A blog about a kid. I like her.

Thursday, October 09, 2008

Instructions for the Babysitter

We try to put Aletheia to bed between 8:30 and 9:00. The standard routine is something like this:

Snack at 7:30ish. Give her a banana or a yogurt tube out of the fridge, plus a cup of water. If she wants more, let her have it. We figure she knows if she’s hungry or not—within reason.

A bath around 7:45. Then we let her set on the counter with her feet in the right hand sink while we brush her teeth. We brush them first and then she gets to hold the toothbrush and brush them. Use the Elmo toothbrush. Then turn the water back on for her to rinse the brush, and hold the toothbrush holder up. She’ll object if you take the brush away from her, but she’ll put it up herself if you ask her to.

8:00ish—in her bedroom. Put on pajamas. She’ll probably want to listen to the Laurie Berkner “Buzz Buzz” CD. If she says “Pig on Her Head,” “Bumblebee” or “I’m a Mess” she’s referring to songs on that CD. She changes the tracks herself and finds the songs she wants to hear.

She’ll love you forever if you read stories to her. She’ll probably pick out what she wants. If she says “Margarita” (sometimes it comes out more like “Maria”) she means the book called “Hi!” For most of her books, she likes it if you stop before the last word of a sentence and let her say it.

8:30ish. Take out the Buzz Buzz CD and put in Mother Earth lullabies. She might object, but tell her it’s time for her “bedtime music.” (Buzz Buzz keeps her awake.) Tell her it’s time to turn out the light—if you hold her up, she’ll pull the chord herself. Then we hold her while we sing “Abide with Me.” If you don’t know it, "Jesus Loves Me" might be a good substitute. Then we pray the Lord’s Prayer and another little prayer for her. And then it’s bedtime.

She absolutely must have the ladybug pillow and blanket or Armageddon will commence. We also let her have books and toys in her bed.

Hopefully that will go well and you’ll be done with the hard work for the night. If she cries, I’d let her cry it out for a while. We don’t let her back out of bed. If she starts crying and just won’t stop, we sometimes turn on her ladybug lamp on the floor and tell her she can read but she has to stay in bed. If she asks for a snack, we give her more water (she can have a sippy cup in bed). If she really insists, half a banana is okay. But don’t pick her up or you are doomed. That’s only for if she seems seriously sick, is bleeding, or has a gun. If she does get a gun, pick her up, kiss her cheek, and start singing the alphabet. It’s your only hope.

Now, for the important thing. The Wii is on the “front” input of the TV. Dish Network is AV2. If she asks for Super Why, she can see another episode or two tonight. Turn on the Dish Network, set the TV channel to AV2 and press “DVR” twice on the remote to get to the saved programs. They are in alphabetical order. Start any Super Why show—it makes no difference to her. At some point in the show, one segment will focus on a cute little pig-tailed girl called Wonder Red, and Aletheia will start crying and saying “Super Why! Super Why!” Fast forward until the boy in the green jumpsuit and cape is back on the screen. I don’t know why Aletheia hates Red, but she does. It’s not a battle worth fighting.


Patti said...

So what if this post was not meant for me? Cuteness.

Anonymous said...

Did the babysitter survive?

It isn't so hard when you are doing it, but when you type it up it sounds really involved!:)

You are good parents- also smart to get out for a night- hope you had fun!

Pater Aletheias said...

As it turns out, Aletheia did great. No fussing at all--except when her hair was rinsed. She hates that, but what can you do? Smooth night all around. And Mommy and I got out to a wonderful production of Shakespeare's Pericles.

It is funny how all the routine stuff parents know sounds horribly complex when you try to write it down.

kim said...


More than survived, (thanks for asking),... Thrived! We enjoyed hangin' with Aletheia!

I actually think it is great when parents leave specifics about their children...it can really lead to a smooth transition/night. :)

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