For a long time, my hubby and I have said we would love having a tiny house like these. Our only request would be a small, almost closet sized room for each kid with a loft style bed and dresser/desk combo underneath. Last Summer we rented a cabin in the Outer Banks, NC and it was tiny. And functional. And lovely. Less mess, more forced togetherness. I can dig it.
Now, the house we owned in PA was gorgeous, 2400 square feet and had four bedrooms (and a pool and a two car garage and…I’ll stop now so I don’t feel a tiny bit sad for my old self). At the time, we had my husband’s niece living with us and my daughter (yay!), and Champ wasn’t born yet, so we had three kids sharing two bedrooms. The boys shared brilliantly. Never a problem. At all.
Our NY rental house is smaller than our PA house, but in a less functional way than the tiny houses and certainly without a small space for each child. When we rented it, I thought “Hey! This brings us one step closer to our small-house-love, and who cares if there is one less bedroom…the boys share beautifully already.”
Enter premature baby brother and night terrors for the oldest boy. Even though my daughter moved to live with her Father around the time Champ was born, two bedrooms to share between three boys under four (and sometimes an eight year old girl), has proven to be a problem. We have had long stretches where everyone slept pretty well.
Then this winter happened, and my kids got sick left and right. Champ decided that he should wake up every night at least once; even if he felt well it was a habit now. Against all of my better judgement, every night, I swooped in and moved him to a portacrib downstairs. Our middle guy, Jude, was the best sleeper (and probably the one that needs it the most) and if Champ’s screaming woke him up, that would be a real problem.
So, besides having my sleep interrupted every night (which yes, probably contributed to this), I thought we found a good temporary solution while we waited for Champ to sleep through the night again.
I thought it was a brilliant idea…until Saturday morning around 5:30am when we heard a loud thud downstairs. Champ figured out how to climb out of the portacrib. I’ve never even seen him try this…not even when he’s playing “babies” in it with his brothers. Had. No. Idea. It. Was. Coming. I hate it when I’m unprepared!
Saturday night, when Champ started crying, we moved Jude to Carl’s room. It was around 4am. Jude never went back to sleep and consequently, neither did Carl. They played “quietly” (as quietly as four year old and three year old boys can), and BH and I nodded off but a few times during the next three hours. We were all exhausted Sunday.
Sunday night, we tried a new plan. Before Mommy and Daddy went to bed, we moved Jude to Carl’s room. The thought was that if we moved him after sleeping only a few short hours, he would stay asleep. We figured our mistake was waiting until almost 4am the night before (since Jude had been asleep for more than 9 hours at that point and probably felt rested enough to play at the time). The move went well…not a peep from anyone (not even Champ)…until four o’clock in the morning again! Jude was awake and ready to play. WTH?
This has happened every time we have tried to put Jude in Carl’s room. My only guess is that Carl’s room isn’t quite as dark and there are things within reach (like lamps), that make it obvious he could play if he wants to. Ironically, Champ slept all night. Not a peep. First time in a month. What gives? Maybe Jude makes small noises in his sleep that were waking up Champ before? Maybe Champ woke up, discovered he was alone, and decided it wasn’t worth yelling if no one was there? I don’t know!
For now, I’ve decided to keep Champ and Jude in their room together tonight. I figure if Champ yells and wakes up Jude, maybe Jude will realize how crappy it is when someone wakes you up and they will both grow out of this?
Well, internets…I have 24 hours until Lizzy comes home for Spring Break (yay!!). If you have any nuggets of wisdom please share.