Bedtime Traditions


I’d love to say that after the kids have finished all their organic, home made vegetables and protein for supper, had a lovely bath, gotten dressed without a fuss and are ready for bed that we read a story, reflect on the day and then they drift off quietly to dreamland within minutes of us leaving the room.

I’d love to say that.  But I can’t…  You know why?  Cos I would be a big fat liar!  It goes more like this:

I manage to heat frozen Woolies kids meals that I keep for “emergencies” and shove most of it into Riya’s moving mouth, leaving the rest on her clothes, floor and chair, after she swatted the spoon away with her hand.  Kyla feeds herself, but often seems like she feeds her tummy – straight through her belly button.

We undress tired and therefore miserable children.  Chuck them in the bath and enjoy playing with all the toys.  This goes relatively well, unless it’s hair wash day – don’t even get me started on hair wash day!

Out the bath and brush teeth – which both kids seem to enjoy doing by themselves.  Fight for the right to brush their teeth for them after their attempt.  Get them onto the change table (which is now right next to each other).  Stop them from falling off the sides while trying to put layer after layer of clothes on (yes, my daughter – Kyla – refuses to make use of a blanket, thus the need to dress her like an eskimo).

Frantically search for the missing dummy/dummies and breath a big sigh of relief when found under the couch.  Sit in the uncomfortable chairs in their room and give them their bottles before rocking Ri to sleep and cuddling with Kyla.

Although this may sound terrible, we enjoy these times.  As they drink their bottles we ask Kyla who we should pray for and she goes through the list, “Ga, Ma, Papa…  Uhhhh…”.  We have to say “Aunty Romy, Aunty Mia and Uncle Ben” because she can’t say that yet, and to each she answers, “Uh, JA” with a swift nod of the head.  Then it’s on to “Nana, Unc and Meow” (translation Uncle Shane and Cat).  We have to say “Gampie” while she looks at us in anticipation and to which receives a resounding “JA”.  Then it’s “Rorw Rorw, Me, Mama, Dada” (translation Ri-Ri, Kyla).  We then pray for everyone in detail, by name.  It’s all too precious!

Then when they are just about to go off, Seth ends it with singing the John Legend song, “Stay With You”.  He has been singing it to Kyla basically since birth and it has become the Alfino lullaby…  Here are the words:

We’ve been together for a while now
We’re growing stronger everyday now
It feels so good and there is no doubt
I will stay with you, as each morning brings the sunrise
And the flowers bloom in springtime
On my loving you can rely
And I’ll stay with you

Oh I will stay with you through the ups and the downs
Oh I will stay with you when no one else is around
And when the dark clouds arrive
I will stay by your side
I know we’ll be alright
I will stay with you

Though relationships can get old
And have the tendency to grow cold
We have something like a miracle
Yeah, and I’ll stay with you

Oh I will stay with you through the ups and the downs
Oh I will stay with you when no one else is around
And when the dark clouds arrive
I will stay by your side
I know we’ll be alright
I will stay with you

And there will be heartaches and pain, yes there will
But through it all, we will remain
In this life, we all know
Friends may come, and they may go
Through the years I know
I will stay
And in the end I know that we’ll find
A love so beautiful and divine
We’ll be in love for a lifetime, yeah
And I’ll stay with you
I will stay with you

Oh I will stay with you through the ups and the downs
Oh I will stay with you when no one else is around
And when the dark clouds arrive
I will stay by your side
I know we’ll be alright
I will stay with you
Yeah everything will be fine
And I will stay with you
Through the end of time
I will stay with you

(At this point they are either asleep or we have to go through our repertoire of songs to get them down).

If if Kyla is not down yet, the parent who put Riya down leaves to work/blog or flop while the other remains. I usually talk to her about the day, have a little giggle, then sit in silence, after which I wake up from my snooze to find Kyla finally asleep (same here). Most modern parents may find this crazy, due to the the lack of sleep training, but it is a very special time. Espcially because I hardly get to spend time with them during the day. Though when these times invade into Mommy Daddy time (After 9) things can get a little heated.  Generally they are usually both down by 8 though.

3 thoughts on “Bedtime Traditions

  1. Ah Seth and Cindy, this is so precious and this is your sleep training!! I hope that we too will have such a special bedtime routine with Leah when she is older 😀 Funnily enough tonight while Leah was screaming to settle down to sleep (as she does every night) and eventually fell asleep in my arms (yes I too dont do the “correct” sleep training) I tried very hard to savour this time where she fits snuggly in my arms and sleeps peacefully..I know it goes by so fast and dont want to forget a second of it! So basically what I am saying is, keep doing what you doing!! You are spending the most precious time with your girls thats far more important than “getting them to sleep in a second” routine 😉 Thats my 5cents anyway 😀

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