when he hears Julia get up. He’d sleep longer if he didn’t hear her, I’m sure of it.

    We begin the going to bed routine at 7; 6.45 if they’re really tired (which they are lots of times). They’re usually in bed, tucked in, stories read, by 7.30. They’re both usually asleep by 8, or shortly thereafter.

    On weekends we’re more laid back…if they’re in bed by 8.30 that’s good, and if we have plans we don’t rush home to get them in bed by a certain time. But on school nights, which is every day for Julia and 2x a week for Oliver (and they both go for a full day), we’re pretty routine with bedtime.

  • themommykelly

    Since our new baby came along I’ve been tough on bedtime. It was previously chaos but has grown managable with time.

    Our eldest is 4 and our second is 2 1/2. We aim for a 7pm bedtime since neither nap, but it IS a challenge. We usually get them to sleep by 8pm. What works best is a good-cop bad-cop routine. I get to be the bad cop which lemme tell ya, comes pretty naturally at the end of a long-alone-with-three-kids-under-four kinda day!

    themommykellys last blog post..Princess Point Of View: Shop Much?

  • DBN

    It is a battle for us. I try to get them in bed and asleep by 8:30, but there are often many tears. Some of the tears are mine.

    Tonight d-girl NEEDED her sleep and I put her to bed at 7, very much against her will. She was asleep by 8 though.

    DBNs last blog post..32 minutes.

  • Meredith

    Andrew (6) in bed by 8, but I do let him read himself to sleep. He wakes at 7 to get to school at 7:45.

    Thank goodness for boys, they are no muss, no fuss in the mornings!

  • Erin

    my parents gave up after I was in like the second grade (it also probably didn’t help that they were getting divorced at the time). But my little sister grew up and went to bed around the same time as your girls when she was their ages. I think that in theory I would like to see my future kids go to bed at around 8 for structure’s sake. 7:30/8pm is the standard for kids 7 and under in our neighborhood, it seems. But I worry that I will probably cave and have bedtimes more like what you have. 9pm doesn’t seem so unreasonable but I know it gets harder the older you get/the more homework they throw on you (I can remember staying up like up to 12 or later for homework in middle school!)

    Erins last blog post..1963

  • Blonde Mom

    Last night Miss C was asleep at 8:30. Yes! Miss A got sick last night from eating almonds so….she was up a bit.

    I’m fine with 8:30 but that’s my cut off. It drives me insane when they are awake on school nights past 8:30. It’s really tough in the summer when it’s light out so long but with the time change coming this weekend I think it will be easier to persuade them to be in their PJs by 8!

  • Heather @ Not a DIY Life

    Ladybug is 17 months old. We start bedtime routine at 7:00-7:15, and usually she’s asleep by 7:45. She is an early bird and gets up anywhere from 6:00-6:30, but sometimes as early as 5 am! She still takes one nap, usually 1-1.5 hrs.

    I think most kids will adjust to a new routine after a few days, so hang in there!

    Heather @ Not a DIY Lifes last blog post..Thankful Thursday

  • Don Mills Diva

    I have felt like a freaking superhero before Graham (who is 3 in two weeks) has been in bed lights out at 8:40…usually it’s at least 9 and sometimes later…

    He doesn’t get up until 7:45 or 8…we are all night owls in our family and hubby works late hours so we often keep him up a little later so he can see his dad.

    Sometimes it just feels like too much though – I have very little time to myself in the evenings.

  • supermommy

    My kids are 4 and 2. The both wake up around 7:00-7:30am. The 2 year old takes a 3-4 hour nap (most of the time) in the afternoon and sometimes the 4 year old will too. They are in bed no later than 8pm. They know that they are to stay in bed once bedtime comes. It’s the same routine that we’ve always had with them so I guess they’re just used to it.

    supermommys last blog post..Trick or Treat!

  • Rhonda

    My kids are 14, 11, and 4. On school nights the oldest is in her room at 9:30 (haha) and lights out at 10:00, the 11 year old is in her room at 9:00 reading until 9:30, and the 4 year old is in bed at 8:00 (ish-because she’s the cutest and youngest and we just like having her around!lol)

    That’s in a perfect world, you understand! It rarely actually happens like this!

    On weekends, pretty much anything goes, but they aren’t to be up later than us. No matter what. (It’s frightening to think about what comes on TV after midnight!)

    Rhondas last blog post..In Memory of Porky

  • Coma Girl

    My daughter is a sleeper (knock on wood!) and is usually in bed by 8, but I have friends whose kids are up until 10 or 11 (which I think is insane, but everyone is different).

    Coma Girls last blog post..L.O.V.E. Them

  • Lisa

    My girls are 4 1/2 and 2. They’re in bed with the whole routine finished by 8 – 8:15. And Goosey has a clock in her room where she’s not allowed to get out of bed until it says “7” in the morning. She still naps too, about an hour and a half in the afternoon. Lulu naps for 2-3 hours. Yes, I’m blessed with good sleepers!

    Lisas last blog post..Stay Little…

  • Why Mom Drinks Rum

    I’m MEAN. Both mine are in bed at 8pm….they can read or whatever as long as they are in there.

    It’s not unusual for them to still be awake come 9-10pm…but they know they are supposed to be in their beds. They are 11 and 9. I relax it a little on some nights – and on weekends they can watch a movie in their rooms so that adds on a couple hours.

    They get up at 7am.

    Why Mom Drinks Rums last blog post..Impromtu Parade

  • Jill

    OK- I’ll admit it. It’s usually after 9 before the little 2yo goes to bed. But he’s IN bed around 8:30. We don’t get home from work/daycare until nearly 6pm, so even with the late bedtime, I have precious few hours with him during the week. And, he’s usually up by 7:00 but I let him sleep as late as 8:00 if he doesn’t wake up on his own.

    Jills last blog post..We Interrupt This Program…

  • Deb - Mom of 3 Girls

    Becca goes to bed anywhere between 7:30 pm and 8:00 – depending on how tired she is. I usually try for closer to 7:30, but with evening activities and such there are times that it’s more like 8pm.

    Abby and Hannah can tell time now, so no more ‘fudging’ bedtime with them… They get pajamas on at 7:15, then have a snack and brush their teeth. Then they’re free to read (in Abby’s room since Hannah shares a room with Becca) until lights out at 8:15. This is working out pretty well at the moment and there’s not much arguing since they can tell for themselves when 8:15 comes. It’s hard to argue with the clock. 😉

  • Amber

    My kids are 6 and 7 and both in school of course. On school nights, we try to have them in bed no later than 8:30. On weekends (Friday and Saturday night), we allow them to stay up later, like 9:30 or 10:00.

    They have to get up for school by 6:10, so we try to get them to bed as early as possible while still getting all things done in the evening.

    Ambers last blog post..Things about me…and a Happy Birthday

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