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Sleep Baby Sleep

January 16, 2015 20 Comments

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I’ve been asked by sooo many people how I got my son to sleep so unbelievably well.. but for some reason I just could not get myself to write it down. A couple months ago, my friend Taylor Chidester asked me if I would do a guest post for her blog www.rockabyebaby.wordpress.com telling my secrets for a sleeping baby.. so I FINALLY wrote down my fool proof sleeping schedule! I was super excited to share it on my blog as well but then.. I just didn’t because life got in the way! But seriously in the last week I have been asked like ten times for my schedule and I decided I needed to get it posted for all you new moms! Here you go! I call it…

How to stay sane, and have a baby.

The day I had my son was by far the best day on my life. The moment I held him in my arms for the first time I finally knew what life was all about… and then they told me to take him home. I remember thinking, “You guys are letting me take this tiny human home? I don’t even know how to take care of him! I don’t even know how to be a Mom! Or change his diaper!” The first night home was one I will never forget. I got pooped on while trying to save my son from choking on his spit up simultaneously.. The rest of that night I didn’t allow myself to close my eyes, not even for one second, fearing that if I slept then my son would definitely die from choking on his spit up.. And from that day on I NEVER PUT HIM DOWN. I was exhausted.. running on zero energy.. and still trying to enjoy the fun and excitement of having a precious newborn. At 6 weeks I decided that something needed to change. There was no way that me or my husband could hold our son ALL the time. That’s when I started searching for a solution. Do you want to know what the solution was??? SLEEP!!!! We all needed sleep. So I did my research. I read Baby Wise. I found articles on Pinterest. I followed every Mommy blog out there, trying to figure out what I was going to do. After getting bombarded with a plethora of opinions and sleep schedules and what not to do’s, I decided to take everything that I learned and make my own schedule that worked for my little family. The first night I tried it, my son slept from 10pm – 4am.. at 4am I gently rocked his crib and put a NUK in his mouth and he fell back asleep until 7.. The next night he slept all the way from 10pm – 7am.. AHHH! I wasn’t sleep deprived any more! I was energized and happy and able to soak in every single second with my new baby. Sleep let me focus all of my attention and energy on being a Mom and being the best one that I was able to be. So I would love to share the schedule that saved my families lives! Just remember that every baby is different. Every parent is different. And what works for others might be a nightmare for the rest. Or things just might need to be tweeked a bit to fit your baby’s needs. But I hope that this schedule will help get you Mama’s to where you are able to savor every happy moment with your baby!

I started my son on this schedule at 6 weeks.


 

7:00am – wake up, change diaper, feed

8:30am – swaddle and put down in crib for nap

10:00am – wake up, change diaper, feed

11:30am – swaddle and put down in crib for nap

1:00pm – wake up, change diaper, feed

2:30pm – swaddle and put down in crib for nap

4:00pm – wake up, change diaper, feed

5:30pm – swaddle and put down in crib for nap

7:00pm – wake up, change diaper, feed. In between this time and bed time it can get a little rough.. So I would try to do things that would keep my baby up.. interactive playing, go outside, take a bath, find something new.. my son actually ended up needing a 15 minute cat nap in between here to get through the 3 hour stretch.

10:00pm – bed time feeding.. do it in a dark room where it is quiet so they know it is time to go to bed.

 


At 3 months I felt a definite switch in my son. His schedule needed some changing. So I changed his schedule to a 4 hour schedule.


 

8:00 – wake up, change diaper, feed

10:00 – nap

12:00 – wake up, change diaper, feed

2:00 – nap

4:00 – wake up, change diaper, feed. Long stretch.. so once again do things that will help to keep your baby up. We always do bath time to get ready for bed. It’s good to have a nightly routine so they know that bedtime is soon!

8:00 – Feed and put to bed for a whopping 12 HOURS!


 

When my son reached 16 months, I felt another shift.. and I knew that the one nap schedule needed to be started. Now he takes his nap from 12-3 and he still follows our schedule perfectly. He loves to to take naps and go to bed. The next step is no naps… I have not idea what I’m going to do with that 🙂 the learning never ends!

