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How excited are you? Super ridiculously excited, right? Mmhmm, me too!

Sorry for the influx of posts, I’m trying to get it in before the big scary move to self-hosting!

Letting our Closets Breathe

First and most importantly, check out the featured Apartment Therapy photo for Day 13, which I saw my sister pinned before I saw it on AT.

bedroom11713It’s gorgeous, right? I love just about every purple wall I encounter, but with the carpet, the white bedding and desk, the gray and white striped walls..I’m totally in love (it’s a good thing Tuvia is so secure). I hope to one day put up pictures of my sister’s home and you’ll see a version of this palette in her living room and then you will commend me on my good taste to have her as a sister.

This weekend, the assignment was: Weekly Flowers and Bedroom.

Flowers from the first weekend of the Cure

Flowers from the first weekend of the Cure

Bedroom cleaning guidelines in more detail:

• Give your bedroom a good, deep clean. This should be a very thorough job. The aim is to rid the room of as much dust and potential allergens as possible. Here is a sample guideline deep clean plan:

• Pick up and put away all clothes, books and belongings
• Declutter surfaces (remove change, jewelry, etc and put in proper places)
• Strip the bed
• Launder all bedding, including mattress and pillow covers
• Flip and/or rotate the mattress
• Vacuum out the closet
• Vacuum curtains with brush attachment and/or clean blinds
• Clean windows and mirrors
• Dust all surfaces and wipe down light switches, fixtures and ceiling fan
• Push aside the bed, side tables and dressers and vacuum/clean under them
• Remake the bed
• Enjoy a sound sleep in your freshly cleaned room!

And, if you want to take the Cure even further this weekend:

• Do a closet and dresser drawer purge. (Filling up that outbox!)”

The outbox after the first purge...you cannot even see the basket anymore...at all

The outbox after the first purge…you cannot even see the basket anymore…at all

I hope I’m not a traitor to the Cure or anything, but I told Tuv to skip the flowers unless he saw a particularly small or beautiful bouquet while he was out. He was sick all week and just started feeling better and then on Friday we got a call from daycare that Aiden was sick AGAIN! So, flowers and the bedroom took a backseat to what I call “survival mode” because that is what Friday felt like and yesterday was more of the same.

If anything was going to get done, it had to happen on Sunday.

Luckily, a lot of it is stuff we do (or try to do) normally anyway (putting stuff away, making our beds etc.) All the deep vacuuming and dusting had been done last Thursday when someone came in to clean. And we had to change the linens recently because…how shall I put this…we have kids. That’s what I’ll call it. So with light dusting and vacuuming in the closets, we were set.

It didn’t take long at all and I always feel better when little things like that are done, don’t you?

I didn’t want to post pictures of our whole bedroom in its current (Mia-fied) state plus I’ve been rethinking the whole thing (the accent wall color has been driving me nuts since we painted it), but I figured I could put up pictures our closets because it’s where we put stuff away and I forgot to include it in the original tour of the bedroom!

Big plans for that wall, including changing the color and putting up large-scale art, which was our original plan

Big plans for that wall, including changing the color and putting up large-scale art, which was our original plan (plus we have different curtains now from Ikea, an image of which is nowhere to be found online)

But we have NO natural light in our closets. Okay, how many people do? That would be kind of odd, a window in the closet? I would cover that up with a rod or shelves. No I wouldn’t, that’s a lie. BUT our room doesn’t get much natural light and it doesn’t reach our closets at all. So I am pretty frustrated with the pictures.

Before: the overall view

Before: the overall view

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Before: the ubiquitous over the door shoe organizer (I never wear most of these shoes)

Before

Before: crunched for rod room and messy bags

Before: the rod, hanging fabric shelves, and two wooden shelves

Before

Before: a basket (box?) with my clutches and wallets next to some of my bags haphazardly leaning on the shelf

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Before
Before

Before: messy, combined seasons, wrong size, and shoes I don’t wear

Before: a Grundtal rail full of headbands and I don't even wear headbands often!The rail underneath has belts, some scarves, and the bags I use most often

Before: a Grundtal rail full of headbands and I rarely even wear headbands!

