Babywise Milestones

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Babywise Milestones you can expect in the first two years when you follow On Becoming Babywise. When to expect sleeping through the night, naps dropped, a four hour schedule, and other milestones.

Babywise Milestones you can expect in the first two years when you follow On Becoming Babywise. When to expect sleeping through the night, naps dropped, a four hour schedule, and other milestones.

In this post, I list the different “milestones” you can reach through using On Becoming Babywise. I list this with the caution that many of these are averages. To create an average, you add together a lot of numbers. The average is a number that was created out of smaller and larger numbers. That means your baby might fall on the larger size of average. Do not be discouraged if that is the case nor thing something is wrong. Remember, you are the parent. Look at the averages and asses where your baby falls in the spectrum of expectation. She may be higher and she may be lower.

I also want to remind you that these are numbers based on babies who did Babywise from birth. If you started late, you might be behind on some for a while (see my Starting Babywise Late Guide for more on this). I started late with my oldest, Brayden. I was behind with Brayden until he was 6 months old (we started at 9 weeks).

Also, if you don’t follow all Babywise principles, you might not receive all Babywise benefits. You are the parent, so you get to decide what to do, but don’t expect all benefits unless you practice all principles.

On to the milestones.

Babywise Milestones for the First Two Years


This is called the stabilization period. I found that to be so true with Kaitlyn. One night when she was 8-9 weeks old, I told my husband that she seemed to just be in her niche, and that it seemed she was just stabilized. Then it hit me that the time period had already been dubbed as stabilization. Also, many things need to be followed closely in this period, such as feeding intervals and number of feedings.

  • Feed every 2.5-3 hours
  • Have 8-10 feedings in a 24 hour period
  • Do not let baby sleep more than 5 hours if you are breastfeeding until 5 weeks of age
  • There will be about 6-8 naps a day, depending on the number of feedings
  • Naps will be 1-1.5 hours long
  • Between weeks 5-8, your baby might be ready to eat every 2.5-3.5 hours
  • Between weeks 5-8, your baby might be able to go down to 7 feedings in a 24 hour period (but only after she starts sleeping 7-8 hours at night)
  • By 8 weeks old, your baby most likely will be sleeping 7-8 hours consistently
  • 15% of babies don’t start sleeping 7-8 hours until they are 10-12 weeks old
  • After 8 weeks old, your baby might be able to move to 6 feedings in 24 hours

WEEKS 9-15

  • Baby can gradually move to 9-10 hours of continuous sleep if breastfed, 11 hours if bottlefed
  • Remember that 15% of BW babies don’t start sleeping 7-8 hours until they are 10-12 weeks old
  • Baby’s naps should be about 1.5 hours long
  • Most babies drop the late night feeding in this period (aka Dreamfeed)
  • Between weeks 12-15, your baby might be able to move to a combination 3-4 hour schedule
  • Starting at 13 weeks, your baby should be at 5-7 feedings a day
  • This is also the age where many babies begin their early morning talking (waking in 5 or 6 AM hour). This can last longer than one month. See page 132 in Babywise for more information.

WEEKS 16-24

  • 4-6 liquid feedings a day
  • Baby moves to 10-12 hours at night
  • Baby will need 3 naps of 1.5-2 hours in length–but remember that some will take a 45 minute nap for the 3rd, and that is just fine

WEEKS 25-52 (6 months to 1 year)

  • Feedings stay pretty close to the same as they are at 24 weeks (6 months), assuming you were eating 4-5 times a day
  • You want 4-5 nursings
  • By the end of this time period, you move to 3 feedings, with the exception of 4th and maybe 5th nursings to maintain milk supply
  • Naps are 1.5-2.5 hours long
  • By 6 months, Babywise says most babies can drop that third nap. Babywise II says a 6 month old will need 2 naps and a catnap (short nap). I have found Babywise II to be more accurate for my children
  • Both Babywise II and Toddlerwise say that by 8 months, most babies will be able to drop that 3rd nap (catnap). Remember, you are the parent. If you have a big sleeper and she is still sleeping well at night, you don’t need to eliminate that nap. At nearly 10 months old, Kaitlyn still needs it some nights
  • Once the third nap is dropped, waketime increases, and often the length of the other two naps increase also. Instead, you might increase nighttime sleep if baby wasn’t sleeping 12 hours. Decide what is best for your baby

16-20 MONTHS

  • Babywise says the morning nap will be dropped between 16-20 months old. Babywise II says between 18-20 months old the morning nap will be dropped
  • Toddlerwise describes our nap change experience better. Between 16-18 months old, the two naps get shorter. I believe Brayden was 15 months old when it began for him. Then between 18-20 months, you transition to one longer afternoon nap. We made the move at 17 months old.
  • Toddlerwise says that the crib to bed transition typically happens between the ages of 18-24 months old.

Hopefully this quick reference can aid you when you want to know what you can expect your baby to be ready for in the near future.

For a free printable of Babywise Milestones, see my post Your Babywise Baby First Year Overview.

Get the whole series here

On Becoming Pottywise
On Becoming Teenwise
On Becoming Preteenwise
On Becoming Childwise
On Becoming Preschoolwise
On Becoming Toddlerwise
On Becoming Pre-Toddlerwise
On Becoming Babywise Book 2
On Becoming Babywise
On Becoming Pottywise
On Becoming Teenwise
On Becoming Preteenwise
On Becoming Childwise
On Becoming Preschoolwise
On Becoming Toddlerwise
On Becoming Pre-Toddlerwise
On Becoming Babywise Book 2
On Becoming Babywise

Related Babywise Posts:

Babywise Milestones you can expect in the first two years when you follow On Becoming Babywise. When to expect sleeping through the night, naps dropped, a four hour schedule, and other milestones.

