Nursery Reveal

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Now that C is firmly established in his own room, I figured it's long past time to share his nursery. Ok I took most of these photos months ago, and would have shared earlier, but after many months of frustration and indecision, I'm happy to say the setup is finally how I had it envisioned. A.K.A. I got tired of waiting around for T to miraculously become a 'handyman', and took matters into my own hands.

 If you can remember back before C's arrival, you'll know that I had a super difficult time coming up with a great theme or direction to go in (I blame the pregnancy hormones). In the end, I finally decided on a theme I'd venture to call refined nautical. The color palate is simple, and most of the decor will flow nicely into a little boy, big boy, or adult room as C grows up. We opted for a convertible crib that can transition into a toddler bed, and then a headboard for a double bed as C grows up. In my opinion, the Munire brand, among some others that you can find at Buy Buy Baby, or Homemakers, were of better quality than most of the baby furniture offered by some of the more typical go-tos such as Pottery Barn Kids, Babies'R'Us, or Target. If you happen to be in the Des Moines area, Buy Buy Baby has an excellent showroom set up with many options to look at. A word to the wise...these 'big items' are not always in stock, and you'll need to order at least two months in advance if you want to have the nursery ready before baby arrives. Homemakers will deliver statewide pretty reasonably, while Buy Buy Baby does not have free delivery, and only offers ship-to-store. Unless you live close by, or have access to a trailer, this could prove to be a difficult task! Crib boxes are HUGE!

About a month before C arrived, I finally decided to bite the bullet and just order the original curtains, quilt, and pillow I had been eyeing ever since T & I found out we'd be having a boy. I'll admit, I spent an embarrassing number of hours searching for a more cost friendly option, but as delivery-day began creeping up on us, without any luck elsewhere, it was pretty obvious they would have to come from RH Baby & Child or bust. An excellent resource, by the way, if you're looking for soft palates and muted color schemes.

For those of you who know me well, I am not one to jump into any long-term (a.k.a. more than $100) design decisions too quickly without first weighing all of the available options (and reading about a million and a half reviews on all things baby related). I knew I wanted a relatively neutral theme that wouldn't scream 'BABY ROOM!' since not only can this room be viewed from our main living area, but the plan is for it to work as C gets older and wants a more grown-up looking room as well. For how much the curtains cost, he might will be stuck with them until he leaves the house some 18 years down the road!

Part of the reason I had so much difficulty coming to a decision, in my opinion, is the severe lack of single colored baby bedding available. Seriously. I bet I spent an entire week just trying to find a plain navy baby quilt with matching pillow and curtains, and a plain white pleated crib skirt. On a side note: If you are also having trouble with crib skirts, I suggest trying Serena & Lily for plain white 17" pleated drop, Pottery Barn Kids for white linen 16" pleated drop, or Carousel Designs for customizable styles, lengths, and colors. White ruffled crib skirts, meanwhile, are much easier to come by, and in just about every baby store out there. For me, ruffled crib skirts have 'Girl!' written all over them, and I wanted something more simple for a boy's room. Another option for you DIY'ers out there would be to just sew one yourself - definitely the cheapest option, and many tutorials available online for patterns. For those of us like me that don't have a sewing machine, a desire to learn last minute how to sew, or a seamstress on speed dial, I hope this info helps you!

I spotted this poem while perusing nursery inspiration via Pinterest, and I thought it was just the perfect little saying to have in C's nursery.

...Cooking and cleaning can wait till tomorrow
for babies grow up we've learned to our sorrow,
so settle down dust, cobwebs go to sleep,
I'm rocking my baby, and babies don't keep...

And because thinking about babies growing up just makes me want to go wake C up from his nap for a good snuggle with his mama...I'll leave you with this picture from when our little guy was just nine days old, super snuggly, and just starting to become aquatinted with his own room.

