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People with teenagers/ preteens and a baby....
10

Mummynumber2 · 02/03/2012 21:13

What's your normal evening routine? I have DSD1 (15), DSD2 (13), DSS (10) and DS (8 months) and am really struggling with the logistics of cooking, feeding everyone, bathing and putting DS to bed before he gets too tired and grotty. Any tips would be most appreciated!

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3littlefrogs · 02/03/2012 21:26

I had a 10yr old, a 7 yr old and a baby.

Bed times were challenging, and I still feel guilty that ds2 didn't get his bed time story as often as I would have liked - dd was colicky in the evenings.

Ds1 would shower independantly, ds2 was happy to play in the bath while I bathed dd in the baby bath in the bathroom. Sometimes I would just top and tail dd in the evenings, and bath her during the morning instead.

Cooking and feeding - all meals cooked ahead of time while the dss were at school. All I had to do was heat and serve. DH always got home after bed time during the week, so it was easy to just feed the dc and get them ready for bed, then have my own dinner with DH later.

Cook in bulk - things like casseroles, pasta sauces etc. Freeze some for the days when you can't manage to cook anything.

Your 2 eldest are capable of helping, so give them some tasks to do on a regular basis. My 10 yr old was perfectly able to watch the baby for a little while or make a simple meal for everybody - pasta or sausages and mash.

HTH

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HJwantstosleep · 02/03/2012 21:29

12/10/1 here. Tea is 5-6pm. If I'm not in from work dh plates me some up. Then bath time & bed by 7 for dd3.

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LizinFrance · 05/03/2012 12:34

13/11/4/2 here!

2 little ones eat at 5.30, then bath and story, bed by 7ish.
While I'm doing that 2 older ones do homework then 'chill out'.
2 older ones me and hubby then eat about 7.30, talk about their day in peace, check homework etc. If time, try to play a game or something with 2 older ones before they go to bed at 9ish.

I often cook the meal during the day, then heat up for whoever is eating, when etc!

(this is the plan anyway - often goes a little astray!!)

Liz
x

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missnevermind · 05/03/2012 18:54

13,10,3,7 months.
Dinner is between 5 and 6 - whenever it is ready.
I have never done baths before bed every night!
I usually eat with the little ones once dinner is ready, DH will eat with the older 2. Mostly we eat at the same time.
3 year old goes to bed about 7.30. Wash and Pjs as soon as dinner is eaten.
We then watch something suitable on telly till 9 when 10 yr old goes up.
DH and 13 year old go to bed at 10. Dh cant keep his eyes open any longer, has very early starts. I refuse to let DS say up later than an adult.

I dont start cooking before 4.45 as somebody is home then to watch the little ones, unless I have planned ahead (V unusual)

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buttonmoon78 · 05/03/2012 23:25

14, 12, 5 & 8m.

I teach 3 nights a week so our 'routine' varies enormously from day to day!

We eat between 5&7 (baby eats about 4.30). Bathtime is when it's needed rather than an every day event. Baby has eczema anyway so I won't over-bathe him. Bathtime is often done for the little ones by the older ones anyway. Likewise bedtime for dc3 - he likes dc2 to put him to bed.

DH is away an awful lot but when he's home he does most of the cooking or we'll eat later than the others.

As for bedtimes - dc4: 6.30-7, dc3: 7-7.30, dcs 1&2: 9ish.

Make sure your older ones are pulling their weight Grin

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pearlgirl · 07/03/2012 00:12

13,11,10 and 23months here.
If we are all home it runs something like this - tea at 5.30ish for dc and me, bit of a play/tidy up /start of homework until 6.30/7, bath and bed for littlest one(can take a while to settle) - dh sorts out homework and music practice etc - ds3 up to bed at 8, ds2 at 8.30 and ds1 around 9 - then we both start getting ready for the next day at work.

The tougher evenings are the ones when we have to run a taxi service to activities and knock ourselves off schedule or when dh is late home -then ds1 or 2 will do bath time with ds4 and I will do homework duty with ds3.

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Mummynumber2 · 17/03/2012 19:52

Thank you all so much for answering, it's all very helpful. I'm so sorry that it's taken me so long to respong, various things have happened that have put the day to day issues into perspective. All back to 'normal' now though!

