Life with a four-year-old and a two-year-old has gotten very hectic lately.
With a busy daily schedule, I’ve been trying to incorporate a calming wind-down routine in the evenings that is relaxing and transitions the kids to a quieter mode in preparation for bedtime. I’ve learned that our evening routine is much easier if we allow for transition time, which includes turning off the television and all media, picking up the toys, preparing for bathtime, storytime, prayer, and finally, the bed.
I wish it went as smoothly as that sentence I just typed.
Because inevitably, there’s an emotional breakdown from someone when the tv must be turned off or the last toy surrendered. The march upstairs is when they realize the day has finally ended, and they resist it with all of MY available energy. In fact, it’s so hard that I will admit, we don’t make it to bathtime or storytime every night. Sometimes it’s enough to just get them to their rooms, pray, and threaten anyone who gets out of bed before the morning.
Lately I’ve added a new twist to my routine: essential oils. Lavender oil is my soothing secret weapon, my personal remedy when life is getting out of hand quickly. I’ve been dabbing a few drops of Young Living’s lavender oil on my wrists and rubbing it on my temples. And I sit for a moment and just inhale it, letting the relaxing lavender untangle my nerves and do its job.
So I’ve been adding this lavender to everything lately: to the kids bathwater, when I wipe down the baseboards, after I disinfect the kids’ potty and the diffuser, which releases light puffs of the oil and fills the first floor with a calm floral scent in minutes.
It’s not a miracle oil–my children have not suddenly turned into angels and obediently make their way upstairs to unwind. But I am more patient and less edgy, which I’m sure everyone appreciates. The kids ask about the new smell and during the last week, we’ve made it to bathtime, prayer time and bedtime, without incident.
So lavender is earning its keep in our wind-down routine and as a fixture in my self-care kit.
How do you wind-down in the evenings with your family? I’d love to hear your suggestions. Please feel free to share in the comments.