Working Out the Kinks (or Why 2 out of 3 Ain’t Bad)

So, what do you think of our blog’s new look?!  I’m super-excited about it–this has been one of those projects that’s been sitting on the back burner forever, and I’m so glad to finally be moving forward.  Kudos to my bro Dean for helping us get here!  And even though we’ve still got some kinks to work out, that’s OK–at least we’re moving in the right direction.

Which is pretty much how I feel about the kitchen remodel.  Whoo-hoo! yee-ha! and all that other good stuff.

And then there’s the bunk bed fiasco.

Yikes.

I honestly thought that this would be a good move.  One that eventually help us reach our goal of Taking Over the World, I mean Reclaiming Our Once-Upon-A-Time Not So Cluttered House.

Alas, I didn’t foresee all the challenges around this lil’ ‘ole bunk bed.  How hard it would be to get the kids to sleep at night, how easily they’d wake each other up (at 5:30 a.m.), you know, all that other good stuff.

Truth is, I did kinda foresee all those problems, but I Just. So. Wanted. It. To. Work. that I did my best to ignore them.  Until last night, when the kids got into a fight and couldn’t calm down, both of them yelling it was the other person’s fault. (Sound familiar?) In the interest of retaining my own sanity, I separated them to help them calm down.  When sending them to different parts of the first floor didn’t work, I sent them upstairs–to your rooms!

Um, duh.  To your (shared) room.

See where I’m going here?

The freakouts quickly escalated until I found another way to separate them and eventually helped them both calm down enough to solve the problem.

But the question remains: What the hell do I do when they both need their own space?  I know that one of the most important things for me to do when I’m freaking out is to get into a space of my own and shut the door, even for a few minutes.  But what do you do when your kids share the same room?

Ideas? I’d love some help on this one.

Part of me thinks that the kids just aren’t quite old enough (ages 5 & 3) for bunks yet, but that we might be there in another 6 months or so. In the meantime, I’ve got to figure out a way to retain my sanity around here. Especially since they’re closing up our ceiling today and hooking up our new stove and hood. Whoo-hoo!  Yee-ha!

And the reconstruction continues….

 

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9 Responses to Working Out the Kinks (or Why 2 out of 3 Ain’t Bad)

  1. Suzita @ playfightrepeat.com January 31, 2012 at 6:56 pm #

    In terms of the bunk beds and shared room, I know what you are talking about. My boys shared a room for their first 10 years. I think we put them together when the younger one was 11 months old. Then we got bunk beds when the younger one was three. And, I totally understand what you mean that you can’t “send them to their rooms”! I think we usually sent one to their room and the other to the living room. It wasn’t ideal, but we had to do something.

    We also always gave them their own spaces within their rooms. They each had their own desk, and certain dresser drawers were theirs alone. Also, I remember getting a smallish plastic bin for each of them, and designating it their “bed box” because they happened to keep it on the end of their bed. This was for all their special toys (small enough to fit in this box) that were off limits to the other kid.

    Even though it’s truly challenging not to have a place to send each kid when they are in trouble or simply “need space”, they do become close when they share a room. After the initial fighting stops, they will likely talk to each other each night while they are in their bunks before falling asleep. This is pretty cute. And of course when they get to college, they will be much better dorm roommates! And their roommates will thank you!

    • tpajevic February 2, 2012 at 6:18 pm #

      Thanks, Suzita. Just before I published that post, I literally remember thinking to myself, hmm, I should check Suzita’s blog on this one–I’ll bet she’s already posted some great tips on sharing, divvying out space and helping the kids get along. Thanks for sharing them-

      I especially like the idea of carving out their own space within the shared room, both with the drawers and a box of their own. I’m thinking we’ll do the same with wall space when we get around to it.

      I’m hoping all of this helps even things out between the boys a bit. Lately, we’ve been getting a lot of the whole “he’s getting more attention than me!” thing, which can be a little exhausting. I think it’s at least partially connected to the kitchen remodel, though, since both boys are getting less attention and therefore need to try and get it back somehow! It’ll be interesting to see how things settle down once our kitchen is put back together again and Ken and I aren’t quite so scattered all the time. Good thing we decided to do it all at once! Yikes.

  2. Christa February 1, 2012 at 10:18 pm #

    Hey! Great blog. What does “reboot this marriage” mean? The bunkbed story is funny. Do you have a basement or something? When our kids were that little we just did the traditional time out, so we just used the stairs as the place they sat. Although I use “they” loosely becUse mia NEVER gets I’m trouble 🙂 so…. Good luck 🙂 xoxoxo

    • tpajevic February 2, 2012 at 6:10 pm #

      Thanks, Christa! Yeah, we’ll have to try the separating them technique…sadly, our offices are in the basement, so Ken’s usually on a conference call or something. But I’ve started using our bedroom as another alternative.

      Thanks! I love all the advice and insights I’m getting from folks around the bunk bed question–all sorts of good stuff, from using duct tape to separate whose area is whose to putting one kid down earlier, etc.

      And “reboot this marriage” just means that I’m using this blog to work out all the 800 daily kinks that arise when you’re married with young kids. You know, trying to keep your marriage on track when everything in the universe is pulling you apart. And all that other fun, light-hearted stuff, ha.

  3. Rachel February 2, 2012 at 3:41 pm #

    I think Ethan and Will were about Nico and Gabriel’s ages when they were banished to bunk beds (from our bed, of course). They were together in the bunks until they were about 12 and 15. Ethan actually had his own room for four of those last years, but he’s my fearful child and didn’t want to leave the safety of his brother’s bottom bunk.

    Looking back, I don’t remember any problems with them sleeping in their bunks at 3 and 5 or really having any issues with figuring out what to do when they fought or needed personal space.

    Oooh, I just sounded like one of those grannies who tells you her kids were all potty trained at six months, spoke and read Spanish at nine months, and were factoring polynomials by the first birthdays.

    It really wasn’t all peace, love and joy, but if it’s any consolation, one day you will remember it that way:)

    • tpajevic February 2, 2012 at 6:06 pm #

      What do you mean?! My kids were already factoring polynomials in the womb…um, perhaps. If they were pulling from Ken’s genes, that is, not mine.

      Sigh. I hope you’re right–that I won’t remember their incessant bickering. I guess it’s like the early baby days, when it seemed so damn hard every minute but looking back it seems like a walk in the park. Like when you see new parents with a newborn and you find yourself thinking things like “You think you’re tired? Just you wait there, little missy.”

      • Rachel February 3, 2012 at 8:36 am #

        Heh. I know. Those new parents are holding their breath waiting for those first steps (foools!). I pine for the days when you could put them down someplace and there they would stay:)

  4. Tiffany Voeller February 3, 2012 at 4:39 pm #

    We tried the bunkbed thing too when they were around 5 and 3. I had similar challenges and quickly gave it up! Love the new look Tanja.

    • tpajevic February 6, 2012 at 12:49 pm #

      Thanks, Tiffany! We’re on the fence–are going to try it for the next week or so before pulling the plug. So far, it looks like the threats are starting to work, ha.

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