I’ve been on the hunt for the perfect laundry basket for Leyna’s room for 2 years now.
That’s quite possibly the lamest thing I’ve ever typed on here.
But it’s true! Cute laundry hampers be expensive, yo!
It’s a Crunch Can by Umbra, and it was only $15 (on sale at The Container Store, it regularly retails for $20 there, still not bad). They have several colors, but no purple, which is what I was hoping for. That said, the pink is an awesome little punch of color in her PB&J room, and the ombre makes it less loud. And, it’s huge! Filled to the brim, it’s one super sized load of laundry.
I also grabbed a new recycling container while I was there.
We were in desperate need of one of these since or method for separating recyclables before it was to stack it all in whatever random box or paper bag we had laying around. This is the Recycle Crunch Can by Umbra ($12).
I’ve had them both for about a month, and they’ve held up really well. Not paid to plug them, just love them… you know, as much as one can love a container.
You know what’s been driving me CRAZY for nearly 2 years? The pictures I put up of Leyna’s nursery right before she was born. Oh, they were SUCH a white-balance nightmare.
I mean, it’s not like I really knew exactly WHY they looked like a dog pissed all over them back then, but I knew something was amiss. I was too tired and fat and pregnant to care, and then I was too tired and covered in breast milk and newborn snuggles to care… and then I sort of forgot about it.
Until I saw a picture pop up on Pinterest and thought, “OMG! That looks like shit!”
So, knowing a little more about how to fix those problems in Lightroom now (and smacking the old me for not taking the pictures DURING THE DAY WITH NATURAL LIGHT), I was able to go back and doctor them a little bit.
For those of you who have Lightroom 3 (that’s the version I have, so I’m not sure if it’s the same in the other versions… might be), and are wondering how to make your pictures look less yellow or less blue, it’s an easy fix in your “Basic” panel in “Develop” module.
The fix: I moved the temp slider to the left to -27 and the tint slider to the left to -6
I know it’s still not some sort of photographic masterpiece, and I wouldn’t say the WB is spot on now, because it may be a little purple, but that was hard for me to fix with all the purples naturally in the room. The point is, at least it doesn’t look like a dog peed all over it now.
Why did I not just retake the pictures? Because it’s at that weird transition phase between a nursery and a toddler room and sort of a mess.
Look at how pretty Leyna’s Quilt Hoop Bow Holder is, all filled up with pretty, bright bows!
Of course, now that I have a pretty penny invested in all these gorgeous accessories, the girl suddenly has an opinion on the matter and tries to pull them off… especially the big ones.
At least they make for pretty wall decor for now.
If you want to make your own Quilt Hoop Bow Holder, or a version of it, here’s the link to the tutorial I posted when I made it.
Leyna is 1 year old, and so help me, I will find a way to get her to wear that big rainbow bow for her rainbow birthday party.
I STILL don’t have a baby to put in it, but the nursery is done, and I thought I’d try to occupy myself by doing the grand reveal. Those of you who have been following my progress may remember that I had this crazy ambition to sew just about everything for the room, and I successfully did just that. I’m not saying all the seams are straight or that it was easy, but I’m super happy with the finished product. No way could I have achieved this custom look for what I spent on the fabric (around $200, I believe) without doing it all myself.
Tie backs and curtain rod from Ikea
Corner shelves from Target
Pillow covers made using this tutorial
I owe a huge thanks to the lovely ladies at City Craft in Dallas for helping me pick the fabrics. They were such a wonderful inspiration and so helpful!
Hot air balloon mobile, a gift from my mom, from Restoration Hardware Baby and Child
Dresser from Ikea
Hutch from Ikea
Bow holder made with this (my) tutorial
Baskets from Target
Changing pad from Target
Trash can is cloth diaper pail (also from Target)
Brown bookshelf purchased at consignment (and yes, I know I’ll eventually have to strap it to the wall or move it when she starts pulling up)
The hutch is decorated with souvenirs from my childhood (like the teddy bear made from my VERY loved baby blanket and my copy of The Secret Garden), along with some things I’ve collected since then (like the Japanese mother and child a BFF sent me when she lived in Okinawa). I also used to collect elephants and have chosen a few to dot throughout the room. I picked up the vintage Winnie the Pooh back in high school, we’ve had the globe forever (it was Scott’s to begin with, I think), and that puzzle box was a gift from my dad when I was in Jr. High. The hippo wooden teether is from Little Alouette. I picked up the giraffe and the nesting suitcases from Gilt.com.
