nursery update

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as evidenced by my recent living/dining room swap, things are always evolving at our house. that evolution can be driven by changing needs, a new acquisition or me just looking to switch things up. being home this past year on maternity leave has meant a lot of me looking to switch things up, but also a lot of changing needs-driven tweaks. after all, i’ve gone from having a newborn to having a one-year-old and that puts some different pressures on your space.

despite it being one of the smallest rooms in the house (even the mudroom is bigger), frankie rose’s nursery has undergone the largest number of changes this year. i so enjoyed pulling her nursery together while i was pregnant, starting in july for a baby that was due mid-january. i was making changes right up until my due date and felt certain that it was perfect at the time we left for the hospital.

one year later, hardly anything looks the same as it did the day we brought her home! because of its size, it’s a hard room to photograph, but you can see some images of her bedroom from last february here.

the first thing to go was the vintage bentwood chair, which while super comfortable for me, revealed itself early on as a not ideal choice due to it’s creakiness. we replaced it with a high-backed rocker from ikea, which, while still a little big for her space (what adult-sized chair wouldn’t be?), is much more comfortable for pierre and offers a smoother transition from rocker to crib. the bentwood chair is now in our living room where it’s a sleeping spot favoured by archie. if we stay here in toronto (argh, i’m tearing my hair out with the waiting, i hate human resources), i’m going to get it reupholstered.

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before she was born, i demarcated a wooden crate to hold toys and stuffed animals, but even with limited toys, it was really easy to forget what she had and lose things in the bottom. pierre (somewhat begrudgingly) reworked a shelf from our basement to create a montessori style low toy shelf when she was about six months old. now everything she has to play with is clearly visible and accessible to her. i put up a similar shelf in her play area downstairs and rotate toys between the two locations. the shelf is very sturdy and gives her something to pull up on, but, at one year old, she still isn’t interested despite my best efforts to motivate her. the toy shelf meant moving her big pastel from wow! canada to a different wall, which meant moving the mountainscape into the bathroom.

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she is, however, big time into scooting on her bum and yanking on cords, so the cubby that i attached casters to and used as a surface for holding her nightlight, baby monitor, white noise machine and bottle needed to be remediated. i tried just taking the casters off initially, but the breakables on top still proved hazardous, so i moved the nightlight, baby monitor and white noise machine to the top of her dresser (tucking the cords behind her crib and behind the framed pastel) and got rid of the cubby altogether, mounting one of our small floating shelves to the wall instead. i painted it a mustard colour that i had lying around, but i’m not sold. luckily these shelves, once primed, can be painted over and over with a nice foam roller. this shelf gives us a little more floor space in here, which is an improvement anyways.

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speaking of floor space, cords and hazards, the tripod survey stand light was also presenting problems. i moved it to the living room alongside the bentwood chair and mounted one of our dining room pendants to the wall above her books. i spray painted the wings a shade of “sea lagoon” and ran the long cord across and down behind the books on her book ledges.

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the french door that is so pretty and lets lots of natural light into her bedroom (and allows me to check if she’s sleeping without opening her door) started to bite us in the ass sometime in the fall. we could see in, but she could also see out, which made bedtime (back when it was very early, around 6pm) difficult to achieve. i didn’t want to add a bulky curtain or replace the door, so i went with decorative window film and i love it. it matches the colour palette of her room and our house perfectly, was super easy to apply and just peels off with no sticky residue. her room is still bright, but this solves the visibility issue of a small space.

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lastly, the brown sheepskin rug that i begged pierre to allow me to buy was replaced with our small living room rug, which needed a new home after i swapped our living and dining rooms recently. we have hardwood flooring on the main floor and a concrete floor in the basement, so there’s a flatwoven rug in almost every room of the house. when i was pulling her nursery together two summers ago, i’m pretty sure i tried every rug we owned in her room except this one, and turns out this one works great.

so much for the nursery being “perfect” before the baby arrived! lots and lots of changes for such a tiny room! if we stay, these changes will only continue — once she’s no longer bottle-fed, a smaller eames rocker or her bobbin converted to its play table stage with a little stool would be great for the corner and, if we stay, her bedroom most definitely needs a new window (it’s older than i am) and covering (she’s bent a number of the slats on the mini blind and i’d rather not have those cords near her bed).

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4 thoughts on “nursery update

  1. Love it! What a great use or space. I love the delicate rose knobs on the dresser – perfect for a little girl named Frankie Rose! (and yes – I’m still awed by the awesomeness of the Montessori toy shelf!)…

    I had a bum shuffler too – my youngest… I think bum shuffling babies walk later because they can already hold/carry things while they move around (unlike a crawler – so really – they are the *most* clever babies when you think about it). He didn’t walk until he was 18 MONTHS OLD (I was freaking out – my first kid didn’t do this). At some point after his first birthday he did start pulling himself up on things but would get on his bum to move. My pediatrician checked him out and said he’s fine – “he will walk when he wants to”… a week after he just literally ran one day. Literally. Husband leaves in the morning with a bum shuffler – comes home that afternoon and has his baby run up to him on sturdy little feet.

    1. i can’t thank you enough for this anecdote. “comparison is the thief of joy” and all that, but i am anxious about her gross motor skills for sure as i do see she’s less mobile than all the other babies we know, including ones several months younger than her. she is a very effective bum scooter, but still cannot get up to seated from her tummy or back, so putting her down flat means she stays in one spot. i don’t know of any other one-year-olds that behave this way! i want to be completely zen about it, but also feel it’s my job to get her help if she needs it, so i don’t really know if i’m putting too much pressure on her or not enough. probably won’t be the last time i ask myself this question!

      those rose knobs were $2 off the clearance table at anthropologie! i bought them before we knew she was a girl and glad i got to use them!

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