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By Jennifer Curnes
In my younger years, Fall Daylight Saving Time was one of the best days of the year because the bars stayed open for an extra hour longer and all I had to be awake for was the 11:30 a.m. bottomless mimosa brunch. But now that I have kids, it is my least favorite day of the year because it means my kids are up an hour earlier than usual. And actually probably even earlier. (It’s the weekend and we all know how much our kids love getting up extra early when there’s nowhere to be.)
But what about all those fool proof action plans to get your children ready for the time change? It works for .005672 % of the toddler population. It works for the same kids that the “Ok to Wake!” clock works for. So like I said, .005672% of the population. If that applies to you, I envy you and highly recommend you follow one of those plans. But for the rest of us that have children that weren’t born good sleepers, I have my own advice for how to get through Daylight Saving 2016.
Daddy Day Care – This plan actually requires eight weeks of planning, as well. If your household runs like mine, you alternate weekend morning responsibilities with your husband so that each of you gets a morning to sleep in. So it’s your job to find out far in advance what weekend the time change happens and then create a calendar that puts your husband on duty that morning. Seriously, put it on your shared Google Calendar. He likely will have no clue about the time change until the day before and then you just have to act completely shocked when he realizes that he got totally screwed. Sucker.
Baby Wants Candy – If you can’t pawn your children off on somebody else that morning, then you’re stuck with them at 5 a.m. when they wake up. AND THERE IS NOTHING TO DO AND NOWHERE TO GO. No play space, museum or grocery store opens that early. How is it that nobody has thought of having a “Fall Back into Savings” event that starts at 6 a.m. and targets families? BIG mistake. So it’s up to you to find something for your kids to do. Be the one who hosts a big romper room that starts at 7 a.m. Invite all of your friends with kids because misery loves company. All you have to provide is coffee because breakfast will be served in the form of leftover Halloween candy.
Party Hearty– Want to head out for a late night after your kids go to bed? I’m here to tell you…DON’T DO IT! There will be people there who don’t have children and they’ll be raging extra hard because of the bonus extra hour. You’ll get caught up in all of the excitement and think that an 11:30 p.m. Fireball shot is a good idea. But a hangover only makes matters worse when you’re up with your kids five hours later. Save your partying for another night. I recommend the night before the next Spring Forward Daylight Saving time. Even with a nasty hangover, you’ll be one hour closer to bedtime the second you wake up.
I wish you the best of luck. Know that you’re not alone. And if you’re reading this and it’s too late to use any of these suggestions, know that next year Daylight Saving Time starts on November 4th. You’ve got a little over a year to start planning.
Jennifer Curnes is a stay at home mom of two living in Chicago. When she’s not counting down the minutes until bedtime you could find her eating Nutella out of the jar with a spoon or writing about it at http://