Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Nursery: Crib Skirt + Mobile

Well friends the nursery is finished and I'm so excited to give you the full reveal this week! But before I do that, I wanted to highlight a few of the projects that helped make the room feel complete.

The first project was to make a crib skirt out of my leftover curtain fabric and I must say it was even easier than I thought. I followed the YHL crib skirt tutorial to the T and it came out just the way I wanted. Since the fabric was a curtain panel, I only needed to hem two of my sides on each piece so I measured my lengths only 1" longer to allow for the hem. Since our crib is against the wall, I only made three panels (one for the front, one for the left, one for the right) and it only took me about an hour.


All three panels are simply held on by velcro so if it gets spit up on or covered in cat hair I can simply remove the panel and throw it in the wash. TIP: When using the velcro be sure to put the grippy side on the crib itself and the softer velcro on the skirt so it doesn't get ruined in the wash!


Now the skirt not only makes the crib look nice and finished but I can use the space underneath to store extra diapers and wipes, a necessity in our small nursery.



I only made my skirt one length since I used up all my velcro but when baby girl gets bigger and the mattress needs to be lowered I can simply attach new pieces of velcro at a lower level and it will look just as seamless and hit the floor at just the right length.

The second project I can now cross of my list is her mobile. I hemmed and hawed and Googled a lot when trying to decide what to do/buy/make for her mobile since the one I wanted was $75 which I simply could not justify. Then I had my baby shower and my sister in law made these adorable paper air balloons using a Silhouette machine and they were perfect! I went out and bought my own paper to fit with the nursery's color scheme and I think they turned out so cute, and not to mention cheap!


I decided to hang them above the changing table using simple tape and fishing line so they really look like they're just floating in the air. And here's her view when lying down:



I'm so excited to have these things crossed off the list and I'm anxious to cross that last item off so very soon!

  • Hang clothing rods in closet
  • Buy plastic bins for closet storage
  • Make and install crawl-space door
  • Buy and install baskets/bins on closet wall
  • Build/buy three shelves for storage/book wall
  • Make curtains and hang curtain rod
  • Make mobile
  • Possibly make crib skirt?
  • Hang art + accessorize
  • Bring in crib, rocker, changing pad (all coming after my shower)
  • Bring in baby!

Monday, April 29, 2013

Our $3 Diaper Bag

Seeing as this is my last full week before my due date (May 5), this blog will be full of all thing's baby-related. If that's not your thing or you have no interest in baby-related topics, feel free to tune me out this week. As much as I'd love to be working on house projects and DIY decor, my mind is 100% in baby mode and the thought that I could go into labor at any second is literally all I can think about. So I'm just forewarning you...and if you're expecting or have babies of your own, enjoy!

When I registered for my baby supplies, one thing I purposefully left off my registry was a diaper bag. As practical as they may be, I just kind of dreaded the idea of toting around a big bulky wipeable bag with Winnie the Pooh all over it. And if you like Pooh bear, that's awesome, but I just wanted something a little more subtle that didn't scream "Watch out, I'm a mom on the go!" Yes babies need quite a bit of stuff but I wanted something that I could continue to use once she outgrows the diaper bag stage. On our most recent trip to one of our favorite thrift stores I found this guy and thought he'd be perfect for the job. This thrift store is more like a giant warehouse of insanity with teeny rows of junk packed to the brim so pretty much nothing has a pricetag on it and you kinda have to hold your breath when you get to the counter and hear what they want for it. Imagine my surprise though when I got to the counter and the lady said, "three bucks." Sold and sold!


When I got it home I soaked it right away in piping hot water with some laundry detergent and then ran it in the washer and let it air dry and it is good as new. If you can't tell right away, it is clearly meant to be a camera bag. It is nice thick canvas with leather piping and has this awesome section inside that is meant to hold camera lenses.


What makes it so perfect for a diaper bag is just that: it has all these convenient little compartments all around the bag that are so perfect for bibs and pacifiers and lotions and whatever else you need to have with you!


