Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Nursery Reveal

This is so NOT a nursery reveal, I just couldn't resist that title.

When our first was born 18 years ago (18!) we lived on the bottom floor of a little duplex-technically one bedroom but there was a large back room I set up for him before he was born.  It was part of an addition, and hence it was freeezing or sweltering, and also had an entrance door into it but my naive self thought it would work out well.  Then he was born, and I couldn't imagine him sleeping farther than 2 feet from me, and what if someone stole him, or what if he was too cold or hot-I would never ever leave him to sleep in such a miserable room, what was I thinking?  He slept in our room.

Fast forward a year, and I was pregnant with our second.  We had just bought a 3 bedroom house and with one going on two children, we had enough rooms for each child to have their own.  I did her nursery in navy and white and yellow-nice and neutral.  I painted the walls myself, copying the print of a wallpaper I could never afford, and had the cheapest all white bedding I could find-with a few garage sale finds it turned out pretty cute.  She slept in there half a dozen times because she refused (and I mean refused!) to sleep without a body laying next to her.  She was the lightest sleeper ever and I thought it was all my fault.  I read books and books and tried different things all to no avail.  What a waste of time, it's the way she was wired.  But the nursery was cute, it really wasand it sat there, gathering dust.

When I was pregnant with my third we moved once again to a 3 bedroom house....2 tiny bedrooms, one without a closet, and a nice sized master bedroom.  We shoved the crib in Isaac's tiny room after Matt was born, and that worked well...the "boy's room".  He actually slept in his crib after a few weeks, that sweet little best baby ever.  It was heaven.

When our fourth, was born, we still lived in that same house, so I set up his crib in our room.  He slept on my chest for a good four or more months because of his terrible colic.  He never ever napped in his whole life.  Except in his sling which I wore from sun-up till sun-down.  I collapsed into bed with him every night, my only reprieve from his constant stomach trouble and we both slept soundly, totally exhausted.  Shouldn't have even set up the crib with that one.

We live where we do now when our fifth was born.  We have four bedrooms.  I went a little psycho when I was pregnant with our fifth, thinking and rethinking all different scenarios depending on the sex of the baby, of who would share with who and how that would work so actual sleep could happen for all.  I switched all their rooms around once only to have changed my mind one week later and put it all back.  I contracted an architect to draw up plans for an addition.  I drove everyone crazy, including myself.  But then Patrick was born and I decided for the present time he would share with Isaac-youngest and oldest.  He did sleep in his crib-the most use out of that crib out of them all-at least for naps, because Isaac was at school and it was nice and quiet.  But at night, I couldn't very well put him to bed with a teenager who needed to study till 10 or 11, so he slept in...you guessed it...our room.

Where he still is.  But won't remain.  Or maybe he will.  I don't care anymore, honestly.

We are plum out of room by today's standards.  Yes, Isaac is going off to college, but he will come home again and again and it's not like we can pitch a tent for him in the backyard after we sell his (tiny) room to the highest bidder.  It will remain his room, although I promised it to the next oldest boy in line for sleeping purposes only when Isaac is gone-there is to be no official "moving in".

The baby will share a room with us.  I'm under no illusion anymore.  Pretty wallpaper, pastel colors, expensive catalog fixings don't determine how well babies or parents sleep.  I sleep best close to my babies-I know that.  Mix some new mother anxiety in with every-2-hour-around-the-clock-feedings and my bed is where we sleep best.

So here's my nursery and I love it.  I love it more than ever because after having five children I feel so settled in knowing what I want, and what I need and how I function as a new mom.  No crazy planning or shopping or moving rooms around.  Now don't get me wrong-I don't mind a good old stroll, ooohing and ahhing, through a  Pottery Barn Kids catalog, but I laugh a little when I look at the photos.  It's SO not what having a baby is about. I know that now more than ever.

My good very talented friend Jane, revamped my old bassinet for me-I had a chance to make it my own- she stitched it all together and I now consider it an heirloom to hand down to my children and grandchildren.  Abbey helped me choose the fabrics after we scrubbed it all up. I love its simplicity. My changing table has every item of clothing and all the supplies I think I will need for awhile at least.

Now we just patiently wait for our sweet little one.

(I love this detail...it fulfills my adoration of ball fringe in a tiny subtle way.)

69 comments :

  1. You are so very wise. I love your simplicity. God bless you all throughout the transition.

    ReplyDelete
  2. I love it! SO SMART! I set up the crib in my room on my 6th too. I don't even try to pretend anymore...ha-ha. I love the changing table too, everything is beautiful! I wish I had realized on my first few how little you really need for a baby. Thanks for reminding us. Best wishes to you in these last couple weeks!

    ReplyDelete
  3. I love this post. I had my first baby just over a year ago - we named him Isaac and he slept in bed with us for almost a year. We just barely finished transitioning him to a crib (right next to our bed), and we are expecting our second, a girl, in December. The beginning of your story sounds quite a bit like ours! We probably won't be naming our girl Abbey, though. :) I love reading your blog and getting these wonderful bits of wisdom with each of your posts. It's one of my favorite blogs because of how real and genuine you are - you aren't looking to show off or make life seem perfect like so many other "mom blogs" out there these days. Thank you! And best wishes to you and your family with the new little one!

    ReplyDelete
  4. LOVE love love love.

    I just can't believe you're going to go all the way to full term with #6. UGH. Tap tap tap. Getting impatient.

    ReplyDelete
  5. So nice and so wise! All the best with your little one, Sarah! Love you and your blog!

