There's this common misconception that baby's bedtime routine is peaceful...a time to unwind, yawn and fall blissfully asleep. The reality is that baby's bedtime routine is loud, intense and downright chaotic. There's a lot of action packed into a short period of time--think feeding, bathing, reading, etc., all before baby has a total meltdown.

Since baby's bedtime usually coincides with adult dinnertime, it's not surprising that mom and dad end up on the losing end of the home-cooked meal equation….even when mom is an expert nutritionist like Stephanie Middleberg. Yup, even the expert sometimes needs a break from being the expert.

Stephanie recently invited us and a professional home chef from Kitchensurfing into her home to show us how a little break from your routine can mean a lot of sanity. As you can see below.

It also got us thinking about a few ways you can make baby's bedtime a little less chaotic. And a little more delicious. Here's 5 of them.

1. Bring in some help for dinner. Not every home-cooked meal has to be home-cooked by you. Kitchensurfing chefs cook, serve and clean up, all in 30 minutes. They bring their own ingredients and equipment. Meaning a yummy meal and no dirty dishes. Hallelujah! Plus you can schedule it on the regular, so you know that once a week, your dinner is a done deal. Did we mention if you use our links you get a dinner for 2 for free?

2. Get prepped. Just like some people pick out their next day's outfit the night before, get all of your baby's bedtime tools prepped and ready to go before you're under the meltdown gun. Lay out baby's pajamas and swaddle. Pick out your books. Make sure the humidifier is filled. The less you have to do when you've got a cranky, crying baby, the better.

3. Reduce stimulation. We know, we know. Poor Dad didn't get to see that adorable baby all day. But right before bedtime is not a great time for some air tosses and a tummy time obstacle course. Try to minimize the action as you ease into the evening.

4. Move bathtime. Or skip it altogether. For some babies, bathtime is anything but relaxing. Just because all the books and TV shows make it look like bathtime is a necessary part of your nighttime equation, it doesn't have to be for you. Move baby's bath to first thing in the morning, or even post-nap earlier in the day. Or heck, just skip it when you need to. Baby needs some germs sometimes too!

5. Indulge in a glass of wine. Or a beer. Or a martini. Or if you're not the drinking type, indulge in something else. The point is: allow yourself a few minutes of “Mom time" after baby goes to bed. We know that sometimes life as a parent feels like Groundhog Day. Know that it feels that way for everyone, at least sometimes. So remember to take care of yourself too. You deserve a break.

Start your break now with Kitchensurfing. Sign up here and your first meal for 2 is on us! Yup, totally free. (Please note: delivery area is manhattan below 110th Street and Brooklyn zip codes: 11215 and 11217.)

This post was brought to you by Kitchensurfing.

Feature Photo by Desiree Walters Photography