Gramps and I just had our 9 year old grandson Mac spend the night with us. We do different things – play outside, go to a movie, play board games. We eat different meals – pizza, hamburgers or Mac’s favorite meal of salmon and broccoli. Sometimes we’re very active and sometimes we’re very quiet, but one thing always stays the same – the bedtime routine.
Getting ready for bed starts with Mac taking a warm shower. He feels very independent doing it on his own. I clean his ears, clip his nails and try to corral his hair with its many cowlicks. We go through the same jokes and conversations each time. How can they still be funny after all these years?
Next is tooth brushing. Mac likes to drag this procedure out for as long as possible for some reason. Maybe it’s because he likes to chat and keeps taking the toothbrush out of his mouth.
Then it’s off to pick out the three books for Gramps and Mac to read. The two of them sit on the couch and giggle and point and laugh and read out loud together. Mac can read very well, but Gramps does better voices and sound effects. This step would go on for hours if Granny didn’t finally say, “It’s time to go to bed please.”
After hugs and kisses all around, Mac jumps (yes, he literally jumps!) into bed. Now this is my favorite part! I lay down next to him for a few minutes while we have a nice quiet chat. We talk about the day we just had, the day coming up, funny things, odd things, ordinary things.
Last night’s talk:
Mac – “So how many baby teeth do people have?”
Granny – “I don’t know Mac. Let’s find out tomorrow.”
Mac – “OK”
What a great conversation is that! I love getting kids ready for bed with a quiet routine full of love and interaction. It is very soothing for me and my precious one.
P.S. We have 20 baby teeth. Who knew?!