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Looking for advice from our BTDT mommies...sorry so long!

Forum: 2010 Playroom


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October 29th, 2011, 09:17 PM
LisaBrown's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Canada
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...that have more kiddos than rooms in your house. Strange opening line to a post, I know!

I was sort of debating whether or not I was going to post this in the open forum, but I'm no good at keeping things to myself so I figure why not...

We plan on TTCing #2 next cycle. As you all know from many of my posts, we live in a home that I had never invisioned us having more than one child in. I always thought we'd move after Melodie was born, but almost a year and a half of me being off work put us further back financially than we expected, and now we're ready for #2 but our finances haven't caught up to the point where we feel ok putting our house up for sale yet. Plus we figure maybe it would be smarter to spend another few years here, with lower payments and then getting back even more equity from this home if we can make it work for a bit longer.

So here's the layout of our tiny place. The main level has a small kitchen (about 12 x 10), a tiny bath (8x5), and a huge family room that we have sort of set up half as a TV area and half as a play area (14x26). The basement has storage and my washer and dryer. I also have a small storage room off of the kitchen (about 6x6) where we keep our recycling, trash and freezer. Upstaires we have a huge but oddly shaped master bedroom that is about 20x30 but U shaped, so cut out a 6x3 square where the stairway comes through...hard to explain. The thing with our bedroom is that we don't even have a closet, but we have a big shelving unit for DH and a huge dresser for myself. Then Melodie's room is about 10x14 with a big closet that we use for storage, toys, a linen closet and some of our clothes. She also has a huge dresser that is only half full, a smaller one we use to store random things for her that we don't want to be too far out of our reach. Now I'm rambling a bit, so back to my point...

We started a huge cleanup of the house yesterday. I told DH I need to have the house in a better condition so that I can start figuring out how we'll make it work with a second kiddo. I want to start buying things we will need for another baby and setting the house up accordingly now. Have I mentioned before that I'm a big planner? I know it probably sounds crazy to some of you, but I need to start thinking like I'm already pregnant, that way when the time does come, I'll already feel ready. So that brings me to my list of questions for all you BTDT moms, especially if you made it work in a small space with more than one kiddo.

Have any of your kids shared a room before? How old were they before it actually ''worked'' having them in the same room? Do you think it makes any difference at all while they're young to have a boy and a girl share a room? At what age would you think it's no longer acceptable for siblings of a different gender to share rooms?...I ask all of this because we're sort of hoping for a boy, although we'll be happy either way of course!

Any tips on extra storage in small spaces, especially for the bathroom, and kitchen? I am at my wits ends trying to make room in our bathroom...we don't even have a linen closet. All my towels and toilettries are packed under the sink on two big shelves, in wicker baskets. It's a nightmare! I'm thinking of getting a moveable kitchen island for more kitchen storage...anyone have anything to recommend or any better ideas?

Also, any tips for outdoor storage, other than a baby barn or shed? We don't have a whole lot for outside, but I would like to get my lawnmower and a few other items out of the storage room next to my kitchen without spending a lot on a baby barn.

And last of all...am I nuts? It's ok for you to give me an honest opinion on this since I have been going back and forth on this for a while myself! If anyone is in a similar situation, PLEASE share...it will make me feel much better! At this point I feel like everyone I know is going to look at me like I'm nuts if I ever announced I was pregnant and that we were going to stay here another few years with both kiddos.

If anything, thanks for reading all my ramblings and a HUGE thanks if you actually take the time to try to answer any of my questions!...I have a feeling it's just the start of my ''crazy planning'' so I hope I won't drive you all crazy with this stuff...if I do, just let me know and I'll join a TTC board or something instead, but I'd rather just bounce all of these things off of you ladies since you're my go to gals, especially on everything baby related.
Thank you Jaydinsmum for my amazing siggy!

Last edited by LisaBrown; October 29th, 2011 at 09:19 PM.
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October 29th, 2011, 11:06 PM
Platinum Supermommy
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 5,566
I'm not btdt but M and a future sibling will be sharing a room also (my step daughter has our third bedroom). We're probably going to have baby in our room until they sleep through the night and then they will share after that. The room is kind of small, i think about the size of Didis so I already think about what i'll do to his room when the time comes and basically all i can come up with is to add shelves on the walls (above where M's bed would be) and then in his closet i'm going to add a second shelf for hanging. I dont usually like toddler beds (i kind of think they are a waste of money, my step daughter went straight to a twin) but we'll probably get one for the space saving issue then when M and future baby are older enough we'll get bunk beds.

