Christmas is a hugely exciting time for children, with a heady combination of presents, Father Christmas, family visits and plenty of sweets and treats to keep them on maximum overdrive! However, it is all too easy for the festive season to become both physically and emotionally draining for both you, and the little ones. Excitement and over-stimulation can rapidly lead to long, broken and sleepless nights! So what can you do to help your children sleep – particularly on Christmas Eve, when they are tempted to stay awake and see the reindeer land on the roof!
Keep them active during the day
Physical activity is key to tiring children out. Don’t let them stay cooped up indoors and slumped in front of a digital screen! Wrap them up warmly, rope in a willing relative, and take them out for a long walk, bike ride or adventure trip of some kind. A forest walk, dog walk, beach-comb, or playground session will help to use up their energy and give them plenty of fresh air and exercise!
Stick to routines
Christmas Eve can rapidly descend into hysteria without the calming nature of familiar routines. Start the day with a proper breakfast, make sure the children do their regular jobs and activities, and keep things as normal and calm as possible – with fun treats scheduled in at planned intervals. Don’t resort to sugar and TV to keep them entertained, try art and craft activities, or baking.
Make bedtime calming
As bedtime approaches on Christmas Eve, take time to wind down. Give the kids a bath, read a Christmas story and give them a warm milky drink for relaxation. Dim the lighting and opt for Christmas candles for a calming glow; this will relax the pace down as much as possible. Ensure they have a comfortable and warm bed to climb into. Little hands will soon start to rub eyes, and bedtime will follow – especially when you remind them that Father Christmas only comes when children are asleep…
This post is a collaboration with Children’s Bed Shop.