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Sometimes, you gotta break the rules.

Our family has strict bedtime rules. We always have. Even as infants, when I know they’re going to wake up 27 times a night to eat, we put our girls to bed on time. This way they learn that 7:30 is bedtime. Doesn’t that have a nice ring to it?


The time of day when I can sit and write without interruption. Or get changed into my sweats without interruption. Or go to the bathroom without interruption. Or, as frequently happens, clean up the kitchen and living room without interruption. Though cleaning is far from my favorite activity, and it certainly doesn’t usually fall under the “relaxing” category, there is something cathartic about picking up the Hello Kitty puzzle/color blocks/Little People/animal farm/baby toys/Barbies/Cheerios/half-eaten piece of toast and not watching at least one of my girls undoing any cleaning I have done.

So last night, that glorious time arrived. I had it all figured out: put the girls to bed, do the cleaning, catch up on the episodes of the Biggest Loser I’ve missed. But bedtime hasn’t been as idealistic as I would like. Goo has been giving us a run for our money. The past few weeks, bedtime goes like this:

  • Tuck the girls in with bedtime prayers, stories, the whole nine yards.
  • Punkin asks for water.
  • Water is delivered, lights out, goodnight.
  • Goo gets up. Goo gets put back to bed.
  • Goo gets up again. Goo gets put back to bed.
  • Mommy and Daddy sigh a sigh of relief as we realize they’re finally asleep.
  • Goo gets up again. Our dreams are shattered. Goo gets put back to bed. Again.

Last night, the same scenario started to play out. I briefly consult Daddy and we decide on the Super Nanny tactic of putting her back to bed, over and over, without saying a word.

I'm going to practice this face in the mirror. That'll show them who's boss.

(Big shock there – whenever I’m feeling particularly clueless, I usually opt for the Super Nanny method. This happens a lot.)

As I get up to go put Goo back to bed for the second time, Daddy yells, “Goo, come here!”

What is he doing? You don’t talk when you’re doing the Super Nanny method! And you definitely don’t bring them into your room!

Me: What are you doing?!?

Daddy: Umm, I was going to bring her in here, put her in the bed, tell her I love her, and snuggle her for a few minutes… I’m weak!

Me: *tough exterior turns into a pile of lovey gooey mush* Goo! Come in here!

All three of us, snuggling in the bed.

Me: I know! Let’s get Punkin and have a surprise Family-Movie-Popcorn-Snuggle Night!!! (I’ve got tough written all over me. All. Over.)

Daddy: Punkin! Get in here!

All four of us, snuggling in bed.

Me: Surprise! It’s Family-Movie-Popcorn-Snuggle Night!

Cue the giggles, jumping on the bed, squeezing in under the covers, hugs, snuggles, laughs and absolute love fest. Sigh. Who needs bedtime?

Okay okay, we do. We absolutely need bedtime. But sometimes, you just gotta break the rules. Sometimes, it’s okay to sacrifice the clock to gain unforgettable family snuggle time. Have I mentioned that I’m addicted to hugs and kisses?

So last night, we threw bedtime out the window. And It. Was. Awesome. I’m sorry, Super Nanny. You would have been horrified at my lack of discipline and follow through last night. But it was Surprise-Family-Movie-Popcorn-Snuggle Night. You can’t compete with that.


About Mediocre Mom

I am a wife to the man who was made for me, and mom to three amazing girls: Punkin is eight, Goo is four, and Smush is two. I'm a Christian, a science geek, and completely addicted to coffee. Trying to stay sane one day at a time. Lowering the bar for moms everywhere.

4 responses »

  1. What a sweet post! I have a child like Goo… It takes hours to get her to bed! and sometimes we have a surprise snuggle night too! What can you do when they look so cute? Doesn’t happen all the time (Or I’d be nuts) but it happens enough to be enjoyable. 🙂 loved reading this!

  2. checking gravity 🙂 LOL this is awesome

  3. I loved readding this it was awesome. We have a strict bedtime at our house as well and some times (not offten) it is nice to just sit and snuggle with themm and not worry about the rules. I love thoes special time.

  4. Pingback: Two magic words. | Confessions of a Mediocre Mom

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