July 2, 2018

A Complete Guide to Baby's Bedtime Routine

This week I shared my 7-9 month old schedule and got amazing feedback! Thank you! I have become really passionate about putting my baby on a schedule over the last several months. This is what has helped her to be the happiest she can be. Scheduling our day together has also helped me to perform better as a mother and created structure in our home. It works wonders for us but full-day schedules are not realistic for everyone. It's so important to do what is best for you and your family!

With that said, I firmly believe in a bedtime routine above anything else. It's the perfect way to send signals to your baby or child that it is time to unwind and prepare for bed. For the longest time, I went without a bedtime routine for Nova. She would go to bed at different hours every night and seemed to be getting grumpier and grumpier. Not only was it effecting her mood but because she wasn't getting adequate sleep, she was growing at a very slow and concerning rate. Right around the time I started to prepare our daily schedule, I committed to a very specific bedtime routine. It changed everything. This bedtime routine was a necessary step before we could even think about putting her on a full-blown schedule. 

While her bedtime routine is quite lengthy and specific, it is also really fun! Nova knows exactly what time it is when we start everything and very obviously looks forward to each step. This routine did not come to me over night. It took a lot of trial and error, research and prayer to know what was best for my baby. I have said it before and I will say it one million times more: EVERY BABY IS DIFFERENT! They all have their own needs and wants. It's so important that we pay attention to that and ensure that their routines and schedules are suitable for their personality and age. 

Quiet Time We start around 5pm by reading stories about bedtime, like "Night, Night Farm" and sing soothing songs. Nova helps me put away all of her toys followed by nursing.

Dinner  I will mix 3 portions of veggies to 1 portion of fruit (like apple or pear). Occasionally she will have cut up turkey and feta that she can feed to herself while I prepare her bath.

Bath ♡ This is Nova's favorite part of the entire routine! Considering we get out of the house everyday and we are typically around a lot of people, I feel better bathing her every night. It is also a great way for her to explore and play in a quiet and calming environment. 

Lotion & Song ♡ After cleaning out her ears and nose (when needed), I bring her into her room for the rest of her routine. I sing "Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star" while putting her lavender scent Johnson & Johnson lotion all over. She tends to get squirmy at this point so I never take too long. 

PJs & Sleepsack  Because it is so hot right now, we typically put her in a onesie and her sleep sack is muslin material so very breathable and thin. Her crib sheets are made of the same material as her sleep sack during the summer as well. 

Oil & White Noise ♡ I turn off the lights and walk her over to her dresser where her diffuser is. We turn it on together to the purple light with lavender essential oil. She sleeps to river water sounds on the app "White Noise" (you can find it for free in the app store). This is when I will give her gas drops or nighttime gripe water if she has been more fussy than usual.

Last Snuggles & Lay Down At about 6:30-6:45pm, after a couple of snuggles, I say "night, night, I love you" every time. I lay her down while she is awake, but drowsy, rub her back a few times and walk out of the room.

Here is your complete guide and elements you can include in your baby's bedtime routine:

Nova and I wish you luck as you try different ways to create the best bedtime for your little babe! It can take time to find what works so don't get discouraged, just keep trying! Once you do find your routine, it will make putting your baby to bed much smoother and hopefully allow you some time to yourself. Good luck, mama!

1 comment:

Cassandra said...

This was so helpful! I have been working on a bedtime routine with my little one . Loved this post!