Monday, April 09, 2018

#BathBookBed - Our Boys' Bedtime Routine ♥

*I have been asked to take part in the Book Trust's #BathBookBed charity campaign. My boys received a bundle of Peppa Pig goodies in exchange for this feature, however, as always, all thoughts and opinions expressed are 100% my own.

Did you know that we're a tri-national family who speak three languages? It's something I really love about our little family - a whole host of cultures coming together as one. 

I'm Irish born and bred, have lived here all my life and am an English speaker who has learned Irish/Gaeilge ever since I was four years old and began primary school.
Jacek was born and bred in South Africa, but his whole family is Polish - he's the only South African in the family! He embraces both his heritages and like myself, is a native English speaker but is also fluent in Polish and chooses to speak to his parents in Polish.

When we had our boys, Jacek and I chose to speak to them in all three languages - English, Irish and Polish, in an effort to teach the boys bits of each language and to strike up an interest in all aspects of where they came from.

Last year I took part in the Book Trust's #BathBookBed campaign and spoke about our perfect routine for a good nights sleep, and this year, whilst sharing this routine again, I thought it'd be nice to give an insight into how we embrace our tri-national tongues.

Lack of sleep is one of the hardest parts of being a parent with one children (I'm someone who cannot function with lack of or interrupted sleep...) and getting children to sleep can be one of the biggest challenges a parent faces day to day.

For us, a clear, set bedtime routine ever since the boys were newborns, has really helped in getting them to sleep and stay asleep too. Of course, like all families, we have had some sleep interrupted and hard nights along the way, but for the most part, our bedtime routine with the children really works.

I find there's nothing better than a warm, bubbly bath to help calm my wild boys down before bed. Both of them have such an excitable, adventurous and energetic personality, but after a bath they're calm, ready to be cosy and snuggle up for the night. Now that Beau is that bit older it's lovely to see the boys playing in the bath together and splashing is one of their favourite things to do!

After getting the boys all snug in fresh pyjamas I allow them to have some quiet playtime - and some warm milk, before taking them upstairs to bed.

The #BathBookBed campaign encourages parents and carers to include short stories as part of a child's bedtime routine and I'm a firm believer in the stance that all children should be read a bedtime story. It's one of the loveliest parts of the day and something we all genuinely look forward to. I love reading through books that I took enjoyed as a child and seeing my boys delight in their imaginary worlds and tales too.

Beau in particular absolutely loves books and has to have a stack of books by his cot for late night and early morning reading sessions. He's fascinated by books and anytime he wanders off you'll shortly find him with a book in hand.

Tyler is not an age where he wants to learn everything and recently he's taken a huge interest in the Irish language, so I've begun reading him books as Gaeilge (in Irish). I read through the story with him in Irish and then explain in English. His favourite Irish book at the moment is Bí ag Spraoi Liom, which we very luckily won from the lovely author Sadhbh Devlin. It's such a heartwarming story and it's great to see him taking such an interest in learning Irish with me.

He also has a big book of Irish focail (words) and I read through them with him. He's now able to count in Gaeilge from 1-20, say hello and I've begun teaching him the conversation starters. He's eager to learn and I love that he's interested in speaking in a language other than English.

Jacek also speaks to the boys in Polish, and whilst we don't have any Polish language books, we do have books sent from the boys' Babcia (grandmother) and Dziadek (grandfather) and that makes them special to the boys. Tyler has been picking up Polish words along them way and is able to greet his Polish pre-school teacher with a friendly czesc (hello) every morning.

I've learned that no matter what your heritage or what language you're able or wanting to speak to your children in, they will always have an interest in listening, even if at first they don't understand. It's amazing for me to have Tyler asking to be read to in Gaeilge, and he's happy to listen to the words being read to him and then have me to translate it them to English for him. 

I'm so glad we're able to embrace our tri-national heritage and pass on the stories and languages we loved and spoke as children to our sons.

You can print or download your own copy of the 'Bath, Book, Bed: Simple steps to a better night's sleep' booklet from the Book Trust. The booklet is full of helpful tips and advice from parenting expert Jo Frost on the simple steps parents can take for a better night's sleep. Daddy Pig - from the beloved kids cartoon Peppa Pig (my boys love Peppa!) also features in the booklet.

It's great to see the #BathBookBed campaign back for a third year and I'm delighted to be able to help spread the word again this year. It's a three-step bedtime routine that really does work for little ones and not only does it help encourage sleep, but having a bedtime story as part of a child's bedtime routine also makes for a lovely moment at the end of the day that sends them to sleep with nourished imaginations... and nothing could be more perfect than that.

Book Trust will be hosting a Twitter party on Wednesday April 11th between 8-9p.m. using the hashtag #BathBookBed.

The lovely people at Book Trust have very kindly offered up a lovely prize for one lucky blog reader too. The winner will receive the bundle of goodies pictured below, however, the books included with be random selections from Book Trust's Best Bedtime 2018 list and not necessarily the books pictured. So please only enter the giveaway if you're happy with that term.

Terms and conditions:
1. This giveaway is open to residents of Ireland and the U.K. only.
2. This giveaway will run for one week and will close at 11.59p.m. on April 16th 2018. A winner will then be selected at random via the Gleam widget.
3. The books included in the prize may not necessarily be the books pictured in the giveaway image. Two random books will be chosen from the Book Trust's Best Bedtime 2018 list.
4. Invalid entries will be deleted.
5. The prize is being sent directly from Book Trust, so by entering, you are giving permission for your details to be passed on to the person sending your prize.

Best of luck to all who enter!

Book Trust


  1. Enid Blyton's Magic Faraway Tree series, loved it

  2. I always loved Watership Down. At the moment my daughter loves Emily Brown.

  3. My little man just loves 'The Guffalo' fave was Alice's Adventures in Wonderland' x

  4. Matilda. I always wished I had her magic powers.

  5. mine was The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe, currently I am enjoying revisiting the Mr Men Series with my little Grandson.

  6. We’re going on a break hunt is my daughters favourite

  7. The Hobbit - for older children.

  8. My daughter really loves Albie and The Space Rocket

  9. Mine was Stig of the dump. Eldest loves any of the David Walliams books, middle one loves classics like Treasure island. Youngest adores Green eggs and ham

  10. we have so many, we both love Whatever Next though


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