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Wednesday, November 16, 2011


So, as I have written before dada has a second job that keeps him away from our den of chaos on more than one night each week.

Which the kids...alone...for bedtime...several times each week.

Which wasnt a big deal when there was just two. Not at all. Some nights were better than others but it was fine, in fact, I could typically get them to sleep earlier on nights when dada was 7 even!

Not so much anymore. Tonight will be a mama on her own night. As was several nights last week. I find myself mentally preparing for it all day.

With baby to manage, and a baby that needs quiet and calm and isn't in the slightest bit patient, it has turned into one grand juggling act to get the kids into bed and asleep. And mind you, we are not parents that kiss little loves on the cheek and close the door and let them fall asleep, no, for better or worse or whatever, we have always laid with our kids till they doze off, FINALLY, into the land of nod.

So, this is how it goes down.

Dinner finishes up. IN THE BATH IMMEDIATELY. Kids play in tub, mama puts baby in pajamas and into sling and cleans up kitchen and retrieves jams for big kids. Kids out of tub. Mama, with baby still in sling (hopefully, and hopefully asleep, if she isnt this is one big chaotic happening with a baby screaming in Mama's ear) Mama scrubs down children with soap, rinses, then lifts up crazy wet slippery children, towels them off, wrestles them into jams, usually chasing little miss around the house trying to convice her to put on her night time diaper.

Once wrestled into jams Mama brushes hooligans teeth. Sometimes little miss refuses, even after talk of ickies on our teeth that give us owies. Sometimes Mama gives in and lets her run away.
the fuzzy quality of these pics helps to capture the chaos....

This is when brother starts yelling that he can get "medicine" (vitamins) out himself. Mama lets him, under close watch. Little miss "helps" get warm milk in the microwave for each kid. Then we head downstairs.

Inevitably the baby is awake and screaming at this point. And little miss jumps up and down on the big family bed and, if we haven't managed to get jams on yet, little man takes his towel and flaps around the room like a naked wild man. Sometimes they start chasing around now. Throwing pillows and screeching. This is when Mama makes them do time outs on the rocking chair and/or stairs while threatening to take away night time books. Sometimes it works. Sometimes it doesnt.
hello little poochie face!


The darlings pick out books. Mama settles baby. Ah, peace. Then all cuddle together on the big bed while reading...until little miss pokes brother in the eye and accidentally kicks the baby and more threats of no books and then Mama might start reading in a very soft voice which requires calm, which sometimes works...ah peace.

And then little man realizes he forgot his stuffed puppy "Flash" upstairs and convinces little miss to go with him upstairs to retrieve it, along with her stuffed bulldog, named "Bulldog" (their latest favorites). Ten minutes later they come back down with their dogs, after Mama bellows at them to stop playing and come to bed.

And now is when baby starts fussing again, as the lights go off and the kids nestle into their cozy spots, each on one side of Mama. Mama swings baby on her knees while sitting up in bed and/or nurses and/or prays for peace.
can we just go to sleep Ma? Please?

And usually little miss conks right out, although sometimes she gets up and dances around the room and Mama chases her down and chaos ensues. And usually little man talks to himself for awhile and shifts around and slides his cold toes under Mama's legs, but sometimes he just falls right to sleep. And sometimes the baby quiets easily and Mama breathes in a deep breath. And sometimes she gets out of bed, rocking baby in the big chair, or bouncing up and down. And then climbs back into bed waiting for that magical moment when the kidlings breathing deepens and their arms go limp. And sometimes she then heaves herself out of bed - with sleeping baby - to go watch mindless TV while eating Ben and Jerry's straight from the pint. But sometimes Mama lays down with a deep sigh and sleeps too.

And that, folks, is how it goes down.  


  1. You are a hero! I only have to do bedtime on my own once a month for deacon meetings. Chris does it (with the three big kids, not the baby) so I can go to Birth Circle and my homeschooling moms support group. He is also a hero!

    I do wonder--do you all sleep in one bed all night? We sleep with the baby, but couldn't sleep with all of them.

  2. yea, to clarify that. they sleep on either side of me to fall asleep. i get out of bed with baby then when i get back in bed i scooch over little miss, she is then next to me and little man. later dada puts little man in his own bed when he gets home from work. normally at night little miss sleeps in between me and dada. baby always sleeps in her little protected space on my other side between me and the side of the cosleeper...clear as mud right? ;) i should draw a diagram. HA.

  3. You are an amazing mama! I've been contemplating how the multiple children bedtime would work...yikes!

    And I meant to comment on the skin cancer post...yikes again. I'm so glad you caught it early. But no fun at all.


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