Crib & Double Dresser // Swivel Glider & Gliding Ottoman // Side Table // Bamboo Blinds // Curtain Rod, Finials, Brackets // Curtains // Toddler Quilt & Pillow // Crib Skirt (old, similar here or here) // Sailboat Mobile (old, similar herehere, or here// Monogram Letters (painted with color match of bedding) // Sailboat Changing Table Storage // Changing Pad Cover // Mirror // Lamp (old, similar herehere, or here) // Boppy Cover // Sailboat Wall Canvas (My own photograph from 2013 Okoboji Regatta printed from Easy Canvas Prints) // Stripe Knit Blanket (old, similar here, here, or here) // Toy Basket // Book Ledges // Personalized Wall Art // Picture Frames // Fox // Dinosaur // Airplane // Flapping Fish // Paint

Splish Splash!

Friday, July 24, 2015

Splish Splash! Summertime and hot weather are perfect reasons to have fun playing outdoors in the water, and we have been taking full advantage. C snagged this awesome water table set-up from Grandma S at his first birthday, and he's been having so much fun splashing around with his boats and water squirties as a way too cool off. Worthy of a least a full hour of entertainment!! 

The water table has been great to help C work on his balance while standing up. It's the perfect height for him to hold onto while giving him a sense of stability using his own muscles without having to hold onto our hands to balance. I'm sure it will be even more exciting once he figures out he can cruise all around it after learning to pick up his feet and shuffle right and left.

Huh? How does this water wheel work? A source of fascination. C loved trying to get this figured out, and watching as I filled up the reservoir with water and the wheel started splashing and turning. Great for teaching cause and effect! C is just starting to learn this skill, so hasn't figured out that he can fill the reservoir himself yet, but it is fun to watch him while he takes it all in trying to understand it. Of course, after the reservoir emptied, Inspector C was back at it again, and had to pull the tower over to see why it wasn't working anymore!

Determination! After C had the boats all figured out, he moved on to splashing. As you can tell, this was a job that needed focusing!

Twelve & Thirteen Month Favorites

Monday, July 20, 2015

At long last...twelve and thirteen month favorites. I've been working on this list for a while now, and had so many great things to put on it that I ended up having to cut it down to keep it under control. Whoops!

Twelve & Thirteen Month Favorites

Sleepers // After burning through several different low-quality brands of pajamas before hitting the one year mark, I bit the bullet and ordered a few pairs of footless sleepers from Hanna Andersson for summer. They have amazing reviews, and are truly a much better quality than most other brands out there when it comes to baby sleepwear. They are made of a more substantial cotton than most other PJs we've burned through, wash well,  and look just as good today as they did over a month ago. Hanna Andersson also has great baby socks that are super warm and cozy for keeping feet toasty on cooler nights or before the one year mark when it's OK to sleep with blankets.

B. Parum Pum Pum Drum Set // After being gifted this fun music set for his birthday, C has been playing with it on a daily basis. His favorites are the drum sticks, mini shaker, and drum lid. It's been fun watching him explore the different 'instruments' and learning to make music.

Sun Hat // C has everything from baseball caps, to fedoras, to swim hats in his wardrobe, and with bright sunny days of summer upon us, we can never have enough. I found this neutral sun hat with ties under the chin from Hanna Andersson. The swim hats sometimes don't have a long enough strap to fasten under the chin, plus they are usually velcro-closure that snags clothing. This version has a long enough tie that it doesn't dig into the double chin, and looks cute while keeping his face in the shade. Hanna Andersson has many other colors available if you are looking to match an outfit!

Step2 Infant to Toddler Swing // C has had so much fun swinging now that we're into summer weather. He loves the motion of swinging, and enjoys being outside to watch the world around him. T installed the swing under our deck right near where he has his smoker set up, so C has enjoyed being part of the boys club while T is playing pit master on the BBQ.