My DH also works late very often and those are the evenings I really struggle with. I'm so exausted at the end of the day, especially when I've been working and DS isn't a good sleeper! Some days we end up having 3 sittings for dinner as I think 5 (when DS eats) is too early for the older ones. I find myself spending the whole evening dishing up and clearing away food in between trying to get DS to sleep.
I have stopped bathing him every day, which has really taken the pressure off and has no effect on his sleep (contrary to what all the books say!).
Whoever said that the older ones should help out is right, I do have a bit of a tendency to let them get away with being waited on! That's then next thing to tackle I think!

Thanks again.

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rainbow2000 · 22/03/2012 16:19

16,15,4,2 and 9 months.Oldest 2 are well able to cook stuff if hungry.DP gets teh 2 and 4 year old to bed and i see to the baby.Dinner is early for teh kids and dp eats when he comes home from work.Usually works but sometimes not haha.

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ColourMeWithChaos · 22/03/2012 16:41

18, 14, 10 (twins), 5, 3, almost 3 months.

Pick up 10 year olds and 5 year old from school at 3.15.
Pick up 3 year old from nursery at 3.30.
18 year old drives himself and 15 year old home from school, arriving home at approx. 4 ish.
18, 14 and 10s do homework/play/have activities (which DH takes them to)
I play with 5,3
I make dinner whilst DH looks after baby and 5, 3
Dinner for 5, 3, at 5.30 (they have a snack after school)
DH plays with them whilst I feed baby
Baby goes to bed at 6.15, one of us will settle him until he falls asleep
Other one does bed time routines firstly for 3 year old (bath, bed, story) whilst 18 or 14 year old normally plays on the Wii or watches a tv show with 5 year old
Then they do bedtime routine for 5 year old (bath, bed, story) whilst the other one head up dinner for us lot
Me, DH, 18, 14 and 10s eat at 7 ish
The boys play for a bit
10s go to bed at 8.30
14 goes to bed at about 10
18 and DH go to bed at 11 although 18 year old is often still on facebook
Baby wakes up for another feed
I feed baby and re-settle
I go to bed at 11.30

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mathanxiety · 22/03/2012 17:11

Delegation, delegation, delegation.

I had DCs aged 11, 9, 7, 4 when DD4 was born and they all advanced to 14, 11, 10, 7 as she grew from baby to three year old. ExH was worse than useless.

Oldest DD walked home from school with the others in fine weather. In bad weather I drove. I carpooled a lot with other parents, sharing the schlepping as much as possible.

I never did daily bathing, just topped and tailed as needed with a bath only in the afternoon if at all. The older ones (over 7) were expected to shower themselves and leave the bathroom fit to be used by the next customer, including rinsing the sink and mopping up drips off the floor. I expected them to leave clothes that needed a wash in the basket in the bathroom. They put away their own clothes after I washed, folded and sorted everything.

Everyone was expected to help preparing dinner and setting the table, or keeping 4 yo occupied and not under my feet while I did dinner. However, I used the slow cooker a lot and also made a good deal of casseroles or sauces ahead of time, with something always in the freezer, with only veg or spuds or pasta to cook fresh for dinner, or salad to toss. We ate at 6-7ish and they were supposed to get their homework out of the way without supervision or input from me as soon as they got home from school. They worked at the kitchen table or at the computer desk. Homework included putting away everything they needed for the next morning and getting their lunches ready. No separate dinner seatings for different age groups. Youngest (4 yo, and baby as she grew) got a big late lunch and a large snack in the afternoon. If the older ones were at a sport practice, drama club, etc, they could warm up leftovers when they got in.

In the evenings before bed we cleaned up after dinner and spent some time together chatting or watching tv together or playing some board game or other game on x-box, wii, etc..

I bfed the baby, didn't bother with trying to get her off to bed before I went, and co-slept so no settling necessary. Everyone else had a bedtime of 9 preceded by tooth brushing, hand and face washing, or a shower. I insisted on a daily shower for anyone over 8. None of them were ever particularly good sleepers but if they were in bed at 9 they were usually asleep soon after. At 9 I would read a story or two and say prayers with DCs aged 4 and 7 who shared a room, chat a bit and say prayers with DS (9) in his room, same with DD (11), with baby coming along with me. That was the extent of bedtime routine.

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