Lately, my youngest son has wanted to “race” me up the stairs at bedtime.

I really believe in routines and bedtime routines are the best ones of all. After bath time, we have snacks while watching a favorite show. Once the clock strikes bedtime, the TV goes off and we go upstairs for teeth brushing and story time.

I am not sure how it started one night but the five-year-old wants to race. Sam also wants to win. He knows if he starts the race before we hit the stairs he has a better chance of winning. Because our house was built at the end of the Arts and Craft era in the cottage style, the stairway is nice wood but small. There are chances for spills if you are not careful.

We start at the entrance of the living room that has a three foot break to the stairs. Sam makes the count down while making sure I do not start early. He yells ‘go’ and we start. But he edges out me out on the stairs. They are narrow and do not allow an adult to pass a child easily.  If I wanted to push the kid aside and let him fall down the stairs, I could win easily.

But then that would involve crying and screaming with my husband wondering why winning over a five-year-old on a race to the upstairs bathroom would over-ride my otherwise good sense. Plus it would take forever to get the kid calmed down again.

So I let him win, especially when he makes the last minute call for the bathroom which requires a sharp right turn. Being smaller and more agile in some respects, he wins every time. It is a last minute bit of pre-bedtime fun. Once we start brushing teeth and reading that book sleepy time is in full swing.

So on to the races we will go every night until they are no longer wanted.

Karyn Bowman is also known as Mom Goes to the Movies. She lives in Kankakee County with her outdoor writer husband and four children. Become friends with Karyn on Facebook.