The bag is just the right size to hold a couple changes of clothes and a few blankets and burp cloths without me feeling like I'm bringing her entire room with me everywhere I go. I am really a minimalist when it comes to "stuff" so I kind of welcome the challenge of bringing only what I need and not a million "maybe she'll need this" things. You can see the lens compartment inside on the right and behind it our portable changing pad fit perfectly and holds diapers and wipes for convenient changing on the go.

I have the Skip Hop Pronto changing station


In the lens holder I stuffed a couple bottles and a few lotions and potions and everything is perfectly compartmentalized and easy to organize. And what's best of all is that it is 100% gender neutral so not only can I use it again with future kiddos, my husband doesn't have to be embarrassed to carry it around since it's not covered in rainbows and butterflies. Best three bucks I ever spent.

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

My Organized Car

I've always been one to keep my car clean. I never leave anything in it that doesn't belong and like to keep it wiped down and vacuumed as best I can because I spend a good amount of time driving here and there so it may as well be enjoyable. My nesting instinct to clean everything has not subsided and most recently I organized my car's trunk a bit to accommodate the stroller that will soon be stored in it so I decided I might give you guys a tour. 

As a little background, I drive a '98 Subaru Forester that is completely paid off (we bought it cash four years ago) and I love it. The trunk is very spacious and the back seats fold down which has come in handy many many times for Craigslist purchases and roadside finds. This car was the Sport edition back in its day so it comes standard with all wheel drive and heated seat warmers, and to top it all off we bought it with a remote start already installed which is absolutely priceless in the winter. Not having a car payment is also something I (and our budget) thoroughly enjoy and I hope to drive this trusty little wagon for as long as I can.

Starting with the trunk, I used a dollar store collapsible bin to organize an extra blanket and my new shopping cart cover. Next to the bin are two more blankets, a fleece version and one that Dan got at work that folds up and zips itself into a portable bag. These blankets aren't precious so they can come in handy for all different messy situations.


Two of my reusable Ikea bags get stored in one of the trunk's side compartments and the other houses a first aid kit ("borrowed" from Dan's Toyota).


You can't see it but I also store our ice scraper behind the blankets and I'm very thankful I can put it away for the season! To keep things looking nice and neat, the whole trunk gets covered by this roller shade and everything is concealed when the trunk door is closed.


Moving on to the back seat, the newest change is the addition of baby girl's car seat which is actually not strapped in just yet. We were simply storing it in the car so we could get it out of the house but pretty soon we'll need to set it up for actual use!


Next to the car seat is this little Thirty-One tote that my friend gave me and I plan to keep in the car to hold extra diapers and wipes as well as a the dollar store poop bags I bought recently and a few toys and books to keep the little one entertained without having to store and carry it all in my diaper bag.




In the back pocket of each seat is an umbrella, so one for me and one for someone else.


Moving up into my center console I have a few essentials close at hand like my phone charger, tire pressure gauge, flashlight, pen, and wheel lock key.


In my dashboard I have this handy little compartment where I store my registration and insurance cards for easy access. In one of my vents I always keep an air freshener (I prefer these to the dangly rearview mirror ones that are always way too strong) and my favorite is the Refresh brand in vanilla.



In my driver's side door compartment I keep my remote start manuals, although truthfully I've never looked at them a day in my life.


Above my rearview mirror I keep an extra pair of sunglasses in the sunglass compartment just in case I lose the pair in my purse or accidentally leave them in the house. And last but not least I like to keep my glove box as simple as possible so the only things in there are a plastic bag full of napkins, a packet of tissues, a plastic cup filled with spoons for snacks on the go, and lastly my phone adaptor for playing music through my car's radio.


So there ya have it, my organized little wagon all ready for trips to the pediatrician and the park. 
And maybe a few garage sales :)

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Nursery: Ten Dollar Ledges

That Ana White is a true to her word, and thanks to her super easy-to-follow instructions Dan and I built three ledges for the nursery that came out to $30 even. We even made a little change in our final product and still came in right on budget. For Ana's ledges she recommends using a piece of 1x2 for the ledge's lip but we decided to go for a more rounded look by using pieces of quarter round.



To hang them we just drilled straight through the back of the ledge and right into the stud. My original plan was to have the top shelf a little deeper than the bottom two but when buying the materials I changed my mind to have them all the same depth and I'm so glad I did.





