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Help with routine!

(12 Posts)
charl25 Wed 15-Oct-08 10:46:18

hi all,
sorry, this isnt the most exciting topic, but i just wondered how abouts to start getting a routine going for my 4 1/2 month old son.
Up to now, we're just kinda winging it, but i think we should have some sort of structure to our day, and we also want to try and help him self sooth himself to sleep(at the minute we go through crying fighting sleep)
He always gets up at about 6am in a kinda hungry but happy mood-no matter what sort of night hes had. And we always put him down around 7-8pm, the rest is just hit and miss!
any advice or examples of your routine would be great
(please not too many mums with perfect babys who sleep through, dont make a peep all day etc please, lol, only kidding)

many thanks x

nondomesticgoddess Wed 15-Oct-08 13:22:55

My ds is 6 months and I have loosely followed gf with him since he was about 6 weeks. It works for him and it also worked for dd who is now 2.

Doesn't work for everyone but at 4.5 months it is roughly -
7am wake up followed by milk
9am nap for about 45 mins
10.30am milk
12.00 nap for about 2 hours (doesn't always happen for as long as that!)
2.10/2.30 milk
4/4.30ish sleep for 30 mins (especially if lunch nap was short)
6pm bath and pjs
6.30 milk and story
7pm bed

If ds wakes up earlier, I adjust the first sleep accordingly (if he woke up at 6, I'd probably put him down around 8.30 and let him sleep longer).

This might not be what you're after at all but it has worked wonders for me!

LunaFairy Wed 15-Oct-08 13:24:13

At the moment I would think 3 naps a day would be most beneficial to your little one.

As he is getting up at 6am, he will be tired within a couple of hours after morning feed. The fighting sleep happens to most babies/toddlers. If you remain consistent with your routine, it will get easier for both of you. I'm a great believer in routine. Babies and children need thrive on it.

A little down the line you'll get into a routine when he can hold out for his morning nap until about 10am and then have another nap after lunch.

It will fall into place. You sound like you're doing everything right in my eyes.

nondomesticgoddess Wed 15-Oct-08 13:25:02

Oh, I forgot to say, both my dc very quickly learnt to self soothe following this routine, although to begin with they would cry for up to about 10 minutes before falling asleep. Not proper screaming, just a little whittering.

LunaFairy Wed 15-Oct-08 13:35:54

I did have to introduce a soft toy or blanket to my ds, this helped him feel secure. When I worked that one out, he was great at getting himself to sleep.

charl25 Wed 15-Oct-08 13:39:04

thanks, everyone is very mixed when it comes to the having a routine opinion, but i decided i needed one so a year down the line we wasnt just running around all day and night!
ive heard of that book, but heard its very strict?
any advice on how i shold start to apply these steps? eg, if hes sleepy at wrong time, try and keep him awake etc?

HelenMc1 Wed 15-Oct-08 13:39:58

I agree with LunaFairy in that aim for 3 naps a day making sure the last one isn't too close to bed time, so by 7pm he is knackered.

My son is 9 months and I have found when it comes to bed time get him tired to the point of grumpiness, turn down the lights (in whichever room he sleeps) and give him a feed. This is the aspect of his routine that I stick to religiously and it has worked wonders. He knows that it is bedtime and even if he is not ready to go straight off he will lie in his cot and chatter himself to sleep in about 10 mins.

nondomesticgoddess Wed 15-Oct-08 13:46:10

If you follow gf to the letter it is very strict (and can look very daunting) - to the point that it tells you what time to eat your toast and drink your juice! However, I found that she does have lots of good advice in and among and if you can bear to read it with a pinch of salt, it can be really useful.

Ds was always sleepy before the morning nap time but I could usually disrtact him with a change of scenery (eg play on the bed for a little while) or by changing his nappy and getting him dressed. Sometimes, if he seemed really exhausted then I'd just put him down a little earlier - it seemed to work out ok by then end of the day!

Also, both of mine sleep with muslins which they chew on corners of to help them sleep.

charl25 Wed 15-Oct-08 13:53:20

i guess i might give that book a look. He always seems to wake up before hes refreshed, and then have to spend ages trying to get him off again! I guess its my fault for not doing the same everyday, he dont know where he is. also how does it work if you have to go out or something? will your dd's & ds's stick to it easily enough?

LunaFairy Wed 15-Oct-08 14:04:52

In the early days, I went out in the mornings between naps. I just found this easier until my ds was older we had more time in between morning and afternoon nap to do things.

I had to stay regimented with my routine as I became a childminder when my son was only 7 months old. If I did fall out of routine then my day would fall to pieces.

charl25 Wed 15-Oct-08 20:22:25

your so brave, i struggle to look after one! thanks for advice everyone, i'll keep you posted how i get on!

nondomesticgoddess Thu 16-Oct-08 19:32:30

When I started on the routines, I tried to keep to the times fairly strictly for the first few days. Once the 'routine' is established you can then be more flexible.
I like the timings of the GF routine because they give you plenty of time to get out and about. Most baby groups around here start at 10 or 10.30 so as soon as ds wakes up we're off out. Then in the afternoon you have another good chunk of time to go out.
Good luck!

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