Bedtime routines with multiple kids can sound overwhelming! Putting one baby to sleep at night is a challenge in its self! Here are some tips that can streamline the process and help you get not 1 but 2, 3, or even 4 kiddos to bed more easily and with less stress.
Streamline where you can
If possible do baths all together! If you have more than 2 kids you can bathe the baby first than the older children later. Also don’t stress if the bath isn’t right before bedtime. If it’s too difficult to get them all bathed right before bed consider bathing the baby earlier in the night to alleviate some of the stress. On busier days you can skip the bath all together and just do a simple wipe down with a wash cloth.
Usually the younger the child the earlier the bedtime. If you need to get the baby to sleep first you can have the toddler or toddler(s) help you put the baby to bed. One example, you can bring them into the nursery for story time. Then when its time to put the baby to sleep have something set up for the older children in their room (like a book or quiet toy) where they can play and quietly wait for you. Once you put the baby down you can then work on getting the older kids to sleep.
It’s extremely helpful to have pajamas laid out, rooms ready for bed, bottles ready to go, and white noise on ahead of time to help the process go more smoothly. If you have a little one who tends to stall at bedtime, you can utilize things such as Bedtime routine flashcards to help keep the process moving forward. If you need to you can have a family meeting to discuss “Sleep rules” and “rewards” for following them!
Routine, Routine, Routine
And as always, have a routine that you do every night so the expectations are clear for all involved. When we do the same thing every night in the same order they know what is expected of them and what is coming next. Every night in my house it’s dinner, playtime for the older two (while I bathe baby and get her to bed), then bath for the big kids, books, lights out! I start the process at 6pm and everyone is in bed most nights by 7pm! WHEW!