Meg, the 4 year old has a really great bedtime routine, in his own room, and can fall asleep by himself (books, etc, kisses, say goodnight, and I can leave him in bed awake).
The now-almost-6 month old really does have a "bedtime" of her own body rhythm - she gets tired and wants my undivided attention for jammies, nursing, etc at about 7pm every night.
Actually, I haven't had much attention to give to this issue in the last couple of weeks, basically since I posted, because baby has been sick (cold, viral pink eye, ear infection, croup, all in succession, and now pneumonitis - ). She just got back on antibiotics to clear out the lung infection so ... in another 10 days I'm going to get on top of how to juggle the routine. So far mommal's suggestion of going back to the nightly bath seems to make most sense to me. If I can start doing that about 30 minutes before I expect to start getting my 4 year old to bed, I think the timing will be great.
When my 4 year old was this little I remember having a great bedtime routine for him at just 6 months, and I could sing him his lullaby and lay him down and he would fall asleep on his own, even then. He's always been a terrific sleeper and I'm hoping to help baby become one, too.
After she gets over all this sickness, that is. Poor little babe...