Living in a Shoe


We did pretty well on this new bedtime routine for about three, maybe four nights.  And then it’s been all downhill from there.

After a long day (Devo has had continuous meetings from 8:30am to about 9:00pm…at least, I hope he’ll be home by 9), there is nothing I want more than for my children to GO TO SLEEP.  We’ve had a good day, a remarkably good, sane, fun filled day.  Now let’s end it well.  I’ve got my sanity to restore before tomorrow’s and Thursday’s and Friday’s parenting marathons.

But they don’t sleep.  They won’t sleep.  I took them swimming for two and a half hours, stuffed them full of bean burritos, and it still hasn’t worn them out sufficiently to go to sleep on time.

As I sit in their room (with colicky infant on lap), I recall that old old woman.  And I think, briefly (let’s blame it on moments of insanity brought on by sheer weariness) that she was really on to something with this whole bedtime thing.

    There was an old woman
    Who lived in a shoe,
    She had so many children
    She didn't know what to do;
    She gave them some broth
    Without any bread,
    And whipped them all soundly
    And sent them to bed.

6 thoughts on “Living in a Shoe

  1. I have the solution! Do what I do…keep them in their CRIB. :S okay sothat won’t work…have you thought of using extrinsic motivation? …aka bribery!

    I found when I was teaching preschool that the children who just wouldn’t nap were very motivated to at least pretend they were napping (ie they were very quiet…and usually feel fast asleep anyway) if I promised special outside time after nap if they were good. Jelly beans also seem to work wonders for Abby!

  2. Maybe that is where the Samoan family Sabbath routine came from! When i asked regarding the usual post church then extended family lunch and afternoon, I was told they spanked them, then the kids cried hard so were tired and went right to sleep! Then everyone was happy. Adults cause no prolonged fussing about not wanting to sleep and the kids slept. Kids when they woke up rested were happy campers. But i didn’t like it cause they spanked even the ones that were cooperating. It would break little Ellie’s heart. Sniff.

  3. Debbie, that extrinsic motivation is where we fell off the wagon. We started with one night of obedience equal a surprise. When we moved up to TWO nights, it all fell apart. Jelly beans, not a bad idea.

    Mom, I don’t remember the Sabbath spankings? Or was I exempt? I do remember those long flip flops, though.

  4. Try not moving up to good behavior two nights in a row for a while…like a month. Make bed time a game instead of a stinky have to do.

    I have dirty tricks like pulling Lia aside and enlisting her “help” in teachingAmelie how to properly go to bed.


    When one of them does a good job going to sleep I’d put some sort of treat under their pillow as a Thank you for a job well done.

    If they need time to wind down before falling asleep I think it is reasonable to set a 5 minute till bed timer so they know are pre warned.

    I am also a reward chart a holic. I have had reward charts a plenty in my classroom. If bed time goes well…they get a star on their chart…if it goes well for 5 nights they get special Daddy time or whatever flips their pickles!

  5. Maralyn and I were especially wired on Friday night. And of course parents are their closest to collapse. After about so many not sufficiently repressed giggles we would hear Dad
    s very authoritative voice from down the hall. GIRLS!

    I don’t remember getting spanked, myself; but once after church there was a very effective laying on of hands for little sister Maralyn. Very effective in keeping me quiet for some time, at least. Seems that Maralyn got it once on Friday evening, also.

    Now how do I get Gpa to get to bed. I can be ready in about 10 minutes, It takes him at least an hour. Not complaining, AT least I still have him.

    see you soon. Love, Guam Grandma Ruby

  6. Grandma Ruby…maybe you should spank him? I hear jelly beans are also good motivators for gentleman!

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