Thursday, May 2, 2013

Bedtime Routine

We read that pretty early on a bedtime routine, and routine in general, were good for babies. It helps them to feel calm, safe and protected going through the same structure day in and day out. So once we started to set a regular bed time for Molly (around 4 months) we decided to put together a bedtime routine that would help her wind down and get ready for sleep. Fast forward to now and at 18 months old we are still practicing the same bed time routine. Is that good or bad?


The Routine

Bath time at 7:30 following dinner
Brush teeth
Lotion, diaper, pjs, brush hair
Dad reads 2 books while I rock and snuggle with her and she finishes off her milk
Books done, lights out
I stay in the room and sing to her and rock her
I get her basically asleep, say a prayer and good night and lay her down in her crib

*Note: between lights out and down in crib is usually 10 minutes

Like I said, this was the exact same routine that we created when Molly was around 4 months old. A few minor things have changed like bottles vs sippy cups, length of singing and rocking but for the most part its identical.

I have begun to wonder when, and if ever, we will be able to just put her in her crib together, say our good nights and then walk out and turn off the light. I am afraid that we might have created too much dependence on the rocking and singing and now she will need it FOREVER! I know, that is a little exaggerated, I hope, but transitions are always hard and despite what some people think children need to be taught. She isn't just going to decide, "okay, just put me down now. I am done with rocking."

I keep coming back to that scene in American Pie Reunion where the Mom is bouncing her son, who is at least 4 years old, to bed. Please don't let that be me!

Does anybody else have experience with this? What is your bedtime routine? Still rocking your little one to sleep? 


  1. It is crazy how kids go with the flow. But take it from me, one day you'll be done, and she'll be fine with that. haha.

    It may not be til you have another kid, or maybe just one day something will come up right at bed time and you'll have to just set her down and you'll be surprised that she just falls asleep! Kids are amazing and always teaching us.

  2. Emily Montgomery5/03/2013 03:14:00 PM

    We've done basically the same thing for Jack since he was little too ... dinner, play time, bath, lotion/jammies/diaper, brush teeth (if he's willing...) then either I read to him and put him down or John reads/sings to him and puts him down. I don't think it's bad to still be doing a bedtime routine ... eventually she won't need it/want it, but still doing it at 18 months isn't strange.

  3. This cuddle time won't last forever.....enjoy it while you can.