Things to know that really helped me:

1. It is important to wake your baby up. Although, sometimes, it is tempting to just let your baby sleep a bit longer because they haven’t woken up.. It is so important to wake them up on schedule! This teaches them that they don’t have to wake themselves up when it’s time to eat. They develop a trust in you to let them know when it is meal time.

2. Putting your baby down without feeding them teaches them that they don’t need to nurse or suck on a bottle to fall asleep.

3. A lot of times, when your baby wakes up in the night, they aren’t actually fully awake. This is when you can let them fuss it out for a while (I know this is so hard) or rock their crib gently or put a binky in their mouth. DON’T PICK THEM UP unless absolutely necessary.

I followed these schedules religiously.. most days 🙂 Sometimes it’s okay to let your baby sleep in their car seat or stroller when you’re on the go. As long as you’re still keeping their schedule somewhat the same. If you feel you need to rock your baby to sleep every night then go for it. Every one is different and different things work for different people. We are all just Moms trying to do our absolute best! Good luck to you all!

Sleep Baby Sleep!

 

February 3, 2015

Eden Lee

20 Comments

  1. Reply

    McKenzie Cherrington

    June 3, 2016

    AHHH! My son just turned 6 weeks today & I have been dying & trying everything. I am starting this tomorrow! Thanks for sharing!

    • Reply

      ourpolka.com

      June 3, 2016

      You are so welcome! I hope it helps! Good luck!

  2. Reply

    Alma gaffney

    June 4, 2016

    I would love an update on how it goes this time around with a toddler in the home!(: how to juggle the two schedules maybe? Good luck!(:

    • Reply

      ourpolka.com

      June 4, 2016

      I’m definitely nervous this time around! I’m trying to involve my 2 year old in putting the babies down together so he doesn’t feel left out! Luckily his nap time is right after the twins eat and I can focus all my attention on him 🙂 I’ll definitely let you know how it goes!

      • Reply

        Alma gaffney

        July 7, 2016

        Does Knox wake up before the twins? I feel like my Toddler strives to wake up before baby brother does every day. Ha!

        • Reply

          ourpolka.com

          July 18, 2016

          Oh no haha! Luckily Knox usually wakes up an hour after the twins!

  3. Reply

    Sarah

    June 4, 2016

    I’m a PDF Baby Wise mama and my 6 week baby is “stuck” at waking up after 4 hours each night. Not bad, but would like him to start extending the night shift.

    We’ve been doing solid 2.5 hour shifts during the day since our son was waking earlier than the 3 hour shift was requiring.
    Then a 3 hour evening shift…
    5:30p feed
    tired by 7p, sleeps (sometimes) until
    8p bath time
    feeding by 8:15p
    in bed by 9p after 4oz bottle is done.
    –This allows us time to relax together, clean, shower, get in bed, until the Late evening feeding at 11:30p and then baby is down for the night – where he wakes up at 4a for a feeding and diaper change.
    **He’ll take a full 4oz bottle feeding at 4a.

    I feel like the baby wise mom blogs keep their baby up after an evening feed for 3 hours before putting baby down for the night. Is that the key? Keeping them up for 3 hours before everyone in the house goes to sleep?
    My husband and I tried it one time, baby slept about 6 hours, but we were upset at the lack of time we had together settling in for the night. Felt like we didn’t get anything done before bed because we were trying to keep our son awake for 3 hours.

    Any advice would be welcomed! Thank you!

    • Reply

      ourpolka.com

      June 12, 2016

      Hi Sarah! Figuring out a sleeping schedule that works for your family is hard.. It’s a lot of trial and error until you fall into a routine that just clicks for everyone! For us that 3 hour stretch of keeping the babes up was golden for us. It’s definitely a lot of work trying to keep them awake but it is so worth it for me. 7-10 pm is when we keep them awake and then at 10 they go down for the night until 6:30 am! I’m still waiting for them to get to 7 am. But at 10 pm I feel like my husband and I are able to have some time to ourselves. Enough time to clean up the house and maybe watch en episode of gossip girl 🙂 I also feel like with my schedule I have a ton of time for myself during the day because of all their naps! It just is what works for you and your baby! Good luck!!