Reader Babywise Questions:

  • Amber said…
    Questions – At 16 – 24 wks, are inly supposed to take 3 naps or can they take more? Am I forcing her to nap when she shouldn’t be? Thanks – Brooklynsmama
    February 9, 2008 11:30 AM
    Plowmanators said…
    If she still needs more naps, by all means let her take them. If she is resistent to the 4th nap, you can drop it. You just don’t take a nap between the 4ish and 7ish feedings. Kaitlyn was around 4 months old when we dropped the 4th nap, but she was still on a 3 hour schedule.
    February 9, 2008 2:04 PM
  • Anila’s Mom 😉 said…
    Hi!Its me again…I have yet another question…”Between weeks 5-8, your baby might be ready to eat every 2.5-3.5 hours”How do I KNOW that she is ready to go the 3.5 cycle? Right now, she is definitely NOT taking regular naps/waketime but it takes A LOT of effort to actually get her up to eat every 3 (some feedings she takes the full feeding and some I really have to coax her). She is 5 weeks old…Thanks again for the help!
    August 29, 2008 4:22 PM
    Plowmanators said…
    See this post: When to Move to a 4 hour Schedule . The principles would apply. I would say you are just having a hard time waking a newborn, not that she is ready to extend her feeding times.
    September 4, 2008 11:22 AM
  • Doubly Blessed said…
    Although I feel quite ridiculous for this, I’m very confused by the BW scheduling. I have 10 week old twins, and we’ve been trying BW for about 4 weeks now. Currently, our a.m. waketime is 5:15 so that my husband can help me feed babies (and spend time w/ them) before going to work. They eat every 3 (8:15, 11:15, 2:15, 5:15, and 8:15). The problem is, this gives them less than 10 hours to sleep at night. (Plus, they’re still waking at about 2 a.m. for a feeding.) Should I be waking them later in the morning? If so, would I have to go to 2.5 hours in order to get enough feedings in each day? I also don’t understand how the math works with waketime and nap time. If they eat at 8:15 a.m. and stay awake until 9:15, and they should nap for 1-1.5 hours, then they’ll be awake between 10:15 and 10:45. Do I leave them in bed until 11:15 when it’s time to eat? Or do I get them up and have waketime before the feeding? I’ve read the book, believe it or not, but I’m still not clear on all of this.
    September 8, 2008 2:25 PM
    Plowmanators said…
    Doubly Blessed, Most people have a waketime somewhre around 7-8. I totally understand the reason for you doing that the way you are (for help feeding them), but I would caution against doing it long-term unless you want them to wake at 5:15 long term. At that age, they don’t need 10 hours of sleep yet. It is a gradual move that happens over weeks 9-15, and if they were early, then it will put them later. If you still want to continue waking at 5:15, you will need to move bedtime up so it starts 10 hours before that, and eventually possibly up to 12 hours before.The other part just does not add up. You are not crazy or missing anything. The math just doesn’t add up yet.
    September 12, 2008 11:34 AM
  • bando966 said…
    Hello! Love all this information. In looking through your blog I can’t find any information regarding a concern I have. Would like to get your recommendation, opinion or feedback…My son is 5 weeks old and have had him on a 3 hour BW schedule since the first week. His routine at night is to wake naturally at 4:30am, take a full feeding and then up again at 6:30am or 7am for his schduled early morning time, which he wakes naturally as well. During the daytime, we have to wake him about 50% of the time to nurse on the 3 hour schedule. We have his waketime for about 1.5 hours (including nursing)then down for 1-1.5 hours.My question is the one feeding we want to drop, of course is the middle of the night feeding, however is the one he always wakes for. As we continue, he is waking for his early morning feeding earlier, about 15-30 minutes. Will they ultimately blend together? Should I let him CIO? What are the best tricks to get him to through the night? (His Late Evening feeding is about 1am) It seems he can take and leave several feedings, but not this one! It’s always 4:30am on the nose!7am-EM10am-MM1pm-A4pm-MA7pm-LA10pm-EE1am-LE4:30-MN (naturally)If there is another post on here that I can refernece, please direct. Look forward to your feedback! Thanks!
    November 3, 2008 8:59 AM
    Plowmanators said…
    bando966, it might be sort of a habit, but I wouldn’t try to break it at 5 (or now 6) weeks. At this age, you stop waking him at 1 am and let him go from 10 to whenever he wakes naturally, if you haven’t done so yet. See also this post for ideas on the 4:30 feeding, but again I wouldn’t try to break it yet 5-6 AM Night Wakings
    November 10, 2008 3:34 PM
  • Kathryn said…
    hello, thanks so much for taking the time to create this blog- it is so helpful. I have so many questions, and am happy to say I have already found lots of info here.My 8 Week old baby is doing really well so far on BW, she is like a little clock.I have two questions that may seem basic Right now my daughter is 8 weeks she is on a 3 hour feed schedule all day until bedtime which tends to be around 10 pm, then sleeps about 6 hours and has a middle of the night feed , then wakes 2-3 hours later ( tends to be about 6 am) . i want “wake time” to be 7 am so she is sometimes up before then, but I try not to feed until 7 am so I can program her first feed of the day.My two questions: According to BW she is to be sttn , soon, do I need to do anything differently to make this happen? Am I on the right track with my method to change her wake time? So far it is not working : ) Any info woudl be greatly appreciated.
    November 6, 2008 7:48 PM
    Plowmanators said…
    Kathryn, it sounds like you are on the right track for STTN. Realize most babies seem to STTN later than the 7-8 week mark, so if your baby does, she is normal :)See this post about that 6 AM waketime:  5-6 AM Night Wakings
    November 10, 2008 3:36 PM