So there you have it! All prepped and ready. Just missing a BABY now.
If you’d like to see the progression of my nursery planning, check out the following posts:
Well, now that took up a good 2 hours of my evening… and didn’t give me a single f-ing contraction. Soooooo I guess blogging doesn’t induce labor. Hmph.
Kendall is 2 years, 7ish months and I’m nearly 41 weeks pregnant
I’m swinging by this Saturday night to show off a little weekend crafting. I’m trying to knock out all the little projects that are left for the baby’s room in small chunks instead of subjecting myself to a tortuous sewing marathon. That’s pretty much my approach to life in general these days, just taking what I can in small chunks.
I had to leave Target after *only* getting what was on my list the other day out of sheer exhaustion. *GASP* Can you imagine?! I didn’t even have the energy to browse the baby section or the accessories! I was winded after just 15 minutes. Shockingly, I managed to keep the bill to under $50 that time, which NEVER happens. Target owns me.
So my small chunk today was to knock out a fun little craft that serves as wall decor and a bow holder for all those adorable little bows baby girl will undoubtedly collect as she grows older. My collection right now is pretty pathetic, but I can’t wait to fill this whole thing up. Yes, I am unashamedly in love with bows on baby girls (but I draw the line when the bow is so large it makes the baby look like a helicopter).
Love! I was inspired by this tutorial for a bow holder made from a picture frame and by this simple tutorial for wall art made from fabric scraps and quilt hoops. I needed something to go above the dresser/changing table and love how this incorporates the fabrics I’m using and the function of a bow holder.
What you need:
1 18×27 Quilt Hoop ($9.95 at Hancock Fabrics)
1 yard fabric (main fabric uses)
3 yards ribbon OR 1/4 yard (or scrap) of accent fabric
hot glue gun
I’ve also kissed and made up with my Olfa Rotary Cutter and found it to be pretty helpful for this project.
If you’re going the ribbon route, you can just skip this step. If you’re like me, though, and want to use an accent fabric, you need to do the following.
Cut 2 3 inch wide strips the width of your fabric. (I think my fabric was 54ish inches wide, if yours is substantially shorter, make adjustments accordingly.)
Fold each strip right side together, lengthwise and press.
Sew up the side with a 1/4 inch seam allowance, leave both ends open.
Then cut 20 inches off each strip, leaving one a little shorter than the other and giving 4 in total. Then turn each one right side out and press with the seam in the middle.
Before you start putting it together, make sure your main fabric is pressed and looking nice, then lay your main fabric over the top of the inner circle of the quilting hoop, lining the pattern up how you’d like. Don’t worry, you can still make small adjustments from here. Once you’ve got that positioned, lay the ribbon or the strips of fabric where you’d like them. I just eyeballed it. Then press your outer loop over the fabric laid on top of the inner loop.
Flip it over and pull the fabric and ribbon/strips tight. Then trim your fabric leaving about an inch of fabric around the edge.
Add a bead of hot glue, a few inches at a time, around the inside of the hoop, pull the fabric over and adhere. Once you’ve glued all the main fabric, fold over the ribbon/strips (making sure to adjust the tension one last time) and glue down.
Flip it over, admire and hang on the wall. Add adorable bows and say “Awwww!”
Oops! I’ve already shown you more of the nursery than I wanted to. I’m holding out on giving you more until the grand reveal… you know, unless I come up with any more fun crafts between now and then.
