I had Kara on a routine from the beginning and when Anastasia was born I knew that I will need to do the same. Of course in the first couple of days and weeks you can’t expect a new born to just follow it. But then later after 6-8 it will be different.
Babies and kids in general need to know what they can expect from their day. Now that Kara is almost 5 years old i am proved that even more. So many morning she wakes up and asks straight away:
“Mummy where are we going today?”
“Mummy what can i eat for breakfast?”
“Mummy can we make cupcakes today please?”
She can barely keep her yes open but she still wants to know.
So what is this routine that i am following with my girls?
Nap time usually comes after lunch: 12.00 – 14.00
With Kara the routine means that i am reading her a story and then she sleeps. If she is not disturbed than she could sleep up to 2 hours.
With Anastasia as she’s younger i breastfeed her and then she sleeps. Sometimes half an hour sometimes up to two hours depending if she had a morning nap or not. Now that she is almost 1 year old I am trying to get her used to nap only once a day.
Having them nap means that i get a break to relax. Sometimes i sleep too sometimes i just spend my time online or watching a movie.
In the evening the routine is more or less the same for my girls. The difference is that Anastasia goes to bed one hour earlier then Kara. This gives me time to look after them properly even when i am by myself.
17.30 – 18.00 – Dinner
18.30 – 18.45 – Bath time
18.45 – 19.00 – Milk time and sleep for the night
17.30 – 18.00 – Dinner
18.00 – 19.00 – Play & Cartoon
19.00 – 19.30 – Shower or bath time
19.30 – 20.00 – Story time and then sleep
Of course things are not always working exactly the same. Sometimes we are out and about and Kara might miss the nap or sleep in the car and Anastasia might just sleep in her pushchair or car seat.
However, 85% of the time the routine works. Even when I keep Kara up for a bit longer sometimes she reminds me that she is tired and I need to put her to bed.
Waking time is very early for us usually between 6 to 7 but we don’t mind it as it means that we have time to do more things together.
Anastasia usually wakes up before Kara – what can you do she is a baby.
Of course there are moments when Anastasia wakes up in the middle of the night but that is always for a good reason – growth spur and she needs to be fed more, teething, illness or developing a new skill.
Things is a good routine for your kids doesn’t always mean a good night sleep. Sometimes it just means that you need to get a break. It means that you can enjoy your evening with your partner doing something you both love. *wink wink
A good routine means that your kids know what to expect.
A good routine means that you kids will be happier kids as in time they will get use to things.
I remember that establishing a routine for Kara was very difficult especially because i went back to work when she was 9 months. But with time and as soon as the teething pains finished she didn’t have any more night when she would wake up. She sleeps through properly since she was 6 months old and now when it is time to sleep she never complains or cries. She just knows that she needs to sleep.
I am hoping that Anastasia will be the same when she will get to Kara’s age. At the moment there are still nights when she wakes up and next day we are both knackered but i still have time for myself at nap times and in the evening. She never cries when i put her down and that is very important.
My advice when it comes to routines?
It is simple. Be strong and consistent and your efforts will pay off!
Do you have a routine for your children? Do you believe that routines can make your life easier?
Would love to hear your thoughts.