Have you ever seen this blog? Its amazing!
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Last edited by Sam914; October 29th, 2011 at 11:08 PM.
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October 30th, 2011, 09:38 AM
QueenCrafty's Avatar Courtney
Join Date: May 2007
Location: North Carolina
Posts: 26,280
I personally don't have experience but my friend just had a 3rd baby in a 3 bedroom house. Her almost 4 year old son and 15 month old son share a bedroom that is about 10x10. They have bunk beds with the youngest on the bottom with a toddler bed rail. Their master wasn't big enough to fit a baby so they just put their new little girl in the nursery. She hates clutter so she keeps only a few toys in the family room and the smaller toys in the boy's bedroom.

My sister is also expecting her 3rd in a 3 bedroom house. Her 4 year old and 22 month old girls are sharing a room that is maybe 11x11. They were trying a trundle bed arrangement, but their youngest won't stay in bed. So they are going to put her in a pack n play for a bit longer so the new baby can have the crib. My BIL won't let my sister put the new baby in the master bedroom even temporarily. Their youngest is a light sleeper so they didn't want her to share the nursery with a baby that would wake up often. Their house also doesn't have a play room. My sister has big wicker baskets for toys that slide under a console table in their family room.

I really don't think it's crazy to have another kid in a small house. People do it all the time. My dad grew up in a house with one bathroom and 8 siblings. I'm going to have our girls share a room even though we have a 4 bedroom house.

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October 30th, 2011, 11:02 AM
Katie81's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
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Well if you are crazy then so am I! We are just now starting to TTC and we have a 3 bedroom house and two kids already. DD (5) has the largest bedroom but she has a full sized bed so there is no way she is sharing with anyone. DS has the smaller bedroom and will be around 2.5 when we have the next baby assuming I get pregnant in the next 5 months. WE went to Ikea yesterday and bought new bedding and decor for his room. I am decorating it gender neutral and we bought coordinating crib and twin bedding. Right now he is still in his crib but it converts to a twin. We will buy the same crib for the new baby and put both in the room. I don't think I want to find out the gender this time so the room will be set for boy/boy or boy/girl. I shared a room with my brother who was 6 years younger than me until I was 14. We had a small house in New York growing up and it was fine.
Kate, mom to Liliana (7) Greyson (4) and Ainsley 17 months
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October 30th, 2011, 11:13 AM
frgsonmysox's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
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Our two older boys shared a room for about a year before we separated them. The only reason they were separated was Anthony has Aspergers and he needed his own space away from everyone. Charlie and David (and perhaps this baby) will all share a room with each other.

I don't see an issue with opposite gender siblings sharing a room until it becomes an issue for one of them.
~Beth~ Wife to my Airman Chris, and mommy to: Anthony Nathaniel (8/31/04), Anastasia Fae (8/01/06), Baby C (lost on 10/12/07), David Cillian (7/31/08), Charles George (4/29/10), and Alan Christopher (2/22/12)

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October 30th, 2011, 12:07 PM
mimi81's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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I'm glad you posted this because we have the same issue going on here. Our house is 1 floor about 750 sq ft, so SUPER tiny.
I know I'll have the baby in our room for at least a few months in a pack n play. I want to get rid of the changing table we have and just use the pack n play changer (I change Brynn on the floor anyways). Then in their room, just have the crib for baby, get Brynn a toddler bed, because of space, and get a big dresser they can share. Hopefully that should leave a little room for toys and maybe add shelves for books.
I kinda like the idea of getting a small shed for outside storage. That would be really helpful!
As far as a boy and girl sharing a room, I don't think it's a big deal. I shared a room with my brother until I was 10 and he was 6.

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October 30th, 2011, 01:07 PM
Platinum Supermommy
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We have 4 bedrooms upstairs, one of which is the master suite. Plus, the addition downstairs for my parents. So, 5 bedrooms total. BUT I have Lily and Vi sharing a room anyway. I think it's good for them to share for a bit.

Right now, Vi still sleeps in our room 50% of the time. But her crib mattress is on the floor in Lily's room. Lily has a double/full size bed right now. We're going to get them matching twin sets in a few months though I think. Vi started sleeping in there a few months ago. I think once the LO is sleeping through the night, you can put them in with a sibling. Lily and Vi actually like to sleep in the same bed sometimes as well.

My SIL had her son and daughter share a room from the time her son was an infant (daughter was a toddler) until they were about 4 and 6. My DH was the only boy with 6 older sisters and they had a 3 bedroom house. He shared with 2 of his sisters for years, until the oldest ones moved out and the 2 he shared with moved into the other bedroom. My best friend shared a room with her older brother (bunk beds) until he left for college when she was 15.

Personally, I'd let a boy and girl share a room as young kids with no issues. I'm not sure if I even would have a cut-off age, probably like Beth said, if there was an issue or one of them was uncomfortable, etc.

As for organizing a small space, I'm not much help. What about storage ottomans or things like that, which are functional and look nice, plus you can store toys, etc inside?

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October 30th, 2011, 04:57 PM
Shantastic27's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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I was actually going to suggest the I Heart Organizing blog!!

