And here I sit. I sit in the rocking chair and supervise nap time. Not the actual sleeping part of naptime, but the hour it takes for them to fall asleep in their beds. Weeks ago, we moved to an 11am lunch aiming for naptime to begin between 11:30am-noon. The idea was that napping slightly earlier in the day (they had been napping around 1pm or later) would make bedtime easier, which would make for happier and well-rested children, even if they continue getting up at 5am.
Routine is supposed to make this easier. And we certainly have routine, they're just not catching on that at the end of the routine, they should close their eyes and sleep.
After lunch we use the potty and put on a pull-up (Pete), change the diaper (Chester), we wash hands, read a book and then they lay down in bed. This is where the fiasco begins. Chester is doing headstands, folding in half with his toes over his head, stretching out off the edge of the bed, getting out of bed to look out the window, etc. Pete is alternately doing the same and yelling at Chester to get back in his bed. So I've taken to sitting in their room while they fall asleep. Then I cover them up and leave to attend to my own needs, like lunch or cleaning the kitchen and folding laundry. We're coming up on week three of the routine, and they are still bouncing off the walls for an hour, at least.
Bedtime is similar, though it also involves a shower, pajamas, one cartoon of choice (typically Go, Diego, Go these days) in addition to the potty trip and bedtime stories. And then an hour or more while I sit and threaten "get back in bed" and "put your head on your pillow". I also pick them back up and put them back in bed without additional snuggles. Consistency is key in training dogs, husbands and children. Anytime I try to leave the room before they're both asleep and I hear little feet making a pitter-patter for the door, the other bed or the books on the bookshelf. Last night it lasted from 7:30pm to 9:15pm!
So there goes two to three hours of my day, spent sitting quietly in a dark room, wishing my children would catch on to the concept, and that I will have the patience to continue sitting and rocking waiting for them to fall asleep. I guess the alternative is duct taping them to the bed, and duct taping their eyes shut before I leave the room.