At the end of the summer, we began to gather downstairs in the bunk room with all the kids to say prayers and tuck everyone in. That nightly event evolved into one night downstairs and the next night upstairs, as school began and the girls' beds were moved back upstairs. Over time, it evolved further to everyone sitting in the living room praying, and then one or both parents retiring to kids' rooms to tuck in.
The boys are really the funniest when it comes to this routine. And by funny, I sort of mean ritualistic. At times verging on blatantly frustrating, but always adorable ~ thus my desire to remember it. I'll head downstairs after prayers ~ which require a post in and of themselves. And they'll insist I get on their beds with them. And 'snuggles' begin - where we share eskimo kisses and then, "A Kiss! A Kiss" will cry Meiners after the nose rubbings and then, "A Hug! A Hug!" he goes on. And he throws his arm around my neck and attempts to keep me snug in his embrace. I'll pry myself out of his strong little arms and jump over to T's bed and the same pattern ensues. Finally I'll break free and T will call out, "I love you Mom! Please tell Dad I love him too!" And I say back, "I love you boys. I will!"
It's awesome to be loved by such sweet and amazing kids.
The girls are a little less cuddly once I return upstairs. Most of their routine is insisting they are thirsty and requiring immediate liquid relief. And Pookie will be reading in her bed with a flashlight, listening to Delilah. The boys had been doing that late in the summer, early school year, as well ~ but more often than not lately, I just hear them talking and laughing...but the girls are sweet and give kisses and always come out to the living room for "just one more kiss/hug/drink of water."
I like the bedtime routine we've made for ourselves this year. I don't know that we had one so unwaveringly in the past. And though many nights I call over my shoulder, "Enough! Go to sleep!" I just wanted to take a minute tonite to remember this sweetness.