Routine, routine, routine!

Wednesday, January 27, 2010 Aimee Larsen 2 Comments

it's as important as location, location, location!  Or is it?

Over the last few months I have been on the side lines, watching a dear friend of mine struggle with her toddlers.  She is a stickler for routines too.  I remember when her oldest was around a year old and she was expecting number 2 that she would have a routine for each day and a "back up" routine for if her day got off schedule.  Wow O!  And she doesn't think she is super number three is on the way and number one is not yet 3, God bless her!

As her kids are growing up and changing, their needs are changing.  The soon to be 3 year olds needs just aren't the same as the 18 months old and each is messing up the others schedule.  I say it's about time to call Super Nanny from the sound of things at their house right now.  Then again I also want to say...forget the routines!  Throw them out the window.

I am not a structured person, I want to be but I'm not.  I try but it always seems in vain.  So, when I had Cooper, it was just him for 3 and a half years.  If he was tired, we laid down, if he was hungry, we ate.  I watched the clock "some" but only to know that it was around nap time, lunch time, etc.  We went with the flow, he turned out to be a sweet, well adjusted child who was secure and happy.  Now when number 2 (Evan) came along, Cooper had started play school so he started to have a more structured routine, and so did Evan.  Poor baby, went to work with me every day in those old, cold shops and pretty much lived in a sewing room. ; )  So, routine was important since I was working so much and had Cooper on a schedule.  Evan, turned out sweet, well adjusted, secure and happy.  While all that was going on, number 3 came along (Jake).  And so the story goes...

We have routines, we have schedules, we do this and go to that and we get up at certain times on certain days but I still don't feel like we have a strict routine.  We nap when we are tired, eat when we are hungry, play when we feel like it, work when it's time, we have a natural rhythm in our home during the day from the time we wake until the time we go to sleep and I have to say that I don't watch for the clock to strike one for nap time, sometimes nap time comes later.  We aim for an 8:00 bedtime, we shoot for a 6:30 wake time during the week for the kids, and so on.

So, what is wrong with one family doing it different from another?  NOTHING!  Does my way work for everyone?  NO. Does Super Nanny fix every family?  She tries but sadly NO.  So,  if something isn't working for you anymore or the needs in a family has changed, do you struggle to go back to the "dreamy" schedule you had before or do you change your routine?  Why do I care what other people do?  I don't know.

Here is what I found that looked interesting...

Plus, there is "on demand" parenting and concepts like Toddlerese. 

Okay my squeezes, give me your 2 cents because you know it's worth more than 2 cents and any links you love!


  1. Well you know me I am a structured kind of person. However each kid seems to go in a different rythmn, their own way. For example Zander would always nap for like 2 hours the most I could ever get riley to nap was like mabye 40 min. At first when she first got home I thought well why doesnt she do this the way I want her too. She was just different. She also has always loved bedtime more. So, I had one that would nap really well but wouldnt go to sleep easilty at night and one that wouldnt nap during the day very long but would go to bed without a fuss at night. So, I think of course kids do "need" routines but you have to change and mold things to fit where they are at that age. The routine that worked at 3 doesnt work at 5 for example. But, a routine I feel you must have kids need it. At least a little bit of one. At least my kids do they dont do well when there is no structure it is hard for them to take.

  2. Kids need sleep hygiene... Mine stopped napping around 18m, because she said so! But on the other hand she always went to sleep between 8,30 and 9pm, and she still does (3,5y). But, beside the fact she didn't have a nap, she woke 2 to 3 times a night... Only got on the tracks around 3y. Personality I guess, and too much energy to waste on sleeping :)


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