Reader Thanks

  • sofistikated1 said…
    very helpful (having the keynotes listed by age)! Thanks!
    February 11, 2008 11:38 AM
    Plowmanators said…
    You bet! I created this post on-request from a blog reader. The thanks goes to her!
    February 11, 2008 1:21 PM

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Valerie, also known as The Babywise Mom, is the mother to four children. She has been blogging on Babywise and general parenting since 2007. She has a degree in technical writing and loves using those skills to help parents be the best parents they can be! Read her book, The Babywise Mom Nap Guide, to get help on sleep from birth through the preschool years. You can also find her writing at, Today Parenting, and Her View From Home. Read more about Valerie and her family on the About page. Follow her on FacebookPinterest, and Instagram for more tips and helps.

Find me on: Web | Twitter | Facebook


  1. molly
    January 8, 2009 / 7:13 PM

    Hi, Thank you for this awesome resource! I have a question about my 7 week old, and if it is already answered somewhere, I apologize. This blog is excellent, however, I find all the information a little overwhelming.My baby was sleeping from 10:00-3:00 am for quite awhile, then all of a sudden for the past week, she wakes up between 1:00-2:00 am (which is exactly 2 1/2 – 3 hours after her dreamfeed) and then again at exactly 2 1/2 – 3 hours later. I have tried a variety of things and this is what I am now noticing. Her longest stretch between feedings seems to be after her last feeding at 7:00 until her dreamfeed between 10:00-11:00, which is all I can do to get her to take her bottle at this time. Should I not do the dreamfeed and let her wake up on her own? I feel like the dreamfeed is interrupting her longest stretch of sleep, however, I would like the longest stretch of sleep to come more in the middle of the night! I just don’t understand the change.Also, how many ounces should she have throughout the day to make it through the night? Maybe this is the problem? She averages between 24-26 ounces/24 hours. At this point I am not looking for sleeping through the night, but for a stretch longer than 3 hours at the most!Thanks for any insight you may have!

  2. Plowmanators
    January 15, 2009 / 12:14 AM

    Molly,I would first address this as a growth spurt, especially if she didn’t have her 6 week growth spurt yet. Some moms find the dreamfeed disrupts sleep more than helps it. The way to find out is to skip it one night and see what happens. Do realize that without it, she will hold on to night wakings longer. BUT if it is hurting sleep, it is better to drop it. As far as ounces, I breastfeed so I have no knowledge of that until a year old. You might check out this book:

  3. bradysmom
    January 15, 2009 / 4:04 PM

    Molly – I pumped, but gave it to mine in a bottle. I think at that age he was taking 4-6 ounces per feeding, and at 7 weeks was every 3 hours. Hopefully that helps.

  4. destina23
    November 30, 2009 / 11:48 PM

    thanks to your blog, I read babywise and started it when my son was 3 1/2 months old with success, until now. my son is 6 months old was on mostly a 4 hour schedule. he's currently cutting down on his napping time, but not upping his waketime. so i'm not sure what to do. For example. He wakes up at 7:30 AM, then is up for just about 2 hours. He used to nap for 2, but now will only nap for an 1 1/2 hours and wakes up happy. If I feed him right away following the eat/wake/sleep pattern he won't take a full feed. If I wait the half hour for the four hour between feeds, he will. Is that okay? Same goes after the afternoon nap.After he wakes up from his afternoon nap, say around 3pm, he will stay up for 2 hours and need a quick catnap at 5p. Funny thing is, he wakes up form this nap anytime before 6p (usually 5:30) and is already looking for food soon after? Its after this nap, that I'm not sure when to feed in order to maintain the eat/wake/sleep.Oh and he gets one more dream feed which we hope to drop this month!Thanks!

  5. Plowmanators
    December 11, 2009 / 11:11 PM

    Yes, you can wait. See the post "eat/wake/sleep cycle"It is common for kids to get more hungry in the evenings, so don't worry about that at all. My older two ate about 2.5 hours between the feeds in the evening like that, too, so it shouldn't be a long-term problem 🙂

  6. Polly Gamwich
    February 24, 2010 / 1:06 PM

    Hi there,I am so grateful for your blog and so so glad to have the forum. But these questions, I really wanted answered by you. Please help me understand the math with all of this …For a baby who is birth to 8 weeks:-Feed every 2.5-3 hours-Naps will be 1-1.5 hours longSo for the sake of an example, let's say you're on the short end of the scheduling, you're feeding every 2.5 hours and naps are ~1 hour. Then wouldn't that mean 1.5 hours of wake time? And isn't it recommended not to get to 1.5 hours of wake time until they are older? I thought 30-45 min of wake time was good at that age? Wouldn't nap time be 1.75-2.5 hrs at this stage?Another question:For a baby who is birth to 8 weeks:-Have 8-10 feedings in a 24 hour period-There will be about 6-8 naps a day, depending on the number of feedings… but shouldn't you have the SAME number of feedings as "naps" or sleep cycles? When do we deviate from the feed/wake/sleep pattern to add more feeds? I don't see feed/wake/feed/sleep as a pattern to be able to add in more feedings than naps … did I miss that somewhere?Thank you so much for clarifying these things for me, it's been a very frustrating mystery!!Cheers,Polly

  7. Plowmanators
    March 11, 2010 / 7:44 PM

    Polly,That is a flaw. I don't know the answer, but you are correct that the numbers don't add up. With Kaitlyn, I tried to stick with numbers, but with McKenna, I just ignored them. She took longer naps than recommended (2-2.5 hour naps).You have fewer naps than feedings because of how naps are defined. Here is a sample for a 3 hour scheudle:7AM–FEEDING ONENAP ONE10AM–FEEDING TWONAP TWO1PM–FEEDNG THREENAP THREE4PM–FEEDING FOURNAP FOUR7PM–FEEDING FIVEBED10PM–FEEDING SIX (Dreamfeed)BED4AM–FEEDING SEVENBEDThat would be for an older baby, but you can see how you only have four naps despite the 7 feedings.

