Nursery Update: Big Boy Room

I have been itching to redecorate Mazen’s room for some time now. Probably as early as the moment I realized that my vision for his yellow + gray nursery never really turned out how I imagined.

As a reminder, here’s what we started with:

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Here’s what his nursery looked like right before he arrived:

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Here’s what it looked like one year later (and here’s the post about that!)

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And here’s what it looks like today!

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I’m in the process of slowly turning our house into a beach house. I’ve declared it my favorite style (bright, relaxed, comfortable). While the changes in the main house have been subtle, I decided to carry the nautical theme into Mazen’s room and give his décor a bit of an overhaul. I didn’t spend that much or change any of the big stuff, but the key pieces made a huge difference in the look and feel of the room.

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The biggest change, of course, is the wall color. What was once a minty green is now bright modern white! And I love it.

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I added new linens and curtains and moved around the artwork and furniture a bit. Here’s what it looks like from the doorway:

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My favorite piece in the room is the ropey lamp that I found in Target’s Threshold line.

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As a reminder, here’s the before! A red lamp I bought fresh out of college that had seen better days.

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The new bedspread from Land of Nod has whales on the underside!

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On top I had this pillow cover made through Etsy to fit the insert we already had. I love the pop of red – it is small but it really brightens up the room

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Check out that octopus – also from Target! The burlap bins I bought a while ago, but they were Homegoods finds that work so well in the open space of the nightstand.

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I used to store toys in this box in the basement, but it works so much better as a book cart in here.

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If you look closely, you’ll see the Young House Love octopus hook on the shelves! I was going to hang it, but I actually like it as a decorative item even more. The paper mache M was made by blog reader Heather!

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We use the bed as a changing table (which works perfectly) so most of the time you’ll find the matching changing pad on top.

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But when I tidy up, it rests back on top of the dresser.

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These curtains were sitting right under my nose for the longest time. I was searching for grommet curtains (the easiest to open and close) that were blackout but also over half white/light with some navy. I had already checked Pottery Barn Kids and overlooked these, and when I saw them on Pinterest I thought they had to be custom made. When I clicked through to the blog that featured them, she had a source guide and I found them on Pottery Barn! Grommets, blackout AND nautical – SOLD! They even tie in the burlap color on the bins and anchor print!

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Here’s a reminder of what the old curtains were like – blah!

I splurged on a crib sheet that I really didn’t need but just wanted. I used to think $24 or so for a sheet was a lot (and it is when you have to buy 1,000 baby things!), but now that I know how much use they get and how happy these whales make the room feel I say go with the sheet you want most in the long run.

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We moved Mazen’s crib 90 degrees and the room now seems to be so much more spacious. The rocking chair looks so much better over there than squeezed in by the door where it used to be. We also swapped rugs around in the house – Mazen’s stained chevron rug is now in the basement, the cushy basement rug is in the living room and this kitchen living room rug is now in here. I think it fits so much better.

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I love it. Mazen likes the whales. We are all happy with the updates!

Where’s That From?

See some of my inspiration on my Baby Pinterest board!

Stripe + whale quilt

Whale crib sheet

Blue dot changing pad cover

Burlap wall anchor

Octopus wood wall art

Rugby stripe curtains

Anchor pillow cover

Ropey lamp

White pin tuck sham

Rocking chair

Wooden book crate

Paper mache M

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Nursery Tour: One Year Later

Here was our nursery just before we brought little Mazen home from the hospital:

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And here it is one year later:

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By request, here are some of the things we have loved about our nursery and some things we have changed.

Our color scheme and décor I still really love.{Although I will say I have considered painting the walls bright white recently…!} I changed the bedspread from a white duvet to a blue quilt for the summer, and like the quilt a lot more because it shifts around less than the duvet did. I also swapped the huge sham and small throw pillow for a more practical gray lumbar pillow. It’s great for reading in bed or nursing.

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I swapped out our gray lamp for the red one because it was easier to turn on and off in the wee hours of the night. The gray ones are now our master bedroom lamps.

