One of my favorite IKEA purchases in recent months in the Svira Box. It comes in all different sizes and I originally bought a big one for storing hats and gloves and all the other winter stuff that ends up lost on the floor of our coat closet every year. Each time I’ve been back to IKEA since, I’ve bought more. I love the muted, quiet color and the opening on the end to add a label.
So, while I love the colors and pattern of my son’s cloth diapers, I don’t have any interest in using them as a decorative feature in my home. And… as I have searched for storage ideas, I’ve seen a lot of decorative solutions- that just weren’t for me. The changing table is in our dining room… so we’re trying to create a look that says, “don’t mind me,” not “poop happens here and so does your dinner.” The Svira Boxes have worked great for us! I keep them full of diapers on the shelves of my $7 (SCORE!!!!) Salvation Army changing table. Hang a wet bag or two from the top and voila! Diaper changes are no big deal.
“Have a predictable bedtime routine,” they said. They all said. Every book, every parent and every sleep expert. So for weeks, I’d come downstairs after my little guy had finally fallen asleep to debrief my husband on the battle I’d just won… or maybe more accurately the white flag the baby had just raised. Together we had gotten in the habit of spending anywhere from 10 -30 minutes each night attempting to reconstruct the exact order of events that led to a sleeping baby. This intense analysis was key if we were going to repeat that the series of unfortunate events tomorrow- get from awake to asleep with even more ease- and finally dub it our bedtime routine. As the sleep deprivation increased, the litany of relevant events evolved from “I read a book and then put him in his crib” to “I used his hand to turn the pages- but not all the pages- just the last two” and “no, no- I didn’t make eye contact with him when I gave him the lovey. That’s why he went to sleep and didn’t cry!”
We maintained this intense level of deliberation night after night as we tried to uncover the magic combination of events that would unlock the elusive ‘sleeping through the night’ we had heard so much about from all of the well rested parents we knew. You know the type: theyremember what they need at the grocery store, cook a meal without forgetting most of the ingredients and let’s not forget the just out of reach- look human… right. Those human-looking parents. The litany of ridiculous behaviors we adults were engaging in only became apparent to me the third or fourth time I was going to be away at bedtime. My husband and I hashed out the specifics of the impending bedtime routine to death- like a couple of crack football coaches from 90s sitcoms… think chalkboards, clipboards.
Anyway…I’m no longer delirious. And, here’s what I’ve figured out. The bedtime routine is the stuff that makes sense on your way to bed. It’s not a made up of a bunch of tasks that need to be crammed in at the most challenging time of the day (exhausted baby & more exhausted parents). Now that bedtime happens successfully (no crying parents) these days, when I’m asked what the routine is, it’s easy for me to describe and no one needs to get out a pen… or chalkboard. Feed the baby, read around the room, read him the book that’s by his crib, give him a kiss and get out. I’m reasonably confident too, that if one of those activities is skipped, or another added- all will be fine!
I love getting to do bedtime. After I feed the baby, we spend about 10 more minutes together. I give him his binky and lovey and carry him while we read around the room- from the changing table all the way around to the crib. In our nursery, that means we spell out Kade (pointing to the letters because I’m a nerdy teacher), and sing the framed verse of “You Are My Sunshine” that is hanging over his changing table. Next, we read the All The Ways I Love You poem by the light switch, and point to and name all of the people in our family in the frame on the other side of the room. Next, I put the baby in his crib with his lovey and pacifier and draw his attention to the giraffes over his crib asking him, “How many giraffes are watching you sleep?” Then we count the 5 giraffes, I tell him the bedtime story and give him a kiss. He rolls over and pulls his lovey to his eyes and I stare for a little bit… because he’s so sweet and peaceful… and then I go do grownup things… and talk to my husband about things other than how exactly I pointed to the letters of Kade’s name. Because… we’re no longer delirious!!!
Another crazy craft project… nesting is a real thing. My OB should have had the power to give me Michael’s coupons.
Beautiful fabrics make all of the grossness that drips and spews out of babies a little less offensive. I fell head over heels in love with some flannel prints a while back and decided to make some cloth wipes. Some rockets, some dinosaurs… The softness of the flannel is so sweet against my baby’s skin when there’s spit up dripping down into his shirt and lodged under his neck. When I’ve been hit… like that time the spit up fired directly into the hood of my freshly washed sweatshirt, the soft flannel rockets were the way to clean up my little guy’s face. And the more textured terry on the reverse helped me scoop the rest out of my hood.
There’s nothing like being out and about with your adorable baby all by yourself, and having an unexpected wave of grossness hit. To me, it feels like hundreds of eyes are on me and they’re all waiting to find out, “is she prepared?” But, after whipping a rocket ship cloth wipe out of my shirt (yes, tucked under my bra strap like a grandma) in the line at the market the other day, I wondered if cloth might always distract onlookers from their investigating. While I collected the mountain of drool, the only thing the customers around me seemed to notice was the adorable cloth wipe. “We didn’t have things like that when my kids were small” and “what a beautiful burp cloth!” Meanwhile, my worries that the drool soaking all the way through my Boba wrap and onto my skin would leave me somewhat exposed (think scary wet t-shirt contest) were abated.
Fewer diapers are changed here in my son’s bedroom than in our dining room. This pegboard is functional, but doesn’t store many diapers. I’ll share our diaper storage solution and the downstairs changing table(who doesn’t want to deal with poop in their dining room?) in another post. This pegboard was a fun project to do while I was nesting… which at my house looked like a craft store exploded. This project was much tamer than any of the wreaths or crib mobiles I crafted! I bought the frame at a Salvation Army for $4 and there just happened to be a pegboard behind the picture. The letters are cardboard and came from Hobby Lobby along with the buttons and other fun accents. I think I found the 8×8 frame at Hobby Lobby too. I found the wire baskets at Home Depot. My spray bottle addiction is fueled by IKEA… and I actually am planning to go back for more… After painting the pegboard white, I hot glued the letters and black frame to the pegboard. I made the “You are My Sunshine” decoration in Google Presentation (like Power Point) and you are welcome to print it out if you’d like to use it!