Making the Most of your Bedtime Ritual: An Evening with Andrew Newman

On Friday, December 22, we were honored to host Mr. Andrew Newman, author of the "Conscious Bedtime Stories" children's book series.

Andrew led us through a thoughtful presentation about the crucial importance of the last 20 minutes of a child's day. His talk was especially poignant for our community of working parents, for whom his quality-over-quantity message most aptly applied. Citing recent neuroscience and developmental psychology, Andrew described how a child's psyche processes the day's events as they sleep. He recommended taking these few minutes before bed to drop everything, breathe, and be fully present. Teach mindfulness. Listen to what they have to say about their days (this is often when kids really open up). Create soothing rituals. Touch them. Connect.

In Andrew's own words: "Conscious storytime -- the last 20 minutes of each day -- helps children integrate their day's lessons and experiences, allows them to let go of negativity, and fall sleep feeling safe and loved. Together at bedtime, taking relaxing breaths and discussing the day over a sweet story, you foster a familial sense of belonging and conscious connection that will support your children through the rest of their lives. That's why we created The Conscious Bedtime Story Club."

Each of his 12 stories (subscribe and have one delivered each month for a year!) features a beautiful story imparting a concept like mindfulness, self-acceptance, silence, and mind-body wholeness. Each story begins with "a snuggle breathing" exercise and ends with an exercise relating to the principle the book centered on -- as well as a special sticker and a star to color in for each time the story is read!

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