As I’m writing this, Elliott is 19 days old (almost three weeks!). I thought I would go over what a day in my life looks like right now.
Elliott will sleep for 1 to 3 hour stretches throughout the day and night. He sleeps the best if he is lying on someone, but we try to avoid having him do that because we don’t want to start any bad habits. He also likes to be swaddled but he needs to have his arms out.
During the night I try to keep the room dark and I have my white noise machine going. During the day we try to keep things noisy and bright so he can start to learn the difference between night and day. I’m hoping this will come in handy later when he starts sleeping longer stretches.
Once he wakes up I will change his diaper (it always needs to be changed). Then I will feed him which generally takes 30-60 minutes. Next I will try to get him to sleep back in his bed or on one side of my body so I can use my breast pump for another 20 minutes.
After I get him back to sleep around 7-8 am I will get out of bed and wash the bottles and my pump from the previous night so I can get new ones ready for the rest of the day. Right now I am washing and sterilizing after each use. I’ve read that you should sterilize until they are 4 months old, but then I also read a lot of people just wash them.
I will then get myself breakfast before Elliott wakes up and the routine of change, feed, sleep, begins again. Now that he’s getting older he’s starting to have more awake time. I will try to talk to him, read him some nursery rhymes, or put him down on his belly for some tummy time (which he generally hates but is getting better at).
I will also try to get laundry or any other chores done while he’s sleeping. I have gone from doing laundry once a week before having a baby, to about every other day. The loads are lot smaller now though. He is always peeing, pooping, or spitting up on something.
Around 6-7 pm I will wash my bottles again and start getting things ready for the night. Elliott usually goes to bed around 8 or 9 pm. I will make sure my night stand is stocked with my water bottle, a few snacks for me to eat during the night, my breast pump, and my phone which I use to track his feedings, diapers, pumping, medicine, etc (the app is called Glow Baby and I love it). I will make sure I pump around 9pm so I don’t have to do it again until about 1 or 2am (not supposed to go more than 5 hours without pumping).
I was originally giving him ready-to-eat bottles but they are really expensive. One box of 24 bottles, on sale, costs about $33. When I first started tracking his feedings on the app he was 5 days old and eating 50 ml of formula per feeding. A couple days later we were giving him 60 ml which is how big the ready-to-eat bottles have in them. At 10 days old he increased his appetite to about 75 ml per feeding which means I would now have to give him two bottles at a time.
In our first two weeks we had spent around $500 on formula. I knew we would not be able to afford to keep doing that.We have now switched over to powder formula which is a better deal.
At first I was a little bit concerned because the powder formula bottles need to be kept in the fridge until you are ready to use them. I didn’t want to have to go downstairs to the fridge in the middle of the night every time he was hungry. But I was running out of the ready-to-eat bottles and didn’t want to go to the store. For the last two nights I’ve been going down to the fridge, and it actually hasn’t been too bad.
I’m starting to feel pretty confident in our routine right now. I’m surprised at how much energy I have with only getting an hour or two of sleep at a time. Some days I will try to take a nap while he is sleeping, but usually I find something around the house that I feel needs to be done instead.
I don’t know what I’m going to do once Elliott decides to change the routine we currently have going. But with parenting you have to expect things to be constantly changing I guess.