One more post, then I’m off into the chaos again. And please do pardon the cheesy title. I’m sorely lacking in inspiration at the moment.
I knew, given the general craziness of the present, that we needed Adventure 14 to be something short in duration and light in intensity. Fortunately, old fashioned adventures come in all shapes and sizes.
Our adventure for this past week, then, was to spend a night sharing a room and sleeping on the floor — a slumber party, to explain it in words that a fourth-grade girl might understand.
For long ages, soft beds and private bedrooms were luxuries of the rich and powerful. Much more common was for families to share bedroom space, with as many as could fit crammed into whatever beds were available, and all the rest sleeping as snugly as possible in other furniture or on the floor.
I’m here recalling once again my good chum Laura Ingalls, who, in Little House on the Big Woods, remembered sleeping with Mary on a trundle bed that slid underneath her parents’ bed during the day. (Baby Carrie slept with Ma and Pa, of course.)
I’m also bringing to mind a scene that has become family legend among my mother’s kin: my Grandma and Grandpa Mac, newly married at the ripe old ages of 16 and 20, spent their wedding night on the kitchen floor of a relative’s house, while his mother and uncle sat up talking theology into the wee hours of the morning just feet away from where the two were bedded down for the night.
So, in honor of all them and all the hardy souls who have gone before us, our family spent last Friday night all together on the living room floor of my parents’ new house.
We let the children sleep on an air mattress if they wanted to.
But Ken and I braved it out with nothing but a couple of blankets and a bit of carpet between us the and the cold, hard floor.
It got a bit chilly toward dawn, and I was a little stiff in the hips and shoulders when I got up, but otherwise, we all slept fairly well. The kids really enjoyed this adventure — especially the part where, when they started to wake up in the morning, Mama and Daddy were right there, in plain sight, ready to be climbed in bed with and viciously snuggled into consciousness.
As a family, we spend so much of our time apart: the kids at school and daycare, me at work, Ken at church. We have a few hours together in the evening, but then we split up once again to go our separate ways at bedtime. Most of the time, I think, this is a good thing. Children (ours at least) need the quiet of their own spaces to fall asleep at a reasonable hour. Parents (us, at least) need a little space, too.
Still, though, it was good horizon-broadening family fun for us to forego the luxury of beds and bedrooms for a night and camp out all together. We’ll definitely want to try this one again sometime!