The musings of ME:
SAH mother of 3 kids, spouse of a doctor-in-residency, caretaker and teacher of random children.

Sunday, January 17, 2010


Now that it is a new year, our church time has changed from 8:30 to 11:00. Often I am readying the family solo as Ben has to be at the hospital some Sundays. It has been hard for me to get the boys up by myself and get us all fed, prepared for sacrament with diapers, wipes, changes of clothes (for Sam the spitter/puker), bottles, sippy cups, snacks, quiet toys, etc. and off to church on time. Many times I have even prepared everything the night before, but of course, as were walking out the door, someone would have a poopy diaper or I'd remember I had to grab one last thing. Our church attendance was not stellar. When we did attend, we were usually late and sat in the foyer.

When we switched times, I thought all that would improve. But it hasn't. And now we face new issues. Our attendance has been better, but for some reason, we are still late for church! And now, our nap schedule is all messed up. Sam still takes 2 naps a day: a 2 hour morning nap beginning at about 9:30 or 10:00 (depending on what time he woke up) and then an hour and half afternoon nap at around 3:00. I have tried to play with it, but he will not lay down a moment earlier and if he is late, his whole day is messed up.

Like today. Sam woke up at 7:30, so he was barely ready to go to sleep at 10 am. I got him dressed for church, then put him down, he fussed for about 10 minutes and was asleep by about 10:15. Well, we were running late for church anyway, so he got to sleep until about 11:15, but then I had to wake him up so we could leave. I thought I could get him to go back to sleep at church with a bottle and rocking him, but nope. He was good all through church, just very squirmy and he kept climbing all over me. I would have put him down to play with toys on the floor, except I couldn't get him to be quiet in any of the meetings today! He was so babbly and loud! Finally, in the last hour, during the closing prayer, he fell asleep. When it was time to go get Jackson from nursery, I put him in his carseat, but he woke up and never fell back asleep again. Not in the car, and not when we got home and I tried to put him down in his bed.

We got home from church at 2:20. By the time I got both boys fed, and put Jackson down for a nap, it was 2:45. Jackson slept until almost 6:00. (In retrospect, I should have woken him up early, but I was busy dealing with Sam the whole time he was asleep, so I didn't.) After I put Sam in his bed, I thought he'd cry it out, but after 20 minutes the screaming was escalating, so I went to get him. Three times that afternoon I had him asleep in my arms and three times he wouldn't transfer to his bed. He just wanted to snuggle with me all day and never did really take a nap. I put him to bed at 7:30 pm and he still fought sleep! (Oh yeah, and in all that struggle, he threw up on me twice. This kid has the worst gag reflex! A little phlegm and he barfs up his last meal. On me. Or the carpet. The recliner has taken the brunt twice! We are going to have to get new carpet and furniture before Sam's first birthday at this rate!)

So finally Sam was down and 8:30 hit and it was time for Jackson's bath. I wanted to let him stay up since I didn't think he was tired with such a long and late nap, but he was being so rotten throwing fits about this and that. ("I want candy! I want to watch CARS! I want juice RIGHT NOW! No, I don't want that. That is STUPID!" That last one was a first. Where did THAT come from??! My preschoolers don't even say that!) I thought maybe he was ready for bed, too. Ben had gotten home, had some dinner and went to bed. He got up at 4:45 am this morning and didn't get home until almost 7 pm. He was exhausted, but Jackson's fits during bathtime woke him up and he came in to see if I wanted some reinforcements. The stern Daddy voice calmed Jackson down and helped for a while, but after that it was just more fits. And I'm talking major kicking, screaming, possessed by the devil fits. The kind where time out doesn't work with Jackson. By the time I put him to bed, I had spanked him twice, he lost his privilege to read a bedtime book, and I had to forego saying prayer with him because I couldn't get him to stop screaming.

Truly, my kids have their moments, but today was especially horrendous! Does anyone else have this church schedule with little ones? What do you do?! Any secrets? Please share because if I don't get this figured out, we may become inactive at church! Help!


Shana said...

SUNDAY ARE SO HARD! I'm sorry that you have to endure them alone alot, that makes it even worse.
I have had many Sundays that sound a lot like when you just described.
These are the only things that make Sundays with little ones easier for me:
1. Pack church bag, bath kiddos, and ready and lay out church clothing, etc.. the night before.
2. Everyone goes to bed a little earlier on Saturday nights. It just helps everyone to endure 3 hours of church better.
3. Have a set schedule for getting ready on Sundays. What time breakfast is, time for getting dressed, and what time you need to be out the door. Right it out and post it up somewhere for awhile if it helps.
4. I shower the night before as well when I have morning church. It help shave so much ready time off when I don't have to wash and dry my hair in the morning.
5. If you are sitting alone at church, find a good friend that you can sit by so if Sam needs to be rocked to sleep or taken out, they can sit with Jack for you.
(Hey we've all been there)

Keep up the hard work Colleen! I know it will pay off for you!

Kirsten said...

Well first of all, we've all been there! I can barely do it with B, but with 2 kiddos in diapers.... WHEW!!
Second, I agree with Shana - having a Sunday Bag makes it so much easier b/c you just set it out saturday and go! It might be alot of work at first,but you won't have to restock it every week; keep EVERYTHING in there. I have a cup JUST for my sunday bag(one that doesn't leak all over the pews), I keep seperate snacks just for sunday that stay in plastic baggies until I need to refil them; things like that.
As for the whole naptime thing I think until you ALL get used to the new schedule that it'll take time, but they'll get used to napping at different times on just Sundays - or if all else fails.... wouldn't you rather have a squirmy baby at church who finally falls asleep during RS, rather than a screaming one? If you have to sit in the back so he can play around then DO IT!! It's better for YOU to be able to pay attention and be happy at church, rather than worry about your baby.... who doesn't know better.... be reverent. Jackson is at an age where it's borderline on what he can do - he should still be able to play, but should know that he needs to do it quietly - You know what I mean!?!
Keep us updated on how it all works out over the next few sundays, Pray for extra inspiration, and hang in there!

marcia@joyismygoal said...

Of course night before packing helps-
maybe even a special bag stays packed just for Sundays.
But I learned from someone else that they plan on being 1/2 an hour before church starts so those last minute emergencies don't throw us totally off-
Can he take his nap in his car seat when you put him down right before time to leave?
Oh I just read the previous comment and I so agree stay firm and positive:)
Hook in a friend or a friends daughter that LOVES kids they are lifesavers and then you have a babysitter in training that knows your kids -- and know some days are going to be rough but ALL of us w/ kids have had active kids -grouchy kids,hungry kids and sat w/o our hubby's and that = frazzled mom esp if we think we are being judged ... so just keep plugging along and going and I promise it pays off.:)

Colette said...

oh, man lady! I feel your pain! I was sooo glad when we switched from 10:30 to 8:30 for the same reason. I don't think I have any words of wisdom, except that it'll just be one year, and you'll have a new time again next year! I think you're effort to make it to church is more important than anything.