Quoting the ever appropriately titled movie, Basic Instinct. I'm applying the quote to my basic instincts as a mother.
Aria is pretty much in a routine of her own now, and isn't far off the guide given in the highly rated baby books - I won't name names, for the reasons that follow.
I have loved reading these books, as they provide a plan of what a 'structured' day should look like. However, I refuse to take the advice that the routine should be followed 'to the letter', as they constantly reiterate.
Aria went down for her morning nap at 8:00 (an hour earlier than the suggested time). It's now 9:30 and I can feel the author hissing and cracking out her whip, as she should be down no longer than 45 minutes... She's clearly tired and needs a longer sleep today, so why wake her up?! All I'll get is a cranky baby, and who wants that?
My view on these books is that they are to be taken however you like. They are not to be followed 'to the letter', and you should take hints and tips where you feel they will fit into your baby's own routine.
I've found them great for helping to settle Aria at night, telling me how her screams are actually her 'crying down' and I should leave her to try settle herself. This has been a life saver, and saved us a good hour pacing the floor with her to settle her for the night. There is tonnes of advice that I've been able to apply to our routine, rather than changing it to fit theirs.
The point in this post is not to follow the rules, go with the flow. Your baby will let you know when he/she is tired, hungry, or just wants a cuddle. You'll fall into a pattern that works for you. Don't worry what the book baby is doing, the baby next door, or the babies in your favourite blogs. They each write their own book, so don't worry about following the one on the shelf.
Thanks for reading.