Firstly, Duck goes to bed. Somehow, largely thanks to my hard working husband, the 11 month old whose sleep patterns nearly killed me has turned into a 1 year old whose sleep patterns are edging towards actual real-life normality. He goes to bed. Just like that. Then he's asleep. It's weird to be honest. I love it. But that's not the moment. After I lay a 'sleepy but awake' Duck (check me out, just like the books say!) down next to his huge Iggle Piggle (a cuddly toy that is almost as big as him), I come downstairs.
I find my big grown up, pant-wearing (as yet unsuccessfully) Bambi watching TV. None of your babyish shows for him anymore, oh no, now he's all about Gigglebiz, which is a bit like the Fast Show... a lot like the Fast Show, but with Mr Tumble in. Next to him is my husband who always, ALWAYS, gets tired when it's the boys' bedtimes. I like to think my mood-lighting and bedtime routine voice is just so soporific that even adults can't resist its charms. They are lying together on the floor, Bambi is awake, Daddy is more often than not, asleep. That's pretty cute, but it's not my new favourite moment.
My favourite moment of the moment comes next. When Bambi is pyjama-ed up, we go up to his new Peppa Pig themed room. He snuggles down in his Peppa duvet cuddling stuffed toy Peppa and George, with brand-new-for-Christmas Mummy and Daddy Pig next to his pillow. They haven't earned the right to be cuddled yet, but they are allowed pillow space. I sit on the floor next to his bed and read a story. In his old room, story time was in a chair and then he got into bed. There is no chair in the Peppa Pig bedroom so he lies in bed to listen. Christmas is over so the 45 day run of Alfie's Christmas has come to an end and we read different books each night. I like reading different books. But what I like most is the fact that Bambi now falls asleep while I'm reading.
The moment of utter peace and bliss comes when I'm reading and I glance over to see his eyes have shut. I keep reading in case he is in that lovely cosy half asleep phase and part of him is still listening, still aware of my presence. It's heaven. Both my babies are contentedly asleep, quiet and warm in their own beds. It's one of the few moments in the day I'm not thinking about anything else. I'm just there. Reading a story to myself and smiling.