26 February 2009

Night-Light

Maddie, Riley, and I got home around 5:00 last night. We played for a while, then I sat them down for some dinner around 6:00. CV and N walked in shortly thereafter, and N joined Maddie and Riley for some Toddler Gourmet. Then, in a revolutionary move, CV WENT TO THE STORE CHILD-FREE while I got the kids their dinner, gave them their bath, and put them in pajamas. CV's mission? Find a bulb of the appropriate wattage and a timer for the lovely star light that we wanted to set up in the kids' room.

We both accomplished our missions. By the time CV got back, the kids and I were snuggled in on the couch watching Dora. CV was able to put the light up, and when Dora was over, we all had a talk about the Magic Light: on means talking is OK, off means time for sleep. Riley, ever resistant to new experiences, was skeptical of the whole thing, but went to bed without a fuss.

At 5:45 a.m., I heard Riley talking. This is already a big improvement over 4:45 a.m.,  but since the star was not set to go on until 6:00, I decided to intervene. I snuck in the kids' room.

"Riley, is the star on?"
"No, Mama."
"Is it OK to talk?"
"No, Mama."
"I'll lie here with you until the star comes on. Try to sleep some more."

Time passes. What seems like quite a bit of time passes. I check the clock. 6:15! Star malfunction! I switch it on manually. 

"Mama!" said Riley, whispering. "That star is beautiful."
"Yes, it is. And what does it mean?"
"I can talk now, Mama?"
"Yes, Love, you can, but quietly."

At this point, Maddie and N were awake, too. I reminded them to talk quietly, and said that it wasn't time to get up yet and that I was going back to bed for a bit. They talked, albeit not quietly, for another 15 minutes or so, and I got them all up at 6:30. I think it's going to take a while for the Rules of the Star to be obeyed, but I think it's going to work. I hope it's going to work. In any case, I feel better for trying something and for keeping my cool in today's early morning hours.

45 comments:

Lindsay said...

Great idea Snick.....I love that Riley knew it was not time to talk....
Lindsay
www.rememberingavi.blogspot.com

beyond said...

riley remembered he wasn't supposed to talk and it was only the first try! sounds like this might work...

Supa Dupa Fresh said...

You are a genius. I have also heard of kids getting stickers for staying in bed or in their room until a certain time (like, until the light goes on).

If you never got angry, you wouldn't be human, but congratulations for your cool and reasonable response today. I don't know how you do it! (I don't know how any of us do it!).

X

Legally Brunette said...

I love it...Bravo! Fingers crossed for you tomorrow morning!

susan said...

Three cheers for a new strategy that seems to be working! Hope it continues to go well.

Anonymous said...

what a great idea!! I hope this is just the ticket for you all.

JP

Jen said...

you guys rock.. way to go riley!

glad to hear things are going well.. we need to do ixtapa or something.. the wife's birthday is next week.. maybe we can do mariachi?

ben made his way into our room around 2am.. booted the wife out of bed by 4am leaving the he and i to duke it out over the covers until 7am when he woke up and wanted to get up. I managed to talk him into a half hour of Thomas on the bedroom TV before we got up.. :)

i like the star idea.

Angela said...

Hooray for small victories! Good for you!

OTRgirl said...

The joys of two adults in the house!! Nice. I'm so glad it's working.

Val said...

Good for you, Snick. :) I admire that you know what you don't like about yourself and are willing to admit it and work to change it. That's not easy to do. And I'm glad this move feels right for you. :)

Single Parent Dad said...

Super stuff.

Sounds like it is going to work, you may have hit on a great idea. Snick's Timer Nightlight - Knock-out for toddlers.

Watercolor said...

Great job!!!! Love the star! Hope it works.

Sotorrific Twins said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
yatima said...

I agree with Riley. That star _is_ beautiful.

Sotorrific Twins said...

what a lovely idea! i'm glad the first night/morning went so well. i'm sure they will get even better as the days go on. keep us posted - i'll definitely be trying this when my nuggets are older.

Michele (Moosh) said...

GREATEST IDEA EVER!!!!

And here I was thinking about the muzzle in the pet aisle....

;-)

Tell CV that her N is gorgeous!! LOVE that hair!!! So happy to hear about all 3 kids loving each other, and the mamas so happy!! YAYYYY!!!!

Anonymous said...

Woot!!!!

liz (www.mysterymommy.blogspot.com)

Melissa in Grafton said...

Snick... you've got it; that's exactly right... you handled it perfectly, and if you're consistent with the new morning rules, I have a feeling this approach will work! :) Good for you!!!