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The biggest change is the night stand. At about 11 months Mazen figured out how to open the drawer and that caused the night stand to be really tippy. (We hadn’t bolted it to the wall because it was so light.) Also, the top had gotten really cluttered, especially since we used it for our wipes storage. The table below was Karen’s and was living in our attic. It was the perfect solution! The only drawback is that it totally clashes with the wall color. Maybe I’ll paint it someday.

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It has tons more space on top and not one but two shelves underneath. I have actually thought about getting a big low dresser to go here for more drawers and an even bigger bed-side surface space, but I think this is good enough for now.

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M loves to pull out this drawer and hide trinkets and his toothbrush inside. It’s a much better height for him.

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On the bottom shelf I have a bin full of our bedtime books. It’s easy to pull out and bring onto the bed so we can dig through them and find the best stories. I found these burlap bins at Homegoods.

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Another huge change is that we no longer use our changing table. When Mazen started to roll, it was too dangerous to have him up there, bolts and straps and all. We went through a short time of changing him on the floor until we realized…

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That the bed is the perfect solution! He can roll off but he still has a soft bed to roll onto. And I can keep the floor space open and the wipes and things on the night stand. I also find it much easier to change him from the base of the changer – the angle is easier to manage.

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Having a bed in our nursery has been THE BEST thing we could have done. I’m so glad we decided to keep it in there! I lie down to nurse all the time. We read stories snuggled together. I change all of his outfits and diapers on the bed. He loves to stand at the window and look out. We also slept in the nursery during the horrible four month sleep regression, and the bed was a life saver for our sleep quality. It will become Mazen’s big boy bed someday in the future too. I really can’t imagine where I’d do all of this if we didn’t have the bed in there.

Since our changing station has moved, the dresser serves as an open space for laundry folding and holds the changing pad when we are using the bed for other things. It also houses the sound machine.

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The crib has been awesome.

Before:

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After:

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It’s on its lowest setting now. We have been nothing but happy with the crib and mattress purchase. I still don’t know if the organic mattress was worth the price tag (and never will) but I can say the mattress is holding up just fine and barely feels used a year later.

I added breathable bumpers when M started to roll around. They might have been unnecessary because I took them off to clean them on the front and he hasn’t ever gotten stuck. In fact, he likes to play with the crib from the outside so I haven’t put them back on.

We bought this crib wrap for the front when M started to chew on the crib. Sadly we have some permanent teeth marks so buy this before your child starts teething! We bought this gummi rail for the sides where ties wouldn’t work. I’ve been happy with them both, although I haven’t taken the gummi off to see how it does on the finish. The front tie wrap is great because I can throw it in the wash if it gets gross.

Lastly, I had to take the crib skirt off when we lowered the crib. It was custom made by my friend and it didn’t fit anymore. Sad, but I kind of like the open look too.

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Nap toys! We still use our aden + anais blankets for sleeping. He loves them. And my mom got him these little dolls (without buttons or anything) from Amazon.

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Did you notice that the paintings changed order in the first two photos? One night I woke up in a panic thinking about that heavy lion frame crashing into the crib and on top of Mazen if we had another earthquake. The next morning I swapped it with the lightweight bike canvas just to be safe ; )

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Before we had nice flags hanging in style by their lonesome:

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And now they have ugly cords tangled throughout. We mounted the video monitor on the wall, which has been priceless to have, but it sure isn’t pretty to look at!

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The toy baskets are now filled with even more toys!

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The rug…

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I haven’t been very happy with the rug. It was inexpensive from Urban Outfitters. I don’t like that it always looks dirty!! It has tons of little pills in it that look like dirt specks, and it collects dirt from shoes really easily. And when M was younger and spitting up all the time, the water marks from the spit up and clean up took ages to come out. If I were you and I were setting up a nursery I’d get an indoor/outdoor rug like the ones that Ballard Designs has. Easier to clean! Thumbs down on the rug : (

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The chair gets a thumbs up!

