Melissa Kaylene: Why Your Kids Need a Bedtime Routine

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Why Your Kids Need a Bedtime Routine

I've had a few emails with questions in the past asking me what I think is one of the most important things you can do for your children. I've thought a lot about this. Other than the obvious always encouraging them and loving them, one of the things that I am so glad we initiated early on was a bedtime routine.

There is many reasons for this, and it benefits my kids as well as myself. Why? It's teaching the kids routines, patterns, schedules...which ultimately will help minimize meltdowns and behaviors. It also is great knowing that unless a kid gets sick or something out of the ordinary happens, that by 9 pm every night things will be quiet in the house, and I can have time to breath and get prepared for the next day.

Of course the kids need reminded, a lot. But they are getting to the point where they just need to be redirected because they know what they need to do. Depending on how long it takes them will determine how long of a bed time story time they will get. We read to the kids every day, but the amount of time fluctuates, and occasionally they do run out of time and they don't get to pick out a bedtime story.

What does our routine look like? It's pretty simple really....but always seems to end up taking us an hour from start to finish when they are all tucked in.

1. PJ's on.

2. Pick out school clothes for the next day. (we set these out with their school bags so everything is together)

3. Nighttime medicine (vitamins)

4. Brush teeth and hair

5. Pick out stories!

6. Read. Normally we read two stories for the younger ones, and Anika reads by herself in bed for 15 minutes.

7. Hugs, Kisses, and Lights out!

Like I said, it looks pretty simple, but if we start at 7 or 7:15, they will squeak by and slip into bed by 8pm.

Kids are creatures of habit. Having a consistent routine before bedtime every night will reduce the ups and downs, fights at bedtime, and create a good sleeping pattern for them.

Do you have a bedtime routine for your children? What are some things you do that work well for your kids? Comment below and let us know!



  1. Hi Melissa
    Visiting from SSS Hop. Thanks for linking up.

  2. Hi Melissa,

    This is such a great post with great tips. Children thrive on routine and love! Or as you said it " children are creatures of habit" And this is exactly what you suggest!

    Maria @

  3. I have four children (two grown, one getting there) and we've had a routine bedtime with each of them. It really does foster good habits, allow them to wake up early and not be tired (important for school), and it's good for them too to have that consistency!!

    Thank you for linking to Super Sunday Sync. :)

  4. We have a great routine with Reagan at bed time. I almost hate it when it gets interrupted because it seems like everything goes awry when it does.

    Thank you for linking to Raising Imperfection.
    Please come back Friday to see if you were featured. :)

    (¸¤ Lanaya | xoxo

  5. I agree 100%. My kids have a routine they follow every night - and so that I don't have to keep reminding them, I've just make a list - with pictures - telling them everything that needs to be done each night. It makes night time SOOO much easier! And since my hubby works nights and I'm all by myself, it so much less stressful on me.

    Great post!

    The Kitchen is My Dance Floor

  6. I couldn't agree more. Ever since my baby was about 1,5 months old I started her routine and it hasn't changed much. And it's amazing what that can do. Emma when it's around 7:30 pm or so she starts saying mommy bath, watter, toys, "tete" {means bottle}, sleep. After her bath she loves to go to my mom's bed while I prepare her bottle and as soon as I get in the room she starts kissing everyone and saying good night and happily comes with me. No tears, no arguments. She knows the day has ended and it's time for bed! She is only 22 months old now and I really see how good she is with routines. She also knows that after lunch she goes for a nap and as much as she is having fun with something we only need to say that "leave your toy there and you will come back after the nap to play with it" and she just say "see ya" and grabs my hand. Routine Rocks girl and I wouldn't change any of that. This is an awesome post and a great reminder to keep this hard work! Thanks so much for sharing this with me at Bewitch Me & Titi! Hope to have you back with more amazing shares! Hope you are having a marvellous week!!!

    Cami @

  7. Routine is the way to go! We are pretty lax sometimes and it always comes to bite us in the bum when everyone is tired and grouchy!!

  8. Routine is the way to go! We are pretty lax sometimes and it always comes to bite us in the bum when everyone is tired and grouchy!!

  9. I have started doing a routine and he does lay down quicker and earlier than he used to which I'm so glad about. My son is 17 months old now. Thanks so much for sharing with us at Mommy Mondy! xoxo

  10. Yes, yes, yes, I couldn't agree with you more! All 3 of our kids (4, 2, 7mo) are in bed by 7:30 and after a long day, I NEED this time after they are asleep! Our routine is simple, jammies, bottles, book, bed...we try and keep it simple so that on nights that we don't have as much time or get home late it isn't a long process. We also have a no tolerance rule for them getting up, they know that if they get up they are going straight back to bed and if they do it a second time they lose a privilege for the next day. We had to be really strict in the beginning, but the consistency paid off and now they never get up once they are down (of course, as a mom we know if they are actually sick or really need something!)

    Great post! Dawn from I Think We Could Be stopping by from Coastal Charm :)

  11. Bedtime routines are definitely a great idea. Mine is pretty similar to yours although I'm not organized enough to pick out clothes the night before :)

    Thanks for linking up for WW!


  12. Hi there, I agree, they love love love routines! Especially if there's a special thing for them after each job, e.g. brush teeth then pick out a story. Visiting your site from Fresh Eggs Daily blog hop :)
    Bec from Journey to the Goodlife

  13. Great post, I raised my daughter on a strict bedtime routine and it was helpful to the whole family. Easier mornings too. Thanks for linking this great post up to the In and Out of the Kitchen Link party! I look forward to seeing you next week.

  14. Routine is very important to kids. We have an early bird so our routine starts at the end of an early dinner. Thank you for sharing at Sharing Saturday!