Friday, August 1, 2008

In Action: Change Your Strategy

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The fact that I write these articles doesn't necessarily mean that I am always quick to put my own advice into practice. As I wrote earlier this week, Brayden was reluctant to go outside and play (see In Action: Find Your Child's Currency ). I finally thought it over and realized he was probably too hot at the time of day we were going outside. I thought over my strategy, and changed up the schedule so we were going outside at a better time of day. That fixed it. He once again loved playing outside. See this article for more on changing your strategy:

Another thing I changed was naptime. I was letting Brayden stay up until Kaitlyn's naptime in the afternoon. It proved to be too long for him. Where he used to go down at 1, he was now going down at 2. With the rearrangement of our playtime outside, I was able to work things so his nap could start earlier. He is old enough now naps don't necessarily have to start at 1, but I will want them to start at 1 once Kaitlyn goes down to one nap and starts at 1.

Here is how our schedule changed:


7:30: both kids wake up and have breakfast and clean up (yes, I have successfully succeeded in getting Brayen to sleep until 7:30. This is likely contributing to the fact that he doesn't need to go down at 1:00 anymore since he isn't waking at 7:00)
8:00: bath and get ready
8:45ish: Brayden TV time. Kaitlyn Solo Playtime. Brayden learning time.
9:45: Brayden Solo Playtime. I would be gone from his room by 10:00ish. Kaitlyn nap.
11:30: Brayden clean up. Kaitlyn wake up (11:30-11:45). We all make lunch. (I use the term "we" loosely).
12:00: lunch and clean up
12:30: outside playtime
1:45: both nap
4:00-4:30: both wake up
4:30: Daddy home. Mommy/Daddy "couch" time. Play with Daddy.
5:00ish: Dinner. Clean-up. Various family activities depending on day.
7:30: Kaitlyn bed
8:00: Brayden bed

I am still working through this to figure out the best schedule, but here it is for now. I also am not sure the exact times some things are happening.

7:30: breakfast and clean-up. Get dressed.
8:00: This is sometimes earlier if they eat really fast. Outside playtime. This doubles as sibling playtime since they play together.
9:15: inside. Clean-up. Bath.
9:45: Kaitlyn nap. Brayden solo playtime. I am gone by 10:00.
11:30: Brayden clean up. Kaitlyn wake up (11:30-11:45). We all make lunch.
12:00: lunch.
12:30: Brayden TV time. Kaitlyn plays in the kitchen while I get stuff ready for dinner.
1:00: Bradyen learning time. Kaitlyn solo playtime.
1:30: Brayden nap.
2:00: Kaitlyn nap.
4:30: Both wake up. Daddy home. Mommy/Daddy "couch" time. Play with Daddy.
5:00ish: Dinner. Clean-up. Various family activities. This includes errands, fun things, bike rides, walks, visiting friends and family, etc.
7:30: Kaitlyn bed.
8:00: Brayden bed.

Once the weather cools down, we will once again need to rearrange the schedule so it will be warm enough to play outside. The lesson here is don't be afraid to rearrange your schedule when needed. I have actually found this schedule moves a lot more smoothly than the previous one. I am able to get more done outside because it isn't so hot (I usually weed the garden and flower beds and other outside chores while they play). They enjoy themselves because it isn't so hot. It is working well for us.


Jessica said...

Wow, did I ever need this post today.

You always have such great insight and troubleshooting suggestions.

I believe my daughter is growing through the 3 to 4 hour transition, her naps are so interrupted. I don't know if she is having too much waketime, if it is just the "4 month sleep disturbance," if it is teething, the fact that she has learned to turn over. Ahhh!

Time to troubleshoot.

Thank you!

Skalsky's said...

My husband and I have 11 week old triplets. They were born at 34w 6d and came home at 3 weeks. We have been doing BabyWise religiously and have a few concerns/questions. They are eating at 7,10,1,4,7:30,and 11. It is too early to move their last feeding from 11 to 10 p.m.? And, their wake time is around 60 min. They often wake up from their nap early and fuss until their next feeding. Advice would be greatly appreciated.

Alexis said...

I know what I am reading but just want to clarify...Brayden has solo time for 1.5 hrs in his room? Thanks for posting your routine!

LReynolds said...

I have a 16 week old baby who goes to bed at 7:30pm each night. She used to sleep until 7:30am with a 10:30 and 4:00am feeding. When she dropped the 4am feeding she started waking up really early! We have been trying to extend her wake-up time but it seems as though she is consistently waking at 5:40am each morning.

I have thought about putting her to bed later, but she gets over-tired doing such.

Any suggestions or is our wake time just 5:45 each day?


Reds said...

I know it says in the book that mom decides when nap is over, but you noted that "both wake up"...does that mean you let them sleep until they wake up or do you have to wake them up from naps and in the morning?

Jaclyn said...

Hi! I was wondering about more specifics from your schedule as a mom. I am struggling with the balance of playing one on one with my 9 1/2 month old daughter, and trying to get things done around the house. I know that playing on her own is good for her, but I always feel guilty that maybe I'm not playing with her enough, or unsure about how much time I should be playing with her.
Another question, which is kind of unrelated, but I'm wondering about teaching my daughter about boundaries and just how to mind me. Whenever I say no and give her the "I'm serious" look, and when needed squeeze her hand, she just looks at me with this big grin and claps her hands with joy. Cute, but no progress is being made, and I'm not sure where to go from here. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated! Thanks for the schedule! You're blog is such a blessing!

