Project Dream Home: Nursery (Update!)

About 11 months ago, I wrote a blog describing my “dream nursery”. I described it as very neutral, timeless, white with a touch of Disney. We never wanted an all Disney decked out nursery because it’s just too much, but puh-lleeassse you know we can’t have a baby room without a bit of Disney magic. Finishing our nursery was quite a task, in fact, we still haven’t really finished it. Between Husband ripping out the closet and me having Luna three weeks early, the room was not even close to being done when Luna arrived. A lot has been done since then, and even though it’s not fully ready, I think we’ve done enough to share some of our work.

I should warn you; I am in no way a decorator. In fact, I kind of suck at decorating, but thankfully Pinterest exist and I am at least able to mimic some of the awesome ideas I’ve pinned. (Although, really, it never turns out quite like the pin.) The nursery is now my favorite room in the house. It’s bright, cheerful, clean (for now) and I spend a lot of time in there. I will share my favorite parts of the room with you!

Luna’s room has a loft (how cool, right?). When we bought the house there was an enormous heavy metal ladder leading up to the loft that stuck all the way out to middle of the room. It was ugly, bulky, dangerous and took up about a third of the space. Before Luna arrived, we removed the ladder and the railing with good plans and intentions to create newer nicer versions. As you can see, that task has been put on the back burner. However, I’m kind of okay with Luna not having a way up to her loft just yet. Her sleep sheep is a nice soft noise maker that we use religiously. It was a gift that came from Pottery Barn Kids. The Summer Infant baby monitor is the bomb! You can read about our fun games with it here.

loft

 

My good friend Sara made this magnet board for Luna and I love displaying all of Luna’s baby friends on it! Homemade gifts are the best!

magnet board

My Dad-in-law and I made this when I realized I had an obsession with baby headbands and nowhere to place them. I got the various knobs from my Grandma-in-law who seems to have just about everything I could ever possibly need. It took about ten minutes to make. SO simple.

headband

I LOVE everything on these shelves! The large letter “L” was used as a guest book at my Texas baby shower. I still let people who come visit write special notes to Luna on it. I love reading what people wrote for her. I have a gazillion children’s books collected from teaching elementary school. While organizing them recently I came across a vintage Cinderella book that I once picked up in a yard sale. It was falling apart, and I decided to use the cover as a framed picture in Luna’s room. I kept the rest and am just waiting for something creative to do with them. I snagged the vintage wooden blocks from the enormous Nashville annual flea market. The poem to the left was written by my Grandmother for her daughter (my Mom). My Mom actually found the poem after my Grandma passed away, and she knew it would be perfect hanging in Luna’s room. It’s a piece we will always have up.

4 shelves

We bought this Cinderella mobile on a whim at Babys R Us and it’s turned out to be one of Luna’s favorite things.

mobile

Here’s a different angle showing off Luna’s bay window. I keep some succulents in the window, which I have managed to keep alive for almost a year now! MIRACLE! The map is a vintage (not real vintage, but a new print of the vintage version) map of Disneyland when it first opened. The glider was also purchase from Babys R Us and I love it. It is absolutely the best piece of furniture we have ever purchased. I fit in it perfectly, it’s super comfortable, it glides, it rocks, it swivels and I have slept in it while rocking and nursing Luna in the wee hours of the night a hundred times. It’s a lifesaver. Then, there’s my Nook. My Nook keeps my company almost every night as Luna keeps me up.

glider

Another angle! In my “dream nursery” post I said we definitely wanted some vintage Disney posters. I found some online, but we ended up ordering the ones we wanted while visiting Disneyworld last fall. You can order them WonderGround Gallery in Downtown Disney and have them shipped to your house.  The rocking giraffe was bought by Peter’s Grandpa when Peter was born. It’s still in perfect condition and I cannot wait for Luna to be big enough to play on it.

ads

And, no nursery is complete without a bookshelf full of beautiful children’s books!

bookshelf

OH, and an adorable naked baby.

baby

What do you think? Am I missing anything? What does this nursery need to be complete (besides the ladder and railing for the loft!).

Cheers!

 

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Real Life

Lately, I am on the computer and watching TV a lot. Since, I spend a large portion of the day nursing Luna, I also spend most of that time writing, reading other blogs and catching up on TV shows. Even though I know I’m doing a good thing (feeding my child and all), I can’t help but feel lazy. I mean, my God, I should at least be reading the dozens of books waiting on my Nook. It doesn’t help that everyone I stalk online appears to be the most productive and perfect people ever.

