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Moms on Call 4 8 Week Schedule: The Secret to a Happy and Healthy Baby

As a frazzled new mom struggling to establish a good sleep routine for my daughter, I desperately needed help. Late night googling led me to the Moms on Call 4 8 Week Schedule – a structured baby care plan aimed at helping little ones sleep through the night as early as 8-12 weeks old. Sounded too good to be true! But after implementing their schedule, I’m a total convert.

In this post I’ll discuss exactly how the Moms on Call newborn schedule works, why it’s so effective, and how you can follow their sleep techniques to help your own happy, healthy baby snooze peacefully.

What is the Moms on Call Newborn Schedule?

The Moms on Call philosophy centers around following an age-appropriate, predictable routine to help baby feel secure and relaxed. By feeding, playing and sleeping at consistent times each day, you establish a rhythm baby can latch onto. This helps regulate their circadian rhythms, setting them up for better nighttime sleep.

Their schedules start from birth, with progressive plans to take you through the first 6 months and beyond. Focusing specifically on their 4-8 week newborn schedule was a total gamechanger for us.

More Details on the Origins of Moms on Call

The Moms on Call baby care schedule actually began organically from two experienced pediatric nurses and mothers – Laura Hunter and Jennifer Walker. After years of caring for newborns in the hospital and training frazzled, sleep-deprived parents on techniques to improve infant sleep, they began crafting a structured yet flexible method.

When they each had children of their own, Hunter and Walker tested their philosophies on their babies with amazing success. Laura’s son was sleeping through the night by 8 weeks old, while Jennifer’s daughter could go 12 hours straight shortly after. During playground chats with other moms struggling for a good night’s rest, they realized they were onto something big.

Initially the duo self-published their own guidebook on newborn schedules to share their wisdom. As mothers began implementing their schedule and telling friends, Moms on Call grew a cult-like following. The first book has now expanded into a series with different volumes tailored to baby’s age and development milestones. Beyond publishing, Hunter and Walker operate a blog with even more real-world advice on baby sleep troubles.

With years of professional medical experience combined and their own parenting journeys, the Moms on Call schedule offers credible guidance directly from the baby nurse experts!

Mapping Out the 4-8 Week Routine

During weeks 4-8, Moms on Call aims to have your infant sleeping through the night, which means only one middle-of-the night feeding between 10pm and 7am. This lets mom get some much needed rest too!

They structure each 24 hour period into sleep, feed, play and activity cycles to help baby differentiate day vs night. An example daily schedule looks like:

  • 7-8am – Wake up, feed, diaper change
  • 9:30am – Feed, playtime
  • 10:30am – Nap
  • 12:30pm – Feed, playtime, change
  • 1:30pm – Nap
  • 3:30pm – Feed, playtime, change
  • 4:30pm – Catnap
  • 6:00pm – Feed
  • 8:30pm – Feed, clean up, swaddle & bed

During this window you’d also aim for only one night feeding between 4-6am to start spacing out calories.

While the basics stay the same, you can customize details like feeding amounts and naps to suit baby’s needs. The key is consistency and timing of activities.

Next I’ll dig into why the schedule works so well…

WeekDay Sleep GoalNight Sleep Goal
4 weeks3-4 naps at 30-90 mins1 stretch of 4-5 hrs
5 weeks3 naps at 45-120 mins1 stretch of 5-6 hrs
6 weeks3 naps at 1-2 hrs1 stretch of 6+ hours
7 weeks2-3 naps at 1-2 hrs10-12 hours total
8 weeks2 longer naps11-12 hours total
Sample Sleep Schedule by Week
Moms on Call 4 8 Week Schedule 3
Moms on Call 4 8 Week Schedule . Image Credit: Canva

Why the Moms on Call 4 8 Week Schedule is Effective

Beyond just being consistent, some clever elements like differentiating daytime vs nighttime help signal sleep time for babies. Here’s how:

Waking at the Same Time Each Day

  • Having a set wake-up time sets their internal clock, so babies know when to expect breakfast and start the daytime routine.

Structured Feed, Play & Sleep Cycles

  • Feeding more often during daylight hours ensures baby gets more calories and nutrition during the day. This allows them to go longer stretches at night without feeding.
  • Having designated play and activity times during day also helps expend energy so baby is primed for sleep come bedtime.

Day/Night Differentiation

  • Keeping mornings and afternoons brightly lit, with activity and interaction tells baby “this is daytime!”.
  • Conversely, dimming lights after the late evening feed, maintaining calmness/quiet signals to baby “Time for bed”. They associate it with sleep.

Adhering to these core ideas sets your baby’s circadian rhythms and primes their bodies for longer nighttime sleep stretches.