The lower rail has belts, some scarves, and the bags I use most often

The lower rail has belts, some scarves, and the bags I use most often

Before: wooden shelves from our last apartment's linen closet

Before: wooden shelves from our last apartment’s linen closet

The “before” isn’t that bad. It has good “bones” like the wooden shelves Tuvia put up on the left for hats/bags and the two Grundtal rails he put up on the right for accessories, but it’s a little crowded, a little messy, and there were so many things that weren’t necessary.

Adding to the problem is that while Mia is sleeping in our room, it’s easiest to keep all of her stuff in our room so I borrowed the hanging fabric shelves from the kids’ closet but it makes it hard to move the clothes on the rod, which means I just don’t see or wear things that I could be utilizing.

I also have wayyyy too many bags. The top shelf has a big Macbeth box with out of season bags and the smaller one has travel bags. Why do I have more than one travel bag? Maybe two, one for accessories and one for toiletries, but the rest can go. Plus I have bags hanging from hooks on the left side of the rod, behind the wooden shelves AND the basket of clutches and wallets. NOT necessary.

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Before: bigger bags hang on hooks behind the shelves, making them a little hard to get to, plus I usually use the diaper bag or just my wallet nowadays

Before: bigger bags hang on hooks behind the shelves, making them a little hard to get to, plus I usually use the diaper bag or just my wallet nowadays

So I did a big purge and it felt soooo gooooood!

There’s still so much more purging to do and SERIOUSLY we need a much larger outbox or to start emptying it, but I feel really good about getting rid of things I don’t use or need. This was a really quick moving-things-around, which got my organizing gears going and I cannot wait to redo the things that survive… “The Purge” (said in my deepest most announcer-like voice).

Here comes the “womp, womp”: I currently have no “after” pictures for you.

Aiden is still sick and has off this week from daycare. Mix that with Mia not sleeping much at night and I am spent. So I must apologize for not concluding with spectacular “After” pics, but I will before the Cure is over! (And then you’ll be all “tooootally worth the wait!” #ahhhhpressure)

Anyone else doing clothing purges? Anyone want to help me sell our purged stuff? I wish we had a front yard so we could just do an old-fashioned yard sale. Also, so we would have a front yard.

I Get By with a Little Help from My Doula

Getting a postpartum doula was GENIUS! I can’t take credit for it, but hopefully you’ll be distracted by the capitals I used for GENIUS and just assume it was my idea (see, now I did it twice).

I didn’t even know such a thing existed until someone on the local parents Yahoo group suggested it. To which the response in my head was a post-a-what-a?

But let’s backtrack. When Aiden was born, we went to my mother’s house where she reassured me that the baby would survive my pulling a onesie* over his head, he won’t hate me forever for making him cry by bathing him, and that it was okay that he had an explosive BM all over her couch and shoes (I’m still sorry/dying of laughter over that one).

*There are more names for different articles of baby clothes than I could ever have imagined before I became a mom, hopefully you’ll just know what I mean

Aiden's first bath out of the hospital- I was terrified

Aiden’s first bath out of the hospital- I was terrified

It was wonderful having that help, but Tuvia and I are homebodies and we knew we wanted to be settled at home right away this time. Could we have managed without help? I am sure, but everything was infinitely easier with it.

