Since coming home we have re-instituted the stay up late night. The twins are old enough for this, and it seems like I get asked a dozen times each day who get to have stay up late night. This is how it works…
The purpose of SULN (stay-up-late-night) is to allow each kiddo to have some one-on-one time with Mom and/or Dad. It’s not a big production, or with five kids I would never get it done. It’s not even supposed to be a really late SULN. It’s just a little bit of time after the siblings have gone to bed. Ideally it is 20-30 minutes, which makes it very doable for me. The child who is having SULN gets to select the activity. Sometimes we have a special snack too (but we try to avoid liquids because its right before bed).
Some examples of SULN activities:
- Read several books
- Play a game (matching, Candy Land, Trouble, etc.)
- Do a puzzle
- Build a Lego item
- Watch silly YouTube clips (we stay away from full length movies though)
- Color a picture together
- Make and then eat a special snack – bake cookies, pop popcorn, etc.
My goal for this year was to do two SULN each week. But…after the first two weeks I was worn out by the time I got everything finished after church days, and school, and _____. It sounds wimpy since the SULN is supposed to be short, but they don’t always stay as short as you want, especially if a game is involved. So now Monday is SULN each week, and each kiddo gets one SULN every month. We’ll have to find a Plan B when Henry is bigger.
Tips for a successful SULN:
- Take a nap!
- Plan your activity or snack ahead of time. We store our games in the kids’ room, so the desired game needs to be taken out prior to the other kids going to sleep.
- Play it up – talk about it all day so the child of “honor” is super excited. It makes the whole thing more special.
- Take a selfie and post it to Instagram.
- Try to get all the other kids to bed a smidge earlier than normal.