We haven’t picked out colors, or bedding, or painted a fairy mural on the wall. In fact, our second child has no claim to any wall–or even a room for that matter.
Why have we allowed this to happen? After all, with our first we decorated with homemade curtains, a rocking chair and a new dresser. What we quickly found, however, is that our son was rarely in his room. He co-slept for the first five months and during the day spent most of his time lounging in the living room with us. He wouldn’t nap in his crib so we wore him in a sling for snoozing or plopped him down on his baby blanket.
We’d happily move everything out to make space for our newborn if we thought she would actually use it. Our spare room is currently our office. Since we’re not sure what kind of sleeper she’ll be and how her crying will affect our two-year-old, we’ve decided to just keep her in our room for a few months and then decide what to do once we get to know her. We’ve set up a changing table on the dresser and she’ll rest in a co-sleeper that some friends have generously lent us.
I’m sure our decision would seem strange to some, but luckily my sister, the mother of five children, has pioneered creative accommodations in my family. It’s impossible for most families that size to afford a six bedroom home, so she’s had babies sleep in walk-in closets, in the bathroom, and in several other creative nooks and crannies over the years. Now that they’re older, they are all using bunk beds and sharing rooms.
The great benefit of being more flexible with space, is that it’s possible to live in a smaller house, have less of a carbon footprint and more financial freedom. I explored this topic quite awhile ago here. So, if you’re expecting a little one, think outside the box about your baby’s nursery, or lack thereof. The honest truth is that your baby won’t be aware enough to give the slightest care to where he or she sleeps. Why not keep it simple at this stage and save up so that you’ll be able to have fun with décor later on?
How did you set up your nursery on a budget? Or did you opt out of the nursery altogether? I’ll keep you posted on whether I’m thrilled with our decision or think it was a horrible mistake.