How Many “Sleeping Spaces” Does Your Baby Have?

Yesterday Joy asked if you stowed your baby in a dresser drawer. Green minds think alike, because I was just about to ask the same thing. (We are somewhat obsessed with this idea of ultimate thrift and practicality. We’ve mentioned it once or twice. And I’m sure we talked about it The Eco-nomical Baby Guide a few times, too.) And here I must make the usual disclaimer that if you do choose to stash your baby in the drawer, please follow the following safety guidelines:

  1. Don’t set the baby in the top drawer.
  2. Don’t close the drawer.
  3. DO take the drawer out of the dresser and set it on the floor.
  4. DO empty the drawer of socks, clothing, knick-knacks, sharp objects, flammable gases, etc., before setting the infant inside.

As charmed as we both are by this drawer idea, neither of us tried it. That is a regret I will have to live with the rest of my life. “So what did you use for your baby’s sleeping space?” you may be asking, trembling with anticipation. “A hat box? A wine crate? A repurposed rain barrel?” Perhaps due to sleep deprivation, I wasn’t able to take advantage of any of these great ideas. But here’s what we did use:

Our bed. The ultimate in minimalist sleeping gear, simply keep your baby nestled between you on your bed, where she will surely sleep soundly. We did this in those early days, but we also had . . .

A Moses basket. We used a Moses basket for the first six months of our daughter’s life. It sat beside the lumpy futon where we were sleeping (for some reason) at night, and we could place it anywhere in the house for the baby’s naps. We even took in on a few trips. But then, at six months, we finally set up . . .

A crib. We liked getting away without a crib for six months because our house was so small. But you can’t keep a kid in a basket forever. In addition to the crib, we had just one more piece of equipment to fulfill our baby’s sleeping needs:

A Pak-n-play. I wanted to avoid purchasing something we’d use for occasional trips, and I did! We were able to borrow a Pak-n-play, and we couldn’t have traveled so easily without it. While sometimes we could borrow or rent cribs at our destination, it was nice to have a portable crib to take to Grandma’s.

Three years after giving birth, everything got a lot simpler. Our child graduated to a real bed at last. Did you use a Moses basket? Bassinet? Crib? Travel crib? Or . . . a drawer?! Let us know what worked and what didn’t for you.


  1. We used the Pack-n-Play for the first 4.5 months of our son’s life, and it lived mostly at the foot of our bed (after that he moved to a crib in his own room). It was also handy to have downstairs in the living room for the first week as my baby had jaundice and had to be attached to one of those light panels we snapped under his onesie. I slept on the couch next to him. Fun times!

    When he outgrew the weight limit for sleeping in the insert, we used it as a playpen–I particularly found it useful to drag out onto our front porch so he could sit in it and play while I gardened. And we took it with us to use as a crib once when we went on vacation. So while we did shell out the bucks to buy it new, I found it well worth the cost.

    I was also fortunate in that my son could and did sleep anywhere–crib, pack-n-play, our bed, the sofa, a sling, his stroller, the floor.

  2. We had our first sleeping in a laundry basket for a little bit after she was born. We had a plumbing emergency, had to stay with friends in a small apartment (not even room for the pack and play in our bedroom), so she stayed in the laundry basket.

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