Dominic is almost 4 months old right now and we have him on a pretty good schedule for right now. I thrive on routines/schedules so I wanted to get Dominic on one as quick as possible so that things could be a little more predictable around here. This is obviously not fool proof & it will most likely change as he gets older & his eating patterns change, but I wanted to share what we have been doing for the past couple of months.
In the first couple of months, it was much harder to stick to a routine because he was a newborn & was just figuring everything out. I would say we really started this schedule when he was around 2 or 2 1/2 months. I think this has helped him sleep so well through the night because he has learned what his daily/nightly routine is.
6am/7am/8am: Dominic will wake up to eat. If he wakes up at 6am, he will go back to sleep for about 3 hours, otherwise, he will be up for the start of the day. He will nurse for about 30-40 minutes.
***for this schedule, we will use 8am as the time he wakes up
8:40am: cereal time! This is a new step for us as we started cereal with Dominic a couple weeks ago. We do cereal twice a day now and he loves it! He gets so impatient waiting for me to refill the spoon LOL. It takes about 15-20 minutes for him to eat his cereal.
9am: play time! He will play on his piano gym play mat, do some tummy time, hang in his swing, sit with me & read books, etc for about 30 minutes or so.
9:30am: nap time! Dominic will go down for a nap in his pack and play, Mamaroo, or crib. He may not fall asleep right away, but it's kind of his relaxing time where he just plays with his hands, looks around, & then dozes off. This lasts for about an hour and a half. During his first nap of the day, I will pump for about 15-20 minutes so that I can use this milk for his cereal feedings. I will split this pumping session's milk into 2 servings.
11am: feeding time!
11:40am: play time!
12:15pm: nap time!
2pm: feeding time!
2:40pm: play time!
3:15pm: nap time!
5pm: feeding time!
5:40: cereal time again!!
6pm: play time & change into PJs
6:30pm: nap time!
9pm: final feeding of a bottle with pumped milk & formula (depending on how much pumped breast milk I have available.) Dominic is up to eating 7oz now and this has been holding him over until morning. John Paul will feed him during this time while I pump. I use this pumping session's milk for the next night's final feeding.
9:30pm: bed time! Our routine is to bring him upstairs, change his diaper, swaddle him up, lay him in his crib, & read a book together to him.
***I get up around 2 or 3am to pump again because Dominic is sleeping through the night & I want to keep my supply up. I use this pumping session's milk for his final feeding of the night as well.
So you'll see, he typically eats every 3 hours. Sometimes this varies and he will go every 3.5 or 4 hours. I always try to have his 2nd to last feeding at either 5pm or 6pm this way, we can end our day at around 9pm. Now this will also vary because it's not like he will wake up at exactly 8am, so it may be 7:45 or 8:05, but this was just an example that you could follow & fill in the times that work for you & your schedule. I eventually plan to move up his last feeding to around 7pm, but we have been making a lot of changes with adding in the cereal & starting to have him sleep with his arms outside of the swaddle because he is close to rolling over. I don't want to overwhelm him with too many changes at once so for now, this schedule works!
Basically our schedule is eat, play, sleep then repeat every 3-4 hours. It's really easy & makes his cries & needs so much more predictable. I've loved this & have just found this works really well for us right now. I know this is not for everyone, but thought I would share what has been working well for us :) During his naps I will do my daily house chore schedule which you can read about HERE. (<-- See, I love schedules HA!)
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If you use a different schedule, I would love to hear it because who knows, it may be something we end up liking better than this!!
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