What’s the Deal With Bunk Beds?

by samantha on September 16, 2011


Have I mentioned we’re moving? The big day is almost here and we’ve been doing a lot of preparations for our new living arrangement. Just to get you up to speed, we are living on two floors of a three story house. The upstairs apartment will be rented out and we’re going to be living on the first floor and  the sub-floor which is a converted basement. Initially the kids were going to get the two bedrooms upstairs and we would be in the “master bedroom” downstairs—the same arrangement as the prior owners who also had two kids. But as an aside the “master bedroom” in the basement is not all that master. It has ceilings that are about two inches from the top of BD’s head, gets no sunlight what so ever and has one window with bars that looks into a small alley.

Over the past few months, while awaiting our closing and throughout the beginning of renovations, I was stressing about how we were going to pull off living on separate floors, the kids upstairs and us downstairs. We have one kid who somehow makes his way into bed with us each and every night, and who knows what’s going to happen when Lola catches wind of what’s going on. To pull it off I was looking at several baby gate barriers between us and them, a few monitors and going up and down stairs several times durring the middle night for crying, bathroom requests ect…

A few weeks ago BD and I were in bed, Fritz wedged in between us, and we realize that there is no way we can be on a whole other floor than the kids. I don’t condone the fact that Fritz sneaks his way into our bed pretty much every night, but the fact is, he does, and I hardly feel like going up and downstairs in the middle of the night, or him trying to make his way down to our room in the night.

Sooooooooo, we’ve decided to all be upstairs and put the kids in one small bedroom together. Problem solved! Now,I need your help. Like I said, the room is small, about 13 x 13 feet. Bunk beds are the obvious choice to save space. Even though we are going to make our former master bedroom on the sub floor a guest/play room, and most of the kids toys can go down there, it would still be nice to have a little space for them to move around in their bedroom, right? But here is my point, can a four-year old successfully and comfortably sleep on a top bunk? I’m worried that if we do get the bunk beds, their novelty could quickly wear off and Fritz will have a difficult time menuvering down the ladder in the night. What are peoples experience with this arrangement? Are bunk beds it a good idea? Yey or neigh?

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Ashley September 16, 2011 at 7:39 pm

OHHH. Our family encountered this same problem last year. We purchased one of those Ikea Kura beds off of Craigslist for $50 and I pained it to better suit our home and now my one and three year old sleep on it. My favorite part is that it is much shorter than a traditional bunk bed and I feel a lot safer. Good luck!

trinajanine September 17, 2011 at 3:54 am

i second the kura! its lower to the ground for little lola and the ladder is easier to maneuver and takes up less space than typical bunk bed ladders. plus the sides are chalkboard and you can add on accessories like a tent topper. maybe you can bribe young fritz into staying in his “fort” through the night?!

kri September 17, 2011 at 5:38 am

We got Jules an elevated loft bed (top of a bunk with no bottom) when he was 3. He was able to maneuver the ladder just fine. We initially got it to try and stop his getting out of bed a million times nightly routine. And it worked!

samantha September 17, 2011 at 8:27 am

Well we we’re going to get the Kura just for fritz when it was his own room. That was our choice…but now that lola is in the mix I’d like her to not have to sleep on the floor kinda? I think she should be in a sort of regular bed. But the bunks from Ikea are pretty low.

@Kri That’s good to know that he could get up and down easily and if it help with the kid staying in his own bed I’m all for it!!!

goldie s. September 17, 2011 at 2:06 pm

I`ve been eyeing bunkbed ideas on ohdeeoh and pinterest. We only have one but as part of my, “we should have another” speech – i wanted to have a mood board to support my cause.

Ann Burr September 18, 2011 at 8:11 am

A four-year-old can totally navigate a bunk bed. Our 4 yo has one in his room and loves it. For what it’s worth, his original twin bed is from Pottery Barn and cost an effing fortune, and I was too cheap to spring for the matching bunk, so I got a bunk from Wal-mart. No one, and I mean no one, can tell the difference. GL with the move :)


Ciarra September 18, 2011 at 6:13 pm

We are a rather large family! None of our kids (7 in the house at the moment) have their own bedroom, in fact all 3 of the kids rooms have bunk beds. But there IS a difference for the 2 little guys who share a bedroom and that is we made their bunk beds ourselves to accommodate their needs as younger people! Instead of a latter we made a staircase, instead of flimsy 1×1 toothpicks with barely any guardrail ours is made from solid 2×4 with a pretty significant rail and last but not least we were able to personalize it for them. That last one isn’t a age specific requirement but it is fun none the less!! Hope that helps! I’m not familiar with your blog yet but if your significant other or yourself are familiar with wood and power tools than a bunk bed is pretty easy to make… but time consuming. Good luck!

samantha September 19, 2011 at 4:44 pm

@Ciarra I don’t know how a family of seven had time to MAKE a bunk bed! Lots of hands?? We are not going to attempt that…putting together Ikea is challenge enough. I salute you!

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