Our 3-1/2 year old is quite the negotiator. We have noticed that his bedtime routine has gotten longer and longer, and that each night he is sure we are forgetting something that is very crucial to his night time happiness. It is also very important to him that things be done in a certain order.
So, to rein things in, and have his buy-in, I decided we would make a little picture-bedtime-chart. It shows everything that is supposed to happen before he goes to bed (each step in its proper order) so that we are more or less bound by contract. Hopefully this way we will not have to jump through all sorts of extra imaginative hoops for the sake of his daily whims. I am planning to have it printed larger than our standard paper-sized printer will allow and then have it laminated. I also think it will be useful for those rare times when we are not home to put our son to bed. This way he can't accuse his grandparents of doing it wrong, as he always does.
Postscript: I submitted this to ohdeedoh where it was actually published! I was really excited about that until I got some flack for posting a picture of my son on the toilet to a national website. I must admit the comment stung. Here's my deal: I am not one of those paranoid people who believes the world is out to get my family. Yes, it is true that I have no control over who views a parenting website about design, but it's a parenting website about design! Come on, people! I refuse to live in a world where I am subjected to fear about "those" people who *might* be out there. I did not show any private body parts and all of these pictures are pretend, taken to create a diagram to help him feel better about his nightly routine. Perhaps I should have substituted that picture for some cartoon when I submitted it. Honestly, the thought never occurred to me. So, judge me if you will. In another day, my post on ohdeedoh will be buried under many, many more posts equally harmless and forgotten just as fast. I monitor my own websites very closely. More importantly, I monitor my children very closely. I wish we lived in a world where we could all be more civil and friendly when we are navigating the anonymous world of the internet. Too many comment strings end up so negative and sarcastic.
Thanks also to Get Buttoned Up, who also picked up my picture chart! Overall, I am feeling the love!