Wednesday, January 5, 2011

A Schedule for Judah: Part 1

Now that the holidays have come and gone, so has Judah's schedule.  The poor little guy dealt with a lot these past two weeks and many will testify he handled it all extremely well.  Between the traveling, sleeping in many unfamiliar places, and meeting lots of familiar and new people he was bound to get overwhelmed at some point. I think it all came to a head Saturday night after my Dad left when we couldn't get Judah to fall asleep.  It was already 8pm when we tried to put him down but he refused to sleep until nearly 10pm.  His behavior was very strange because it seemed he had forgotten how to fall asleep on his own, in just one night, a skill I thought he'd mastered weeks ago.  Can that happen?  Well it did and the past few nights have been rough. So here is the schedule I have carefully designed around our weekly activities and with God's help will hopefully adhere to.  This is considered to be a parent led schedule.

Mind you, I did leave a half hour leeway in between some of the times because I know days won't always be perfect, but I am going to keep the eating schedule as strict as possible.

7:30/8:00 a.m. ------- wake up, diaper & outfit change, vitamins
8:00 a.m.----------------- nurse
9/9:30-10/10:30 a.m.- nap (Relax & Read my Bible)
11:00 a.m.--------------- nurse & solids
12:00-1:00 p.m.------- nap (Clean up around the house)
 2:00 p.m.---------------nurse
2:30/3-3:30/4 p.m.--- nap (Start Dinner)
5:00 p.m.--------------- nurse
6:00 p.m.--------------- solids
7:00 p.m.--------------- nurse & night time routine
7:30 p.m.--------------- bedtime

Now I chose to stick with a stricter schedule (meaning nap times & eating times) to make our days more predictable for Judah, productive for me, and practical for the both of us.  I had gone the way of feeding on demand and putting him down for naps only when he was tired, but this was not working for us and was only resulting in many sleep-less nights (we always manage to get some sleep.)  Since I stay at home, I consider this to be my job and most jobs have schedules, or at least a beginning and an ending time.  My good friend Rachel also reminded me a while back that God is a God of order and that is what I desire, is some order.

*Important Note: I am not saying to wait until exact times to meet the needs of your child.  Of course if they are hungry or tired, feed them or put them to sleep, but the idea for me was to try and reach these times by either adding or subtracting say 15 minutes at a time so that eventually he will be hungry and tired at the same times everyday.  Also note, this is an okay schedule for a 6-month-old.  I would not use this for an infant who obviously needs to eat & sleep much more often. The links below should be able to help you create a schedule at any age, when you are ready.  Like I said before, I carefully constructed this schedule by doing research, comparing notes with sample schedules, and trying to make these times coincide with our weekly activities.

Some Websites on Scheduling Your Baby:
Baby Schedules
Should I put my baby on a schedule?

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