Change Your Strategy. Examples of what it looks like to change your strategy to make parenting easier. When things aren’t working, try something different.
The fact that I write these articles doesn’t necessarily mean that I am always quick to put my own advice into practice. As I wrote earlier this week, Brayden was reluctant to go outside and play (see In Action: Find Your Child’s Currency ). I finally thought it over and realized he was probably too hot at the time of day we were going outside. I thought over my strategy, and changed up the schedule so we were going outside at a better time of day. That fixed it. He once again loved playing outside. See this article for more on changing your strategy.
Another thing I changed was naptime. I was letting Brayden stay up until Kaitlyn’s naptime in the afternoon. It proved to be too long for him. Where he used to go down at 1, he was now going down at 2. With the rearrangement of our playtime outside, I was able to work things so his nap could start earlier. He is old enough now naps don’t necessarily have to start at 1, but I will want them to start at 1 once Kaitlyn goes down to one nap and starts at 1.
Here is how our schedule changed:
7:30: both kids wake up and have breakfast and clean up (yes, I have successfully succeeded in getting Brayen to sleep until 7:30. This is likely contributing to the fact that he doesn’t need to go down at 1:00 anymore since he isn’t waking at 7:00)
8:00: bath and get ready
8:45ish: Brayden TV time. Kaitlyn Solo Playtime. Brayden learning time.
9:45: Brayden Solo Playtime. I would be gone from his room by 10:00ish. Kaitlyn nap.
11:30: Brayden clean up. Kaitlyn wake up (11:30-11:45). We all make lunch. (I use the term “we” loosely).
12:00: lunch and clean up
12:30: outside playtime
1:45: both nap
4:00-4:30: both wake up
4:30: Daddy home. Mommy/Daddy “couch” time. Play with Daddy.
5:00ish: Dinner. Clean-up. Various family activities depending on day.
7:30: Kaitlyn bed
8:00: Brayden bed
I am still working through this to figure out the best schedule, but here it is for now. I also am not sure the exact times some things are happening.
7:30: breakfast and clean-up. Get dressed.
8:00: This is sometimes earlier if they eat really fast. Outside playtime. This doubles as sibling playtime since they play together.
9:15: inside. Clean-up. Bath.
9:45: Kaitlyn nap. Brayden solo playtime. I am gone by 10:00.
11:30: Brayden clean up. Kaitlyn wake up (11:30-11:45). We all make lunch.
12:30: Brayden TV time. Kaitlyn plays in the kitchen while I get stuff ready for dinner.
1:00: Bradyen learning time. Kaitlyn solo playtime.
1:30: Brayden nap.
2:00: Kaitlyn nap.
4:30: Both wake up. Daddy home. Mommy/Daddy “couch” time. Play with Daddy.
5:00ish: Dinner. Clean-up. Various family activities. This includes errands, fun things, bike rides, walks, visiting friends and family, etc.
7:30: Kaitlyn bed.
8:00: Brayden bed.
Once the weather cools down, we will once again need to rearrange the schedule so it will be warm enough to play outside. The lesson here is don’t be afraid to rearrange your schedule when needed. I have actually found this schedule moves a lot more smoothly than the previous one. I am able to get more done outside because it isn’t so hot (I usually weed the garden and flower beds and other outside chores while they play). They enjoy themselves because it isn’t so hot. It is working well for us.