Tuvia and I knew we wanted someone who could be there to help during the hours between Aiden coming home from daycare and going to sleep. We didn’t need anyone for overnight because I’m nursing so I’m getting up every couple of hours anyway and I have a wonderful husband who takes care of the burping, diaper changes, swaddling, and putting back to bed (not to brag, but right?!) We figured that by having help during those hours, we can give Aiden more attention and help ease the transition for him. I was also pretty nervous because between work and school, Tuvia is pretty busy during those hours and I knew I could use help with the transition also (cue image of Mia crying, Aiden throwing a tantrum, and me in a huddle on the floor…a recurring nightmare during pregnancy)

Back to the the parents group: I had heard of a birth doula, but never a postpartum doula. I did some research online and figured why not speak to both baby nurses and the postpartum doula?

Karla Pippa (how great is her name?) called and from our phone conversation I was already convinced that I needed her in my life and after we met a little bit later, it was a done deal. This is what I got from the conversations we had: she wouldn’t just be taking care of Mia so I could do what I needed to do, she would be helping the whole family find our rhythm again so that when she left we would be set, so to speak. She asked me a lot of well thought out questions to figure out what it is that I wanted/needed most post-birth and we came up with a tentative plan for what she would do when she came. (And she was always flexible about when she would come if our needs changed)

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Best decision ever. Tuvia and Aiden brought Mia and me home from the hospital Saturday night and Karla came the next morning. She never failed to ask what she can do or if there was something I could use right then, but, and for me this was the real help, she always had suggestions for what she could do. And she always always did it with a smile.

I don’t just mean that she took care of all the chores that would have totally bugged me if they had been left undone, I mean that she did ALL of them top to bottom and took care of Mia and made sure I was taking care of myself and was a support for the entire family. She gave me a massage. A MASSAGE people! Tell me you don’t want her. Because you’re lying.

Karla and Mia. This photo does neither of them justice.

Karla and Mia. This photo does neither of them justice.

I’m so grateful that we had Karla. I felt so taken care of and like the house was taken care of and like I could have the energy to take care of my kids because at the end of the day, I want to be the one to take care of them. What can I say, I love the little stinkers.

Aiden: "I like she" also "Mia sounds like a baby dinosaur!"

Aiden: “I like she” also “Mia sounds like a baby dinosaur!”

Now I would advise all of you expecting mamas out there to giver her a call and book her ASAP. And if you can afford to have her as a birth doula, I would definitely recommend that too. I didn’t have her but I can only imagine that someone that caring, helpful, supportive, and presence of mind would be the perfect addition to a labor and delivery room.

 

Have any of you had help after having babies? Did you stay at home or go somewhere? How was your experience?

Seven Things About Me Award (!!!)

The wonderful Alex at NorthofSeven nominated me for a “Seven Things About Me Award”! Thank you, thank you fellow blogger who has made me laugh and cry (again, I’m gonna have to reference the hormone surge). I love her blog … Continue reading

A while back, the hubs and I got Marimekko fabric on sale and staple-gunned it onto a wooden frame. We don’t have any pictures of us making it, but Kristin from Bliss does a wonderful job explaining how easy it is. I’ll post a picture of ours in a minute

Happy DIY Monday!

One of the biggest mistakes I see over and over again in home interiors is art on walls that is too small. Art is a statement piece and often a focal point of design. Scale is very important in design and the wrong art or wall decor can work against the look you are trying to achieve.

Today, I am going to show you an easy way to add high impact with wall art. This can be as high cost or low cost as you want to make it.   Art can be expensive, especially large-scale art.

The Problem: Well, I wanted a statement piece for my dining room remodel, but with having to lay new hardwoods, countertops, and a back splash my decorating budget is small right now.

The Solution:  Make my own!

So, I just built a canvas frame and stapled fabric around it…

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(City) Road Take Me Hoooome

(City) Road Take Me Hoooome

I signed up for driving lessons! I got the name of a driving instructor that a couple of friends really liked in high school, (yup, almost a decade ago). Turns out he retired years ago, but this place seems pretty … Continue reading

The Desk, Part II (and a little surprise)

On to part II of the desk saga (See the first post here): Over two days and much moaning excitement on my part, we figured out a system that we thought would work for us more long-term. What we want out on … Continue reading