Joovy Spoon Walker // After hearing about horror stories of walkers that went tumbling down stairs with baby in tow, and reading reports that say walkers can actually delay learning to walk, we were VERY hesitant to join the club. However, after C tried out cousin J's walker while we were visiting, and his doctor hinted that it may be good for him, we came to the decision that we may as well give it a try to see if it helps him figure out how to walk and move his feet instead of just planting himself in one spot. Since we were a bit late to the walker game, our selection was limited based on height and weight requirements. The Joovy Spoon fit the bill supporting kiddos up to 30lbs and 33.5inches in height. (For reference, most other walkers only support up to 25lbs.) It was a bit more expensive than other walkers on the market, but the quality is great, and the simple design and oversized removable tray for eating and playing with toys we already have at home were also selling points. The color choices were also better than most for blending in to our home as much as possible - we opted for the charcoal color - and the open back helps with avoiding pinched heels. This walker has traveled with us several times, and folds down nicely, has a machine washable seat, and plastic bumpers for those inevitable crashes into the furniture and cabinets. A money-saving tip...Sign up for emails, and save by purchasing from Bed Bath & Beyond using one of their 20% off coupons! Nope, they're not a baby store, but they are a sister store to Buy Buy Baby, and offer many of the same products online.

John Deere Massaging Corn Teether // We have Great Grandpa K to thank for this favorite teether. It took a while for C to catch on to biting hard enough to make the teether vibrate, but since he figured it out, it tends to be the first one he reaches for...after Sophie that is...

Fisherman Sandals // Perfect for warm weather, I picked up this plain brown version for cheap at Walmart. They have more support than some of the more flimsy options I was able to find online, and are a nice neutral color that goes with just about every outfit in C's closet. Another great thing, they were less than $10! We recently also added these Keen's to wear with more athletic inspired outfits during the hot summer months. They're built to last, are machine washable, are great for new walkers, have excellent reviews, and I've spotted them on several little kiddos C's age this win win win win!

Rompers // These one piece outfits are perfect for warm weather and babies on the go. Some places to shop for these: Gap, Oshkosh, Carters, Hanna Andersson, Nordstrom.

Carter: 13 & 14 Month Update

Thursday, July 16, 2015

Sum..sum...summer time. Time has been flying this summer, and C has been very busy keeping us all on our toes. His curiosity is insurmountable, and there is always something just around the corner that he needs to investigate. He has a fascination for door stops, power cords, DVDs, video game controllers, kitchen and bathroom cabinets, air vents, entertainment stands, and houseplants.  I picked up these cabinet locks to prevent him pulling out ceramic serving pieces, appliances, and bathroom cleaning supplies, but he always seems to find the one thing I didn't think of. Pretty much any object that wasn't meant as a toy is fair game. He's not yet pulling himself up on furniture, or cruising around, so he's somewhat limited to what he can army crawl to, or sit up and reach, but the addition of a walker just after his first birthday has made many nooks and crannies more available to him than ever before, and he is loving every minute of mischief.

The official 13 Month photo!

Face Crinkles
Sitting Up
Army Crawling
Power Cords
Bike Rides
Table food
Playing in the water
Tasting the wind
Escaping diaper changes
Morning snuggles with Mom

I laugh in the face of a diaper change! #escapeartist

Being scolded

C has been busy working himself onto the naughty list this last couple of months, and immediately goes for the power cords the minute I turn around. So far, he hasn't pulled the lamp off the table, but he did manage to pull the monitor off. He knew right away he was in trouble too. After the initial shock of something falling off a table when he pulled on a cord, he quietly reached for the monitor and silently stared at it in his hands, all the while his back to me while I was getting ready in the bathroom. He would turn his head to look at the bed, then back to the monitor, and back to the bed, then back to the monitor before slowly peeking over his shoulder to see if I saw what he did. We had a little sit down talk after this incident, and I explained that we don't play with cords because they are attached to things that can hurt babies. He looked at me and listened, then his bottom lip started to quiver, there was some whimpering, and a few tears even dropped before he went in for the snuggle to make sure everything was still good with the world. We've had a couple of other incidents where he has been overly excited at scratched my face - I may have looked like I'd been in a cat fight all last week - after which we repeated this little chat of ours ensuing in the lip quiver, whimper, and tears routine before making up with a snuggle. I'd like to think he's learned his lesson, and I do think he at least has an understanding that he shouldn't be doing these things, but he's a very curious little boy, and always on the lookout, unknowingly or not, for the next spot of trouble he can find himself in. One lesson at a time! #snuggleandmakeup


