A typical day with a 4 month old
Here’s a post from my drafts! I wrote this back when Ezra was 4 months old (obviously…), which was in August. Seems like forever ago.. but it’s only been 5 months.
Well it seems like only yesterday I was talking about a typical day with Ezra when he was a newborn. Oh how time flies!
And oh how things change!
My last “typical day” post was when Ezra was 3 weeks old. He will be 5 months on Thursday and our days look quite different!
I know some moms don’t believe in a “routine” for their babies, so when I say routine just know that I’m not holding Ezra to a strict schedule. I believe it’s best to observe a baby’s natural rhythm, then work a routine around that. For us, it just so happened that Ezra settled into 9am-12pm-3pm-6pmish eating schedule and his naps kind of emerged around that eating pattern. Over time, naps became very predictable and now we have a routine that works for us every day. We can go off the routine without too much incident, but if we go off it for several days in a row, Ezra has a tough time. The boy knows when he’s sleepy and he doesn’t like nap time to be messed with! I have also found that the EASY routine works really well for us – chances are it works for everyone because it just makes sense and it’s actually what adults do in their daily lives anyway: E = eat; A = activity; S = sleep; Y = you. After Ezra eats, we have activity (play, errands, etc…), then he takes a nap/relaxes and while he is napping it’s me-time.
But, this isn’t a post on the merits of routine… this is a post about our day-to-day life with a 5 month old. So, here’s what a day normally looks like for us:
Ezra wakes up anywhere between 7:30am-9:00am. Depending on the time, I either bring him into bed with us and nurse him or we get up for the day and I nurse him. If it’s closer to 7:30am, I bring him into bed with us and we snooze a little longer. Regardless, our day starts at 8:30/9:00am. I love seeing Ezra’s gummy smile every morning. He is always so happy and it’s a great way to start our day 🙂
Alex gets up earlier than we do, so he can get ready for work. When Ezra and I get up, Alex hangs out with Ezra so I can pump and get ready for the day. I pump every morning. Ezra no longer wakes at night so every little bit of pumped milk goes straight into my freezer stash, unless it’s a Wednesday. On Wednesdays the pumped bottle goes straight to my mom’s. Ezra hangs out with his grandma every Wednesday so I can have a catch up day!
Alex leaves for work around 9:20. If I haven’t already nursed Ezra, I do so when Alex leaves. After that nursing session, I take Ezra into his room to change his diaper and get him dressed for the day. Sometimes we hang out at home in the mornings, other times we have things to do. I like to try to get all my errands done in the morning or early afternoon since Ezra naps better in the car or while we’re out at that time.
But, if we stay home, Ezra and I play on the floor with his toys, or we read books until around 10:30/10:45. At that point, I put him down for a nap. We’re working on doing naps in the crib so if we are home for sure I definitely try to make the first nap of the day a crib nap. We go through the same routine as we do at night – close all the curtains, tell the toys and stuffed animals goodnight, then turn on the sound machine. Usually, if I have laid Ezra down before he is overtired, he will put himself right to sleep.
The first nap lasts roughly an hour – sometimes less, sometimes more. While he is napping, I try to get any cleaning or chores done so they’re taken care of for the day. After that, I work on knitting or writing.
When Ezra wakes up, usually around 11:30/11:45am, we do a diaper change and play a little. I nurse him at around noon and after he’s done nursing I put him in his jolly jumper or on the floor on his playmat so I can make myself some lunch. He is really good at entertaining himself and loves practicing his rolling.
After I’ve had my lunch, Ezra and I will play some more or run some errands if we didn’t get to it in the morning. Sometimes we meet friends or family for lunch. Our afternoons vary day to day.
Regardless, nap time happens again at 1:30pm. He will nap for an hour. If we’re home, I use that time to knit pouches or catch up on other work.
Ezra nurses again at 3pm. He will only be awake for about an hour after that nursing since his earlier naps are so short. He gets pretty tired by the late afternoon and it’s important for us to be home by that time so he can get a nice, long nap in. I put him down around 4:00pm, sometimes 4:30pm. Usually he takes this nap in my arms (my favorite!) or the swing. I can rarely get him to nap in his crib for this nap. He’ll nap for about 2 hours. If he’s going to nap in my arms, I make sure to have work nearby that I can easily grab so I don’t disturb him.
When he wakes up around 6:00pm, I change his diaper and we play a little bit until Alex gets home. When Alex gets home around 6:30pm, I start making dinner. Alex and Ezra play while I cook. When dinner is ready, Ezra sits in his highchair while we eat. I nurse him again around 7:30. From then until 8:30, he’ll either snooze a little bit or play with Alex. At 8:30 we do rice cereal. He loves cereal!
Bath happens at 9:00pm. He sure is a water baby. Bath is arguably his favorite time of his bedtime routine. Alex does the entire bath routine himself, so he has bonding time with Ezra. After Ezra’s bath, I quickly hop into the shower and get ready for bed. Then, when Ezra and I are both in our jammies and ready for the night, I nurse Ezra on the couch and he is asleep by 9:30pm. I keep him with me on the couch for about 30 more minutes or so, then we lay him in his crib at 10:00pm. He sleeps until around 7:30am-9:00am and we start the day over again!
Things that are majorly different from our newborn “routine” are:
- We are on a more established, predictable routine. I know he gets tired at 10:30am, 1:30pm, 4:30pm and 7:30pm. Those times vary only by 15-30 minutes.
- Ezra is, obviously, awake for longer periods of time in between nursing sessions. He also nurses for a lot less time- usually only 10 minutes. This means more play time… some days he isn’t difficult to entertain, other days he hates all of his toys. On those days, we leave the house and go out and about.
- He takes at least one nap in his crib, and sleeps in his crib every night. We transitioned to the crib in early August and have never looked back. I can’t believe we waited so long.
- Ezra eats cereal now at night. We introduced cereal about 3 weeks ago. He really loves food and is doing great with it. We plan on introducing vegetables at lunchtime soon… mostly because now that he sleeps anywhere from 10-11.5 hour stretches at night he is technically missing a feed (he used to wake at 3:00am for a bottle) and I’ve noticed he will get fussier and need to squeeze in an extra nursing session somewhere during the day.
- Speaking of the missed bottle at 3am, out of nowhere, Ezra started sleeping long stretches at night around 3 months and that stretches just lengthened until he was sleeping through the entire night. We didn’t do any sort of sleep training, but I know things don’t always happen this way and that things can change in the blink of an eye.
Hope this is helpful! I’ll be sure to write up another “typical day” in a couple more months if things have drastically changed.