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While I only nursed it in a handful of times (the bed wins every time) it has been great to have when we have a visitor. Matt often sits in it while I nurse at bedtime and others sit in it when they hang in the nursery with us. I use it sometimes if I am comforting Mazen at night or need to rock him a bit. M loves to bang on it. I couldn’t have asked for a better chair for these purposes – it’s compact, rockable and comfy.

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Our drawers and closet are pretty much the same. I’ve moved things around – what used to hold burp cloths now holds shoes and socks. But nothing really to note. I do sort of wish I could take everything out and make 2 rows for hanging clothes. I put all of his clothes in a drawer by season and they do get a little jumbled at times. But it’s just easier to put shirts in a drawer than to hang them up, so I haven’t made the jump to try that. Still very glad I took the closet door off and used a curtain instead.

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Speaking of curtains, I did swap out the white ones for blackout curtains early on. I still miss the white ones, but the blackouts are good!

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Gotta run – tantrum alert!!

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39 Weeks: Nursery Tour

Here we are in the home stretch and our little boy’s room is all ready for him to come home!

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Overall, I love our nursery. It didn’t really come out at all how I envisioned it many months ago, but it’s morphed into a cheerful and bright space that I love to be in.

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I went from a vision of all grey + yellow + white to a more varied palate with touches of teal and modern elements. As he grows older, we can take out some of the baby items and pastels and add in more modern elements and bright colors.

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Links to all items at the bottom of the page!

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The nursery room already had a twin bed in it, so we decided to keep that as a parents’ bed and work surface. It’s already been really great for folding laundry and I can imagine changing outfits too. And of course sleeping!

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Fun print sheets from Target and the yellow pillow was an Etsy find for our couch that I like better in the nursery

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The blanket at the bottom breaks up the white bedspread (which we already owned) without having to go all out on a matching one. Also will be good for removing for playing or protecting the duvet from explosions!

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The nightstand next door houses the parent base for our monitor and sound machine plus a drawer filled with midnight snacks for mom.

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We are well stocked with fun books on some IKEA shelves

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And below you’ll find one of my favorite pieces – a modern rocker from Amazon. It’s SUPER comfortable (although not glider level) and will make a great seat for a quick rock, storytime or nursery visitor to sit.

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I like that it’s smallish for my 5’2” frame and the back comes up high and there are arm rests for extra support. When you sit in it you are slightly reclined, which is why it’s so comfy. The bike pillow is another Etsy touch!

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The rock ‘n play sleeper will be where babe sleeps next to the bed until he is ready for the crib.

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We decided it made more sense to move us parents into the nursery than whole nursery into the master bedroom. Plus the two rooms are about 10 feet away from one another, so it’s almost like one big suite.

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I love how easily this folds away should we need to tidy up for company or make more rug space for playing.

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I think as soon as nighttime nursing sessions reduce in frequency a bit, it will be easier to transition to the crib because he will be used to the room and I can continue to sleep in there for a while too. Or just move back next door : )

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Love our modern grey crib – such a great price for $199.

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The crib skirt was made by my friend Lynsie!

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And this fun Boppy cover was an Etsy find

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Above the crib I found these color-coordinated bunting flags on Etsy. I was going to make them myself at one point, but all that sewing would have taken me 100 hours. I prefer to support someone who is a sewing expert instead : )

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The two batik paintings of a lion and grasshopper were done by my grandmother many years ago, and Matt painted the bike on a Michael’s canvas. We just lucked out that the colors matched so well!

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Our Angelcare Monitor sits inside this pretty cloth bin – a shower gift from Etsy

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Next to the crib is a little chair my grandmother hand painted with a snail!

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Along with a custom blanket and a hand-me-down sleep sheep that plays noise : )

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Love our Urban Outfitters rug! Such a steal for $75! I did have to buy a pad for underneath too.

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A family friend gave us this vintage-y basket now filled with baby toys!

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Our changing station is an IKEA dresser. We have our diaper bag hanging by a hook on the right side of the dresser. The animal painting is another of my grandmother’s! The little bin matches the floor one from Etsy.

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The changing pad is an Amazon best-seller by LA Designs with a Carousel Designs cover. It’s all mounted to the wall and secured to the dresser top for safety. I have a waterproof pad that I’m going to lay on top for protection when it’s actually time to change a diaper!