I follow a lot of Mommy blogs, Mommy Instagrams, Pinterest boards and, of course many Moms on Facebook. Most of the time I love seeing what everyone is up to, what their funny kids are doing and whatever advice they’re offering up to us new Mommys. However, lately it seems they are all just rubbing my nose in their perfect productive days. I seriously do not know how some of these women are capable of doing their hair and makeup, getting dressed in real clothes, making a gourmet breakfast, getting their children ready and posting it all to Instagram all before 8am. Heck, I don’t even know how they do that much before noon. Some days I’m thrilled to brush my teeth before lunch.

I totally believe these Super Moms are doing all these things, but something in these Mom’s lives is a huge mess. Something has to be forgotten, put on the back-burner, left to the wayside and playing second fiddle. NO ONE can do it all. I refuse to believe it. We have all become experts at taking that perfect photo to make our lives seem fun, perfect and beautiful. In fact, the more I think about it, more I realize that I am so very guilty of doing exactly that. If you follow me on Facebook or Instagram my life probably looks like I drink Starbucks, shop, workout and cuddle a perfectly happy baby all day.

SOOOOO, it’s time to get a real look into my life.

I planned to stay in PJ’s all day, then Luna threw up on me and then peed on me…while screaming in my ear. I chose not to Instagram this magical moment. In fact, like all babies, Luna cries and pees on me a lot. Those cute pictures I normally post of her smiling is 1 out of 100 photos I took while making ridiculous high-pitched funny noises at her for ten minutes.

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I am currently using the dining room table as my makeshift office because our office is not finished, and it’s very cold in that room. Also, there is a perfect view of the living room TV from the table.

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I happened to be in the middle of spring cleaning. Spring cleaning used to take me a day (2 tops), but with a newborn it is looking like it may take a week. We currently have piles upon piles throughout the house. There’s the “get rid of” pile, the “winter crap” pile, the “wash this” pile and the “figure out where this goes” pile. It’s very exciting.

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AND, our dishwasher is STILL broken and I HATE doing dishes.

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did make the bed and get a pic of these two snuggle bugs. I didn’t get everything checked off my list today, but I did sing a dozen nursery rhymes while Luna smiled along, so worth it.

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There ya go…some real photos that will hopefully make you feel better about your own productive or not-so-much day.

Cheers!

I Guess Husbands Nest Too?

I’ve been driving myself crazy with nesting, writing and trying to get “it all” done before baby comes along. I’m also being driven crazy by emotions at the moment…my feelings are hurt so easily, every little thing feels enormous and Husband is making me absolutely crazy. Don’t get me wrong, he’s awesome. He makes me the happiest person I could possibly be, yet somehow, he also make me want to kill him 17 times a day. Why do I have to be the responsible one ALL the time? Why does he breathe so loudly? Who makes that much noise while washing dishes? And, seriously, is it so hard to not leave your shoes in the living room?

Seriously, though, love the guy more than anything.

Today, Husband was working in our nursery. It is so close to be finished, all we have to do is hang everything on the wall, by a couple small things and put in a new ladder. Yes, our nursery has a ladder. There is a loft in the room with the biggest most dangerous metal most bulky heavy duty ladder you have ever seen. It take up almost a fourth of the room. I hate it. I have wanted to replace it for months and it’s finally happening. Yay! Husband and his friend were busy tearing out the terrible ladder and will soon build and put in a new nice wooden one (compliments of my talented father-in-law).

I left for work in the middle of the whole process, but before walking out the door Husband stopped me to ask about the closet in the nursery. The closet, not the ladder. We still need a rod in the closet, but Husband suggested tearing it out all together. I also happened to hate this closet. It was put together poorly, the doors do not fit right, it’s also unnecessarily big and bulky and it’s basically crap. I told him tearing out the closet and replacing it is a fantastic idea, but probably should have been done a few months ago…not a few weeks before my due date. Husband responded with, “but you’re cool with getting rid of the closet?” Yes, I am cool with that, BUT I do not think it’s cool to start a project that is likely to not get finished on time, and we should probably get the loft finished first. I left with that.

I came home to this.

Where the closet once stood....
Where the closet once stood….

I learned two things today: Husbands also nest. Pregnant women in their third trimester are not crazy because of their hormones, they are driven there by their Husbands.

Let’s hope Luna’s room isn’t completely demolished by the time she gets here.

Cheers!

Being Homeowners

Whenever Husband and I moved in together, many years ago, we made chocolate chip cookies.

It was about 10pm, I had work the next day and for some reason fresh cookies sounded like the best most delicious idea ever.  So, we went grocery shopping, made cookies and ate them in bed while watching reruns of Friends. Doesn’t get much better than that.

As we snuggled in bed with our cookies and Ross and Rachel, I looked at Husband and said, “Being a grown-up is fun”. Husband smiled and said, “I know…when we were little and forced to go to bed early we always imagined that our parents stayed up eating cookies and watching TV. Now, I know we were right.”