  8. D & H
    April 15, 2010 / 5:37 PM

    How do I know when my baby is ready to move to a longer schedule (more than 3 hrs between feedings) and drop a feeding? My son is 11 weeks old and sleeps through the night about half of the time from 9pm to 5 or 5:30 am (my goal wakeup time is 6am). The rest of the time he wakes around 2:30am and then we get up at 6am. I figure I should wait until he sleeps through the night consistently before lengthening the daytime schedule (especially since that would mean one less daytime feeding), but about what age and what signs should I look for to know he's ready?

  9. D & H
    April 20, 2010 / 3:07 PM

    A couple more questions…right now when my baby (11 weeks) sleeps through the night, he wakes early at 5 or 5:30 instead of 6. So as we adjust to get back on track by later in the day, he has a few morning cycles 3.5 hours long. So how does it work with extending to a 3.5 hour schedule–do I wait until he can sleep longer, until 6am, and keep bedtime the same (so then he's back to 3 hrs all day, which is shorter), or extend to 3.5 hours first, so our morning wakeup time is still early, but then we cut out a feeding and bedtime gets a little earlier? I'm confused about how the logistics work out. Our "normal" schedule is to eat at 6am, 9:30, 12:30pm, 3:30, 6, and 8pm (with one nighttime feed around 2:30am). When he sleeps through the night, we end up doing 5:30am, 9, 12:30pm, 3:30, 6, 8pm. How would you recommend changing this as he is ready to lengthen?

  10. Plowmanators
    April 29, 2010 / 10:45 PM

    D & H,A couple of posts to see. One is "when to move to a four hour schedule" and "dropping the dreamfeed"Yo can see today's post for a bit more on that, too. I am confused on your second question. Are you wondering what to do on days he wakes early, or what to do when he is on a 4 hour schedule?

  11. teal
    May 2, 2010 / 4:34 AM

    Plowmanator, what a great , funny name=0) Just had my third boy and so wished I had this resource with the first! My newest son is almost nine weeks old and started sleeping through the night the last week (10PM-5/6AM) and on a pretty darn consistent 3 hour schedule. Except for the first three very 'gassy' weeks, he has been my easiest baby to get on the 3hour schedule even with naps (so far!=0) sorry for too much question after mulling over every related post I could find from you, is;- he is only taking 7 feedings. and he is waking now at 6/6:15 and my start time is 7. I assume I should not feed within just one hour, so therefore in keeping my three hour schedule or making it 3.5, moves me to 6 feedings… is that too early to do so? I tried one day of 6:15Am , 9, 12, 3, 5:30,8, and 10 and it just seemed to mess up his naps, i didn't have enough milk at 8 and he wasn't hungry much at 5:30…What do I do?

  12. D & H
    May 4, 2010 / 6:36 PM

    I guess what I'm trying to figure out is this: do I wait until he can sleep consistently to our goal waketime of 6am before moving to a 4-hour schedule? Or just until he is sleeping through the night consistently but still waking earlier than our goal?

  13. Plowmanators
    May 17, 2010 / 6:09 PM

    Teal,At 9 weeks, 6 feedings is okay for some babies–but not for all. So that would have to be your call. But by 11 weeks, I think most could do 6 feedings. Again, your call on what is right for him.I have a post titled "early morning feedings before waketime" That will give you a few options on what to do with this. All three of my kids had that waketime for a while, so I have experienced it a lot 🙂

  14. Plowmanators
    May 17, 2010 / 6:11 PM

    D&H, it depends on how important that goal is to you. Would you be okay with 6 AM being your waketime for a while (maybe a really long while)? If not, I probably wouldn't yet. If yes, then I would consider it. If it were me, I wouldn't move to the four hour until he was sleeping until my desired waketime. But you do what works for you 🙂

  15. KatieW
    June 3, 2010 / 4:11 PM

    Hi there Im in need of some advice. Im stumped and not sure what to do. My little guy is 11 weeks old. His daily schedule usualy as follows, 7am wake up time 1st feeding, about 45min wake time then 1hr45min nap time. With about 3 hours between feedings. Which lately we have been pushing that 3 hour mark he really would like to eat every 2 hrs. He is breast feed and usually eats about 10mins each side and seems satified after each feeding. Im not sure how to keep him at this 3 hour mark? Also bed time he eats at 7with usually a cluster feeding then to bed at 8. Hes been sleeping usualy til 4am for the last couple of weeks with a occasional wake up at 2 or 3. goes back to sleep and wakes for 7am feeding. I didnt know if I should be waking him up at 10pm (makeing that his last feeding for the night) and then hopefully he wouldnt be waking to 7 or maybe around 4 but would maybe stop the random 2 or 3 wake ups? Thank you! Im just not sure what to do. Thanks

  16. Plowmanators
    June 14, 2010 / 6:31 PM

    KatieW,The 10 PM feeding (dreamfeed) might be a good idea for you. He is likely going through a growth spurt. I would feed him more often right now to make sure he is satisfied. See also blog labels "wonder weeks".He can still have a growth spurt even if he is satisfied after a meal. Him eanting to eat more often is a sign of a growth spurt.

