Good morning gorgeous Mama's,
I get lots of questions about Harry's routine, and I know when I was pregnant, I was eager to know what other mothers found helpful when it comes to a feeding and sleeping routine.
Up until about 3 weeks ago, Harry did not have a routine as such. He was fed when he was hungry, and slept when he was tired. I didn't try to get him into any routine, as I just let him decide what he needed. He has naturally gotten himself into a routine now.
From when he was born, he has always been a big feeder, and has been feeding every 2 hours since day one. This was quite exhausting during the night, as it sometimes took an hour to get him fed and back to sleep, leaving just an hours sleep before he was awake again. We tried giving him more milk but his little belly could only take so much.
He has been on Aptamil milk since he was born, but has been on the "hungry baby" Aptamil since he was 3 weeks old... As I said, he's a hungry little man!!!
He was originally using the Tomee Tippee bottles, but when he began having trouble getting his wind up we changed to the Dr.Browns bottles and he has been on them since. They really made his feeding easier and helped with any trapped wind. I also found that adding an extra ounce of water to the hungry baby milk helped too. The hungry milk can be a bit thicker so Harry feeds better with one extra ounce of water ie. 5 scoops of milk to 6 oz of water.
Below is an outline of Harry's "average" day :
6/7am wakes for bottle 6oz
7-9am playtime on his playmat or his bouncy chair
9am bottle 6oz
9.30am 1 hour nap in his cot
11am bottle 6oz
11.30-1pm playtime/tummy time
1/2pm bottle 6oz
I may head out at this stage of the day, and he generally sleeps when we are out and about.
5pm bottle 6oz
5-7pm playtime with daddy
7.30pm bottle 6oz
8pm into is cot with his mobile on
He usually takes about 10 minutes to not off.
11pm dream feed 4oz bottle
He will then sleep through the night until 6/7am
Please bare in mind that this is just an average day. Each and every day is different, and some nights he will wake at 3am for another bottle. Or for example, last night he fell asleep after a 6pm bottle and slept right through to 6am with no dream feed.
Dream feeding is the process of lifting your baby while they're asleep and feeding them, usually between 10-11pm. It doesn't work for every baby, but seems to be working for Harry and stops him waking from hunger at 3/4am. I find leaving the light off, and not speaking to him or stimulating him is the best way to keep him asleep. Because his body is so relaxed, he barely has any wind, so the feed takes less time than usual.
My only advice I could give to any new mums, would be to just listen to your little baby, and let them lead you. I know it's different if you have other children, and you may need them to follow a set routine to make your life more manageable, but I found letting Harry lead the way worked for us. I don't allow him to get worked up from hunger. If he is hungry, I feed him. When he's tired, he sleeps. He has been a very relaxed and chilled out baby so we have been so blessed.
Harry is in his cotbed in our bedroom, and I have no intentions of that changing anytime soon. He has his own nursery right beside our bedroom, and I know he would be fine in another room, but I am not quite ready for that yet... (clingy mama!!!)
All babies are different, and I know Harry's routine could go out the widow tomorrow and he could be completely different, but for now, we are following this routine.
If you have any questions about feeding, sleeping or any other baby related queries, please get in touch with me via Facebook, Instagram or email (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Lots of love,