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Creating a Happy, Healthy, and Harmonious Home As Single Mom - Have a Bedtime Routine

May 14, 2012 | Comments: 0 | Views: 73

The third in a three-part series

Hectic and hurried homes seem to be the norm these days. Establishing harmony at home is a challenge for the more than 10 million single mothers who are head-of-household for 18 million children. As the only adult you make decisions and lead the way for your children. Perhaps you came from a single parent family yourself and didn't have the home atmosphere that you desire for your children. If your home of origin was not a happy one creating a healthy and harmonious home may seem too far out of the realm of possibility. A few well-developed routines can make a difference and make what seems impossible a real possibility. Your children will grow up with memories of a stable home and will have the tools needed to create the home of their dreams.

At the end of your day you can create a routine that will build a sense of security and healthy family bonding. Your children will carry this with them and into their homes when they raise children of their own.

First have a bedtime. Announce thirty minutes before that it is "Thirty minutes to bedtime." Turn off the television, computers, video games, and cell phones. Have a list of pre-bedtime routines, such as, 1. bathe, 2. brush teeth, and 3. prepare clothes for next day. It is important to be consistent, no nagging. Just methodically go through the same steps each evening. This means, of course, that you too have to stop and be part of the process. Once everyone is ready for bed, cuddle up with pillows and stuffed animals and prepare for story time.

Read from a book that is appropriate for the age of your child. When children are preschool age read two or three of their choice of books. For school age children you may read one chapter each night from a book that interests them Always remember it isn't important that you are a great storyteller, but that you tell great stories. Choose classic fables, children's classics, and Bible stories. Keep it brief so there is time for discussion.

When my three were young I read from The Picture Bible each night. After several days of reading the stories of the Israelites troubles in the wilderness my son signed and said, "When will they ever get it?" A teachable like that occurs only when you allow time for it.

Give each child a few one-on-one minutes to talk about something positive as you tuck them in. A wonderful life-long habit of ending the day with gratitude is a great opportunity to establish a lasting and meaningful memory.

As exhausted as you may be, you may even fall asleep with your child, this routine will be a not only stabilizing force but a genuine character builder for your child.

Gail is a published author, a storyteller, a speaker, teacher and guide. You may learn more about her on her website at and more about SMORE for Women, which she founded, at

Source: EzineArticles
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