  17. The Summer of a Lifetime
    August 6, 2010 / 8:16 PM

    Hello,I am wondering how to get my eight week old daughter onto a 2.5-3 hour schedule. I have been trying to follow BW since birth, and she has NEVER consistently gone longer than 2 hours between feedings. She does mostly 2-2.25 hours. She's done 2.5-3 hours every now and then, but I can't figure out how to stretch ALL her feedings out!She sleeps very well at night, eating at 6:30-6:45 and then going to bed at 7:00. I do a "dreamfeed" at 10:00, then let her sleep till she wakes. She usually wakes up around 2:30-3:00 and then goes right back to sleep until 6:30-7:00. During the day, I feed her, play with her, and then put her down for naps. Most days she does really well with this. This week, however, she has not- she had her 2-month immunizations Tuesday. She slept ALL day Wednesday and then has NOT slept at all the past two days. She is really fussy and has woken up from 15-30 minute naps acting hungry again! Today, she's wanted to eat every 1.5-2 hours!How do I get her to eat every 2.5 or 3 hours during the day, instead of eating so frequently? When she's hungry, she'll cry really hard, and by the time she eats, she's so upset that she spits up. I should also mention she's a reflux baby, so I try to avoid that at all cost!Any thoughts or advice would be helpful!Thank you!

  18. Plowmanators
    August 19, 2010 / 2:39 PM

    The reflux might prevent you from doing more than a 2 hour schedule for a few months. Have you read the reflux section in BW? Be sure to read the posts on this blog on reflux and realize that it is normal for a reflux baby to eat every two hours, so a growth spurt might equate into every 1.5 hours. Hang in there! It will get better.

  19. Plowmanators
    August 19, 2010 / 2:40 PM

    The reflux might prevent you from doing more than a 2 hour schedule for a few months. Have you read the reflux section in BW? Be sure to read the posts on this blog on reflux and realize that it is normal for a reflux baby to eat every two hours, so a growth spurt might equate into every 1.5 hours. Hang in there! It will get better.

  20. Plowmanators
    August 19, 2010 / 2:40 PM

    The reflux might prevent you from doing more than a 2 hour schedule for a few months. Have you read the reflux section in BW? Be sure to read the posts on this blog on reflux and realize that it is normal for a reflux baby to eat every two hours, so a growth spurt might equate into every 1.5 hours. Hang in there! It will get better.

  21. Josey
    January 7, 2011 / 4:36 PM

    I'm a little confused with some timings of things. I have a 3 month old (13 weeks) and she eats every 3-4 hours, but typically prefers 4 hours, and even then I usually have to wake her up to eat. The information above says that during this time they might be able to drop the dream feed, but also says they should eat 5-7 feedings and might be able to vary between 3-4 hour schedule. How is it possible to drop the dream feed, and stay at 5-7 feedings, and vary between 3-4 hours. Basically her schedule is to wake at 8am and eat, then our schedule is for 12, 4p, 8p, and 10p (however usually a couple of her feeds are at 3 hours, so her 8p is more like 6 or 7p). That's 5 feedings, and if I drop the dream feed she'll only be getting 4 feedings, but we're still varying between 3-4 hours. So it seems to me she would HAVE to eat right on target every 3 hours in order to be able to get 5 feedings and drop the dream feed. And some days she will go 4 hours between each feeding and I have to wake her up for each. So is it ok for her to be on a consistent 4 hour schedule at this age as long as I'm still giving her that 5th feed at 10 or 10:30 at night? The other thing is she is usually only happy to be up for about 1 hr to 1 hr 15 minutes (unless we're out of the house running errands or something) then she naps. So basically a lot of the time she is up for about 1 hr and then sleeps for about 3. I think maybe this is just her (I know my mom always said I loved to sleep as a baby and needed a little more sleep as a child than the average). Is this kind of scheduling ok??? If not what should I do to change things up a bit?

  22. Plowmanators
    January 17, 2011 / 5:47 PM

    Josey,For varying, you would have to do one feeding at 4 and the rest at 3 if you dropped the dreamfeed. However, these things don't necessarily all fit together. In this age range, some might do a dreamfeed with a 3/4 hour schedule. Some might do a 3 hour schedule with no dreamfeed. Your baby can't necessarily do ALL of the things listed under each age group.McKenna took long naps like that, too. So long as she is growing well and eating milestones and is alert, then it isn't a problem. It can be a warning sign if your baby is lethargic and doesn't engage when awake, but so long as she is normal, it is fine.It is also fine to work the 5 feedings in how you feel is best. I did a 4 hour with a DF with my youngest for a while.

  23. Robyn
    March 3, 2011 / 6:39 PM

    I have a 5 1/2 month old. Probably just two weeks ago he started sleeping 11-12 hours at night. He did it great 4 nights in a row. Before that he was getting 7 feedings total a day. Once he slept 12 hours he was getting 6. I give him solids once a day. He also seems to be in and out with moving to a 4 hour schedule. Problem being, he doesn't always nap long enough to make that happen. The past 4 days, he has only gotten 5 feedings a day because he stays awake longer and doesn't seem to need them. But, the last 4 nights he's been up at 6am-8am crying off and on, sometimes screaming and sometimes not. I haven't fed him again, I make him wait, but he doesn't really go back to sleep for very long. So, could it be that he needs to eat 6 times? But, he is almost 6 months and everything I read say he should be 4-5? And it's hard to fit in the 6, I would be feeding him less that 3 hours because I've never done a dreamfeed.THANKS FOR YOUR HELP!

