"T for B," or "Time for Bed" is a nightly phrase either my husband or I say in the last few minutes before we turn off the TV and head to bed. I suppose in this texting day in age it should seem appropriate to shorten a common phrase by taking out five letters, but either way I think it is just sorta fun to say, "T for B." By the way, neither my husband nor I text.
Bedtime used to be such a set time and routine growing up. I remember our routine of bath time, brushing teeth, some times reading a book or two, or my dad or mom would tell us a story they made up, prayers and bed. My oldest sister, by five years, was across the room in her own room and I shared a room with my other sister who is two years older. Many nights we would stay up laughing and giggling in the dark playing games we made up like "Broken Record," which is when you repeat something someone says over and over until the other person can't take it anymore. My Dad would call from downstairs and say he wanted it quiet or he was going to have to come up there. To do what? I don't know, but it usually worked. Recently my dad told us he used to sometimes just put an ear out his bedroom door to listen to us giggle and would just laugh to himself.
We would toss our buddies, our favorite and torn up stuffed animals, across the room to each other in the dark, or if we were really not tired we would play shark. Shark was when one person tried to get to the other bed while someone pretended to be a rock in the water on the floor. Our carpet was dark navy blue so it was very realistic. The rock would come alive and trick the swimmer who would try to get the the other side without being caught and pulled into the water. You can imagine this game was hard to play quietly.
Games were not limited to bedtime. We also had early morning games. And when I say early, I mean early, like before programs were being broadcast on television. We used to get up and dance to the music they played on the TV when all you could see was the rainbow stripes on the screen. If my mom heard us she would usually give us some saltines and send us back to bed.
A favorite morning game was playing My Little Ponies or Queen of the Mountain. We would pretend to be a queen by standing at the top of our bed and pulling our blanket up to our shoulders like a cape. Seems really simple, but when you throw a costume like this on and try to talk in a British accent it's amazing what non sense conversational improv can go on between two little girls.
I loved my bed being next to the window. I remember when we moved to that house from our other house, when I was four, my mom said that I could still have my bed by the window. My bed was against the window at our old house and right outside was a tree with a robin's nest. I hated to leave that. The new window was much higher up, being on the second level, and there was still a large tree. I had a great view of the backyard and could see all the way to a very large hill where there was a horse farm. We used to ride our bikes there and feed the horses carrots and talk to a really old, scruffy man, we nicknamed Oscar the Grouch.
Once when my mom was hiding chocolate Easter eggs in the yard for an Easter egg hunt we were having later that day, I stood on my bed during nap time and memorized where they all were. I could see the shiny silver wrappers glowing in the sunlight. My mom couldn't figure out how my sister and I had so many eggs in our baskets at the end of the hunt, and if I remember correctly made us give a bunch away to the neighbor kids.
My oldest sister once won an Easter egg hunt she did with my grandma because when everyone raced off to get eggs she ran way ahead of the group and worked backwards, grabbing the eggs furthest away first instead of the ones right out in front. My grandma used to laugh telling the story because when she asked my sister, who was about four at the time, to give some away she wouldn't. Talk about competitive strategy at an early age.
Yes, I had a wholesome up bringing. Bedtime stories, Easter egg hunts... What can you say growing up in the Midwest in a Catholic family with all girls and two hard working parents. One being a special education teacher and the other a CPA of a packaging company.
I have great memories of growing up. I think a lot of people tend to think kids today have it so different, but really doesn't it seem like every generation tends to think that same thought. I think we just miss the days when someone else told us when to take a nap and head to bed. We could rely on others to keep track of time and make sure we were getting enough rest to make the next day so enjoyable.
So, sometimes when my husband says "T for B" with a big yawn and I'm not feeling all that tired, I think, yeah it probably is. The funny thing is that a few minutes after I put my head down on the pillow I usually fall asleep. So, I try to remember another phrase my dad says a lot, "You need your rest." It's so true, even when we don't realise it.
"Sleep tight! Don't let the bed bugs bite!"