  4. Reply

    Rena

    August 15, 2016

    Hi there! Thanks for posting this. I’m new to your blog. Just wondering how you handle early wake ups from naps? For ex. I’m trying out this schedule today and woke and fed baby at 7. He was awake until 815 or so when I started seeing yawns. I put him down and he’s been waking every few mins. Would you just continue putting him down until you reach the 10am wake up, even if he hasn’t gotten a solid nap in? Part of the problem is he’s very gassy and often wakes because he needs to burp and can’t get it out himself. Any thoughts would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!!

    • Reply

      ourpolka.com

      August 25, 2016

      Hi! So glad you’re here! So I would maybe try to keep your baby awake all the way until 8:30 even though you’re seeing yawns. I know it’s hard but I think it helps so much! And I would definitely not pick him up from the 8:30-10 am nap.. If he cries then go in and put a binkie in his mouth.. And just patiently wait through the cries! So hard! And as a mom you can tell if it’s a screaming bloody murder cry where you should definitely pick up your baby. I hope this helps! Good luck!

  5. Reply

    Brooke

    August 24, 2016

    Hi! I’m sorry- I know this was posted a few months ago but I have a question! What signs or what was the shift you noticed that drove you to move to 4 hours? I EBF and am feeling a sense that I need to move to 4 hours (my 6 month old son is not eating as well at 3 hours each feed and napping poorly when he used to eat and sleep AMAZINGLY).

    • Reply

      ourpolka.com

      August 24, 2016

      Those are the exact signs!! For sure try and change to the 4 hour schedule and I bet your babe will be so much happier! Good luck!

  6. Reply

    Megan

    October 8, 2016

    When did you start tandem feeding your twins? I want to start a schedule but I’m feeding forever at separate times because they aren’t big enough to feed without me using both hands! By the time I’m done feeding they’d have to go down for a nap and get zero awake time away from nursing!

    • Reply

      ourpolka.com

      October 8, 2016

      I actually started tandem feeding them right when they were born! It was pretty hard but I just wanted to master it right away! And now I feel like it’s easy for me and the twins because it’s all we know!

  7. Reply

    Ali

    October 19, 2016

    Hi Eden,

    How do you keep this schedule when you are out and about? I feel like I am in and out of the house constantly.. Shopping, time with family, etc.. & on vacation??

    Thanks in advance!!

    • Reply

      ourpolka.com

      October 19, 2016

      For me it all about schedule + flexibility! While your still in the thick of sleep training I definitely wouldn’t make tons of plans to go out.. Just like poddy training.. Try to stay home until it’s pretty much routine! And once you baby is pretty good at following that routine you can stick to it pretty well on the go! We’re on vacation right now and it’s definitely impossibly to completely stuck to a routine.. But I try to keep them awake when it’s time to be awake and when it’s nap time I lay them back in their stroller and cover it. Usually they wake up earlier from their map when we’re out but I still wait to feed them until their scheduled feeding.. It’s definitely harder than being home but I’ve just learned to roll with the punches! Good luck!!

      • Reply

        Ali

        October 24, 2016

        Thank you so much Eden! I will put these tips into practice. It helps so much to know we are not alone in this. (:

  8. Reply

    Brooke Eaves

    January 29, 2017

    Hi Eden! What did you do for the first 5 weeks? My son is 2 weeks old I’m trying to master a routine, or at least some what of one. Is 2 weeks too early to establish a routine? Also, ant tricks on fixing day/night confusion?
    Thanks!

    • Reply

      ourpolka.com

      January 30, 2017

      Hi Brooke! Gosh that first month is sooo hard! I do feel like 2 weeks is a little too early to start on this routine but what I would do was always try to stick to feedings at 6, 9, 12, 3, 6, 9, 12, 3… And so on. I would never wake my babies in the night though. So if they slept past 3 am I would just wait until they woke up and then try to get back on the 6, 9, 12 feeding times. And if they woke up before 3 am I would try to smooth them to sleep with a binkie. Good luck though! You can do this!!

      • Reply

        Brooke Eaves

        January 31, 2017

        This is so helpful! I’ll give it a shot. Thank you!!

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