This update is coming later than I originally planned for a couple reasons. 1. I got some sort of wretched stomach bug/24 hour flu a couple days ago, barfed my brains out (for the first time this pregnancy!) and spent almost the entirety of yesterday sleeping and/or complaining. I was even too sick to tweet! *GASP* 2. Uhm, the kid is HOME now, which means productivity levels went from nearly a 10 to 1, and blogging suffered because of it, wouldn’t you know.
I’ve been itching to tell you all about it, though, so let me just start by saying it was one of the most wonderful weeks ever! I mean, as much as we enjoyed our vacation to Sonoma earlier this year, I think we got more satisfaction out of this one, and we didn’t even leave our zipcode most days. Our outings mainly consisted of those to Lowes since we decided on a whim to redo the kid’s bathroom, complete with ripping up and replacing tile.
Side note- the Pica is still going strong. The little bits of mortar that my husband was chipping up from the bathroom floor looked as appetizing as Cheddar and Sour Cream Lays Potato Chips, the grout he laid down looked as delicious as buttercream frosting. I kid you not. Yes, I spoke with my midwife about it. No, she *wasn’t* alarmed. This is… common??
My mother is an angel and the world’s best grandmother, or “Nae Nae” as Kendall insists on calling her. She had him for a solid 7 days, and we got SO MUCH DONE. We really must make this a yearly tradition. It’s not like I didn’t miss the kid, because I surely did, but the anxiety I felt after dropping him off rapidly faded and was replaced with the awesome sense of accomplishment as we crossed things off our mile-long to do list.
Sure, our week wasn’t as full of resting and relaxation and formal date nights as I’d hoped, but we still managed to connect and have fun together. I’m fairly certain we never even got into a heated argument a single time we were at Lowes (though there were still several disagreements). When you are away for vacation, I think it’s expected that your relationship will perk up a little bit, the arguments will subside, but it was so nice to experience that same feeling while living our “normal” life at home. And since Kendall’s returned, I find we’re both working harder to be a little more patient with him and with each other.
So a rousing recommendation from me for more kid-free staycations!! You should really give it a try if you haven’t been so lucky to yet.
Now, time to brag.
As you may recall, I spent much of my week in my own personal sewing hell. Not only did I have my temperamental sewing machine and her bitch-ass bobbin to deal with, but I also had a new frenemy, the Olfa Rotary Cutter, who damn near sliced off the top of my finger. (For real, people, do not underestimate the deadliness of this crafty tool. I’m sleeping with it under my pillow the nights Scott is gone so I can get deadly crafty on intruders if need be.)
While Scott slaved away on the bathroom remodel, shouting obscenities at his equally deadly mortar scraper thingy (hmmm.. I’m beginning to wonder how much our relationship really benefited from having inanimate objects to scream at for the week), I sweat and swore and knocked out baby girl’s crib skirt, baby blanket, and curtains lined with blackout fabric.
I still have a few sewing projects to tackle, like the crib rail guard and a couple pillow covers, and we still have some furniture and accessories to add to the room, but here’s what I’ve got so far.
The baby blanket is definitely a labor of love, but not so much skill. Crooked stitches and wonky ruffles turned “pleats” abound. Never, ever try to hand ruffle 9 yards of fabric. Never.
Not quite satisfied with the curtains. I think I’m going to move the rod up a bit and put them on those clippy hook thingies. The blackout fabric was a huge PITA, but it makes all the difference. That room feels 10 degrees cooler.
This is the next big project I’ve got to tackle. We’re adding a hutch to the right of the changing pad where we can display her “worldly souvenirs,” like the Matroyshkas I just won on Ebay! Then I have some crafty things up my sleeve for decoration above it. The dresser is from Ikea (surprisingly sturdy, I’ll add) and the trash can is for cloth diaper laundry.
Not too shabby for a week’s worth of work in the third trimester, eh? We also managed to organize the garage a bit and finally figured out what to do with 3 of our 5 strollers (and I swear, every SINGLE one of them gets used- or will be- and has a purpose). Scott screwed in some $9 bike hooks to the studs and whala! So much better than the real estate they were taking up in our front room, temporarily turned stroller garage.
