Charlie is a Master of the Art of Procrastination. An unfortunate affliction he inherited from his mother.
Which happens to be unfortunate for his mother.
As soon as Charlie (telepathically) knows that I am about to make the transition to his bedtime routine, he turns on the charm.
He pulls out all the stops in order to be as cute as possible, hoping that we'll sit there watching his antics and perhaps forget that he should be snuggled up in his cot.
He has the memory of an elephant, as any little thing throughout the day that had made us laugh, or even give a hint of a smile, is replayed for our viewing pleasure.
Then when we finally look at the clock and realise his bedtime was half an hour before and frog-march him down to his room, it suddenly becomes vital to him that we read his favourite book.
Then his next favourite book.
Then the next favourite.
And so forth down the pecking order of much loved books, right down to the ones he doesn't really like, but are worth dragging out just to stall a bit longer.
Tonight, he decided to add a new tactic to delay the final moments of bedtime. It was suddenly vital that he take every teddy in the room and put each of them to bed in his cot.
One by one. This went on for quite a while.
He has a lot of teddies.
And each one got a kiss and a cuddle. Before being shoved roughly through the bars of the cot and dumped haphazardly into bed.
(Note to self : Teddies will be leaving tomorrow for an extended visit to the linen cupboard or other out of the way destination.)
Finally, we reach our limit. Enough stalling tactics cunningly disguised as a display of cuteness and I pick him up for his goodnight cuddle and rendition of Twinkle Twinkle. He gives me a quick cuddle then points at his cot, almost ordering me to place him in it, and he happily assumes his sleeping position : bum up, hands tucked in, and falls straight to sleep.
For all that effort at delaying bedtime, he actually LIKES going to sleep.
I guess the stalling has now become part of the routine. And I must admit I love it.