  24. Plowmanators
    March 21, 2011 / 9:23 PM

    Robyn,There are several possibilities. One is if you look at the post "5-8 month sleep disruptions" you will see common reasons for sleep issues with this age group. Another is the feeding issue. Another is just a vacillating some babies do as they start to STTN.I would first check that post and see if any of it applies.

  25. Lily
    April 25, 2011 / 3:09 PM

    I have a 15 week old daughter who has been following BW from birth. She pretty much has lined up with all of the book timelines… but around week 11 started getting ahead. She is currently on an all 4 hour schedule- 4 feedings a day and sleeps about 10 1/2 to 11 hours at night. I couldn't figure out how to work in a 5th feeding because she dropped her dreamfeed first. She seems to be doing fine. My question actually concerns the extended day phase. How will this look for her? Will she have longer waketimes? She currently stays up for about 1 hour and 15 minutes minimum up to 2 hours sometimes. When will she drop the third nap? Sometimes she only sleeps for 45 minutes for the last one. Is that part of the "extended day"? Also what do I do when she only sleeps for 45 minutes on this nap? Right now, I don't feed her until her scheduled feed time because she doesn't seem hungry when she wakes up. Then she eats and stays up for her additional hour before going to bed (feed and waketime of an hour is combined). Is this ok? I noticed on a lot of the blogs that the last feeding parents put their children down to sleep without a waketime. I keep her up for at least an hour because she seems so alert and happy and then goes down for bed. Is this fine as well? Just let me know any of your thoughts on this. Thank you!

  26. Plowmanators
    May 9, 2011 / 5:49 PM

    Lily,Her waketimes will probably stay shorter for a while and will add on as normal.Most babies drop the third nap between 6-9 months with 8 months being average. Sleeping for 45 minutes for the last one is fine, and so is waiting to feed her after that nap.As long as she is sleeping fine through the night, then the waketime after the feeding is fine.

  27. Sylvia
    May 16, 2011 / 12:50 PM

    Hi I was wondering if I could have some input from some Babywise Moms. My 9 week old baby is on a 4am, 7am, 10, 1, 4, 7pm, 10pm and always wakes up for the 4am middle of the night. The book is saying that by 8 weeks they should be sleeping through the night. What is considered sleeping through the night? Also, should I change her routine to eat/wake/sleep every 2 1/2 hours instead of 3 to avoid the middle of the night 4am feed? I"m also exclusively breast feeding. thanks so much sylvia

  28. Sylvia
    May 16, 2011 / 12:50 PM

    Hi I was wondering if I could have some input from some Babywise Moms. My 9 week old baby is on a 4am, 7am, 10, 1, 4, 7pm, 10pm and always wakes up for the 4am middle of the night. The book is saying that by 8 weeks they should be sleeping through the night. What is considered sleeping through the night? Also, should I change her routine to eat/wake/sleep every 2 1/2 hours instead of 3 to avoid the middle of the night 4am feed? I"m also exclusively breast feeding.thanks sylvia

  29. Katie
    May 26, 2011 / 4:31 AM

    My daughter is 4.5 weeks old. She has been a great sleeper and a great eater from the start. At 3.5 weeks of age she had already gained almost 2 lbs (Nurse said it calculated to 1.5 ounces per day since we left the hospital) which puts her at 10 lbs 5 oz. At 2 weeks old she started sleeping from her dreamfeed (10 pm) until 3:00 am. We set our alarm to wake her up at 3 am. We then feed her,, put her to bed and wake her up again at 7:45 am for her initial feeding. She rarely, rarely wakes us up in the night, we wake her up. Can I start letting her sleep "through the night" or should I keep waking her up? What would be an appropriate "sleep through the night schedule" for her? Right now she is on a 7:45 am, 10:45, 1:30, 4:30, 7:30, 10pm, 3 am schedule. I know that is only 7 feedings in 24 hours, but she seems to be just fine (in regards to weight gain). In fact, she rarely lets off at the breast (so its hard to know if/when she's full) and we give her a bottle at the 7:30 pm feeding (4 oz) and she takes it all every time. How would you suggest transitioning to sleeping through the night?

  30. Katie
    May 26, 2011 / 4:31 AM


  31. Plowmanators
    June 1, 2011 / 8:12 PM

    Sylvia, I just answered this question on FB, so see my answer there.

  32. Plowmanators
    June 1, 2011 / 8:14 PM

    Katie, yes, you could let her go 6-7 hours at that age. At this age, she is close to 6 weeks, so if she is okay with it, you could let her go 7-8 hours. I would just drop that 3 AM feeding. You could either drop it cold turkey, or you could slowly decrease the amount of time she spends nursing.

  33. qylie
    June 15, 2011 / 3:53 PM

    My son is 8 weeks old. We have been doing BW from the start. He goes 3 hours during the day between feedings with a bedtime of 7pm and DF of 10pm. He wakes up at 2am and doesn't seem to want to stretch it longer. Sometimes he goes to 2:30, once he went to 2:40. I don't know how to get him to sleep longer. After I feed him at the 2ish feeding he wakes 3 hours later 5ish and takes a half feeding 🙁 HELP!

  34. qylie
    June 15, 2011 / 3:57 PM

    I tried cluster feeding and that just seams to make him hungrier as he starts waking more often. He is taking 4oz at the 10pm dream feed (I pump a bottle).

