Ask the Mamas: Witching Hours

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Mama Say What?! reader MacKenzie S. asks: “How do you survive those late afternoon witching hours?”

Witching Hours: The time between your little one’s afternoon nap and dinner; typically 4-6 pm.

When all else failed, I could turn on the original Bambi movie. The narrator’s voice was like a sedative and my girls would be asleep in minutes. Short of that, being outside helps. The worst part for me was that during their witching hour, I was the most sleepy. ~Sue F.

First off, I make a fresh cup of coffee. Then, depending on the weather and how crazy my daughter is acting, we will go for a walk, pull out old toys she hasn’t see in a few weeks, put her in a big bubble bath in Mommy and Daddy’s tub, or build a fort for her to destroy. If she is acting crazy because she needs a little nap or is hungry or thirsty, I obviously address those issues first! ~Michelle W.

I didn’t know those hours had a name! When I was a stay-at-home mama, I dreaded those hours more than any other time of day. I would try to take the kids to the park, take a walk around the neighborhood or do a quick errand to help pass the time before dinner. But as a working mama, it’s no longer an issue. My husband gets the kids and gets home around 4:30. I am home by 5:00. We get dinner on the table, eat at 5:30 and then have baths, playtime, TV time, reading, snuggles and bed by 7 p.m. Our evening flies by and we wish we had more time to spend with them while they are awake! ~Mary Ellen M.

Hmmm… witching hour for us (We called it something else when I was working and now I am blanking) is NAP time in this house! I still need a cup of coffee around that time to keep me going. On the rare day that N isn’t napping, he does have rest time in his room or we play outside/go for a walk. I am not looking forward to the day that he no longer naps. ~Cari H.

That’s nap time in our house at the moment. And when he wakes up, he usually helps me cook dinner. So we don’t really have a witching hour anymore. Even when he was younger and I was a working mama, I came home and we just played while my husband or my mother-in-law cooked dinner. When I was home, I could usually put him in my baby carrier on my back and either go for a walk or start cooking dinner with some loud music on and he’d be a happy boy. On the rare occasion that he doesn’t take a nap these days, I try really hard to keep him from getting bored with some sort of activity; either riding his bike outside, walking to a local park, playing with Play Doh or sometimes even a quick trip to the grocery store for a change of scenery does the trick. I have no idea how that will change once he’s done napping or when our second baby is thrown into the mix! ~Alex T.

Since P is a little older (3.5) he hits the crazy, tired stage when he is fighting being tired. So I make that bath time. Then he gets in his pjs, a few minutes of play time, and then into bed with a movie for night time. ~Amanda P.

By Michelle W.

Michelle W. is a first time mama to Elizabeth, born in December 2012. She is the wife of a Marine, loves to sew, read, work out, and loves being a home manager (house wife). Her weaknesses are staying on a budget, almond sparkling wine, and Instagram. She tries to be the best wife and mommy possible, and believes there are no bad days, only bad moments.

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