I am sure you have heard about the importance of reading to your children as a part of their bedtime routine. So I hope this post encourages you 🙂
I used to read them off to sleep every night when they were little, really little. Then as life got busier and we were out every afternoon with extra curricula activities, I was too tired and had no… ahem… shall I say – patience left. Most afternoons, we didn’t arrive home until between 6pm and 7pm (and were early rises too so 6pm would have been our ideal dinner time). Then I used whatever energy I could muster to cook a super fast dinner while at the same time, overseeing the showering ritual and begging the girls to clean up their things from the day. Ahhgggg. Then we would sit and have dinner, then time for teeth, toilet and bed. Which consisted of me and hubby tucking them in and saying goodnight, complete with cuddles and kisses, and prayers when we remembered. Then the next hour was spent encouraging them to ‘go to sleep’. Please go to sleep! Do you know what I am talking about? Or is it just me who skipped reading at bedtime for a while?
Now we aren’t so busy, actually we are home almost every single afternoon/evening now 😀 So I don’t have that same excuse.
One night I told hubby that I used to read to them and they went to sleep really fast, sometimes even while I was reading. I told him how I am too tired to read these days. I was actually expecting to get some sympathy. Instead, he said to me ‘Go and read to them.’ Ahem… Um excuse me! That wasn’t what I wanted to hear. However, I swallowed my pride and off I went. I went right on in and read to them. Deep down I knew he was right. It was only about 10-15 minutes, but they were so excited 🙂
I have been reading again to them every night since then, that was over twelve months ago now. I am so glad I listened to my husband 🙂
I usually read between 10 minutes and half an hour depending on how late it is due to afternoon/evening activities.
I start with a Bible story from The Child’s Story Bible by Catherine F. Vos. Then I read a chapter from a younger girl literature choice, at the moment its Milly Molly Mandy, followed by a chapter from our bigger girl literature book – Heidi. This has been so good for us. Sometimes my youngest will fall asleep while reading the last chapter, depending on how tired she is. The girls definitely go off to sleep a lot more peacefully 🙂
A couple of the books we have read during this time are Stuart Little, Trumpet of the Swan, Charlottes Web, Owls in the Family. Even though there are other literature choices I would rather read to my oldest, I have to be aware of content that my youngest is not yet ready for, and as she is usually awake during the majority of our bedtime reading, I have to choose something that she will be okay with. Keep an eye out for my future post on Younger Girl Literature and Bigger Girl Literature.