We always tried to follow a routine when getting Evan to bed. After dinner Justin and Evan would go upstairs for bath time and some play time. Then I would bring up the bedtime snack, and we'd read stories and sing songs. A favorite story was the classic Goodnight Moon by Margaret Wise Brown. To make the story more our own, we would pile Evan's three bears on top of my head. When we got to the part where it's supposed to say, "And there were three little bears sitting on chairs." We substituted, "And there were three little bears sitting on Mommy's head!"
Mommy, Evan and the Three Bears
As Evan got a little older, he used more delaying techniques to put off bedtime. Storytime began to really get abused. It's hard to say no when a little boy says, "One more book!" Evan started to become a little bit of a bossy boots, too. After reciting Goodnight Moon from memory, we would ask him if he'd like to sing a song. At first we sang The Wheels on the Bus every night. It's a great song for a kid who's upset, because you can make it as long or as short as you want. You can use the traditional lyrics, or add your own. At about the same time Evan started to become fascinated with garage doors. He decided that shirts were similar to garage doors. If my shirt was a little up and my belly exposed, Evan would tell me, "You're garage door is open, Mommy." He had to incorporate this new and exciting information into his song. So, his new verse was "the wheels on the garage door go up and down...." We also had the wheels on the Mommy (and I would do a corresponding movement), and the wheels on the Daddy. He'd even ask for the wheels on his Bear Bear. We enjoyed his creativity, but I think Evan was just testing the bedtime limits. And getting an amusing little show to boot.
Evan at Bedtime