We decided to reinforce the bottom ledge since it would be the most likely to get grabbed when baby girl gets older and decides she wants to practice climbing. That shelf is secured from the back and also the bottom straight into the stud so it is as sturdy as can be. 


I'm still playing around with the top shelf's arrangement so just ignore my lackluster attempt at styling. And here's a little reference point for ya: the door from our room is on the left and her closet is on the right. I still have to take final pictures of that space before I can show you her very own walk-in closet. Lucky girl.

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Nursery: Dollar Store Finds

As I mentioned last week, I've had a crush on the dollar store lately and have been so excited by all the awesome things I've found that can be used all over my home, not just for organizing sinks and cabinets. The latest room to benefit from my $1 scores has been the nursery.

1. Fabric drawer organizers. These things are awesome my friends. At most other stores these collapsible bins would run you anywhere from $6-12 bucks each but there's no reason to spend that much! When I first showed them to you they looked like this:


They come all folded up but they're a cinch to put together. I bought two and they are now all filled up with teeny little socks and hats and shoes and look like this in the nursery's dresser/changing table:


They were the perfect size to fit two side by side and they hold a ton of stuff! Now all those little items are nice and organized and easy to find.

3. Plastic drawer organizers. These things are just as awesome and easy to assemble and work perfectly holding all of baby girl's clothes in her drawers and help to keep things organized by month.




3. Plastic totes and bins. I know I've already expressed my love for dollar store bins but I'm saying it again: they have such a great selection! Since the nursery is very neutral, save for the orange ikat curtains, I was able to pull any color I wanted as an accent and this little aqua basket is perfect to keep in the closet to hold clothes as they are outgrown.


I also picked up these two big white bins that are perfect for holding swaddling blankets, burp cloths, and sleep sacks in one of the dresser drawers and even left enough room in between for a couple extra sheets. 



4. Non-slip shelf liner. Since we are using a dresser as a changing table, I needed a way to keep the changing pad from slipping off the top. Obviously I would never take my hand off the baby when changing her nor would I ever walk away but I still wanted a way to make the pad a little less slippery for when she gets older and wiggly.


This shelf liner worked like a charm and I simply cut off a piece the size I needed and laid it underneath. Now the pad stays in place while still being completely removable.


So there ya have it, four great finds from the dollar store that helped put the finishing touches on the nursery. And speaking of finishing touches I only have a few more items to check off the list and then it will be done-zo. Seeing as I'm 37 1/2 weeks (yikes) it's about time.

>> To watch the video tour of Evey's nursery check out my YouTube channel!

Friday, April 12, 2013

No Cabinet Left Behind

No cabinet in this house is safe from my incessant need to purge and organize everything and one more fell victim last night. Our kitchen cabinet closest to the sink got a mini makeover last night and it's just one more off the list. Before, this cabinet held all of our cleaning supplies.


Since our oversized, extra deep kitchen sink will also serve as baby girl's bath very soon I wanted a place to put her bath mat, shampoo, and a few bath toys in close proximity. Truthfully it was high time the cabinet got cleared out because we rarely used half the stuff anyways. The first thing to leave the cabinet was our dishwasher pods. The box was small, but getting rid of it meant one less thing in the cabinet. The easiest solution was to move the pods to the two small white containers I already had above the dishwasher on my plate rack.


Now I just need to remind Dan that they're in there!


After those were moved I organized the top shelf of the cabinet to hold all the bathing necessities, like her lady bug bath sponge, a bin full of J&J shampoos and lotion and a cute little set of bath squirtees.


Then I grabbed this black mesh bin (removed from the bathroom cabinet when it met its organizing match) and repurposed it for some of our monthly used cleaning products.


It then got slid to the back next to a giant bottle of Pine-Sol I use for our floors.


Then last but not least, the box of garbage bags and our almost daily used spray cleaners are front and center and easiest to access since they're used all the time.


All the random products that I use maybe once a year got relocated to the basement storage room and the Method stainless steel cleaner got the boot... anyone ever used it? I don't think it works very well at all and I have better luck cleaning my stainless with glass cleaner! To each their own I suppose.


Happy weekend everyone!
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