I have had a few requests to continue up with my previous post. I am glad that you all are actually getting something from my advice. I am in no way a mama expert, but I just wanted to keep a record of what was working for us that I can look back on.
Schedule: Caleb is still on a schedule. However, his meals are the only thing that happen at the same exact time everyday. He naps at different times. If I know we are going somewhere that day I will adjust his naps around that in order to make sure he is rested. I will put him down earlier than normal to try to get a nap in if we have something to do that morning/night. I have learned that as long as he gets his sleep and food he is happy. His bedtime also varies. I refuse to go home at a certain time every night just to make sure he is in bed at 8 pm sharp. I really believe in taking the time out to enjoy yourself and not let the babies schedule dictate your life. If you know you are going to be out later, make sure the baby takes a nap before you leave.
Sleeping: As I stated before Caleb's bedtime/naptimes varies during the day depending on what we are doing. He still takes 3 naps a day, and sleeps through the night. Normal times are Nap at 9:30, 12, and 4/5. Bedtime generally around 9:30. He always waks up around 8 or 9 in the morning. I wait and listen for his ques for naps. I know as soon as he starts getting fussy and cranky that it is naptime. I give him a snuggle and kiss, lay him down in his bed, turn on his music and monitor and step out. Very rarely do I have to go back in to calm him down to sleep. Generally he will fuss for a minute and fall asleep. I love to rock him, but he will rarely fall asleep anymore by being rocked. Bedtime is the same routine, except for the nighttime prayer is added in.
Nightime schedule: When Caleb was first born I was all about the bath, story, prayer, bed routine. It was a nightly occurance that I was sure he could not function without. However, with my work schedule I can not always give him a bath at night, and he actually does fine without the nighttime routine. I have a lullaby that I will sing to him and it immediately calms him down if he is upset. However, for the most part he will go straight to bed routine or not.
Daddies: We mama's really need to give our hubs a break when it comes to babies. It breaks my heart when I see mamas standing over their hubby's telling them everything they are doing wrong with the baby. I really really believe that we need to give them a chance to figure things out for themselves, and take time to bond with the baby. I remember many times when Caleb was little bitty that he would cry and hubby would ask me what was wrong, and I would say "I'm not sure babe just figure out what will work for you". Nick would often walk to Caleb's room and rock him and sing to him. Such a great bonding moment that would have been taken away if I would have stepped in. Sure hubs does not always do things the same way you would or the best way. However, they love that baby just as much as we do and they want nothing but the best for them. Give them a chance. Let them bathe the baby, let them read a story, get the baby dressed etc. It is a great break for you and a great bonding experience for them.
Play: Caleb has both accompanied play time and free play time. If I need to get ready for work I sit him in the floor with his toys where i can see him and let him play. I also will get down in the floor with him a lot and play with him. I will read books, place toys away and get him to scoot to them, work on whatever developmental milestone he is working towards at that point etc. I love our play time.
Developmental Milestones: Caleb is a laid back baby as I have said before. He could care less about a lot of things. It took him a month longer than most babies to start cooing, rolling, scooting, army crawling etc. However, that is just him. There is absolutely nothing wrong with him it is just his personality to be laid back. He loves to just sit and play with toys for hours, and I love that about him. It is hard sometimes as mama's to not get jealous or think there is something wrong if your babies are not moving at the same pace as others. However, take a step back before you freak out and think about your babies personality. Are they high maintenanced, hyper, calm, laid back, clingy etc. Each baby is different and they are all going to develop differently. It is not a competition to decide who has the most advanced/genius baby. It is their precious infancy. A stage we will never get back again, that is many times wished away to Keep Up With the Jone's. Don't wish it away, take it in.
Eating: I started Caleb on solids at 4 months. Why? Because I knew he was ready. He was showing all the signs, and there was no reason to hold him back. We are now completely on table food at 9 months. Why? Because he was ready. He was eating 5 jars of baby food a day, and had no trouble with the table food we would give him. Each baby is different. We have had no problems with starting him at 4 months and I did not stress about it at all. I make sure he eats a well balanced diet, and just watch for allergies.
Mood: Our mood effects our babies. If we freak out they freak out. If we are calm they are calm. Peaceful you=Peaceful baby. Take a deep breath and lay the baby down if you are getting frustrated. Return when you have calmed down, or you will both be upset for a while.
As I said before I am no expert on Mothering. However, these are things I have learned through my experience, that I want to remember for future babies. Hope they help you too.