It would seem my pre-mummy, delusional bedtime dream is shared by a primary school in Wisconsin, America.

According to a recently published article, this school kindly provided parents with a ‘helpful chart‘ outlining suggested times for bed proudly displayed on their Facebook page.

It served to help parents by outlining recommended times for bed sleep time in order to wake up at certain times wake time ie. If a 6 year old goes to bed at 7:00pm they will wake at 6:45am.

I’m guessing, maybe due to some kids falling asleep and snoring so loud it was distracting the others, someone over in the ‘clever ideas office’ decided to dream up a table and fill it with a load of shite of times and label it ‘Bedtime Table’.

Such is it supposed success,  I’m amazed my kid’s secondary school haven’t jumped on this bandwagon and put up a similar one.  I have it on good authority from my teenage son that ‘everyone’ falls asleep in lessons.

Not wanting to assume it’s the lesson that sends them to sleep I can only assume it’s probably due to not getting enough z’s the night before due to Netflix studying late.

Recently at school my son decided to have a quick ‘power nap’ but crucially forgot to remove the banned contraband from his mouth.  Waking suddenly to his name being shouted caused a choking reaction as he believed the ‘lump’ in his mouth was in fact a fly! apparently his relief was immense when he spat it out to find it was only his chewing gum.


Here in England the only FB page we have connected to both my kids schools are for ranting about anything school related sharing important fluffy information, such as recipe ideas for dinner and pointing out that again, no one is stepping up to the mark of helping on stalls.  Fresh blood is always required.

The Only In America chart recommends children aged five have 12 hours’ sleep.  I agree and would champion this if my kids were willing to listen.

It further advises children aged 12+ need between nine and 10 hours sleep.  I’m assuming that’s for the weekends, in which case mine are getting more than the recommended amount.

What the table doesn’t allow for is what to do when you put them to bed at said time and as soon as you are back downstairs they get back up!

However, on school nights it would seem unless they are all in bed and fast asleep by 9pm they will not get the required amount of sleep.  The chances of this happening in this house is as likely as me finding out Victoria’s Secret!!

A few parents, the kind that every school has, praised the guide commenting:

very true I follow this“.

even calling it “awesome”.

my favourite “we will show this to our kids if they complain”.

Wow they must have really easy to scare kids.  I can imagine the scenario here while arguing the toss about bedtimes and the injustice of it all, I whip out this handy bedtime chart and watch as my kids all recoil back to their beds.

But hey thats just a scenario, the reality would be them laughing while lobbing it in the bin, or more realistically the floor space surrounding the bin.

Back to the comments and thankfully, there were a few parents who said it how it was:

bet there’s not many who live by this table

” lol thanks for the laugh that is hilarious

and my favourite one “this chart was clearly written by someone who doesn’t have kids or doesn’t live in the real world” adding a more realistic view to the nonsense post.

I don’t know about anyone else but if you are one of the lucky few whose bedtimes are a non eventful process then I envy you.

Bedtimes don’t mean sleep over here, demanding bedtime means hours of negotiation, complaining and yelling.

Sometimes I find myself momentarily wallowing in the proud cloud, when after some tough negotiation talk I stop to think what great hostage negotiators they could all become later in life.

A lot of wandering around and sudden urges to chat about their day happens only on the stroke of bedtime.

All wandering is usually accompanied with a puzzled expression, usually mine as they don’t have their phone in hand and it’s a rare sight to see.

Questioning all acts of wandering the response is always vague and usually something mumbled about looking for something beyond any description.  However it adds a few extra minutes to the avoidance of bed.

Luckily I am on hand to intervene and provide reassurance that I will continue the search for ‘nothing’ once they are in bed.

In theory the table is a good idea for all parents who have never thought of trying this before.  So with NO parents left on planet earth who havent tried this or something similar it is clear to me its of no use to anyone.

Unfortunately I can offer no reassurance it gets better as they get older.  Our bedtime battle has been raging on for 16 years with no end in sight.  The arguments just get longer with longer words used!


09:00pm Bedtime warning rings out to deaf ears.
Repeat above.
Repeat above.
Apparently they all heard me the first time.
The unfairness of it all debate.
The homework he didn’t have is due in tomorrow.
Mum you have remembered it’s my school assembly tomorrow?
Has no idea what the homework is & no he didnt ask the teacher!!! Its easier to message his mates who don’t know either.
Shit what assembly?
Time for a wander the phone needs a walk.
Explaining why it’s NOT easier to go to bed in their uniform.
Guidance given on where to wander to.
Have I seen their library books due in tomorrow!
Wandering again, this time with added puzzled expression for effect
Kids all finally in bed.
Are they asleep? yes they must be they just said they were!
No they are NOT on their phones, why do I always assume they are?
Son shouts for phone charger for the phone he is not on.
 11-11:30pm Desperate for a drink they are dying of thirst x 4.
 Incoming text from son who is not on phone with breakfast order.
 Do I wanna hear about his day? NOOOOOOO!!!!!