I wish I could say we accomplished everything on the list that gives me anxiety daily, but at least we made a considerable dent. To top the week off, we got to go to a bar where we watched, in it’s ENTIRETY, the Mizzou Homecoming game vs. OU, and we got to see the most epic smackdown, not missing a single play. We ate greasy, spicy appetizers and Scott drank like he was in college again, which I found to be pretty amusing and was secretly jealous. Best. Date night. Ever. GO TIGERS!!
Mizzou Homecoming 10 years ago
A.K.A. I’m About To Embark On the Ridiculous and Possibly Unachievable Task of Sewing Nearly Everything For My Baby’s Nursery. Send Vodka… oh, wait…
I decided I was going to go the DIY route for this baby after dropping a ton of cash on Kendall’s crib bedding only to never really use much of it (crib bumper came out after he started rolling over, the blanket never got much use). I couldn’t find exactly what I was looking for, and figured it couldn’t be too hard to sew up a crib skirt. Then I found a tutorial for making crib sheets, and they actually don’t seem too hard either. And then I figured a curtain panel or two wouldn’t be that challenging, and while I’m at it, why not some matching pillows for the rocking chair and the window seat?
I told Scott we’d “save so much money” this way, but uh… that was before I fell in love with cute designer, boutique fabrics. So yeah, I’m making all this stuff with expensive fabric, which sort of negates the cost effectiveness of it all (and NO pressure on my end… none at all). But it will be super cute, right? I mean, maybe. If I can mange to not kill my sewing machine for inevitably fucking up for something that I know is my fault, but that I can’t diagnose in the moment because I’m too filled with RAGE over the stupid tension getting screwed up and the bobbin constantly coming unwound… or something to that effect. And this is all banking on my seam ripper not attacking me and lopping off a thumb because I will be using that seam ripper a lot.
I made sure to buy a couple extra yards of each fabric to account for damages. Speaking of fabrics, here they are:
Left to right- The first is the Amy Butler fabric I originally fell in love with, from the Love Collection. The sample I came home with was quilted because it’s all they had, but the fabric I ordered and will use won’t be quilted. The other two are by Jennifer Paganelli, from the Poodle Collection in a color called Mustard, but it really looks a lot more like peanut butter to me. The first two on the left will be used the most, with the one on the right used sparingly in the details.
My plan is to make the bedskirt out of the Amy Butler fabric. The bed sheets will be made out of the diamond Poodle fabric, and so will the curtain panels, which will be a great contrast against this grape jelly purple accent wall. We still have much painting to do, including adding the peanut butter color to the top of the rest of the walls and white trim, but you get the general idea. I know it looks pretty dark in this picture, but I swear it’s not as cave-like as it seems.
I’ll make some fun throw pillows out of all three fabrics to go in the window seat/sill thingy. I made sure to find a tutorial that requires no zippers or buttons. Would love to add a ruffled edge to some, but… I’ll get into my fear of ruffles in a minute.
Of course, I’ll also whip up a crib rail guard, using whatever scraps I have after the big projects are done.
And then there are these awesome, collapsable fabric bins that look like maybe I can tackle them… or just one… maybe none. We’ll see. There may be too many measurement involved for my frazzled pregnant brain.
Oh, and she’ll HAVE to have a blanket, at least one. Kendall’s not about to give up any of the billions other people made for him. He still demands to sleep with each one of them at night in his sea of stuffed animals and various other soft, once SIDS hazards that now cover his face most of the night.
I love this one. Seems simple enough, except for the ruffle edge. THAT seems hard as hell. Ruffles scare me. Anything that requires “basting” scares me. Okay, okay, anything that requires more than a simple straight stitch scares me, which leads me to…
What did just sign myself up for?! I have to follow through. I’ve spent entirely too much money on too much fabric, but I can already envision the battles, the f-bombs, the crooked seams, the seam ripper thrown across the room (a dangerous habit, I know). I will need an extra dose of patience, a box of Bandaids and a bottle of Tylenol.
