Cover Your Ears ... Daylight Savings Time Is Coming
Does everyone have their kid's cranky pants ironed and set out for next weeks time change?
I sat down to write this blog and thought to myself, "who is responsible for this crap anyways?" According to google search, some guy named George Hudson proposed this idea because he wanted more time to ... wait for it ... catch bugs in the evening. I don't know anything else about George Hudson because, frankly, I think he had terrible ideas. But, I'd be willing to bet the farm that this dude did not have kids.
I actually used to enjoy the time change. As a steady night person, working an 11 hour shift versus a 12 hours shift is super exciting. It's always a big party when everyone sees their phone magically turn to 3 o'clock. Which is always followed by the same chatter, "what time should I chart that med for?" and "should I do my 2 o'clock now or should I have done my 2 o'clock at 1 o'clock?" It's so confusing!
And, for fall back (in my way younger days) an extra hour at the old watering hole was never something I'd complain about. Needless to say, that definitely is not a thing anymore.
Now I'm old and I'm dealing with crabby kids that don't want to go to bed because "it is still light out!" and "I'm not tired!" And sadly for me, they aren't wrong.
Regardless, the time change is just a little over a week away and we all have to deal with it. Aside from writing a strongly worded letter to your government officials, I only know of two things you can do.
1. Prepare Ahead of Time
If you're dead set on sticking to the schedule that you already have you're going to have to prepare about a week ahead of time. This works especially well for families that have a rigid bedtime.
Starting on Monday the week of the time change you should start to move your bedtime and naps up by ten minutes each day. For example, if your bedtime is set at 7 PM your schedule for the week would look like this:
Sunday - 7 PM
Monday - 650 PM
Tuesday - 640 PM
Wednesday - 630 PM
Thursday 620 PM
Friday 610 PM
Saturday 6 PM - This is the night that the magic happens and you are back to your 7 PM bedtime.
If you forget to start adjusting your schedule because, duh, you're an exhausted parent it's really no big deal. Just divide an hour by the number of days you have left until the time change and move bedtime by that amount of time. For example, if you remember on Wednesday, you have 4 days until the time change so your schedule would look like this.
Wednesday - 645 PM
Thursday - 630 PM
Friday - 615 PM
Saturday - 6 PM and magic.
Or, You Can Pretend It's Not Happening
For real, just pretend the time change isn't coming and do nothing about it. This is my favorite option because in my house we don't have set bedtimes. Bedtime is always based on the quality of our day and naps and within a reasonable time. Hint: Between 6 and 7.
An extra added bonus for this option, if you have an early riser, is they will automatically wake an hour later. Okay, maybe George Hudson wasn't so bad after all.
You may have to adjust your bedtimes and naps by a half hour or so depending on your kids sleepy cues but within a week they will be right back to normal.
In my opinion this truly is the best option especially if you're really honed in on your kiddo's sleep needs.
Keep In Mind
Kids love consistency. Keeping with your same daytime and bedtime routine will help your family smoothly transition through the time change.
Check in on your sleep environment. It is easy to get lax with the environment in the winter because winter kind of does the work for you. But, in the summer when its bright and hot make sure you're keeping your bedrooms extra dark, cool, and comfortable.
Your kiddo is likely to be under-tired on the first day of the time change if they sleep in and go to bed with the sun blazing. So make plans to get outside and get active for a large part of the day.
Be sure to follow @maktosleep on social media. And, if you want to hear me talk personally book a call with me here. I promise it will be a good time.
Okay, talk soon!