Now let’s look at how you can implement the schedule successfully at home…

Real-Life Success Stories from Moms on Call

While explaining the details of the schedule is critical, real-life examples drive home the incredible impact Moms on Call has had on exhausted parents. A few success stories:

Monica, a first-time mom, was at the end of her rope trying to soothe her daughter’s colic and constant crying. After 2 months of never-ending shushing and rocking just to get the baby to sleep for 30 minute stretches, she was beyond burnt out. On the edge of desperation, she read about the Moms on Call schedule and decided to give it a try. Within days of implementing the routine, her baby’s demeanor changed dramatically. She began napping more soundly during daytime windows and settling down contently after night feeds before being placed in her crib awake. For the first time Monica felt rested and confident in her ability to care for her newborn.

Alan and Theresa were overwhelmed as first-time parents to newborn twins. With two demanding babies needing attention simultaneously around-the-clock, they were exhausted and stretched so thin that finding time to even shower or eat was a struggle. Unsure how they would manage like this for months on end, they came across the Moms on Call books and website. There they found guidance tailored specifically to coordinating schedules with multiples. Implementing consistent, alternating feeds and activities allowed each parent to focus on a single baby in shifts. This gave them room to breathe, regain energy to properly care for both girls, and rescue their parenthood journey.

Beyond dramatic cases, nearly all parents implementing the Moms on Call method experienced notable improvements in their baby’s sleep. The detailed schedules and sleep training guidance are truly life-changing for restless households everywhere!

Setting Up the Perfect Sleep Space

A restful sleep space sets the physical stage for baby to easily drift off. Be sure you:

  • Locate baby’s crib/bassinet away from direct sunlight or loud household noises.
  • Invest in sound proof blackout curtains to make sure naps happen in darkness.
  • Use a white noise machine to drowned out disruptive sounds. The loud shushing creates a calming effect.
  • Optimize room temperature between 65-72°F degrees, not too hot and cold.
  • Consider a sleepea® baby swaddle wrap to avoid startling during sleep.
Next Steps:
  • Identify the ideal place in your home to create a dedicated sleep haven for baby. A nursery or bassinet in your bedroom are common options.
  • Shop for any needed gear like curtains, a white noise machine or swaddle wrap to complete your setup.

Investing a little time and money into an inviting sleep space makes a big difference in helping your baby sleep soundly.

Moms on Call 4 8 Week Schedule 4
Moms on Call 4 8 Week Schedule . Image Credit: Canva

Troubleshooting Common Sleep Challenges

Even with a well-planned schedule, babies may struggle with sleep because of:

  • Growth spurts – Cluster feeding and disrupted sleep for a few days as baby hits a developmental leap.
  • Disruptions when traveling or overtired. It throws their internal clock off!
  • Illnesses like cold, flu or teething pain causing discomfort.

During these times you may feel lost. Have hope! There are a few tricks I learned for coping with challenges:

  • Be flexible and prioritize feeding on demand if baby seems extra hungry from a growth spurt. Then get back on schedule.
  • Catch up on daytime sleep if baby missed sleep because of travel or overtiredness. Missing day sleep snowballs.
  • Offer extra soothing during illness blips. An infant pain reliever, cold teething toy or warm bath can provide comfort.

Take cues from your baby. Offer extra soothing when needed, get back on routine when you’re able. It’s give and take!

Next steps:
  • Make notes tracking your baby’s schedule changes, growth patterns, illness timing etc. to learn their rhythms.
  • Have a plan to access relief items like pain/fever reducing medication ahead of time to quickly soothe baby when sick.

Understanding your baby’s unique needs over time allows you to navigate the tricky periods smoothly!

Cause of DisruptionSolution
Illness– Offer extra soothing (meds, cooling baths) <br>- Prioritize feeding on demand
Growth Spurt/Leap– Increase number of daytime feeds <br>- Cluster feed before bed
Overtiredness– Add an extra nap <br>- Move bedtime earlier
Travel– Bring sound machine <br>- Stick close to schedule
Teething– Provide cold teether/toy <br>- Use infant oral pain reliever
Poor Sleep Space– Address environment issues <br>- Optimize for better sleep
Milestone Distraction– Increase daytime play interaction <br>- Reinforce calming bedtime routine
Common Schedule Disruptions & Solutions

Realistic Sample Schedules By Age

To give you an idea of how Moms on Call schedules progress, here are some age specific examples:

Newborn (0-4 weeks)

Focus is feeding on demand and bonding. Let baby guide timing. Sample newborn daily routine:

  • 7am – Feed
  • 9am – Feed
  • 10am – Nap
  • 12pm – Feed
  • 1pm – Nap
  • 3pm – Feed
  • 4pm – Nap
  • 6pm – Feed
  • 8pm – Feed & sleep

Midnight & 5am – Night feeds

6 Weeks Old

Feeding and naps stabilize into more predictable windows.

