Even more exciting adventures in floor bedding

By kenny friedman on Monday, August 16, 2010

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I recently did a guest post about floor beds on Modern Hippie Mag. A bit of old a bit of new. And a tiny bit of good info about floor beds. Here's the post but that doesn't mean you can't still check out their site.

Clang, clang, clang...clang, clang, clang. That's the sound that woke Staci  up about a month ago. She thought it was a cat trying to get in to our 5 month old son's room. When she walked to the room and saw no cat she started walking away.


Just as she turned away she heard clang, clang, clang followed by a tiny little giggle. It was Miloh playing with a metal trash can in his room.

You may wonder how a 5 month old gets out of his crib and to a trash can at 5 in the morning...the answer is simple...he has no crib.

We have Miloh on a floor bed which is exactly as it sounds...a bed (more specifically a mattress) on the floor. No crib, no frame no nothing...just the mattress.

I need to explain that my wife and I started off normal...if we had our child 5 years ago he'd be in a normal crib in a normal room and he wouldn't be waking us up with trashcan music.

But my wife Staci became a Montessori teacher about 5 years ago and studied about Montessori from the start...and we did the floor bed because it's part of the in-home philosophy.

Staci wanted to do the floor bed because it helps the child become independent and know it's place in their environment.

I didn't care much but it sounded neat, albeit odd, and it's a hell of a lot cheaper than getting a crib.

People who hear about it don't know what to think. Some think it's cool...others think it's crazy. Some are bummed they didn't do this for their child..others jokingly offer us money to get Miloh a proper crib.

While the bed was a bit scary when he started to roll (we adjusted by getting a thin 2 inch mattress) it's been amazing...for us and for him.

When we put Miloh to sleep we get to lay next to him and read a book while he dozes off. And if he wakes startled in the night we just lie on the ground and rub his head...then I often wake up 30 minutes later and go back to bed.

The independence is working wonders for him. The floor bed makes the whole (kid safe) room the crib. So instead of crying to get out when he wakes he'll just roll (and now crawl) over to a toy and start playing until he needs to eat.

Last night after feeding him his bottle I heard a noise from his room...he wasn't tired so he rolled to get a rattle to play with. This morning we heard banging coming from the room...it was him grabbing wood toys of the shelf...and let me tell you...the banging is so much nicer than the crying we'd hear if he wanted out of a crib.

We've even seen funny things...Miloh half on/half off his bed (this happens a lot with floor beds). We've opened the door to see him in the middle of the room just smiling. And even though we aren't religious I've walked in on him 3 times when he was "praying." He'd gotten himself half off the bed and was in the kneeling position with his hands and head on the mattress like he was praying. Maybe he was asking for a crib.

It's not for everyone...it's a bit scary at first and maybe scarier once they are mobile.

However our floor bed experience is amazing...and while I am not one of those parents who throws advice on "the best" way to do anything with your kid I do think the floor bed is truly a fantastic idea.

You can read more about it in Montessori From the Start or check out my floor bed posts for a lighter side of the method in action.



13 comments:

  1. The first time you posted your babies room I thought it was the coolest room I had seen, but I thought the floor bed was SOOO odd. Now, I am wishing that I had carpet in the babies room so I could give my kiddo a floor bed as well. Your stories of Miloh are fantastic!

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  2. Hey Stacey, thanks. Actually the few other people we know who have floor beds don't have carpet. We were originally worried about it.

    The people with hardwood floors put a rug down right next to the bed.

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  3. hi Kenny,
    We do the same with our baby daughter. I'm not a montessori teacher but I am trying to incorporate the montessori teaching in our daughter's life.
    She sleeps "on the floor" and she loves it so far. With all the news about cribs recall, it is nice to not have to worry about that.

    We live in an old house and have hardwood floors so we put a huge rug in our daughter's room in case she rolls over her bed.

    :)

    Lita

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  4. oh forgot to mention, I have that book you recommended. Great book!! Love it.

    Lita

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  5. I love this: our sons share a twin bed mattress that's literally in a little wooden box (frame would be pushing it) on the floor. I mention their sharing a bed on my blog (& what I call our inadvertent family bed, too).

    Sleep -- & where we do it -- is one of those underreported little truths about parenting, don't you think?

    Here's my link.

    http://www.valleyadvocate.com/blogs/home.cfm?uid=92

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  6. poppy pretty much hates her crib - does best on a regular bed (closely supervised, of course) and i often fashion her a makeshift floor bed for her to nap on when i need to leave the room to get things done during her nap. when we move into our next place we plan on babyproofing a nursery for her so she can enjoy a floor bed as her permanent bed - honestly it makes perfect sense to me and i fully agree that listening to your tot playing happily is a helluva lot nicer than hearing them flip out crying because they woke up alone in their crib and are pissed off! (;

    power to the floor bed! glad it's working out so well for you guys.

    cheers!

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  7. Glad everyone is digging the floor bed. It really is cool. At first I thought it was odd but right when we got him in there (2nd month if I remember correctly) it just seemed right.

    Plus I loved it when I just slept on a futon on the floor.

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  8. i think i might be the last person on earth who doesnt read your blog but seriously, where the heck have i been because i feel like we have so many of the same parenting styles! and the floor bed is a big one! since corbins crib is attached to our bed he needed a safe place to nap or fall asleep if we werent quite ready to go to bed yet and the floor bed has been the perfect solution! i quite frequently get the "you people must be crazy-what do you mean you dont have him sleep in a crib in his room-and he sleeps on a mattress on the floor???" look but it works for us so whatever! our house is small so when he wakes up from his nap he just walks out of his room with a big smile! i just read all your floor bed posts and im excited to keep reading your older posts!

    thank you for making me feel like im not the only one!!!
    thechroniclesofcorbin.blogspot.com

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  9. thanks Jill. Glad you found the blog

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  10. i think i might be the last person on earth who doesnt read your blog but seriously, where the heck have i been because i feel like we have so many of the same parenting styles! and the floor bed is a big one! since corbins crib is attached to our bed he needed a safe place to nap or fall asleep if we werent quite ready to go to bed yet and the floor bed has been the perfect solution! i quite frequently get the "you people must be crazy-what do you mean you dont have him sleep in a crib in his room-and he sleeps on a mattress on the floor???" look but it works for us so whatever! our house is small so when he wakes up from his nap he just walks out of his room with a big smile! i just read all your floor bed posts and im excited to keep reading your older posts!

    thank you for making me feel like im not the only one!!!
    thechroniclesofcorbin.blogspot.com

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  11. Glad everyone is digging the floor bed. It really is cool. At first I thought it was odd but right when we got him in there (2nd month if I remember correctly) it just seemed right.

    Plus I loved it when I just slept on a futon on the floor.

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  12. Where did you buy the 2 inch mattress, and why did you decide to convert to it over the other one? I'm guessing Miloh kept getting in compromising positions trying to roll off? I'm seriously considering the floor mattress idea as I already hate the idea of a big bulky crib in the room. Miloh's room is a quite lovely minimalist design overall. You did a great job.

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  13. Hey Ashley

    We got the thinner mattress at Ikea. I forget exactly which one it was but it was the longest super thin one they had (you have to use their sheets).

    We moved to it because he would roll off and he'd wake himself and cry.

    He still rolled off the thin one but he wouldn't get startled and wake. We'd find him in the middle of the floor or right by the door most nights so baby proofing is super important.

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