Or, you know, maybe it won’t be that bad. Maybe the fact that I can’t drink while doing these projects might actually help me. Yes, let’s just blame all my previous sewing inadequacies on the glasses of Shiraz that always accompanied me to the sewing machine.
Kendall is 2 1/3 and I’m 27 weeks pregnant and off to tackle some crib sheets.
I am 25 weeks pregnant. 25 weeks! I wish I could explain how different my perception of time is this time around. I guess that parenting vortex/worm hole/black hole you get thrown into with your first just never goes away when you get pregnant with the second because I can not wrap my head around how fast this pregnancy seems to be going.
And it terrifies me.
In an effort to maintain some ounce of control over the situation, I think I began nesting the minute I exited the first trimester. Irrational nesting, like, “I WANT ALL THIS CARPET GONE AND I’M NOT COMING HOME WITH THE BABY UNLESS IT’S ERADICATED” nesting.
I actually lost the carpet war. Or, well, I chose to bow out gracefully after coming to the conclusion that I just may have given my husband an ulcer over trying to figure out how to squeeze in (financially and time-wise) putting in hardwood floors between now and Christmas. I laid off after he was convinced he had cancer and wound up going to a series of doctors who basically told him he needed to manage his stress level better.
So I’ve decided to focus my nesting urges on other, more realistic projects, like the nursery. Problem? I have no idea what to do.
With Kendall, we didn’t actually even have a room for him until we moved when he was 8 weeks old, and by then I knew exactly what I wanted. His room came together so much better than I ever imagined and I don’t know how I will ever top it.
I need your help. Please help me come up with a fantastic nursery for baby girl so that I may not lead my husband back into thinking he has cancer again.
Here’s what I’ve got so far:
Colors- I want a PB&J inspired color palette. Something similar to this logo, but maybe less pink and more raspberry and purple.
I’m planning to make the bedding myself, and by bedding, I just mean the bed skirt, the sheets, the curtains, crib rail guards and a pillow for the rocking chair. I’m skipping the bumper this time. I was never comfortable with it in Kendall’s bed and wound up putting a breathable bumper on instead. I may go that route, or I may wind up with something else that’s still in the works. Whatever “bumper” I end up using will be white. Here are some of the fabrics I’m looking at order samples of.
Obviously I wouldn’t be using all of those. I’m thinking one of the mainly purple options, one of the brown options and the light brown minky dot.
I’m pretty sure we’re going to end up with this Ikea dresser, but I don’t know if I should keep it espresso and add white knobs to it, or if I should go with white to break up the matchy, matchy vibe a bit.
Oh, and I get to add this charming book case that I got at a consignment sale to the mix, too.
Those are pretty much all the solid ideas I’ve got. I think maybe I like this chipboard chandelier for a mobile, but I could be convinced otherwise. Was also thinking maybe a cutesy, mod-ish hot air balloon one, but that’s mainly in my head as I’ve yet to run across anything that resembles my idea. She will have a new ceiling fan, but it will be a neutral one, not anything theme-y.
We have room for a mural on one wall, and I have an amazingly talented sister in law who could do one for us (she painted the solar system on Kendall’s wall and it is phenomenal), but I don’t want to paint a mural just for the sake of painting one.
I love this inspiration board from OdietAmo.blogspot.com and the ideas she has for a purple and brown, sophisticated nursery, but it’s a tad too much white for my liking.
I also like the idea of adding a bit of a “round the world” influence. You’ll notice that one of the fabric choices I’m considering has little Russian dolls on it, and I think the hot air balloon mobile would be cute to add to that. Was also thinking we could do a cool world map mural if we went with the mural.
Okay… soooo have I completely flooded your senses? Are you too far gone to help me? Am I headed in a million different ways at once? Because that’s exactly how I feel.