Plowmanators said...


lol...the troubleshooting seems like it never ends. It just takes short breaks :)

Plowmanators said...

Skalsky's, is 11 weeks their actual age or adjusted age?

Plowmanators said...


Yep, 1.5 hours! He loves it. Kaitlyn would go that long if I let her. He has his door open and I am right down the hall from him. He loves his solo playtime!

Plowmanators said...


I personally would consider that a night feeding still. See this post for more on it:

Early Morning Feedings Before Waketime:

Plowmanators said...


It is the time they wake up. Sometimes I have to wake them, sometimes they wake on their own. Lately I have been waking Brayden almost every morning. I wake him first and Kaitlyn's room is right next door. She is usually awake by the time we go in there, but I haven't heard a peep from her before then. From naps, I usually wake Kaitlyn in the morning and sometimes afternoon, though she usually wakes on her own for that one. I usually have to wake Brayden from his nap, though sometimes he wakes.

Plowmanators said...


I just left some thoughts on your question on another post. I think it is a good thought and I will do a post on it.

See this post about the discipline:

Teaching Your Baby "No":

mommy2girls said...

I've really been enjoying your posts. I have 27 and 6 month old daughters. We have done BW with both. I have a question about solo playtime. We are having difficulties with the 27 month old. We have done it pretty much since the beginning, however there was about an 8 month period (in which her sister was born) where we didn't do it. I have been trying to get her to have room time for at least 15 minutes. She will not leave her room, but stands at the door and crys the entire time. I am just in the next room and she can see me. The crying has been going on for quite a while. I've tried talking with her about it, letting her play with certain things only during this time and nothing seems to work. She always says "don't like playtime" when I tell her it's time. Any suggestions you have would be welcome.

Skalsky's said...

Plowmasters, 11 weeks is our triplets actual age. Their adjusted age is 6 weeks. Help please :)

Plowmanators said...


I would make it so she cannot see you. Babywise says it is unfair to to expect your child to play alone when she can see you.

You might need to start with a shorter time at first. Have you read the independent playtime post? In it I outline my method for starting Brayden on it later. That should give you some ideas.

Plowmanators said...


You can try moving their dreamfeed time up if you want to. 60 minute waketime sounds right for their age. I think one thing to keep in mind is to think of them at their adjusted age rather than the actual age. 6 weeks is a growth spurt so they might be doing that.

This post should be of interest to you:

Preterm Babies and Babywise :

And this might have something of value:

Babywise and Twins:

Have you read the naps post:

Naps: Troubleshooting:

Skalsky's said...

Thanks! I read those posts and have a few more questions! We feed the trio at 7,10,1,4,7:30, and 11. We notice that there are always 1-2of those feedings where the girls only eat an ounce. I don't want to extend their feeding times until I can drop the dream feed. Is it too soon to go to 5 feedings a day. What should I do?

Plowmanators said...

It probably is too soon to go down to 5 a day. BW says not to go down to 5-7 feedings until 13 weeks, which is beyond even their actual age. See this post:

There are a couple of things you can do. You can do a combo schedule. So say it is the 10 AM feeding they only take 1 ounce. Push that back to 10:30. Then feed at 1:30, 4:30, 7:30 or 8:00, and 11:00.

Another option would be for your own benefit to start to move the dreamfeed up. Try to get it up to 10:30. See the dropping the dreamfeed post.

Dropping the "Dream Feed":

ckim56 said...

I work from home about 25 hours a week...and recently started having a problem with something. My computer (where i work) is in my 6 month old son's room...In the past on days I set aside for work I would just put him in my bed for his naps and then I would work in his room while he napped. Recently, when I do need to work and have to put him in my bed instead of his own he will scream wheni put him down (not normal for him) and then only sleep for 45 mins, and then he just screams more

he also began teething and has been having trouble sleepign through the night, so i thought maybe he's just in pain- but still when i put him in his own crib he sleeps well

I got a pack n' play thinking that might help but he is still having trouble with sleeping somewhere other than his own crib...SO, would you say this is something he needs to just get over, or he could get used to...? or do I need to move my office to the kitchen?

thanks so much for your help and insight :)

Plowmanators said...

I would first be sure he isn't crying in pain. Try painkiller. If it continues, I would do the pack n play and try to get him to sleep happily in it. You don't want to be confined to your house because he doesn't sleep well anywhere other than his own crib.

Amy said...

I want to change my son's schedule and would like to get some advice from you and other fellow moms. My son is 10 months old. He's been on a schedule since he was born. He wakes up every morning at around 6:30am. How do I teach him to sleep in a little more? I'd like for him to wake up later and sleep later (e.g. wake at 8am and go to bed at night at 8p )(FYI - This is how his day looks like right now: 6ish get up, BF, play and back to nap. 10am breakfast, play, 12-2 nap, 2-6 play, 7 bedtime, 10 BF, back to bed) Thank you!

Plowmanators said...


One thing to do is figure out the reason for the waking at 6:30. For that, see the Naps: Troubleshooting: Revised and updated and Nighttime sleep issues revised and updated posts done last month.

Also, if I were you, I think I woudl just hang in there until March 14 when we move our clocks forward. 6:30 will then be 7:30.

Another note, most babies naturally wake in the 7 AM hour, so 8 AM might be a difficult goal to reach.

Basically, what you want to do is not feed him until your desired waketime if possible. So if he is waking at 6:30 now, wait 15 minutes to feed him. Then hopefully he will sleep until 6:45, and you can wait 15 more minutes to feed him.

Good luck!


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