The Ultimate Children's Design Resource


You Plus Two: Sleep Advice to Complement Your Shared Design

It has been said that going from 1-2 kids is a challenge but 2-3 is a breeze. Well, I am not entirely sure about that but it wasn’t too long ago that I became a “You Plus Two“. I have experienced a whole new set of anxieties and obstacles adding another little person to my world. It’s been a fascinating journey and while I relied on friends such as my dear friend, business partner and savvy mom of three Pam for advice, sometimes it takes some real help. But most of all, it’s about not being afraid to ask for help!  That’s why I want to introduce you to a super mom, wonderful resource, and trained social worker, Rachel Cedar of New York City.

Rachel established You Plus Two just last year to fulfill a need for moms of two or more everywhere. Rachel offers her expertise through workshops, webinars, one on one or virtually.  Here at Project Nursery, we’ve discovered that our most frequent reader question is from parents asking for help with how to place two kids in one room! While we are experts in the design aspect of it all, we turned to Rachel to ask, how do we get them to sleep in the same room? Pam is currently designing a boy/girl share for her own kids and I plan to eventually move my boys in together.

Finding ways to create a shared room like John, Leo, & Adam’s is a popular question on Project Nursery.

Rachel teamed up with baby sleep consultants Dream Team Baby and here’s what they had to say…

Sleep Tips for Siblings Sharing a Room

1. Divide to Conquer. Let’s face it, kids are playful. They’re supposed to be! Even if they are tired, being in the same space is an invitation to play and engage. Many families find it helpful to put up a partition or other device to physically separate their children during sleep times. Our favorite option? A cute floor to ceiling curtain on a ceiling track. Similar to what you may have had if you shared a room at the hospital, only, well, much cuter. Pottery Barn Teen sells a functional and affordable cable system. With a track system you won’t have to worry about anything falling over. And, during the daytime, a curtain can easily be pulled back to open up the room for some serious playtime!

2. Set the Mood. A dark, quiet room is the optimal sleep setting for most individuals, but it is especially important when siblings sleep together. Keep the lights low so that your children can’t see each other or be distracted by one another’s shadows or movement. We also strongly recommend using a white noise machine to muffle out the inevitable sleep sounds that all kids make.

3. Prepare in Advance. It’s never too early to prepare for bedtime. Take advantage of small windows of time in the late afternoon to lay out pajamas, collect lovies, refill humidifiers, fold back sheets, turn on nightlights and draw shades. It gets hard to find the time to do all this once the evening routine begins, so the earlier you get prepared, the more organized you will feel.

4. Distract, Distract! If you need to occupy your older child while you feed and put down your baby, consider putting together a “busy box” of toys for him to play with. You can fill it with dollar store finds, birthday party and happy meal favors. You know, the little trinkets that always end up at the bottom of your purse. You’ll be surprised at how long this stuff can keep your child entertained!

Download the remainder of these shared room strategies here!

Whether you’re planning a room with multiple cribs, beds, or a mixture of both, Rachel’s tips will help you achieve a functional space similar this gender neutral nursery by a project nursery reader.

For more tips, visit You Plus 2 and like them on Facebook. Rachel’s next webinar takes place on April 14th , entitled “Siblings Sharing A Room: Bedtime & sleep strategies when you are two-to-a-roomEnjoy a special promotional offer for Project Nursery subscribers: $5.00 off a webinar and 25% off all other phone or Skype services. Use promo code: PNFAN1

  • Ingrid

    hi Melisa: Thanks for these tips, I can relate having a 3 year old sharing the space with a 1 year old. I sometimes find the need to distract the older kid while putting the baby to sleep. I’ve never thought about physically separating them though. That’s something to think about!

  • Rachel

    I am trying to plan ahead for a shared room. I have a two year old son and another boy on the way. Our youngest will have his own nursery until we have another baby. So, the boys will be sharing a room eventually. Unfortunately both bedrooms are very small. We could fit a bunk bed in the room, but it would be overpowering. I thought about getting a trundle bed, but that seems inconvenient. Does anyone have any suggestions?

  • chen

    Very helpful. My two sons share a room, and early sleep time has always been a problem. I think I’ll try the dividing curtains idea.

  • Sonja

    I think that these are great ideas. I am 5 months on the way and because we’re renting our apartment, baby #2 will have to share with Therese. I came to PN looking for ways to create a gender neutral toddler/baby room, and stumbled on this post. It seems that I have to redo my plans a bit, but thank you for sharing!

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