And, you know what, 6 years later, being a grown-up and living together is still fun, sometimes we still make cookies in the middle of the night and we definitely still watch Friends. HOWEVER, after the sugar rush, lack of sleep and a very messy kitchen reality starts to soak in a little. Bills have to be paid, chores have to be divvied up, bad habits must be endured and fights and arguments are inevitable. We quickly learned that being a “grown-up” is not all fun.

We lived in apartments for a couple of years in Tennessee, a year in Albania and a couple of years in New York. Those years were great, but our last year in New York we were getting the itch to be homeowners. We looked for months in and out of Manhattan, but somehow found ourselves in a modern home from the 70’s right in middle of Tennessee. Our first few weeks in our new house had a familiar feeling of euphoria…

We had SO MUCH space! A 3-bedroom home in the country is basically a mansion compared to our less than 400 square feet on the Upper East Side. We had friends over all the time to eat, drink and play games (still doing that). I had just found out I was pregnant, so lots of time was spent daydreaming about the nursery and raising kids in our new home. We have a garage connected to the house, which is amazing. We basically never have to face the elements…no more carrying groceries in the rain, defrosting my windshield or slipping through snow. We have a dishwasher, bathtubs, our own washer and dryer. We also have land, which means the dog and cat can run around freely whenever they please, and if I don’t feel like taking Belle on a walk, I don’t have to! Yay for owning a house!

Now, as you may have guessed the elation of being a homeowner has started to wear off a bit. Owning an older home means that basically everything breaks, and we can’t exactly call our landlord or super to fix it. EVERYTHING is up to us. Husband and I have learned a lot about being a handy-man this year. The really big nice yard has to be kept up. There is no trash service so we literally drive our trash to the dump. We have a ladybug infestation (yes, that’s a real thing). We got mice (problem almost solved), and we have a very pesky woodpecker.

A couple of months ago we were continuously awoken by the knocking of a woodpecker that we would walk out and attempt to scare away so we could go back to sleep. One morning, while Husband was shooing the bird away in his boxers at about 7am, he looked to his right and actually saw a deer standing next to him just watching the whole spectacle. Neither the bird nor the deer seemed to care that there was a human standing there screaming and flailing his arms about. Apparently, no animals fear us.

Now that pesky woodpecker has pecked holes out of the side of our house…one more thing we need to fix. Our to-do list of things we do not actually know how to-do is very very long.

The good news is, we are mostly still enjoying it. Even as we remove every single dish from every cabinet, and scrub down the kitchen with bleach and set-up mouse traps…even as we grit our teeth and sarcastically say “boy, being a grown-up is so fun”…even when the garbage disposal clogs for the 50th time and water floods under the sink… we are grateful. Owning our house is not easy and definitely not always fun, or even affordable, but it’s ours. It’s our home together and it will be our home for a very long time.

We may not always feel grateful in the moment, but at the moment when we figure out how to fix the broken garage door, finish painting a room or learn while my blow-dryer keeps blowing the breaker, it’s awesome. Hopefully those will be the moments we remember in 20 years, and hopefully we won’t be invaded and taken over by wild animals by that point.

Cheers!

My 2013

Happy New Year’s Eve! We made it back to Nashville last night, unpacked, re-packed and are now getting ready to drive up to the Smoky Mountains to ring in the New Year with a small group of friends in a cozy cabin. At this moment, I am actually sitting under a big warm blanket on the couch.. I am trying to enjoy every peaceful quiet second because it will be about a week before I get this moment again. As I sit here, I am reflecting over the last year…

Every year brings its great and its terrible moments. The bad times aren’t always forgettable, sometimes I don’t want to forget them, but for today I want to focus on why 2013 was a great year, and why every year just seems to keep getting better. You know I like to focus on the positive!

My 2013 in Review

The year started off with a little New Year’s Eve Party in Nashville.

1 new year 2013

My nephew, Micah, was born and I got to meet him for the first time when he was a month old. Being an Aunt is the best.

2 meet micah

Not only was my sister’s baby boy born, but a few of my closest friend’s had their baby boys this year. Being an honorary Aunt is also the best. 

3 danica

I learned to swing and flip on a trapeze!

4 trapeze

We made the decision to buy a house, and ended up buying a house in the country in Middle Tennessee… a huge move and decision after years of moving and traveling from city to city.

house

I left my job, which I loved, in NYC and have changed my entire idea of what I want to be when I grow up.

5 yoga

After spending the last month in NYC alone (Husband was already in Tennessee), I said “good-bye” and prepared for a new adventure. 

5.1 bye nyc
me in the cab on the way to the airport

*Our BIGGEST news this year! We announced at 10 weeks that we are expecting our first baby!

6 zimbickijr.

We found our Duckie abandoned and abused on the riverbank while canoeing and made her the newest addition to our family. 

meet duckie

We found out our first baby will be a little girl!