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Inside the dresser we’re all nested with cloth and newborn diapers

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Cloth wipes all washed and ready to do when the time is right

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Drawer #2 is filled with onesies – small (newborn), medium (0-3) and large (3-6) sizes! Sleep sacks on the right.

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And our bottom drawer is filled with more clothes – sleepers, outfits, shoes, hats, pants! All <6 months size.

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The big boy clothes are waiting in the closet!

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Along with IKEA drawers filled with useful things like burp cloths, bibs, towels, blankets and crib sheets and baby toiletries on top in a yellow box my grandmother gave me and I painted.

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And some hanging shelves with things like baby carriers, extra blankets, nursing covers, waterproof pads.

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And last but not least, a nice hook for the diaper bag!!

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For More Info…

Furniture

Twin Bed is from Pier 1 in 2006

Duvet cover and bed skirt by Pottery Barn

Yellow + grey leaf sheets are from Target

Chevron Blanket is Carousel Designs

Dresser + Nightstand are IKEA Hemnes

Modern Baxton Studio Letterio White Cradle Rocker from Amazon

Wall-mounted book shelves are IKEA Ribba

Crib is Baby Mod Modena by Walmart

Naturepedic Organic Baby Crib Mattress and Organic Mattress Pad from Babies R Us

Little painted chair was done by my grandmother

Rug by Urban Outfitters with this pad underneath

Fan was painted white by me!

Closet Shelves are IKEA Brimnes

Baby Items

Rock n Play Sleeper

Changing pad by L.A. Baby

Changing pad cover by Carousel Designs

Crib skirt handmade by a girlfriend

Boppy Cover by kidzcraft

Wipe holder from Amazon

Sleepy sheep from Amazon (was a hand-me-down)

Blue dot blanket handmade by a friend

Diaper bag Duo by Skip Hop

Wet bag for diapers from Amazon

Sound machine from Amazon

Décor

Yellow bed pillow is from glamdesign

Bunting flags from timamagee

Chevron cloth bins by NikJDesigns

Bike pillow in chair from birdmafia

All artwork made by my grandmother and husband!

Grey shade lamp is Pier 1

Zig Zag lamp is from Target

Yellow basket was a gift from a friend

Curtains from Bed, Bath and Beyond

Teal and grey chevron bins from IKEA

 

Previous 39 week posts

Snapshots: Nursery Through 9 Months

Grown Up Nesting

Thought Dump

Pre Mom Syndrome

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39 Weeks: Snapshots

Nursery Progress Through 9 Months

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Matt’s birthday present to the baby – a hand-painted bike canvas!! I found a few on Etsy and nearly bought one when I realized I could make one myself that would be more special and a lot less expensive. But then I realized that Matt is SO much more artistic than I am and asked him if he would like to take on the project. We bought a 20×20 canvas at Michael’s for $14 and used our leftover bathroom paint for the backdrop. Some white acrylic paint, bowls for wheel tracing and a steady hand turned out into a really fun nursery addition! We might paint his name under the bike when he’s here : )

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previous WEEKS

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36 Weeks: The Final Items

After my shower in Hillsborough, I returned home with a good idea of what we still needed to buy to prepare for the baby. I had been excited for this for a long time – I couldn’t wait for the relief to have everything we need in our house! That day has come, and we are all set. Here are the final items I bought to complete the nursery!

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Diapers and wipes – for the first few weeks/month until we transition into cloth. I have 6 packs of diapers and about 4 big packs of wipes. The good news is if I need more they are easily found. I think these will get us through the toughest time no problem.

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Two wet bags for our diaper bag and the basement

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A handy OXO wipes container that takes both disposable and then cloth when we are ready

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It opens with one hand and has a weigh to make pulling wipes out easier. Also keeps them moist with a tight seal.

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The aden & anais blankets I have been drooling over all summer! I mostly just wanted the bees for Buzz : )

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A second Halo Newborn Sleep Sack – I wanted a few kinds to test out

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3 SummerMe Swaddlers – I hear these are great!