Anyone else have a similar problem?

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So after a long & tiring pre-Christmas term of completing homework incorrectly, stuffing school bags, forgetting to pay school trips, under filling lunch boxes, causing headaches, way too many early mornings we were ready for the break!  Ooops sorry this isn’t about us parents, it’s about the kids, it’s always about the kids God love ‘em!

The long term had seen Ciara sitting her mock exams and Keelan just sitting..! Finishing school every day the threat of “I really need to revise” was said with real sincerity but alas all too quickly forgotten after the discovery of Gilmore Girls but she battled on, ever the optimist.

Meanwhile over at Primary school Niall had the embarrassment of wearing an ill-fitting Roman outfit for Roman Day.  Feeling overally smug and worryingly confident,  for not only had I remembered he needed a Roman outfit I had actually ordered it well ahead of time quashing any need for last minute panic runs to Sheets-become-Outfits aka Mum’s.

However, drowning in complacency, it probably wasn’t my best move leaving it until the night before for a fitting, doing that can only end in disaster, such as the wrong size, like Age 5-6 when Niall is 9, and we all know that these dress up outfits are always super small no matter what age is says!

Seeing him in all his attire with hat resting on top of head for effect purposes, I managed to hold back on laughing out loud.

I told him to look on the bright side.  It wasn’t about royalty so he could be the poor homeless Roman boy.  To carry this look off he would need trousers no longer than his knees, an ill-fitting top that sat just above his waistline with sleeves touching his elbows.  Luckily this outfit gave him all that!

Convinced and happy he skipped off to resume device attachment.

Fast forward to the beginning of term and the return of the School Morning Battle Cry, only for the eldest two,  the younger two still had another day to magnetise themselves to their devices.

Although, not one to miss an opportunity Niall was up early apparently unable to sleep, it was not for gloating to his brother that he didn’t have school.

With the battle cry sounding out from 6.55am the echoes of groans could be heard throughout, soon these groans formed silhouettes of what appeared to be zombies moving in for the kill but I’ve seen the Thriller video and those zombies were 100% more lively so I knew it was nothing more than teenage manifestation.

With breakfast over and moaning at an all-time high broken by the shouts of Keelan “Why has my button moved sides on my trousers”?  With a puzzled expression I sent hubbie in for clarification, after deliberation it was discovered that the trousers he had on were not his, they were in fact mine.

Naturally, it wasnt his fault but mine after all what the “hell were they doing in his wardrobe?” he asked.  My answer was simply “how the hell could you not tell they weren’t yours”?

I quietly pondered the idea if the button had been on the same side would he have actually walked out in my trousers……I would like to think he wouldn’t have.

On reflection this is the boy who put on his brothers school trousers once and wondered why they were short on him!

This little mishap was soon forgotten as the air was filled with screams of Hurry Up, we need to get going, what’s up with him, his attitude is so bad, he gets away with everything and that was just from Ciara, bless her always on hand to chip in.

With no urgency or worry Keelan announced “I can’t find my school shoes” this sent me into a frantic search, watched closely by Ciara and  Keelan who had the grace to remain calm whilst casually leaning against the wall checking his phone and occasionally answering “nope”, “no idea” and “how would I know”.

With hubbie on board the search continued, with a sudden lightbulb moment I remembered I had dumped them due to the sole hanging off as did the fact I had not replaced them.

So with great delight Keelan got to wear his trainers for the day, with me reminding him that they were expensive blah blah blah and they had better come home with him, intermittently interrupted by Niall repeatedly telling Keelan to have a “nice day at school”.

Well I can report first week back in and things are going well.  Ciara has had a few of her mock results back and considering she never so much as looked at a revision book she has done well, but is  nervous,  as today is the big day their results come out, and all sealed in an envelope!

Evelena has decided that I will no longer be helping her with her homework as she was so embarrassed when her maths was all wrong, and fair play to her she has kept to her word.  I will not be disputing this any time soon.

Niall not one to break with tradition remembered he had homework last night on the stroke of bedtime, and with no one willing or available to complete it for him, it was down to him to rush his way through it.

After 10 minutes talking a good talk and questioning what my problem was, after all I should be thankful he

a) remembered he had it

b) and ever so slightly grateful that I didn’t have to do it.

My failing to see this was classed as ‘moody’.  So after researching said requirements he produced an impressive sheet of scribbles, mostly illegible but this was the plan, I see the method in his madness.

Finally what is any new school term without the start of roadworks?  Why would anyone want to carry this out at a convenient time, no its best left until the kids go back that way we can all work on the same timetable.

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