Having some predictable activities each day alleviates stress – in other words: routine. Children in particular, respond well to a basic structure to each day interwoven with a creative, variety of activities. I am always amazed that when we sort out a bedtime routine for children, starting from the end of play time and creating a regular preparation for supper, bath and bed and sleep; it doesn’t take long before it becomes a recognized routine. Navigating the last couple of hours of the day when everyone is tired and hungry can seem like a marathon, however, when Mom and Dad know what the structure is and everyone is working towards that goal – children in bed by a certain time – everything runs more smoothly. Interestingly when bedtime routine falls into place and children get a good night’s sleep; the morning routine runs more smoothly too.
While the transition from chaos to routine is tricky and sometimes a challenge, once it has become the ‘new normal’, parents are amazed at how easy the process is and learn to enjoy the end of the day routine as much as other times of the day! Nerves do not need to get so frayed and the day can end pleasantly rather than grumpy and bad moods!