  35. Moneymaker
    August 3, 2011 / 2:39 AM

    THANK YOU!!! I have been having a hard time lately because my 2 mo. daughter seems to be struggling with babywise. After reading this post, I realized that she is probably just the 15% that doesn't really stretch at night until 10-12 weeks. It was hard for me to figure that out because my son was an amazing sleeper (with babywise he began sleeping through the night at 5 weeks and was always a little ahead of schedule). Thank you!

  36. Plowmanators
    August 23, 2011 / 4:33 AM

    qylie, I never got notified of your comment! So sorry! If you still need help, let me know.

  37. Plowmanators
    August 23, 2011 / 4:35 AM

    Moneymaker,you are welcome!

    December 3, 2011 / 11:13 AM

    HiI'm a mom o a 5 weeks breastfed baby girl,I want to put her on a schedule,I feel that i cant't put her on 2.5 hours schedule because she want to feed every 2 hours and sometimes less than 2 so what is the best one for her?thank you

  39. Plowmanators
    December 20, 2011 / 9:22 PM,First, I would be sure she really wants to eat that often. At 5 weeks, it is possible there was a growth spurt going on that made her want to eat more often, and in those cases you feed as often as you need to. Once you are sure she is not in need of the feedings, I would start with shooting for every two hours. If she seems to want to eat sooner, try holding her off even for five minutes at a time with cuddles, pacifiers, etc. Also, be sure to have her nap between each feeding. Often times we confuse "tired" for "hungry."

  40. Sylvia
    January 7, 2012 / 7:16 PM

    Hi! I have a 13wk old little boy and we are missing the milestone of sleeping through the night, making one exhausted momma! We are on a 3hr schedule starting at 7am and still doing the 10pm-ish dreamfeed. His total waketime is still at 1hr and any longer is complete fussiness. He then sleeps 1-2hrs, usually longer naps in the morning. He sometimes fusses through his fourth naptime. For awhile he was consistently up at 3am so I thought it may have been habit but wanted to wait until the 12wk mark to see if he worked it out. He has gone 2 or 3 nights through from the dreamfeed to teh 7am waketime, but not regularly and not the past week. Ideas? I am nervous to do CIO because there's no way for me to know for sure that he isn't hungry. He eats about 7min one side and 5 or so on the other each feeding. He won't take more and goes his 3 hours during the day fine. Appreciate any insight!

  41. Plowmanators
    January 23, 2012 / 6:58 PM

    Hard to say for sure Sylvia. One thing you could try around 3 AM is to try soothing him back to sleep without feeding him. If he falls back asleep and sleeps until 7 just fine, then he probably is not hungry. But if he wakes at 4-5, he probably is still hungry at night.

  42. Mrs. Madz
    February 10, 2012 / 11:44 AM

    Hi! Thanks so much for your blog! I need some help. Jaxon is 11 weeks old, he was sleeping 7-8 hours at night and now he is not! We did get off our schedule a bit and he had his shots this week. Also it's like he 'forgot' how to put himself to sleep and nap time has been really frustrating. After a major disruption does it take some time for babies to get back on track? I blame myself also for not being 'strict' enough with the schedule and it changes everyday. How do you balance the obligations you have with the schedule? He usually always wakes at 7am and goes to bed at 8. Definitely not sure if I'm going about his routine in the right way. He is still on 3 hour with one 4 hour stretch. I also noticed he isn't giving me his sleepy cues this week he just goes straight to being grumpy. Thank you so much for everything! Your information is so valuable! God bless!

    • Plowmanators
      March 1, 2012 / 9:06 PM

      Mrs. Madz,It does take babies some time to get back on track. Also, it is possible he is not feeling well or something. I have posts under "disruptions" and "flexibility" that can give you ideas on how flexible you can be and how to handle disruptions when they arise.

  43. Kat
    March 8, 2012 / 3:25 AM

    Thank you so much for providing this resource. I'm still so confused about what to change about the schedule at some of the babywise stages. My daughter is 17 weeks old and we still have her on a 2.5 hour schedule during the day with a dream feed at 10. She sleeps to around 6am or so regularly. That means she still has 7 feedings and 7 naps. She is starting to have a tough time napping in the 2 naps after the 5pm feeding. Should we make changes at this point?

  44. Mel
    March 14, 2012 / 2:30 PM

    Hi! Thanks so much for this website! We have been doing BW since birth, however lately I feel really confused/overwhelmed with my 7 month old. Until a few days ago, he was taking 4 bottles a day (6am, 10, 2, 6pm) with a bedtime snack. We tried moving him to 7am with daylight savings which has been an epic fail, he still wakes at 6 on his own. Also we've tried weaning down the "afternoon snack" in an attempt to transition to three meals. He will only nap for 1 1/2 hours at most, twice a day and a 30-45 min nap close to dinner. He sleeps from 830pm until 6 am. I've tried to get him to sleep longer overnight but he just will not sleep any more. I feel like I am doing something wrong that he's not getting a full 12 plus good naps. He just seems like he does not require that much sleep. Plus he's a big eater so I feel like that "snack" really still needs to be an actual meal? Any ideas for me, I am at a loss!

  45. Plowmanators
    April 1, 2012 / 1:06 AM

    Kat, yes. She should most likely be able to do a three hour schedule in the day now. She also should be able to take just three naps. So if she is getting up at 6 AM, she will be going to bed around 6 PM, then you wake her for a dreamfeed around 10 PM still.

  46. Plowmanators
    April 1, 2012 / 1:11 AM

    Mel, at that age, he should still be having four liquid feedings a day, so don't worry about dropping that.

