The 30 Minute Rule

November 12, 2007

I’ve implemented my first bedtime rule. Its more of a guideline than a rule, but I’m trying to own up to my despotism, so humor me.

The rule is that I will spend 30 minutes on bedtime, from teeth brushing until I leave the room. Ruby can choose how to allocate that time. She can spend 25 minutes on teeth, 4 on pajamas, and 1 on tucking in, if that’s what she wants. Surprisingly, once she got the concept, she decided that fighting over every brush stroke wasn’t a good use of her time. Neither was the violent pajama avoiding thrashing that has become common place. Tonight was the first successful implementation. Last night was the “daddy is a heartless bastard” road trial.

With that unpleasantness behind us, tonight Ruby really got into the spirit. She got brushed and dressed quickly. We had a story, and then she chose to use the remainder of her time counting. Yes, first to 20, because that’s how many minutes she had left. Then to 60, which was as high as she could count without loosing interest, then, after asking how many minutes she had left, to 15, and so on. The counting went on right up until the last minute, when we started to count to 60. We got to 20 and she said “Daddy, I want you to go away now”. SUCCESS!




  1. Comment by Dean

    Dean November 13, 2007 at 7:13 am

    We counted to 140 on the way to Grammy’s house yesterday. Keep up the fgood work. I like our concept, and may need to borrow it.

  2. Comment by Gramora

    Gramora November 14, 2007 at 5:29 am

    So how did night #3 go?!

  3. Comment by Tucker

    Tucker November 15, 2007 at 8:25 am

    So far so good! We had a single “Dad I neeeeeeeeeeed you” on Tuesday night, but I reminded her that she had had her 30 minutes, and now it was my time, and she settled right in.

  4. Comment by Allen

    Allen November 21, 2007 at 1:16 pm

    You guys are incredible! Keep up the great work!

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