Move over Ikea-hacked toddler/kid bed, there's a bigger, badder bed in town. Elizabeth Boyce takes co-sleeping to a mind-blowing level; the mom created a family bed by adapting parts from Ikea Kura beds to comfortably fit her five youngest children, disabled husband AND her. (Yes, that's seven people.)
Boyce said she made the bed out of necessity. "We had kids sleeping on the floor on blankets every night. Our mattresses were already on the floor, since the baby and toddler were still in our bedroom. The big kids would start or move in every single night." She was "sick and tired of tripping over kids all night, that they weren't sleeping comfortably on the floor and that (she) had bedrooms completely empty."
She further explains on her blog that the family just needed sleep. They travel a lot together, so the kids are accustomed to sleeping in the same space as their parents.
"Bedtime was full of tears and fights. They got out of bed repeatedly. Our house was lit up like the 4th of July with nightlights because everyone was anxious alone," Boyce wrote.
Having to take care of her husband, nurse a baby, put her kids back into their beds and soothe a toddler, things can get really crazy. By moving everyone in together, everyone had their own dark little space to sleep in.
Enter the now-viral photo of her Ikea family bed.
Here's where everyone and everything goes:
Boyce even shares a tutorial on her blog for anyone who wants to replicate the family bed (or you know, make a giant, cozy sleeping space for just yourself). The rest of us less crafty people will just admire from afar as we Duct-tape our cribs the Ryan Reynolds way.
But Boyce's family bed hack hasn't gone without criticism and questions. For these, Boyce has set up a FAQ page that pretty much answers everything from "How in the world do you have sex?!" (Short answer: You get creative—and there are all these other empty rooms in the house now!) to "Doesn't everyone wake each other up?" (Super short answer: No).
Co-sleeping is still considered controversial in the United States, with only about 13 percent of American parents practicing some form of bed-sharing.
"Sharing your bed with your kids is so common. It is just not talked about. It was how I was raised; it is how we wanted to raise our kids," Boyce said. "I don't think our plan was to have a giant family bed, but our room was always a comfortable, inviting space for our children to feel safe and loved. If there are naysayers in our lives who don't agree with our choice, they certainly don't say it to us!"
We love her "let's make things work" mentality. Boyce is doing what works for her as a parent and trying to get some much-needed sleep along the way—that's something we can all appreciate.