Baby # 5 is arriving in the next couple of weeks… into our 3 small-bedroom house. She will occupy the nursery within a month of her birth. So as of this week, our current baby was ousted from the nursery at the ripe age of 14 months and officially graduated into the already-brimming “kids’ room”.
I think we are entering military-style large family living (a la Yours, Mine and Ours), except without the uniformity. Notice the mismatched bedding that doesn’t fit the beds; the girls sleeping sideways on a full-sized bed with a large stuffed dog as a barrier; cheap curtains re-appropriated as a crib darkening wrap; duct tape everywhere. My husband and I now refer to the kids’ room as The Orphanage–who do all these kids belong to anyway?–and all I have to say is:
My kids won’t be lonely at night. I do remember feeling very lonely as a child as I tried to fall asleep in my own dark room. Lack of available oxygen in the room might be a problem, but solitude won’t.
My daughter with the “generous tonsils” snores steadily and loudly for 11 hours straight, providing built-in white noise.
The kids must keep their beds made and everything put away in order to even get the bedroom door open. A drastic natural consequence of messiness is a lot more effective than my constant chiding.
My soft-spoken 11 year old mother’s helper walked upstairs this week, looked into the Orphanage, and her jaw dropped as she timidly asked “Uh, how many people sleep in this one room?” She is from a Catholic family herself, but apparently a more spacious home : ) The kids proudly responded “ALL FOUR OF US!” as they took to jumping on beds. So far, so good. If they all opt for single rooms freshman year of college, I’ll have no idea why…