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Could not resist these on sale when I was at Babies R Us – they look so American Apparel!

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Lanolin and a handful of fleece waterproof pads. I had a mom friend recommend these to me. I had never heard of them, but they are great to put down during diaper changes both on your pretty changing pad or on the floor/couch/wherever you are. Cheap too! Can be also used under crib sheets or as burp clothes. They have tons of sizes.

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Butt paste and 2 kinds of pacifiers

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A large wet bag that now hangs on the side of our changing dresser

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An inexpensive sound machine

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Which is next to our monitor on this little yellow IKEA table. It never occurred to me that there would be CORDS running from the motion sensor on the Angelcare so I’d have to have the monitor close to the crib. Luckily this table has been floating around our house for months without a permanent position and it now has a purpose. Close by to turn both electronics off after a nap.

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And here is dad-to-be securing the changing pad to the dresser and the dresser to the wall!

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I’ll be doing a final nursery tour when we have the last 2 items in. I am waiting for 1 to arrive and 1 to be made!

PREVIOUS 36 WEEK POSTS

Snapshots

New Additions

Pack n Play Options

Nesting –> Resting

Car Seat Installed

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36 Weeks: New Additions

New additions for the new addition!! From family, friends, Etsy and Amazon : ) I wish I could showcase every single gift we have received and every single item I have purchased, but here are snapshots of the range of baby items we have accumulated…

A Duke bib and socks from Matt’s grandmother Bonnie – Go Blue Devils!

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Board books of all kinds!

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A modern Boppy Cover I bought from Kidzcraftz on Etsy!

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Bison Booties!!!! A gift from the Etsy store owner, Erica, who is a BERF reader

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Beach toys for next summer (and the bath until then!) plus soft blocks and a hilarious ball from mom’s friends Judy and Susan! They have started the toy storage under the stairs : )

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A baby monitor from Kirst!

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Our awesome Skip Hop diaper bag from Karen!

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I already put a few things inside : )

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Carousel Designs changing pad (on the L.A. Baby pad that I bought), plus a funky inexpensive lamp from Target and a catch-all container Alex and Eric gave us at our Cville shower from NikJDesigns on Etsy. Can’t believe how well it matches the changing pad!

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This adorable outfit from Baby Olivia

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Fun toys that light up and sing!

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Chevron bibs and burp cloths from my sister from the Posh Pea Boutique and handmade ones by my friend Tiffany!

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And so many cute outfits for 3-6 months that need sorting and folding! You will see these all in time : )

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Previous 36 week posts

Snapshots

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34 Weeks: Baby Central

In anticipation of it becoming baby central, I’ve been working on the basement! It’s so dark and dreary, I wanted to bring in a bunch of bright colors and functional storage, seating and toys.

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It used to look like this – an empty corner with a bookcase and a printer. The lamp went to the nursery, the books to our upstairs bookshelves and the printer to our hidden closet shelves.

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Now with some updates, it looks like this! [The colors should give you an idea of how dark it is down there with just one window on the other side of the room!]

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On the left side is TV central. I’m sure I’ll spend a good amount of time on this couch, but it’s also really hard to get into because it’s so big and sunken, so I think the chair is actually going to make a better nursing spot.

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But the ottoman might become my downstairs changing table (I just need a pad to put on to protect it)

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Improvements included:

Moving the arm chair to the corner. I never knew what to do with this corner and kept putting things in it that I didn’t like. I like the chair! It fills up the corner space well.

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We could have bought a glider for this room, but I just didn’t want to spend the money since we have this great (comfortable + stylish) arm chair. Plus, I hear exercise balls are great for soothing babies – so our friends with a 2 month old tell us! We have one of those down here and ready to go.

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Pretty comfy with a view of the TV

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And tucked nearby – a foot stool to prop up feet and recline (also the huge couch if that turns out to be more comfortable). ALSO a rocking chair on the porch I can bring down if needed. OR I can lie sideways on the ottoman.

