What does a Garden Gnome do when she is not gardening, in the kitchen or doing genealogy? Well the answer might just surprise you so read the entries to find out more. This blog focuses on everything we do to make our house a home. There will be a strong emphasis on home energy efficiency and do-it-yourself (DIY) projects. At the same time there will also be crafts, knitting and crocheting projects along with any other little tips we do to create that down to earth, I want to be here home. Please enjoy your visit :)

Monday, October 19, 2009

Extra Sleeping Arrangements

I grew up in a rather small house that was often overflowed beyond capacity. So finding sleeping arrangements for overnight guests was always a challenge for my Mom. Usually the kids gave up their rooms and beds for the adults and we had a chesterfield that pulled out to make a bed as well. The kids usually found a sleeping spot on the floor with heavy blankets and quilts. The upper bedroom level wasn't heated (more on this later) so sleeping on the floor was cold. I can still remember when my Mom bought two folding roll-away beds. They had thick mattresses so were more like beds. The biggest problem was finding a storage spot for them since the house had no closets either! Fast forward to the 2000's and there is a whole new solution for spare beds. We bought an Columbia Air Bed that essentially is an air mattress that goes into casing on an easy to set up frame for comfortable sleeping yet it has compact storage and easy portability.

Columbia Air BedIn the Box

We bought a queen sized Columbia Air Bed on sale from Canadian Tire® for $149.99. The box was as long as the folded height of the frame. It was heavy as well. Inside the box there was the carrying case, mattress, electric pump, bedskirt with pocket that holds the mattress in place and a reversible heavy comforter that can be zippered to prevent it from falling off the bed. All of the bed components were packed into the compact carry case that has wheels for easy portability.

The entire set-up is heavy and sturdy but portable. We were immediately impressed with the quality. We also liked that bed included an electrical pump for easy inflation.

Columbia Air Bed Carry CaseCarry Case

The nylon carry case is large enough for all the bed components to fit in. It has a three sided zipper for easy removal and replacement of the bed components on one long side. The velco flap with the Columbia lifts up to reveal a plastic protected luggage tag holder. There is a heavy duty handle on one short end and wheels on the other.

Pictured is the filled case. The air mattress behind it is another one we have that doesn't have a frame. The new air mattresses inflate with included electric pumps or electric blow dryers and they easily deflate making them an ideal solution for temporary additional sleeping arrangements.

Columbia Air Bed inflatedInflated

We set the Columbia air bed up in the soon to be craft room. The set up was surprisingly easy taking less than 5 minutes. We found that an extra blanket between the air mattress and bottom sheet keeps the bed from getting cool. This is a problem with air mattresses. I like that the bed is up off the floor so it looks and feels like an actual bed. It's a lot nicer to be up off the floor! I also like that the bed sets up and dismantles quickly taking up minimal storage.

We have taken this air bed with us on a few trips to one of our kids who does not have a spare bed. I'm glad we bought it as it does solve the problem of having a temporary spare bed. So if you are in need of an extra bed this might be a solution for you. There are several brands available through most sporting goods and outfitter type stores.

The crib in the background has now been dismantled and the air bed is in it's case. The craft room is our winter project this year. It will have a complete make-over including replacing the carpeting with hard flooring. While this will remove a temporary overnight guest room it will provided the much needed space to organize all my craft supplies as well as set up the sewing and knitting machines for ready usage. I'm really looking forward to this space so please check back to see how we complete this project.

Garden Gnome


esp said...

Hi Garden Gnome,

Found your blog by way of the canning2 list and have been enjoying browsing your old entries. We're working on weatherizing the house and you have some good, helpful posts. Thanks!

We also use an aerobed for extra guests although ours does not have the frame. We like the way it stores easily -- we can fit the mattress, pump, sheets, and blankets in a big storage tote and then stash it all in the attic. Closet space and spare bedrooms are at a premium in our old bungalow.

Elise said...

My mother has one of those beds and it works great for when I spend the night in her condo the only problem with it is that I've found the air inside the bed to be a bit cool on your back so it helps to put a extra sheet or blanket over top of it.

Garden Gnome said...

Hi esp and thanks for visiting. I'm glade the weatherizing tips are helping you. The aerobeds are really a nice convenience. I can so relate to not having closet space. This house has an abundance of closet space but we renovated a turn of the century 2 story 4 bedroom house that had no closets! What a pain.