Happy families often sleep together. I used to be a person who believed that every child needed their own bedroom. Now I’m happy if no one falls out of bed or kicks their sibling in the face!

When we first started travelling in our horse truck, we only had four children, with three of them sharing the bottom bed. I wondered how we would be able sleep with another baby added to the mix, but the four girls have managed to share a bed just fine.

Our four girls sharing a bed, March 2012
Our girls arrange themselves on the queen-sized bed in various formations, although this is a popular one. Occasionally Aisha moves the sheepskin rug to the floor to gain a bit more space.

Elijah sleeping in his box, March 2012
Elijah sleeps in the blanket box when he's not up in our top bed.

Occasionally we end up with someone in our bed on the top shelf. Usually it’s the baby, but sometimes it’s one or another of the girls who wants a break from her sisters.

Sharing beds is only possible if the family lives in peace and harmony throughout the day. Two years ago, we would never have considered sharing a room — let along a bed! — with our children. These pictures would have looked terrifying to us because we would have imagined the chaos that we would have produced in our previous reactive states. Now, as we have learned to guide our family in paths of righteousness, we are able to share a small space together.

After sharing a picture of a huge combined family bed we saw during our travels in Sydney in January this year, we received quite a lot of feedback from others who also share their master bedroom (and bed) with their children. So here are some pictures from Sparkling Adventures’ readers who also have unconventional sleeping arrangements.

Ellie's bed, March 2012
Ellie's room full of beds sleeps her tribe of five. The wall-to-wall bed is a single, a double and a queen put together. The 7yo daughter sleeps in the single. Next to her is a 20-month-old daughter, then Eliie, then a 4yo son and the Daddy on the other side. Ellie says that "Though we do like to play a bit of bed tetris, this is generally how it goes. I wouldn't have it any other way and neither would my kids. Happy families definitely co-sleep. It's so lovely to see my daughters cuddling at night of being warmed in winter by sweet babes."

Rosy Hess' bedroom, March 2012
This is Rosy's sleeping arrangement right now. On the bed sleeps Rosy, her husband, 3yo daughter and 5mo son. On the floor (on mattress pads) sleeps Rosy's 11yo daughter, 7yo daughter and 5yo son.

This is Amy's bedroom. She says they ended up separating the beds a little while she was pregnant as Amy was having trouble climbing out over the end of the bed. Current sleeping arrangements include a 9mo daughter against the wall, Amy, a 3yo son and Amy's husband. A 4yo son and 5yo son generally end up in there somewhere pretty much every night. The 6yo son may come in every once in a while but he usually prefers to sleep in his own bed now. You'll also notice the little cot-size mattress under the first bed, which is an option for any of the kids if they don't want to sleep in the beds.

Sarah's bed, March 2012
Sarah's family travels full-time in a bus. On her bed sleeps a 4yo daughter, Sarah and her husband, a 2yo son and a 6yo daughter. Under the main bed, a 9yo daughter sleeps with her dog. About one metre from the end of the main bed, two sets of bunk-beds sleep a 11yo daughter, a 13yo daughter (and her dog) and a 15yo (and her dog)!

Tina's bedroom
Tina sleeps in the queen bed with my her 5yo daughter. A 6yo daughter sleeps in the top bunk, a 12yo daughter sleeps in the bottom bunk (known as "the cave") and Tina's 14yo son sleeps in the red bed. Tina says she has suggested the teens move down to the basement for "more room," but they both say they want to stay together at night!

Shanna's bedroom, March 2012
In Shanna's bedroom, they've taken the bed-frame off the king-sized bed because it's easier for the youngest to get on and off the bed without it. Shanna's 6.5yo sleeps on the top bunk, the 4yo sleeps on the bottom bunk. The 2yo sleeps on his cot mattress (supported on a wooden platform that matches the height of the big bed) or in the king bed with Shanna and her husband.

I think it’s amazing to see all these bedrooms. Friends, thank you so much for sharing them with us!

What about you, do you have a shared bedroom too?