Lost in La La Nursery Land, Trying Not To Make My Husband’s Ulcer Worse
25 weeks pregnant
Holy freaking OMG this is so fanfuckingtastic! I just did Kendall’s new little night time, please get sleepy and stay sleepy time routine -bath, lotion, diaper, jammies, sleep sack, Rockabye Baby Lullaby CD, lights down, nurse, rock…. good God that is a shit load of work to get one small person to go to sleep. High maintenance much? Well, at least it WORKED!! I put him down sleepy, but not asleep, left the room, turned the monitor on and prepared for the wailing to begin, except it never did. All I heard was, “grunt… grrrrrunt….GRUNT…grrrrrr…gg…zzzzzz”. VICTORIOUS!
See, I was all prepared. Tonight was going to be the first night that we would start a modified version of crying it out. (Boo Hiss!! I can hear the disapproval of so many from miles away). My goal wasn’t to scar my child or to make him feel like he’s neglected. I didn’t want him to pass out from the sheer exhaustion of screaming his lungs out and choking on his own spit. It was actually quite difficult for us to come to this decision, but the little shit head knows what he’s doing now, people. The other day I let him fuss as long as I could before my heart was on the verge of shattering into a million pieces (I think I made it all of 4 minutes). I ran back into his room, convinced I had scarred him for life. I swooped in, sprinting to his bedside, only to be shocked when he immediately stopped the screaming, looked up at me, and smiled the biggest “I’ve got you where I want you” grin I’ve ever seen. Scott swears every time I take him from him when he’s crying and Scott can’t soothe him he practically winks back at him after the rescue.
But it’s more than the crying it out tonight. We are also hoping to get him to spend his very first entire night in his crib, in his room, on the other side of the house. I do not hold out much hope for sleep in the hours to come. Up until now, Kendall has spent the nights in our room. He starts out in his pack and play, but usually ends up in our bed, asleep next to my naked boob that is flopping out of my nursing tank, passed out after an early morning feeding. I eventually wake up and put myself back together, but if it’s after 3 in the morning, he just stays in between us. It’s a system that has worked well for us. Especially for me. Other than having to switch sides of the bed with Scott depending on what side Kendall needs to feed on, it’s very little disruption to my sleep. However, for many reasons (fear that we will roll over on him, fear he will fall off the bed, fear we will have a toddler/child/pre-teen/socially awkward young adult sleeping with us in the future) we have decided that the honeymoon must end.
I’m sure it will be hard at first. I expect bruises and stubbed toes as I try to make my way through the house, half awake, to nurse him in the middle of the night. And who knows how many times he’ll wake up. That’s where the cry it out thing comes in, I guess. The goal is to not rush off to his room every time he stirs, but to wait and see if he will put himself back to sleep or if he really is hungry before making the sleepwalk journey. I guess that will eventually lead to better/more sleep, but the problem is that for a while I know that I won’t sleep through those grunts, whimpers and whines. Instead, I will lay as close to the monitor as possible, analyzing each and every noise, wondering, waiting, not sleeping. Yup. Tonight is going to be brutal.
I anticipate the fight to be long, tiresome, and perhaps bloody at times (only my blood, I assure you, probably from stubbed toes and broken toe nails from bumping into walls in the middle of the night). I will be at a disadvantage. I will be more exhausted. But I’m hoping some sneaky tricks will help me win. Maybe he will be so enamored with his new room (which we just put the finishing touches on yesterday!) that he’ll be led to believe all the cool babies sleep in their own rooms and let their mommies and daddies get lots of sleep.
With that, I leave you with pictures of said cool room. It is the only room in our house that is completely unpacked, let alone decorated. Sometimes I like to close the door, hang out in there, and pretend the rest of my house is as pristine and color coordinated. It’s a space and planets themed room that we’re hoping he will like just as much a few years down the road as we do now. The mural is the most kick ass thing about the room by far. My brother’s girlfriend hooked us up with her amazing artistic skills and painted it in a day. She and my brother are headed to their first year of college in Seattle in a week (yeah, she’s 18 and this talented). I told her she should do this for people up there as a college job. So if any of you are interested, let me know! I bet you could get her for a steal. Okay, enough talk… here are the pics-
Now wouldn’t you want to spend all night in there?
Still about 4 and a half months old