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A flexible routine for your newborn using E.A.S.Y

When we bring a newborn baby into this world, whatever you thought you knew goes right out the window. Babies are unpredictable and the only constant thing about a newborn is change! Especially in those first 4 months. Lots of parents come to us looking for a routine for their fresh little ones, but realistically it’s not possible! Babies do not look at clocks, and we cannot force it on them.

That is why we love recommending the E.A.S.Y routine coined by Tracy Hogg [1]. 

E – Eat

A – Activity

S – Sleep

Y – Your time

You can start getting your little one on this routine as soon as they are born and even still start implementing it when they are anywhere between 4-12 months old. It’s an amazing way to get more structure in your day, and by doing this your little one gets to know how and when their needs will be met, AND it also helps you as a mom or dad to get to know your little one better and better respond to their cries.

How to implement EASY:

Start your morning off by doing a feed when your little one wakes, when he cries 10 or 15 min later you know it’s not hunger because you’ve just fed. He’s just woken up so he’s not tired, so the most likely reason is a trapped wind or gas. Now you know you need to do something about that. If you are keeping an eye on those awake windows (See below) then when your baby starts fussing around that time and you’ve had a bit of activity (even just a nappy change) then you know it’s time to get your little one to sleep now.

Is your little one 6 weeks or younger and crying? Ask yourself:

  • Is it time to feed? (She’s probably hungry)
  • Is it time for a nap? (She’s probably tired)
  • Have you checked her nappy? (Maybe it’s too wet or dirty)
  • Has she been in one spot for long? (Maybe she’s bored)
  • Has it been loud/busy while she’s been awake? (Maybe she’s overstimulated)
  • Is she pulling up her legs and looks in pain? (May be gas)
  • Is she crying inconsolably about an hour after a feed, or arching her back after she spit up (Might be reflux)
  • Is the environment too hot/cold or is she too hot/cold?

**To help get your little one on this routine it will also be helpful to track your little one’s days for 3 days. You can use or download this sheet to help you keep track.

Troubleshooting EASY:

  • My baby falls asleep during feeds and seems hungry an hour later? 

If your baby has been born premature, or had jaundice this is normal. Try your best to keep your baby awake while feeding. But in any other case work hard to not make this the norm. Try to do a proper full feed and keep them awake for the duration of the feed. It will become easier after 6 weeks!

  • My baby wants to eat every 2 hours?

If you baby is 6.5 pounds + your baby might not be getting milk efficiently (if breastfeeding) Take care that he doesnt turn into a snacker. Watch out for an improper latch.

  • Baby not taking regular naps?

Look at awake times and that you are not overstimulating your little one. Keep swaddling and offering naps.

  • Baby sleeping well during the day and waking up frequently at night?

Day and night confusion!

6 weeks – 4months:

  • My baby just doesn’t want to do 3-4 hours at night?

Look at your calorie intake during the day, is it enough?

  • My baby was doing 5-6 hours at night but now waking frequently?

Is it time for a growth spurt?

  • My baby refuses to nap for more than 30-45 min?

Are you reading tired signs? Is it the correct time to lay baby down according to awake windows? Are you maybe going in too soon after he stirs? That you are not giving baby time to re-settle?

  • Is your baby waking up the same time every night but never feeds a lot before going back to sleep?

Might be habitual waking and not necessary hunger waking.

SOURCE: [1] The Baby whisperer solves all your problems (by teaching you how to ask the right questions) Tracy Hogg and Melinda Blau, January 2006 edition