Lisa, I don't know if you're anything like me, but I tend to hang onto things for entirely too long! I find that when I go through things and downsize I have a TON more room. We have an extra bedroom, but I don't know that when we get pregnant again we'll have the new baby use it. I think it's totally fine for them to share! I wasn't comfortable with the idea of Livi being in her own room for awhile anyway (she slept in her crib in our bedroom til about 13 months) so I would imagine it will be the same with the next one. I love the bunk bed idea--I always wished I had those when I was a kid!
Thanks for my gorgeous siggy, Jaidynsmum!!!

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October 30th, 2011, 05:45 PM
mylene169's Avatar Kaija and Kolbie's Mommy
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Our house is fairly small (950 sq.ft. plus a finished basement) and we're nice and cozy with just 2 girls. We do have 3 bedrooms though so they each have their own even though Kolbie's room is way too small to play in. I'm not sure how we're going to fit a twin bed in there eventually. But we've talked about having the girls share anyway. Odds are good that we'll still be living here when we're ready for our 3rd baby, so when that happens we'll get some bunk beds for the girls.
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October 30th, 2011, 10:17 PM
palmetto_moon's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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I have ten kids and a four bedroom house. Here is how it works. DH and I are in the master and Mia is in our closet. I know, it sounds horrible but the closet is huge, easily the size of a small bedroom. It fits her crib, two dressers and there's still plenty of space for all our clothes. It even has her baby swing set up in there.
In bedroom number 2, I have my three oldest boys. In bedroom number 3 I have my three youngest boys and in bedroom number four, I have the three girls (not Mia). We also have an open loft that is currently used as a playroom that we're thinking about walling off (it's already dry walled on three sides and open on the fourth...hard to explain) so we'd only need to drywall one wall, to make a fifth bedroom.
Anyways, the kids share just fine. I have no problems whatsoever with three kids in each bedroom. They do fine. I try to remove as many things as possible out of the room so that they have space to move around. For instance, we don't keep toys/toyboxes in bedrooms to make more room. That stuff is in the loft, so if we made the loft into a bedroom, it would give us a bit more bedroom space but then we'd have the trade off of toys having to go back inside bedrooms....It works fine for us though. Is it optimal? Probably not and sure I'd love to win the lottery and build a 10 bedroom house but it's totally fine and if it means we get our big family then we're happy to squeeze in!!!! The kids have a lot of fun together too. Sometimes lack of privacy becomes an issue but more often than not the fun they have together really outweighs that...
I think you can probably make it work. Even in a small room, a toddler and a baby can share just fine...depending on your storage space in your bedroom you could also experiment with keeping the kids' dressers in your room or closet which would free up more floor space in the bedroom the kids would need to share...

Thank you Kiliki for my awesome siggy!

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October 31st, 2011, 05:43 AM
Mega Super Mommy
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 3,492
I have had up to 3 kids sharing a room and on our recent vacation we had all 4 kids in a room (twin bunkbeds, full bed and a packnplay).

I think B/G sharing is fine for a long time. My Nate will still sleep in the room with the girls sometimes and he is almost 5.

[/COLOR]Nathan(6), Reagan(6), Riley(5), Kaycee(3)

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October 31st, 2011, 08:53 AM
JaxonsMom2010's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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Currently we have a three bedroom house and have four kids.

The older two boys share a room. And Jaxon shares with his sister. It works pretty good. We have bunk beds in the older boys room.
Christy - Mom of 5

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October 31st, 2011, 09:41 AM
LisaBrown's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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Location: Canada
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Thanks everyone! Reading all of your posts really does put me at ease, just knowing so many of you have been through it or know people who have makes me feel a lot better. Over the weekend we cleaned the heck out of our house and put everything we could do without in storage down in the basement. I've figured out that we would put the baby in his or her crib in our bedroom until he or she sleeps through the night and then they will share a room. The rest we will figure out as we go I guess! But like Angela, we'd rather enjoy a big family in a small house than enjoy the empty space in a big house. Soo I guess all that's left to say is... TTC here I come!
Thank you Jaydinsmum for my amazing siggy!

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October 31st, 2011, 12:07 PM
sandpaper06's Avatar Mom of 3 darlings
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Location: Denver, CO
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I'm glad to hear it. We actually have a 5 bedroom house, but Lauren and Marcus share anyway. We have 2 cribs in there, and will switch to bunk beds. I'm on the lookout for Full on Full ones though, so it might be a while.

As for sharing, there was a point when my parents had the four of us younger girls in one smallish room. (2 sets of bunk beds). DH is the only boy in his family and shared a room with one of his sister's until he was 14 (his parents expanded the house at that point and he got his own room). I think that as long as no one is uncomfortable, they can stay in B/G rooms for a long time. Plus, you do what makes your family work. Ya know? Glad you're TTC and I hope it happens quickly for you!
Alisha, mom to:
Marcus - Jan '09
Lauren - March '10
Caroline - November '12

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