A couple of months ago I had a strike of brilliance, which resulted in the “slumber shindig.”
Picture this scene. If you have kids of your own, you probably know it well.
It’s witching hour, that window circa bath-time. All I need to do is in turn on the bath but I keep getting side-tracked by the kids rugby tackling each other, chasing Rico around, rolling on the floor, crying for the stuffed animals that they insist on parading around rather than leaving in their bedroom and now can’t find or asking for more food even though they just finished dinner. Usually C is also trying to finish off her reading book, M is trying to see the pictures, and everyone gets on top of each other in a tired hot mess. And I’ve still not made it down the hall to turn on the bath. Finally I bundle them in for a wash, emerge from a tsunami of water pistols, ducks and splashing and herd the troops up to the bedroom to get changed for bed. If I’m really lucky we’ve washed their hair and I have to get the hair dryer out. Party time!
And breathe, it’s time for their story, their bed, and my coveted evening window of adult time.
However, a couple of months back it struck me that once the kids are finally settled and ready for bed, we have some of our best, lovely conversations. This might be C finally divulging some detail about her ‘investigation’ session at school, or M asking me about why it rains.
So I told the kids that each night before their stories we’re going to have a slumber shindig. They get to choose the topic, and we’ll spend a few minutes talking and learning about it. This might mean pulling gems of wisdom from my brain, looking on the iPad or simply getting them talking and our topics have ranged from leopards to shapes to the human digestive system to types of clouds to Halloween …the list goes on.
After all the wrestling and hustle bustle of the day it’s just a quiet cuddle on the bed and reminder to talk about the world around us. With the odd scrum interjected into the proceedings. We’re all really enjoying it.