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Next to the chair is mom’s station – a spot for water bottles, snacks, computers, phones, books, etc. The drawers are empty and ready to receive items!

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Next to that is a toy basket – which currently houses our hand-me-down boppy pillow. Hopefully the downstairs nursing support. (I also have a My Breast Friend that might become the priority downstairs – don’t know yet)

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Underfoot is a new rug I found at Pier 1 for $25 bucks! I wanted a play rug for the baby to lounge on and play with toys and things.

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I researched all kinds of bigger rugs, round rugs, and expensive rugs and decided that until I need an expensive rug, this inexpensive fluffy guy will be fine – at least until he’s ready to need 10 feet of crawling space. I almost went with red, as white seemed impractical, but then I remembered spit up and breast-fed baby poop is white/beige and I actually think it will blend better in this than a darker color. If I have to toss it after 6 months I will – another reason to go cheap.

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Perhaps my favorite change is the newly painted shelves!! We bought these at Pier 1 for our first apartment and black was cool then. But now they just seemed to make the space so dark. So I brightened them up! Details on the transformation coming next week : )

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The baskets I found at World Market – for a great price! $6.99 for the silver ones and $3 for the small ones. The yellow box was another spray paint project. I planned to put it in our bedroom, but it just didn’t match well (it was TOO bright!) but I think it works well here : )

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I love the bright colors, and they are ready to store diapers, wipes, toys, and more.

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Look, one already has some toys from Baby Raffi!

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There is also lots of floor space for the swing, bouncy seats, pack n plays and more. I think the majority of our baby stuff will end up down here – which means the upstairs will hopefully be a neat retreat.

PREVIOUS 34 WEEK POSTS

Snapshots

Breastfeeding Class

Drop Or Not?

Seasons Change

PREVIOUS WEEKS

4 weeks

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33 Weeks: Snapshots

Our toy baskets are filling up!!

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We received some really fun things as gifts – including this yellow vintagey basket from our friend Chris!

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And this antique one my mom gave me filled with stuffed animals

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I tried to put these two in to play but they jumped right back out! “We are not stuffed!” they squealed.

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Previous WEEKS

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32 weeks

32 Weeks: Snapshots

This week a beautiful crib sheet arrived in the mail!!

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Thanks to Jessica for the gift : ) It’s hard to tell in the photos because the sun was so bright, but it’s a pretty mist seafoam blue. We’ve had an empty white mattress in the nursery for months, so I was so excited to put some color on the crib.

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What I didn’t anticipate was how hard it is to change a crib sheet! If you think making a queen size bed is hard…my gosh this was much harder to maneuver. I know the tightness is very important for baby’s safety though, but I had to really pinch my hand in there to lift up the mattress and put the sheet on. Hard also to bend over and lift a heavy mattress with a big belly in the way!

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[We will hopefully have mattress pads soon too – and I know the trick about layering for midnight blowouts!]

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The zoo found it to be extremely comfortable and fell asleep at once

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Boppy and sleepy sound sheep were hand-me-downs from a local Twitter friend! Thanks Greg!

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One step closer to a baby friendly bed!

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(32 weeks = 8 months!!!!!!!!!)

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31 weeks

28 Weeks: Cute Finds!

A bunch of really cute things I’ve stumbled upon recently : )

Uncommon Goods Fruit Rattles

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ThePoshPeaBoutique’s Cute Chevron Bibs!

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With matching burp cloths!

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Vital’s Bike Onsie

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Carousel Designs Crib Bedding

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JolieBerry’s Chevron Shoes + Tie Onsie

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LittleBabyBumbleBee’s Chevron Onesie Stickers 

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Land of Nod’s Bucket of Burp Cloths – Lions!

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LastEarth’s Camera Onsie

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13days “How I Roll” Bike Onsie

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And perhaps my favorite….BisonBooties’s Chevron Collection!

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Please share more!!

PREVIOUS 28 week posts

Snapshots

Hospital Tour of Martha Jefferson

Book Worms

Two Kicks At The Same Time

PREVIOUS WEEKS

4 weeks

5 weeks

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7 weeks

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11 weeks

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27 weeks