Party of Two (and Other Bedtime Shenanigans)


There are three kinds of people:

1. House People. When these people look for a home, they consider the bed to bath ratio a priority. Each child, future child, and in-law will definitely get their space. Nice grass and yard space is a must. But, trees? Who needs ’em? They have nice neighbors who bake cookies and celebrate Halloween as a big happy group.

2. Neighborhood People. These are the people who search for homes by ZIP code. They typically prefer older homes and are willing to sacrifice square footage for the chance to walk to their favorite hole in the wall around the corner. They don’t really think through the bedroom situation before they sign on the dotted line. Yards? What are those? Most of their neighbors are really nice, but everyone is too busy being urban to hang out.

3. Former Neighborhood People. These people freaked out one day . . . perhaps the day before Thanksgiving when Crisco hit them on the head, as it fell out of the overpacked teeny tiny cabinet, when they were reaching for salt. Then they said, “I’M OUT OF HERE!” and became House People.

We are hovering precariously between group 2 and group 3 in our 3 bedroom/1 bath home.

When we fell in love with our little bungalow in the Spring of 2011, we’d just given up on our mini dream of having a 3/2, our littlest wasn’t even a glimmer, and I daydreamed of living simply and growing old there with my man. At 1500 square feet, it seemed like a palace compared to our first bungalow (1240 square feet).

I refuse to give up our guest room, so our two littles share. And I wish I had a really easy blog post for you–like we have two beds and they go down at 7 perfectly–but that is not real life.

Here’s our “kids share a room adventure” timeline:

Birth-6 months. Littlest in our room while I nurse her, oldest (2) in her room.

6-13 months. Littlest won’t sleep for the life of us, and we move her and the pack and play into the guest room. When guests descend, she comes back to our room.

13-18 months. Littlest FINALLY sleeps through the night and is given the green light to sleep in sister’s room. Things go remarkably well–even at nap time. We pat ourselves on the back for living simply and teaching our children good values, like sharing. We are awesome parents.

18 months-now. Biggest crawls out of crib, we mourn, and convert it to a toddler bed. With new found freedom, the children party all the way through nap time and bed time. No one sleeps or naps. Big girl gets relegated to the guest room for nap time. Things go better for a while. Then big girl gets a later bed time because she can’t help but party with little sis, who is actually really really really tired. Finally, big sis gets relegated to the guest room for bed time and moved to her room when she is FINALLY asleep.

It’s all about flexibility. Raising children rarely goes just like you planned it.

Our children share a room out of necessity, yes. But even if we had a bigger home, I think* they would still share for a few reasons. Someday they will be forced to share in college** or marriage, why not learn sharing skills early? Kid stuff is banished to one room. The amount of “stuff” stays at a nice minimum, because there simply isn’t room for excess. This is a blessing.

*Never say never as a mom.

**Like I said here, I definitely could have learned sharing a little earlier in life.

Do your kids share a room? What are you secrets?

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  1. Love this post! We have a 3/2 house, but ours still share as well because, like you, I don’t want to give up the guest room/dog’s room. 😉

    Neither of mine are consistently good sleepers, but we have just (like in the last week) started putting the little one–almost a year old–in her bed about half an hour before the older one, who is 2 1/2. Up until now, the little one has slept in the pack-n-play in the living room. But this is so far working well, and I hope I’m not jinxing myself by saying that!

    They still nap separately, but they wake up around the same time in the mornings. The older one gets out of her bed to go see her sister, and they giggle for a long time before we’re allowed to come in. I can see a happy light at the end of the sleep tunnel, and I love it!

  2. Tiffany. YES! My youngest totally took naps in the Dining room for months. I think to myself daily (like when crisco is hitting me in the head) people in NYC and most places in the world live in smaller homes than mine. I keep reminding myself “first world problems.” AND like you said, my girls are becoming best friends. Yes the rumble, and sometimes I catch the big one in the little one’s crib jumping around and being crazy, but I think in the end, it will pay off. I got my own room at 7 and have honestly had a hard time sharing my entire adult life.

  3. With an 8 yr old boy and 7 month girl, they have separate rooms. Although the youngest doesn’t sleep well and mommy ends up being her “roomy” often. 🙁

    In a hearbeat I would down size! Our first home was 2/1 700 sq ft. Our home now is 4/2 with a large play room, which I would gladly get rid of, too much stuff! Kuddos for keeping things simple!


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