  47. Emily
    January 9, 2013 / 11:45 PM

    I LOVE your blog and it's such a great resource for first time moms (like me) who have no idea what the heck we are doing.My son is exactly three months old and is on a great schedule that he pretty much established himself and I just observed/followed. I have to wake him up at 6 AM so that I can get to work so his feedings are: 6, 9:30, 1:30, 4:45 and 7:45. So he's usually in bed by 8 or 9 which is clearly too late for him.Here's my problem – I don't want his last feeding to be 6 PM – I think it's way too early for a bedtime and he needs the ounces in the last feeding. But he gets EXHAUSTED at 6 PM and needs a nap until about 7 PM. This doesn't seem to impact his sleep since he doesn't wake up in the middle of the night but everything I've read says not to let them sleep during this time. But how? Do you think the schedule is okay as is?

  48. Katie
    January 10, 2013 / 8:01 PM

    This sounds a lot like my daughter was I wouldn't worry about it

  49. Tiffany Beauchamp
    June 7, 2013 / 7:35 PM

    Hello, and thank you for this blog. I wish I'd found it sooner as so many others have stated. I am a first time mom at 31 and am trying my best to implement Babywise. My 10 week old girl has bad gas/mild colic (I say mild b/c she doesn't meet the definition of true colic as my pediatrician defines it). She hasn't consistently slept well at night or napped by the book, but considering the fact that her gas wakes her up much of the time I feel she has done well. She is down to 7 feedings yet isn't STTN yet. She goes to bed at 9pm, I wake her for DF between 11 and 11:30pm and then she wakes b/t 4-5:30 range (she eats well at this time) and then we start our day at 8am using our 30 min buffer much of the time. 🙂 I noticed that you stated that babies shouldn't be down to 7 feedings unless they're STTN consistently. She is sleeping 5-6 hours at her longest stretch. Does this count as STTN? Babycenter considers this STTN, but wanted to check with you as I want to not create a bad habit or stop doing what we're doing if she is making progress. Btw, she would skip DF all together, but then I was waking at 2am and 5am and figured better to only have to wake once at night. Thank you Thank you Thank you and I look forward to reading your response.

  50. Katherine
    August 25, 2013 / 12:11 AM

    so, I have a 7month old son, and I have only recently been applying the babywise principles (prob since about 5 months). Before 5 months, I was doing about a 4 hour routine, however, my son was not sleeping through the night (in fact, he would wake several times). I since learned that I should just let him fall back asleep. However, it was still seeming like he was waking up; i researched and found that Babywise suggests to not move your baby to 4hr until they are sleeping 12 hours through the night without eating, so I moved him back to a 3 hour routine, and I also added in 3 solid meals a day along with the nursing. He takes 3 naps, none which seem adequate, anywhere between 45 -1:30. He seems ready to go to the 2 2hr nap and one catnap routine. so here are my questions: 1. On the 3 hour routine, he seems disinterested in eating, however, he is not sleeping 12 hrs like the book suggests…so in this case is it okay to move to a 4 hour so he is actually hungry and eats a full meal?2. Does is matter if he waits 15-30 into his waking to eat? as opposed to eating right away so he can play?3. If he has had an off day due to visitors, doctor, whatever, and has not had adequate nap or night sleep, is it okay to let him 'sleep in' through his normal wake up time?

  51. tmack
    September 12, 2013 / 10:53 PM

    Hey!Your blog has been soooo helpful! My daughter is 8 months. Her schedule is 7am wake, 840am nap, 10am wake, 1145 nap, 115 wake, 4pm cat nap, 5pm wake, 730 bed time.So, I just now started the catnap instead of a whole third nap because she stopped going to sleep. I am also weaning her of the dreamfeed right now. This whole time I have been doing the whole optimal awake time thing and that's how I figured her nap times. But… She will only sleep 1 hr and 15 minutes at each nap. She wakes up happy so I thought it was fine. But, when I look at sample schedules, mine seems weird. Is the wake time before bed wrong? She's awake for like 2-2.5 hours before bed. And the past several days, she has only slept 45 minutes for her second nap. What do I do with that? Also, now that I have dropped the dream feed, she wakes early at 620-630 am ( I don't get her un till 7).So, should I shorten night time sleep or leave it? How do I get her to take longer naps or does it matter? Should I go back to a third full nap since her naps are short? Thanks!Tracy

  52. Alison Chinnery
    August 7, 2016 / 10:31 PM

    Hi there, you say that baby should go down 12 hours before the desired wake-up time, but then how do I fit in all his feeds? My boy is 12 weeks and sleeps from 9pm to 7am. I feed at around 7, 10, 1.30, 5. His last feed usually starts at 7.30 (since this is his fussy time it takes him longer.) Thanks! Alison

  53. Alison Chinnery
    August 7, 2016 / 10:32 PM

    Hi there, you say that baby should go down 12 hours before the desired wake-up time, but then how do I fit in all his feeds? My boy is 12 weeks and sleeps from 9pm to 7am. I feed at around 7, 10, 1.30, 5. His last feed usually starts at 7.30 (since this is his fussy time it takes him longer.) Thanks! Alison

  54. Darbi
    October 10, 2018 / 12:30 PM

    10 week old baby, exclusively pumping, 10 lbs. wake at 630, feed every three hours. I don’t dreamfeed and she eats middle of night. I nurse her then. Bottles are 3.5 oz so she gets 25 oz in 24 hours. How can I include dreamfeed and be confident she doesn’t actually need to eat in the middle of the night? Kinda like what comes first, the chicken or the egg. I don’t want to overfeed her.

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