  • 7am – Feed upon waking
  • 9am – Feed
  • 10am – Nap
  • 12pm – Feed
  • 1:30pm – Nap
  • 3pm – Feed
  • 4:30pm – Catnap
  • 6pm – Feed
  • 8pm – Feed, clean up & bed

4am – Dream feed

8 Weeks Old

Expanded night sleep, dropping dream feed

  • 7am – Wake, feed
  • 9am – Feed
  • 10am – Nap
  • 12pm – Feed
  • 1:30pm – Nap
  • 3:30pm – Feed
  • 4:30pm – Catnap
  • 6pm – Feed
  • 8pm – Feed, clean up & bed
Moms on Call 4 8 Week Schedule 5
Moms on Call 4 8 Week Schedule . Image Credit: Canva

Modifications for Breastfeeding Moms

The Moms on Call routine provides an invaluable framework of age-appropriate feed, sleep and activity times for developing healthy sleep habits. However, since the schedule guidance covers bottle feeding logistics, exclusively breastfeeding mothers may need to adapt parts of the routine to meet their unique needs. Here are some modifications to be aware of:

To ensure adequate milk supply as baby feeds more frequently during daytime hours, breastfeeding moms need to amp milk production. Strategies like adding extra pumping sessions, lactation supplements, massages and hydration can help increase quantity. Building up freezer stash is also smart before starting the schedule.

While the schedule notes feeding amounts in ounces, nursing moms allow baby to feed directly on demand during sessions. Watch diligently for fullness cues to switch breasts and avoid overfeeding. After nursing, pump any excess for bottle feedings later.

Growth spurts, when baby cluster feeds, and periods when illness or disruptions throw off the routine may require greater feeding flexibility. Watch baby’s signals closely and prioritize on-demand feeds when needed, then resume scheduled feeding periods.

Here is an example daily schedule for breastfeeding mothers:

7am – Nurse upon waking
9am – Nurse, then pump 10am – Nap 12pm – Nurse, offer pumped bottle 1:30pm – Nap 3pm – Nurse, then pump 4:30pm – Catnap 6:00pm – Bottle feed pumped milk 8:30pm – Nurse, then bedtime

The Moms on Call sleep training method can work incredibly well for families who breastfeed too with a few strategic tweaks! Be prepared to flex when needed.

Getting Your Partner Involved

Tag teaming with your spouse or partner lightens the load, plus helps baby bond with dad (or non-birthing parent) too. Have your partner own certain schedule tasks:

  • Handling the overnight feeding session so you can sleep.
  • Helping with bath and bedtime routine 2-3 nights a week.
  • Preparing bottles while you focus on nursing baby.
  • Entertaining baby with songs, stories or activities after feeds so you can have free time to shower, eat etc.
  • Doing diaper changes after feeds or naps so you can take a walk break.

Just an extra set of trusted hands with defined duties makes all the difference. Don’t hesitate to enlist support!

Next Steps:
  • Sit down together and determine what tasks your partner can realistically take on. Avoid overburdening them!
  • Schedule defined blocks for hand-offs so you both have planned breaks. Consistency is key.
  • Arrange time for self-care activities for yourself during hand-off periods to avoid burnout. You both need outlets!

Bottom Line

Hopefully this gives you confidence that implementing a structured newborn routine IS possible even during the crazy early months after birth!

The Moms on Call Schedule completely changed my life as an exhausted new mom. My baby started sleeping 6 hour stretches shortly after 8 weeks old, letting me recharge.

If you are at your wits end with a baby who “doesn’t sleep”, try the Moms on Call method for 2 weeks. The investment of sticking to a schedule results in well-rested, happier babies…and parents!

Wishing you lots of restful nights ahead.

FAQ – Moms on Call 4 8 Week Schedule

What if my baby won’t sleep after a late evening feeding?

Ensure you are differentiating daytime vs nighttime for your baby before this last feed. Keep lights bright/activity high during the day then dim lighting and limit stimulation as bedtime nears. Make the late feed the last food intake before bed. Conduct a quiet, calm bedtime routine afterward and put baby down awake but drowsy so they learn to self-soothe asleep. Babies have to adjust to this structured schedule predicting bedtime. Stick with the consistency and they will start settling better within 1-2 weeks.

Is it okay to occasionally veer off the schedule for events/visitors?

Can I start sleep training this early? What about letting baby cry?

How do you juggle older kids with a newborn schedule?

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