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Starting a routine Lock Rss


My little boy is nearly 4 months old; - I am keen to set a bit more of a routine with him; - At the moment his actions are still very much dictating our days activities.... rather than timeslots, etc.

Some days his daytime sleeps are for 30 minutes - other days 2 hours plus... - Should I be waking him.. and sticking to routine?? - I am of the mind that his body needs it if he is remaining asleep and don't lean toward waking him.. but it may mean his night time sleep isn't so long! -

Also any suggestions on what sort of activities we could be doing/playing to stimulate development at this age would be great to receive!
Maya was on a routine from the start, because Plunket told me she should be, it seemed to work well. At four mths, her routine was something like
7am wake and breasfeed
830am sleep
10am breastfeed and small amount of solids
11.30am sleep
1pm breastfeed
2pm sleep
4pm breastfeed and small amount of solids
6.30pm bath
7pm breastfeed and bed
10.30 last feed for night

If she woke in between those times I would give her floor time, or put her in the front pack. If she wasn't awake by feedtimes I would wake her. I would also wake her at 10.30pm for a breasfeed and then she would sleep thru till 7 the next day.
The routine worked well for her. As a newborn she fed three hourly with sleeps in between during the day, and by 7 weeks she was sleeping 8-10 hours every night without waking.
Good luck, but also remember that not all babies like routine

Mum to Maya Grace 02-03, Sienna & Mercedes 10-06

Hi, I feel it's important to start a routine but it is also important to be flexible and to go with the flow.. I kinda had timeslots but the daily routine was affected by his length of naps. But my daily routine up to 7 mths was 5 feeds every 3 hrs and it was feed, play, sleep. On the whole this worked well.
Suggestions for activities might include tummy time, musical toys, reading of books, playing in front of a mirror, video such as play school, playing with different texture such as scrunching, rough, smooth, play mats, Hope these help!!
Hi Milkshop
It does feel that way some days doesn't it.
I've just had a look on my sheet which I got from my health centre. Its about how much sllep babies should be getting a day. its got for a 3 month old which is 15 hours total, and a 6 month old its 14 1/4 hours total. It depends on how much your little one is getting at night (the sheet says day and night sleeps). I found that if I followed the total amount of sleep he needed, and some days do vary depending on activities, he set his own routine that became quite flexible.
He now sleeps from about 7-8pm until 6am wakes for a feed. Back down straight away then goes until about 9-9:30am. He has 2 sleeps a day but the length will vary but they're usually about an hour at least.
Hope this is of some help. If you want I could email you a copy of the table I try to go by.
You can email me at [email protected]

member since 2004

Hi : - Thanks for your suggestions.

From what I have recently heard - some bub's sleep for 8 hours in the night and some are still waking every 3-4 hours.. whereas there doesn't seem to be any REALLY huge differences in routine... it just depends on the baby.

One area I have trouble with is the feeding; as Zac generally demand feeds, - he also sometimes suckles for comfort rather than hunger/thirst.
If he doesn't get the breast when he crys - it then escilates (VERY LOUDLY) until he does so that it's not worth trying to stretch out the time should he demand earlier than the hoped for time slot in-between feeds.

I am going with his signs (i.e tired/hungry, etc) to plan our days and try and stick to the feed, play, sleep plan; rather than time slots.. I'll keep on working toward it! -
Hi Laura
Hope you got that sleep table. I found that feed play sleep didn't work with Liam as he would wake up about an hour or so before his feed was due so I modified it to play feed sleep. He was always sleepy after his feed but I'd been keeping him up trying to do the right thing then by the time I put him down he was over tired and a real bugger to settle.
Liam was also a comfort suckler so we introduced him to the dummy, he was about 4 months old before he could keep it in himself so it was propped in with a toy or rattle (naughty I know, but it worked). But it also depends if you want to give Zac a dummy, its no major problem for us as he only has it to go to bed or if he's tired.

member since 2004

Hi Kristy,
Thanks for the sleep table - I unfortunately couldn't view it on my computer.. - but went to Plunket on Wednesday & had a few queries answered, which helped.
I have tried a dummy with Zac, however he hates it - and screams when I try to put it anywhere near his mouth!
I'm now doing sleep, feed, play, feed, sleep! - I feel a bit like our routine is constantly changing; - especially now I am introducing solids - but hopefully I will soon find something that sticks!
A routine is good but I loathe to wake a sleeping baby. If i'm just hanging around the house then I let him do what he wants - but if I have somewhere to go then he needs to fit in with that - which most of the time he does
Hi Milkshop

My son is 4 & 1/2 months old and I'm still trying to get him into a set routine. The problem I'm having is that I can't stand being home every day so the days I go out - his routine goes out the window - I guess that's where my flexibility comes in.

I generally stick to the feed, play, sleep routine and he feeds every 3 hours. I do find that he is quite often awake before a feed so sometimes it's feed, play, sleep, play, feed, play, sleep etc...

His routine is something like this:
7.30am feed, play
9am sleep (he only sleeps about 30 mins at this time)
10am feed, play
11am sleep (sleeps about 1 - 1 & 1/2 hours)
1pm feed, play
2.00-2.30pm sleep (depends on tired signs as to when he goes down here, then will sleep till next feed)
4pm feed, play
6pm bath, feed
7pm bed
10.30pm dream feed, sleep

I keep Rory up between 4pm and 7pm to really tire him out then give him a quick feed at 10.30pm in the hope that he will start sleeping through the night - no such luck so far!

Anyway you've got to do what works for you as each baby is different. Good luck smile

Debs, NZ, Mum to Rory born 19/01/04

Up until 3-4 months Jacob was a terrible sleeper during the day. I would have to rock him to sleep every time then when I put him in the cot he would wake straight away or only sleep for about 10min. I felt as thought he was having 20-30 little sleeps a day. By the afternoon (when dad got home) he was grumpy and irritable. I put it down to Colic/reflux.
My clinic nurse recommened the feed, play, sleep routine. I went home and really preservered with it. After two day he was a different baby. He started taking the dummy which he had refused prior (making sleeping easier already) and stopped having to have a feed to go to sleep. He started sleeping for 1-2 hours in every 3-4 hour cycle. There are books available about feed, play, sleep or hopefully your clinic nurse could help.

Rach - Boy 03.02.04 & Girl 10.01.06


I have a 3 1/2 month old little girl and I try to stick to a routine as much as possible. Not that we have a routine really. She is having regular feeds between certain times of the day and I try to give her a bath between 5pm and 6pm. I generally let her sleep for however long she wants to. I also don't like to wake her up. She usually goes down between 8.30pm and 9.30pm for her night sleep. She will sometimes wake for a feed, sometimes two, but I try to leave her be during the nights. I want to get into more of a routine but I am not sure what sort of routine to establish yet. I am still a learning first time mother.
As for activities I have a Aquarium Bouncer, a huggies playmat, some rattles and toys with bright colours and toys which makes noises. I only give her a few to play with at a time, and I rotate these with each play time.

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