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The Bedtime Routine: Try this for a week and make getting the kids to bed a doddle...

Issy, known to her young family, and her Instagram followers as Mummy Scrummie is a Hampshire-based mum of two and brand rep for Catkin Toys. Every Sunday, Issy will be writing a guest blog feature, covering the parenting topics and issues that interest you! Have a topic you'd like to hear more about? Get in touch!

The Bedtime Routine

The first rule of parenting is: you do not tell new parents about real-life parenting. The second rule of parenting is: you DO NOT tell new parents about real-life parenting!

It’s an unspoken rule, but one universally accepted (implemented, presumably because nobody would ever agree to have children otherwise!) that new parents do not need to hear the truth about parenting.

They don’t need to know, whilst they bask in the fuzzy-hearted feeling of cradling their baby, that never again are they going to be able to poo in private; that gone are the days of wearing white clothing; that, if they ever get the chance to eat a snack, it’ll have to be done hiding behind or actually in a kitchen cupboard, and that over the next decade or so, they are going to spend a gargantuan proportion of their time persuading someone smaller than Dobby the house elf to “JUST CHUFFING WELL GO TO SLEEP!”

The Bedtime Routine is the kryptonite of parents. Children are absolute rotters when it comes to sleeping. From the first night they spend at home, these pint-sized people, adorable and lovely as they are, seem determined to be as inconvenient as is humanly possible to you and your established routine!

As babies, they want to sleep on their terms and no one else’s. Then come the “Bop ‘til They Drop” years where, as toddlers they will keep going until their chubby little bodies physically cannot take anymore and they fall super-soundly asleep, face down in their mac ‘n’ cheese (true Little Miss Scrummie story). Then: the Kevin and Perry era of the schoolchild; during which they don’t want to go to sleep “ever AGAIN!”, because Tiny Person FOMO is a very real thing.

This week, I’m giving you my top tips to make the bedtime routine in your household, as easy as falling off a bike (and, yep, that’s another thing that’s going to happen a lot; I recommend arnica cream for bruises!) …

My very first words of wisdom on the matter: be consistent. Okay, I know, you’ve heard it 150 times already, but in my opinion, it really is the best way to teach your children what you expect of them