Putting Together a Loft Bed Without the Instructions

Since we moved, way back in May, our two children have been sharing a room for the first time.  She’s 5, he’s 2, they can just deal with it, right?  Well, Edward has not been sleeping well, and he has been bothering Ruby, so she hasn’t been sleeping well either, and the whole room really could use a little more space.  The solution?  A loft bed!  Put Ruby up on the ceiling where Edward can’t get her and free up a little more floor space in the process.  Brilliant!  Well done, me!

But of course I do not want to pay lots of money for a new loft bed.  I am a musician.  I do not have lots of money.  Therefore, I turned to my friend Craig’s list, where I found many suitable loft beds for sale.  I drove across town the other night and picked up a very nice, slightly used loft bed, originally from IKEA, and brought it home in my car.  The problem, of course, is that my car is not big enough to hold a fully assembled loft bed, so we had to take it apart first.  I tried really hard to pay attention as it was being disassembled, making mental notes of where each piece fit and which screws went into which holes.  I drove home feeling confident, and the next morning I was ready to begin the reassembly process.

What I had not counted on was that in the night, a big glass of water spilled onto my brain, which was where I had made all the notes about the bed, and all the mind ink ran together until it was completely illegible and all I could make out was a few unhelpful bits here and there.  Of course I didn’t really have a choice at this point.  What else could I do, but bring all the pieces upstairs into the kids’ room and start to try and piece it back together.

So to refresh your memory, I had 95% of the pieces (oh, I didn’t mention that part?), 0% of the instructions, and a big pile of metal poles in front of me.  Having gotten it all upstairs, I decided that what I really ought to do was go to Lowes and see if they had any of the parts I was missing.  Obviously, they did not have any of the parts I was missing, because the loft bed was from IKEA and all the bits were metric or something, and Lowes only sells good old fashioned American stuff from China.  Definitely not Sweden.  So I got a few things I thought I might be able to jam into place anyway and returned to the pile of scrap metal that I could have sworn had only recently been a bed.

I have to tell you, it was not at all easy to put this thing together by myself.  It involved a lot of long, heavy, and awkward pieces of metal that I had to balance on my head, shoulders, knees, and, at times, toes, in order to get everything lined up just right so that I could screw it together.  It took me an hour or two, but I finally got enough of it together to realize that I had done it completely wrong.  The bars I had installed at the top did not have the screw holes to put the middle cross beam on, and the holes in the poles were not lining up like they should, since I had reversed them all.  And it turns out that I should not have put the criss-cross-mattressy-holdy-uppy part on first, because I needed to screw some stuff on underneath that I now could not get to.  So I took it all apart again.

In the middle of all of this I had to go pick Ruby up from school, and when we got home she helped me by holding up various poles and ends so that I didn’t have to balance them precariously on myself.  All in all it took me about 5 hours to finish the thing, but finish it I did.  We got the kids new sheets and blankets (Cars for Edward, Tangled for Ruby) and moved Edward into Ruby’s old bed, and now we can sell his crib on Craigslist ourselves, sans instructions of course.

The kids both loved their new beds, and they both especially loved the loft.  Edward climbed right up the ladder into it, and wouldn’t come back down.  In fact, if anything he has been harassing Ruby more.  So every night since we got the new beds, he has ended up sleeping in the Pack ‘n’ Play in our room.  But I’m sure that someday he will love not only his bed, but sleeping in it as well.  And if not, I will sell him on Craigslist.

Just kidding.  But I do wish he had come with instructions.

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Posted in Bed, Edward, Ruby, Sleep.

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