Hugs,
m

spoiledonlychild said...

I don't have an early morning problem with my daughter (knocking on wood), but now I want my own star. I love the idea of the magic star, not to mention the star malfunction.

kerry said...

Him saying the star was beautiful brought tears to my eyes for some reason. He's such a sweet boy.

It sounds like they really get it which is a great first step. If this helps I will be implementing it here when the time comes.

Anonymous said...

Hooray! I am so happy for you and especially for Riley. You sound so much more relaxed already ...

Leslie

Mama Mama Quite Contrary said...

I had to crack up at the star malfunction. That is something that would totally happen to us! Sounds like your sweet Riley definitely gets its purpose though. Keep us posted on his progress!

Aimee said...

Way to go! I hope you have continued success. The timed light is a great idea.

Donna Brewer said...

Yeah! Good for you and CV and more importantly Yeah for the little man!

Melissa in Grafton said...

Snick, just saw your condo listing appear in my daily real estate alert... your place is adorable, and I do think (in my non-realtor opinion) that it's well-priced, especially for very desirable Arlington!

The staging lady may not have been very tactful, but she did a great job in the rooms. I especially like the kitchen. And wow -- some nice bling that's fairly rare in Arlington: central air, and a garage? Great!

Hope it sells fast for you guys. Someone is bound to snap it up... fingers crossed!

Hugs,
m

Snickollet said...

Melissa in Grafton--

Thank you. I do have to concede that the stager did well, she just didn't do it very nicely :). At least it's done! Let's hope the property moves soon. Like this weekend! I'm such an optimist.

-Stacey

Susan said...

Very cool!!! Riley sounds so sweet. He is trying ;) And so are you!!!

Giovanna Diaries said...

that is such a great idea...glad it worked..even w/a malfunction.

Natika said...

I thought of you last night.
My children wanted to bake a cake(13yr&9yr) at 7:45pm. A birthday cake for me. At first I was a little remiss about the whole thing. It was late and the cake would not cool in time for frosting. Then I remembered the advice I almost gave to you via your last blog. I was going to tell you sometimes you just have to enjoy the ride. They grow up!
You will remember getting impatient with them, will they?

Enjoy the snuggling times in the morning. I will enjoy the sweet smell of chocolate cake. We will both have memories that only a mother can have!

Anonymous said...

http://www.americaninnovative.com/products/teachmetime.php#

Check out the okay to wake feature! This is such a great idea, although your star works just as well. We use to cover the minute numbers on the clock with electric tape....no waking mommy until you see the 7.

Yummy Mummy said...

Sounds like you may be on to something! Fingers crossed for a quick sale on the house and some late sleeping this weekend.

x

Colleen said...

Brilliant idea! If there were only some way to communicate the star idea to my 6-month-old (who starts babbling hours before I'm ready to face the day) I'd do it. I'll file this idea away until she's older.

cat said...

Oh wow, way cool idea!

Julia said...

Very impressive, on all counts. Major major points.

And good luck with the weekend open house. Sorry about the weather coming in Sat night-- I would imagine these things are better attended in nicer weather...

Tiffany said...

Great job!

buddha_girl said...

Oh I love this story!

Cynthia said...

Could you post the link for the moon sun light, please? Thanks!

Melissa in Grafton said...

Did you say your open house is today? Doesn't look like the weather is too bad at all... just a coating of snow out here -- probably even less your way.

A good omen, I think! :)

Lori said...

Thanks for giving me that nugget- I CAN change how I react. I've been super stressed lately with work and personal issues. My little man misses me and wants to talk and cuddle all evening and it drives me up the wall. I want to get my list done, I have all these expectations of myself and I can't meet then. It just is a horrible circle. Take time now and pay later. How do we do this?!

Sparky said...

I don't have kids, but that star idea is a great one! I'll have to remember it for someday.

~ Jolene said...

yey to to star!!! and I love that Riley said "the star is beautiful." SO sweet! It will get better - I feel it! :)

Roads said...

That sounds like progress, Snick. Another few years, and you'll have this one cracked (that's wicked, I know, but I couldn't resist).

The next piece of equipment you need now is a set of ultra-thick blackout curtains. Then you can sneakily set the star for 8.30 on Sundays, and sleep in. They'll just never know the difference.

Well, maybe in your dreams, anyway...

winecat said...

Great idea!

Heather Marie said...

Sounds like you made some progress!!!! :)

ACE Soft said...

Nice blog for new generation


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