I consider the time between childcare and bedtime to be the best of times and the worst of times. On one hand, we’ve all had break from each other and are thrilled to see each other again so there’s a honeymoon period where I think, “OMG, I’ve FINALLY cracked the code on this parenting thing. Excellent job, Me.” On the other hand, there is a lot that needs to happen in a relatively short period of time so the feelings of euphoria often nosedive as soon as I ask my kids to do completely unrealistic and unjust tasks like picking up their toys, and, wait for it, PUTTING ON THEIR PAJAMAS. There’s a slight bump when they get to take their Culturelle® Kids Regularity (yum), but then I’ll do something like ask them to brush their teeth (the horrors!) and we’re off again.
Actually, now that I think about it, it’s parenting in a nutshell. It’s an emotional roller coaster that can deliver you to euphoric highs where you think you’ve finally figured out the purpose of life and then, literally, 45 seconds later, recall fondly the root canal you had last week because, man, it was lovely to just lay there with nothing to do. The best thing we can do is to laugh, am I right? (And maybe book a colonoscopy because I’ve heard those require a lot of lying around.)
With that in mind, I’ve put together the eight things my 3-year-old invariably does between the end of childcare and bedtime.
1. Tell a never-ending loop of poop jokes. I’m not sure what gene kids have that makes them think “poop” is the most hilarious punchline ever, but it’s very real and alive. My son can turn pretty much turn any conversation into one that involves him yelling said word and then collapsing on the floor in giggles (now that I think about it, I have a tendency to steer most conversations towards my kitchen remodel so maybe the apple doesn’t fall that far from the tree…).
2. Transform into a superhero. He will dress up like batman, regardless of temperature and the possibility of heat stroke, and then show us his muscles over and over again. Cue heart melting and phone blowing up with photos.
3. Never, ever, ever eat anything for dinner. At breakfast, he’s a champ and I can’t get enough in him, lunch is usually pretty good, but by the time dinner comes around you’d think I was asking him to sell me his favorite tow truck.
4. Scream bloody murder about taking a bath. Then, have the time of his life, playing with toys and pretend swimming. Scream bloody murder once again – this time, because it’s time to get out of the bath.
5. Get a superhero-like burst of energy five minutes before bed. He’ll be the most giggly, hilarious, and snuggly that he’s been all day so, you know, putting him to bed is really easy and not painful at all.
6. Request the same book, every single night, multiple times in a row. Listen, Kid, I agree The Book With No Pictures is comedy gold, but on the third read-through in the same night, even the phrase “Boo Boo Butt” loses some of its luster.
7. Take every truck, stuffed animal, and book in the house to bed. I’m not sure what your plans are for tonight (mine involve “Game of Thrones” and sleeping), but I’m glad to see you’re fully prepared for any construction emergency that might come up.
8. Roll out the bedtime stall tactics. Oftentimes he’ll tell me “I never want to let you go, Mama.” Oh, I know it’s a ploy to extend bedtime and I DON’T CARE. Because, Kiddo, I feel the exact same way.
Although Kara Kull has been compensated by i-Health, Inc., the makers of Culturelle® Kids Regularity, the opinions expressed in this blog are independent and not associated with i-Health.