Friday, September 5, 2014

Daily Routine (with 6-12 month old baby)

     I've used a schedule for our days for several months. Though this latest schedule says "6 months adjusted - 8 months actual," it will probably be the one we use until he's a year old. I've once again aimed at pairing our activities up so that there are times in the day in which I'm fully attentive to him and times in which he can play independently while I work on the home or meals. I've learned that "doing it all" is all about balance and smart, proactive planning!
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Edits: 7:15-7:25am Get ready for day
7:25-7:45am Breakfast, Clean-up and Table activity
7:45-9:00am Independent play

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A few notes about our current schedule:
  • Tennyson still wakes at least 2-3 times at night. (Some nights it's all night long!) I learned at about 5 months old that until he does sleep through the night, then I also need to rest during the day. I'm able to be more focused, enthusiastic, calm and patient with adequate rest. In other words, I'm able to be a much better wife and mama! I may rest the entire time or only half the time. The important part is that I am intentional about resting during the day if I'm up during the night.
  • The blocks of independent playtime not only allow him opportunity to learn through exploration and develop his motor skills, but it also allow me additional time to accomplish remaining tasks such as laundry and/or dishes.
  • We frequently use playtime suggestions found on the websites Productive Parenting and Let's Play as well as the book Retro Baby. All are excellent for providing interaction-based play.
  • "Table activity" refers to any activity that can be done while seated at the table. Currently, this simply involves a toy or two (we often keep a toy or two stored in the back of his high chair that are brought out only at this time.). This trains him to not expect to get up as soon as he is finished, which is helpful in developing patience for waiting until others are finished eating and for enjoying a meal away from home. It also allows me to clean up the mealtime mess before we move on with the day. I feel it's important for him to see that we are responsible for cleaning up after ourselves and maintaining order in the home.
  • I've simplified my cleaning routine tremendously so that it is achievable within this block of time each day. This is important for maintaining order within the home, especially with a child(ren).
  • David and I both enjoy cooking, and so we alternate nights in which each of us prepares a meal. Whoever doesn't cook spends time with Tennyson. Though it's not written as such on the schedule, we've since implemented the rule that the non-cook cleans up after the meal. This way the workload is shared in the evenings. 
  • I don't always take my "personal time." If I haven't been very diligent or on-task during the day, then I may have work leftover that needs accomplished first. In a way, it serves as motivation to stay focused during the day! Other times, I decide that an extra thirty minutes of sleep is a worthy use of personal time!

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