C has been on the move this month. After a handful of times sitting up sneakily without anyone seeing it, C has been proudly pushing into a sit all by himself since turning 13 months. We've been working on this for a while now in physical therapy, so we are so proud of him for reaching this goal. He started army crawling at about a year, and he has become very efficient getting from Point A to Point B. He is starting to use his knees more, but hasn't yet figured out that he would be able to move much faster if he just would push off the floor with his arms. Also new, the addition of a walker. C has been LOVING the new mobility, and took only about 30 seconds to figure out how to push forward. He started out doing a two leg hop to get around, but after a few days, he started putting one foot in front of the other, and now he pretty much is at a dead sprint once he gets in. He loves pull up and practice walking using our hands, and once he gets his balance figured out, I'm sure he'll be off and running! He hasn't quite figured out how to pull himself up from sitting using furniture yet, and he isn't furniture cruising, but T & I think he's likely just days away from getting into all kinds of things he shouldn't be! For his safety, and our sanity, I got this baby gate for the top of our stairs, and these cupboard locks, and so far they have done the trick keeping him out of too much trouble.

New Teeth! Finally, as we draw to an end of this month, after waiting nearly five months, C's two upper front teeth have popped through. We are all convinced he has a whole mouthful coming as we can see a couple more just under his gums, but so far, he's been handling it like a champ, and only been up during the night once to be consoled.

With summer in full swing, we've been enjoying the occasional boat ride when the weather isn't too hot and the lake isn't too busy. C loves to be on the boat, and was particularly fond of the new addition of Grandpa T's fishing boat to his mix of maritime adventures. Who knew watching a motor churn the water would be so much fun?!

Summertime is for trips, be they just down the road to visit Grandma S and Grandpa T, a bike trip to the Nutty Bar Stand, across the lake for a change of scenery, across NW Iowa to visit family in Humboldt, or across timezones to visit Florida or Colorado. We've kept busy this summer, and have been on the go all over the place. C has had the opportunity to see both oceans and mountains (in the same week!) loooong before T & I ever did when we were kids. I don't know how much air travel we will take after C reaches that golden age of 2 years old when he'll need his own ticket to fly, so we've really been trying to take advantage while he's just a little guy. We don't have any big travel plans for upcoming months, but maybe we'll try to sneak in a trip to Sioux Falls, or Iowa City before the summer is gone.

First time trying nuts! Almond fudge ice cream at The Nutty Bar Stand in Arnolds Park. As you can tell, C was all about it. Nothing is better on a hot summer day than a scoop of ice cream!

This was just after C doused himself in water from a water bottle while we were out on a walk. As you can tell, he thought it was pretty funny. Maybe now he won't squeeze the bottles that are full of water!

Playing our favorite game...Peek-A-Boo!

Splish splash! Hot summer days = playtime with water. 

Eeeeeeee! No post would be complete without a few good crinkle face pics! C has been loving riding his tricycle around the driveway and checking on all of the flowers. Just when we think it's time to go inside, he dives for his trike, and we have to take a couple of laps and practice learning to ring the bell before going inside to cool off.

We had to lower the mattress in C's crib this month. He hasn't yet pulled himself up, but he's been sitting up every time we go in to get him, so before it's too late, we made the adjustment. He pretty much loves it, and immediately started jumping on the mattress when we put him in to test it out. #thenaughtylistcontinues

Learning about accessorizing in mom's closet...aka source of fascination and where C can be found when mom isn't looking.

Official 14 month photo!

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