Baby Hints & Tips

FIFO Family – Routine With 2 Kids

Young mother teaching her 2 years old little son to ride a bikeI never did a routine for my first child (now nearly 3), but with a FIFO husband thought with number 2 it would be a good idea. My son starts his evening routine, at 5-5:30 (bath dinner etc) and is in bed by 7. My little one 3 weeks old tends to feed for up to 2 hours on and off with wind issues in the evening. What routines do other mums do with 2 kids solo?

  • My hubby is also a fifo worker. I have a nearly 2 yr old and a 3 and a half month old who suffered from wind terribly in the evenings until recently. I tried to do a lot of preparing for dinner during the day and did a lot of slow cooked meals so when the screaming started in the evening I could just give my eldest her dinner and when bub settled, the eldest had her bath and bed time routine etc. Stick to your routine and just go with the flow with bub. I know it’s hard and some nights you just want to sit and cry. And that’s ok too. But it does get easier. Sonja
  • I too am a FIFO Mum my little one was 4 days old when my partner went back to work. For the first 12 wks I followed what her sleeping and eating pattern was I would bath her during the day while my son was at school. Once she got to 12 wks I got Tizzie Halls save our sleep and put her into routine by the routine set out in Tizzie’s book and too this day my little one follows routine. The hardest part I find is when Daddy comes home he tries his hardest to keep to her routine but we make room so he gets quality time with her as well. It’s not easy having a new born and another child to think of when your partner works away weeks on end. I also found by doing up the routine on the computer and putting it on the fridge I did one for each of my kids I would read them everyday so I knew what was to come next and now I don’t need them as I know what I have to do each day. Also I’m not sure what sate you live in but if you haven’t already joined look up FIFO Familes page on here as well there are play groups in most areas in each state where you can go meet a group of Mums that are FIFO wives as well. I have been going to one once a month an it’s great. Good luck x Christie
  • I’m solo during the week 90% of the time and I find it’s best if my eldest’s routine is maintained, and my youngest goes with the flow, eg Breastfeed on demand, follow cues. At that age trying to implement a schedule will only put pressure on you. Go by the guideline only awake for 1 – 1 1/2 hours max. Make your routine what you do, not necessarily when if that makes sense? Eg always wrap, etc etc. Is very tough but does get easier as bub gets older. My youngest is 7 months and I found a natural synchronicity to their routines emerging around 5 months (except when illness/teething/needles messed with everything) Good luck! Manda
  • Cluster feeding is normal, I’d leave routine until baby is a bit older. Once baby is around 6-8 weeks old, take note of when baby eats sleeps and wakes for a few days and there is your rough child led routine Kimmy
  • I have a 2yr old and 4.5 month old and often have evenings alone due to husband’s work. I give 2 yr old dinner at 5:30 and then we all have some play time. Bub has time on tummy etc and the two kids have a bath together at about 6:30. I get all night time clothes etc prepared before bath. I lay out a changing station on bathroom floor and pull bub out first and dress her (so I can still watch 2 yr old in bath) and then get 2 yr old out of bath and take him to the change table where I put the bouncer for bub to watch him get dressed. Sometimes, when she is really tired, she starts screaming and I hate this part, but we try to sing songs and go quickly. Once 2 yr old is dressed and in his sleeping bag, he picks some books and sits beside me on the lounge whilst I feed bub. Once she is asleep, I put her in bassinette and then put 2 yr old in bed. If she won’t settle, I feed her enough to calm her and then read books with the two of them, put 2 yr old in bed and come back to bub!! Hope this makes sense and is some help. Good luck Alison
  • save our sleep book is fantastic! I do the feeds times and try to match the sleep times but mostly both of mine slept earlier than what she recommended but at least u have some idea where they are at. Then I know when I can put my 2yo to sleep so they both have a day sleep together so I can have an hr to do what i need to do kid free Nikki
  • dinner at 6pm for 2 year old and 10 week old feeds not long after .. my dinner at 6.30 pm and the kids have a little play (baby on floor) toddler with toys … When my dinner finished around 6.45pm both go for a bath … dressed and teeth brushed by 7.15pm.. read a book to both and toddler in bed asleep before 8pm .. Baby has final bottle around 8.30 pm in bed by 9pm and I then have an hour to myself Carissa
  • Keep the routine the same just make or prepare dinner earlier in the day. I used to try have everything ready when bub was asleep and if bub was unable to be put down I’d shower older 2 get them to practise washing and drying themselves. They can be bathed together to. As bub gets older it gets a lot easier. Sharni
  • My youngest was 4mo when my ex started working FIFO. I did the opposite. I deliberately didn’t set a routine as I had two other children that my baby had to fit in with. We fell pretty quickly into a natural routine which fitted well with the other kids and because it had never been rigid, she coped really well with any changes to her routine. I have continued to allow her to set her own routine and now, at 2 1/2 she asks for bed around 7pm each night after getting her blanket and snuggling with me for the 15 minutes prior. I believe this made for a more relaxed family. My older kids never saw the baby as an inconvenience and in the week my ex was home, we had no restrictions on our time. Kyra
  • My husband is fifo I have a 2 1/2 yo and 11mo we loosely follow tizzie hall too Siobhan
  • Fifo wife here too with a 3yo and 16wk old. Sometimes it helps in those early weeks to let go of your “regular” routine and perhaps do bath earlier and get dinner ready earlier in the day when u can. Jaime
  • Sounds crazy but I start dinner at 4/4.30 so 2yr old eating by 5 (5 month old feed time) bath/shower by 6 and bottle book and bed by 7. Hubby doesn’t get home til 8.30. by the time my 2 yr stops to play while cleaning up I need the extra time between Crystal

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