7 it's a girl

I met Taylor Swift at a fun and fancy awards dinner for Aunt Amy. 

8 taylorswift

I started a new website/blog with my friend Chris and am having a lot of fun learning to make it better and better each week. 

Get Kidz Fit

This was the first year we did not take an International trip in a very long time, but we still made time to travel in good ol’ America. Husband, surprised me on our 8 year dating anniversary by taking me to Disney California…completing our goal of visiting every single Disney park in the world!

9 disneyland

We had our annual trip to Hilton Head, South Carolina with the family. 

10 hhi

Spent some time in Pittsburgh visiting more family. 

11 pittsburgh

Went to a beautiful wedding Chicago.

12 chicago

And, OF COURSE, we made our annual trip to Disney World. 

13 halloween

There are dozens more good times I could write about from 2013, but this sums up the year pretty well. I’m getting anxious about what 2014 has in store (more good and more bad), but it’s exciting to think that some of our best memories and adventures have yet to happen. 2014, you have a lot to live up to, see you soon!

Cheers!

DIY Chevron Table

I completed yet another Pinterest project and I must say, I am pretty darn impressed with myself. It is like pulling teeth to force myself to actually start a crafty project, but once I am going there’s no slowing down. I’m practically Martha Stewart and Super Woman rolled up into one nice package…modest too.

Here’s my latest project….

finished table

Looks good, right? Just don’t look too close. The yellow stripes smeared a bit, but you can only tell if you are sitting at the table looking for mistakes, so who cares?

I got this old iron table from my in-law’s storage. It was white at one point, but mostly dirt and rust when I rescued it. Here’s how I refurbished this cute café table.

before

-First I sanded every bit of metal.

There was A LOT of rust
There was A LOT of rust

-Once everything was smooth I washed off all the dust and dirt.

-Then I taped off the seats and covered them in plastic bags to keep them from getting sprayed with paint.

cusions

-Next, I spray painted everything white.

-Here’s the trickiest part. I used painters taper to create chevron stripes. This was by far the longest and most taxing step.

Green looks really good too...I was tempted to just leave the tape and call it a day.
Green looks really good too…I was tempted to just leave the tape and call it a day.

-Finally, I spray painted the top of the table yellow (my favorite color).

spray paint

-After the yellow was (mostly) dry, I removed the tape to reveal my pretty yellow stripes….which leaked out from under the tape and smeared in a few areas. So, if you try this either a)make sure your tape is pressed down really well. b) Use something other than painter’s tape, or c) expect some smudges and smears.

chevron

What do you think?

reveal party

Not sure what my next Pinterest project will be, but I’m hoping it’s something for the nursery!

Cheers!

Project Dream Home: Nursery

Yes! It is finally time to start working on our nursery! We have had so much work to do in our new home (and still have so much), that we have been putting off the nursery until it’s absolutely necessary to start getting it ready. We still have 4 months, but I think the time has come.

From day one, my friends and family have assumed that our baby room is going to be decked out in Mickie Mouse and Disney extreme, and why wouldn’t they? We are Disney fanatics…we worked, dated, got engaged and got married at “the happiest place on Earth”. Why wouldn’t we theme our child’s room after our favorite second home?

The truth is that we just don’t like character-themed rooms. It’s always too much. Plus, once a room has a theme, especially a nursery, people go a little nuts buying for that specific theme. I do not want Mickey and Minnie EVERYTHING, so we are going for something a little more simple… a lot more simple actually.

Our nursery is going to be neutral, lots of white, simple, timeless and gender neutral furniture. Husband and I both like the clean simplistic look of the neutral nurseries I’ve found on Pinterest.

The natural lighting and simple decor is so nice in this room.
The natural lighting and simple decor is so nice in this room.
The rug makes this room much more cozy than just a solid wood floor.
The rug makes this room much more cozy than just a solid wood floor.
I do not love all the teddy bears pictured here, but the colors are just right.
I do not love all the teddy bears pictured here, but the colors are just right.
A touch of color might be nice too.
A touch of color might be nice too.
There's just so much you can do with a neutral room!
There’s just so much you can do with a neutral room!

We  love the neutral rooms, BUT, we are going to sneak in a touch of classic Disney. I found lots of cute Disney touches to add on Pinterest. Not sure what we will choose (if any), but these are my favorites so far.

mobile doorknob book hanging

One Disney touch we definitely want to add is a couple vintage Disney posters. I found some amazing vintage ads from Disneyland! I think we will choose our two favorites, frame them and add them to our neutral room to liven it up a little. It’s Disney, but not too obvious or obnoxious. Right?

Here's a few...
Here’s a few…

CANNOT wait to get started on our little girl’s room!

Cheers!