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Congratulations on your pregnancy...Wait!

By Emily Achenbaum Harris

Posted: Friday, Sep. 09, 2011

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Emily Achenbaum Harris

Hi, I'm Emily and this is my blog about career-questioning, minimalism-seeking, gardening, earth-saving, pregnancy, parenthood, and my pathological ability to make the same mistakes over and over again. See more at littlehousesouthernprairie. wordpress.com.

At least 10 people have asked me when we plan on moving or what we're going to "do" about the house since we're having a second child. (I know, I know - I have 10 friends!!!! Yes!!!!). It's been a fascinating look at how expectations have changed. Folks under A Certain Age automatically assume we must "have" to move ASAP, like before the birth or immediately after. Then there's my 70-year-old neighbor, who has the exact same ranch house as we do, and raised 3 kids there. That was, as she said, how everyone did it.

It's a 2 bedroom, 1 bath house. About 1,200 sq. feet. I actually don't think 1,200 sq. ft is that small ... if it's brilliantly, efficiently designed. Our 1,200 sq. ft. is super cute and livable, but no efficiency machine. I've rearranged it in my head a million times, and we could make it a 3-bedroom, 2-bath house within the same footprint if we really wanted to, but that sounds like a renovation project for someone else. I've also mentally plotted out how to sleep four kids in this house (with no renovations) if I had a surprise pregnancy containing surprise twins. We could do it. I am sick.

I don't think it's a big deal for two small kids to share a bedroom. I shared a bedroom until the fourth grade, and always shared a bathroom. Surely it was the same for those of you who weren't only children, right? When did private bedrooms and private baths for all become the norm?

We will move, eventually. I think it's nice if kids can have their own bedrooms. Not required, but nice. I like privacy too. The rooms don't have to be big. A shared bath? I tend to think that even if we had a billion dollars, my kids will be sharing a bathroom.

The main reason I'd eventually like a larger house is so *I'd* have a rubber-ducky-and-mini-potty-free bathroom. For myself. And a bedroom that does not share a wall with teenagers' rooms. I'd also sort of like my own wing. With a library, perhaps? Greenhouse? Doors that bolt from the inside? I can see it all.

But kids sharing space? A crisis? No. We'll be four people sharing a small house for several more years and it's going to be just fine.

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