Crib Alternative - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 10 Old 07-22-2014, 12:53 PM - Thread Starter
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Crib Alternative

I've been thinking about getting rid of our crib. It takes up too much room, it's got teeth marks in it, and I'm fairly sure it was recalled at some point (the side rail drops down). I'd really like a less bulky solution. We will have 5 kids divided up among two bedrooms until we are able to sell this house and get something bigger (and who the heck knows when that will happen!). Time to get creative with our space!

We don't use the crib until the baby is about... oh, I don't know... maybe 4 months? Maybe a later? I honestly can't remember since every baby is different and the decision to move them out of the room varies with each baby.

I was just reading a montessori article about using a "low bed." It's basically just a crib mattress on the floor. You have to baby-proof the room really well because they will eventually start crawling or rolling out of the bed and exploring.

Anyone do this? Thoughts on it? It's hard for me to picture putting a baby to sleep on the floor and letting it just scoot around unattended. I'd definitely want one of those video monitors! Would it be strange to surround the mattress with one of those baby corral things (don't know what they are called)? It would take up space but it could be put away fairly easy during the day.

Any other alternative to cribs? (besides the family bed) A pack n play seems like it wouldn't be supportive enough, but maybe it could made to be more supportive.

Maybe I should see what other people do in other parts of the world. I know in the "old" days parents used to put the babies in a trundle bed right next to their beds.

Sorry for rambling!

Corrie, "trad" Catholic, wife to DH and Mom to DD (4/07), DS (2/09), DD (2/11), DD (4/13), two angel babies. 
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#2 of 10 Old 07-22-2014, 01:04 PM
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With my first two, we were also tight on space and never used a crib. My mom bought me this Eddie Bauer playpen that was a lot heavier than normal playpens, but about the same size, and it had this very cushioned padded bottom that had a nice fabric that could be easily cleaned. It was really dark blue, I've never seen one like it again. We used that for both the kids beds for the first 2 years. With my third child, I finally broke down and got him a crib that somehow magically fit into our bedroom thanks to this window alcove, but not until he was nine months old.

Cribs are overrated. Just do whatever works best for your family.

Three kids and one on the way.
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#3 of 10 Old 07-22-2014, 01:13 PM
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I'm in the same boat. I have the sleeping covered (I think) for the first few months but once baby outgrows the cosleeper I'm not sure what I'll do. I really loathe cribs though and one wouldn't fit in our room anyway. But the thought of baby crawling around the room would make me anxious I think.

June 18th, 2014
EDD February 26th, 2015
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#4 of 10 Old 07-22-2014, 02:04 PM
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I bed share with all my babies for 2-3 years at night because I exclusively breastfeed and let them self-wean, but at nap time around one year of age, we used a montessori style floor bed. I put a twin mattress on the floor of the nursery. It was/is easy to lay and nurse the babes down to sleep then slip away. a few pillows at the edge of the matress keep the baby safe if they roll. Or you can use a bed rail that grasps the mattress like the safety first secure top mattress. I have seen families that use a futon matress too and theat seems to be an even better option.
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#5 of 10 Old 07-22-2014, 02:49 PM
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Just as an option you can buy a mattress for a pack n play
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#6 of 10 Old 07-22-2014, 03:08 PM
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I have done the pack in play bassinet for the early months and then moved to a floor bed/toddler bed. It worked well for us. I have always given my kids access to the toddler bed not long after a year though. If you want an affordable way to baby proof it look at using a pool noodle cut to length under the sheet as a bed rail. Super cheap and actually works great! Have you looked at the baby hammocks? I really like the look of those.

Michelle mom to DD , DS , & lil DD plus and spending my days
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#7 of 10 Old 07-23-2014, 02:06 PM
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I wish we could do a floor bed, but we live in an area with scorpions and find them in the house with some regularity. Now we have a much bigger bedroom than we used to, so I think we can put DS's full bed next to ours (he sleeps in our king bed with us) and make room in our bed for baby.

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Living and loving in ATX with DH (of 7 years) and DS (3.5)
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#8 of 10 Old 07-24-2014, 04:19 AM - Thread Starter
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I had no idea you could buy a PNP mattress. That's the route we are going to go. If I had a room just for babies I would do the floor bed. I think it would be too hard to make sure the kids keep the floor baby proof. We transition to a toddler bed or real bed pretty early anyway.

Corrie, "trad" Catholic, wife to DH and Mom to DD (4/07), DS (2/09), DD (2/11), DD (4/13), two angel babies. 
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#9 of 10 Old 08-22-2014, 11:18 PM
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I think"supportive" is individually/culturally defined to an extent. We used a pack n play (first bassinet style then the standard) with DD until 15 months then to a mattress on the floor, we plan on doing the same for DD#2 due in Nov, although ultimately who knows (DD never liked co sleeping, which had been my plan, but maybe this one will do only that?). Pack n plays as the sole sleep device is pretty common, and it makes for a super easy transition with traveling (either bringing your own, or someone there always has them, or all hotels have them too).
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#10 of 10 Old 08-22-2014, 11:19 PM
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Luckiest- scorpions, yikes!
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