Friday, January 28

How Do We... do naps

A big question is how do we do naps with so many people in the house and kids sharing rooms and the noise of people and so on.

Our youngest is a sound sleeper. We're pretty sure she sleeps better when it is noisy than when it is quiet. Our two year old, not so much. So here's what we do. After lunch eaten and we've tidied up, I bundle up the older kids and send them outside to play. This works 90% of the time. They have rain coats and umbrellas for rainy days, snow clothes for winter and so it is only in extreme stormy weather that they need to stay indoors. Chase is tucked into his bed and Addie into hers. Ella is four and plays outside with her older siblings.

Generally, they'll play outside for about an hour with trips inside to use the bathroom or get a drink, which is fine by me. I'm pretty much settled with the idea that our floors will never be spotless unless it is five minutes after they've been mopped.

When everyone comes inside, I have them put away their things and find a quiet toy to play with in the living room. Ella goes upstairs to her bed for a nap and depending on the day and his temperament, Aiden, who is six, might lie down for a little while.
I've been trying to get the older three kids in the habit of doing their personal devotions during this time, taking time to be quiet, look at their choice of book from our Bible stories pile or their Bible and write in their journals if they like. The kids do great with this and seem to thrive on the ten minutes or so of quiet time, I just need to remember to remind them to do it.

To keep the three oldest kids occupied while they play during nap time, I turn on Your Story Hour on ,Jonathan Park on , Adventures in Odyssey on or one of our stories on Cd's. Librivox also has a lot of great children's stories for free. Right now the kids are listening to a story that takes place during the civil war, since that is the time period we're immersed in.

Alternately, I'll let them play a game together, which gets if-y because sometimes games can stir up conflict which gets noisy or a school game on their little laptops is also allowed.

All this keeps them occupied for about two hours every afternoon until the babies and toddlers wake up and the house is a busy hubbub again.

What about you? What have you found that works for nap time in your house?


Anonymous said...

I require everyone to do their independent reading-type things during our 90 minute quiet time each day.

I admit though, that since my 3 yr old rarely naps's become more and more stressful. Shhh!, Be Quiet!, Head On The Pillow!

*I* am very frazzled after Nap Time, and it used to be such a peaceful time for me (#5 is our first to not nap until almost 6 yrs old).

I'll have to think about your idea a little.

Have a great weekend!

mandi said...

We are out of the nap time phase, but we do quiet time every day at 3pm. This is usually on their beds (they share a room and have bunk beds) and they look at books for an hour. My eldest is a new reader, so she does some silent reading at this time. Sometimes, I let them color or play with legos during quiet time. As long as they are doing their own thing, the house remains quiet!

Bell said...

I didn't know we could listen to Your Story Hour on-line like this. Thanks for sharing that. I'm excited about it. I love glimpsing into your life. I appreciate your heart for the Lord and your gentle spirit.

Lecia said...

Thank you for sharing your day and how you do things. It is so inspiring to read about others make things work in their homes.

In a recent post you mentioned kefir smoothies for breakfast. Would you mind sharing your recipe? We have recently started using kefir and I am finding it difficult to get our smoothies to some out with a great taste. Thanks so much.