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Bathtime/bedtime routines with 2 children- please share what works for you!(11 Posts)
I have a 2.5 yr old DD and am expecting DD2 at the end of January. My husband works very long hours and is never home to help with bath/bedtime except at weekends. DD1 has always loved her routine and has a bath at 6.30 and is in bed by 7-7.15pm- though I think she's n the process of dropping her afternoon nap so bedtime might be brought forward to 6.30pm with bathtime at 6pm for a while.
I am finding it hard to imagine doing this with a newborn and later with a 6 month old baby etc. I really don't want to disrupt DD1s routine but would like to get DD2 into a good routine too so neither are overtired. Please share your experiences!
Does anyone have help at bathtime? By this I mean paid help- as its been suggested to me but I'm not really sure if it's possible to get someone to come in for an hour each evening...?
Trust me- you will manage
I was worried about all kinds of stuff- how will I be able to take my DS1 to all his activities with baby DS2, and to school/from school etc... We are managing just fine - my DS1 is happy and my baby is happy.
I have an almost two year old ds and a 5 month old dd. Bedtimes without dp are a very mixed bag. If dd has slept well during the day then she's not too bad waiting for ds to go to bed. If not...well, things get loud. It sounds awful but when it all goes tits up dd has to be left to cry whilst I get ds sorted and into bed. I try everything I can to get her to nap at around 5ish whilst ds has his tea so that she's not too exhausted come 7.30 when it's time for ds to go down.
Wrt bath times-how big is your bathroom? We're lucky in that we have a massive bathroom so I take dd up in her chair and get the bath running then bring ds up. Put ds into the bath, then bath dd and she returns to her chair whilst I dry and dress ds. Then downstairs with dd and back up for dd. I've made it sound more complicated than it is!!
You'll find a way op, work out a routine that works for you. A sling can be useful to get the baby to nap in the late afternoon.
I have a 2.5yr old and 6mth old. I was very lucky in that for the first 3 mths my DH was always home to help. Now when on my own I do the baby first, the whole bath, bed routine and make sure he's asleep before I start on the toddler (who will have been downstairs glued to the TV for the duration). It just means that on the days I do it on my own the baby goes up to bed 15mins earlier than usual and the toddler is a little later than usual.
I think that's what we'll end up doing pink. dd has just, in the last two days admitted defeat and gone to sleep in her cot rather than on me in the evenings so we might make her bedtime earlier and first, but I don't think ds will play ball when dp isn't here though so on those days it might all go to pot.
I bought an angel care bath seat for baby and plonked them both in together as soon as I could Bath him. He was safe in there and dd could bath safely next to him. I could wash her and he was still ok.
Bath time had to move forward a bit for baby to account for grizzly evenings for a couple of months but he is 20 weeks now and they both go in at 6.
Thanks everyone. I think it makes sense to bath then at the same time- at least another are both in the bathroom at the same time- with either dd1 playing quietly while I sort out dd2 or dd2 waiting (dry) in her chair while I put dd1 down.
I have an Angelcare bath seat- dd1 still uses it(!)!and the bathroom is big enough for us all to be in there at the same time so hoping it will just fall into place....
We dropped from a daily bath to a bi-weekly one when we had our second.
Yiz can all judge away, it works for us and they're clean....enough.
Bath together and pop dd2 in bouncy chair while getting dd1 out
All in our room, read stories to dd1 while feeding dd2
DD1 goes to sleep in our bed, dd2 on me in bed or in cot (relatively recent sleep training at 6.5m) - she only sleeps one sleep cycle in the cot so not enough time to do a totally separate bedtime for dd1.
The above wouldn't be necessary if we had proper bedtime in place for dd1 but she's a sleep fighter so we've always stayed with her while she goes to sleep. So I need us all in one room because I'm not prepared to leave dd2 to cry either. It would work if we had a rocking chair in dd1's room, I could have sat in that feeding dd2 to sleep and just waited for dd1 to fall asleep.
First 2-3 months: as much bath/bedtime help as poss. if I had to do it on my own, DD2 was in bouncy chair in bathroom while I did DD1 bathtime, then DD1 in front of TV while I fed DD2 to sleep, then DD1 bedtime. DD2 got bathed earlier in the day or not at all...
After 2-3 months: bath both together (you need a bath chair for baby). older one goes in first and comes out last so is in bath while you do baby's pjs etc on the floor. Then older one in front of TV while get baby to sleep.
Mostly DD2 feeds to sleep but if she won't and it's getting late then she just has to
yell in her cot self settle while I put DD1 to bed. Usually she stops yelling and goes to sleep sometime during DD1's stories anyway.
The key is preparation - make sure all changing mats, nappies, PJs, Dvd, milk etc are to hand before you start so that you don't have to leave anyone unattended (except dc1 in front of tv but that usually keeps her glued).
I am in your situation. I think you just middle on through, like with everything! What you do changes as the children change.
When DC2 was newborn, I had him in a sling for the duration of DC1's bath & bed routine. After a while I started bathing him with her and was able to put him down in his cot while I did DD's bedtime - he often drifted off to sleep himself top, which was awesome!
Then he stopped going to sleep on his own, which was tricky for a while as I kept him up whilst I did DD's bedtime, but it wasn't v good as he was overtired, but we muddled on. Then, DD dropped her daytime sleep, which made it much easier because she was tired enough at the end of the day for me to put her to bed early first and then do him.
Now DS (18mo) is taking a long time to go to sleep with me in the room and DD (3.5) doesn't go to sleep as early as she used to, so we're back to a bit of muddling again. She goes to bed and listens to a story CD while I put DS down. It works 70% of the time OK, but at other time DS takes ages to go down and DD ends up coming and finding me, a bit fed up! No ideal, but I don't know another solution!
It works out ok. You make it work. And the children adapt to what you have to do.
Good luck with your new baby.
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