    ReplyDelete
  6. It's beautiful Sarah!!:)
    So sweet and delicate.
    Can't wait to catch up here...i've been gone awhile...kicking back and enjoying the summer and staying away from all things electronic!!:)
    have a happy day

    ReplyDelete
  7. Oh its so sweet! I love it. Can't wait to see photos of a little baby in there!

    ReplyDelete
  8. Thanks for your openness. I was feeling a bit blue for baby #4 who's dresser was a plastic bin (in our room) and also was in a bassinet in our room. But 4 kids in a 3 bedroom house, and yes, it is just easier to have baby with us. :) I was sad there was no cute "your room" pictures for the baby book. Now he's 1, sharing the room with his 2 year old brother and they already are having great fun at night and keeping each other from sleeping! :) (And there is no cute Pottery Barn in site in that room either. Part of me is sad I never got to make my "dream" nursery, even after 4 kids, but the realist in me sees it doesn't matter. They all have grown up with love and that is what matters!

    ReplyDelete
  9. Beautiful!

    Oh, if only we could all enjoy realy living out lives instead of looking to magazines for images of how we should look doing it. LOVE this post- it gives me such a breath of relief remembering the nurseries that sat mostly empty as my sweet baby girls snuggled with me, in our room, too.

    I so love your ability to do what you feel is right instead of what others portray as right. Wonderful conviction!

    ReplyDelete
  10. I am a stalker - I read your blog, but never comment. I couldn't resist today. I have 4 children - 15, 8, 6, and almost 11 months. I could have written this post inserting my own children in place of some of yours. I love your blog and just wanted to say hello and wish you a wonderful delivery of your new bundle.

    ReplyDelete
  11. Sweet little area for the new baby! We also have five but lived in an 800 sq ft home till our 3rd was about 8 months (with her in our room). Moved to our current home with around 1260 sq ft at that time and were all excited about the 4 bedrooms, then quickly found out #4 was on the way. He and #5 (now 2) both stayed in our room for several months to a year.

    Our baby "needs" have grown smaller with each baby, but the love for that baby has grown in that he/she has so many more people eagerly anticipating his arrival and sharing in the joy of his birth.

    ReplyDelete
  12. Love it Sarah! Same with me...We currently have our 2 year old in her crib(not even close to moving her to a bed!)and our 10 year old son(who gets lonely in his own room!)sleeping in our room. I love it!

    ReplyDelete
  13. You are so cute! I love the recap of what changed from new little one to new little one! Can't wait to hear about the next little addition!!

    Cheers
    ~ Jillian
    www.hersplitends.com

    ReplyDelete
  14. I love this post, Sarah--on so many levels!

    Honestly, there are times that I think to myself, "Is this wedding about getting married or just about the wedding?" and about new births "Is this about the baby or just about a nursery?" I DO understand wanting to make things lovely, and I think it's a good thing, but it seems to be easy for women to drive themselves to distraction--and then be devastated if things don't work out just the way they expected. I wonder if we wouldn't all be better off if we had fewer expectations and just waited to see how things go.

    I'm so glad that, for this sixth baby, you feel secure in what you want and need. I pray that all will go smoothly and that this little one will just as healthy as your other kids--what a blessing they all are to you!

    ReplyDelete
  15. LOVE this post! Good luck as you get ready for your 6th child :-)

    ReplyDelete
  16. I agree with you when you wrote about oohing and ahhhing over catalogs. What's important is the love that surrounds the baby...not the material things.

    Because our house is small my three girls shared a room until my oldest turned 14. We only have a three bedroom house, but because I was raised in an even smaller house...I am grateful for our lovely abode.

    My son will be three in November and since my room was big enough for him to have a nursery...we compromised and fixed it up so cute! Nothing wrong with that! Your room looks big enough, and it looks beautiful! Love the color scheme.

    Good luck to you, and enjoy that baby! Wishing the rest of your kids a great summer...what's left of it! Happy belated to your better half!

    xoxo

    ReplyDelete
  17. SO perfect! I love the ball trim fringe on the bassinet. Our two year old has slept in his crib for a total of maybe 2 hours, ever. In our bed is where we all sleep best and although I tried to deny it and felt a little indulgent for the first 9 months, now I know he's just a light sleeper and also hard wired to be a cuddler. I wonder if we'll need a bigger bed when #2 comes along.... :) Wishing you all the best with your new little bundle.

    ReplyDelete
  18. Oh Sarah it is beautiful! I love the ball fringe on the drapes!

    Don't you wish we had the wisdom we have after child #6 (or #2) for child #1? There is such a more relaxed approach to mothering. I try to impart wisdom to new moms without being overbearing. I remember as a new mom being frightened beyond belief, but also stubborn to do things my own way. Where did it get me? Stressed out!

    Now I'm no longer a new mom....just a stressed-out mom of teens!!!

    ReplyDelete
  19. So sweet, love the fringe detail. We are having our third on Thursday and he or she will be in our room as well. And will eventually move into the one shared bedroom with his or her two sisters. The more children you have I think the more you realize how little a baby needs--this is such a blessing that comes with experience.
    Best of luck! Can't wait to here about the new addition to your family!

    ReplyDelete
  20. It is so sweet! I love the ball fringe on the bassinet! Best wishes to you!
    Elizabeth (Jane sent me over!)

    ReplyDelete
  21. This post is very full of wisdom and common sense...like many of your other posts always are! You didn't clarify though...will Patrick be moving out of your bed? Afterall, he's almost 5 and you will be having a newborn around the bed all day/night long.

    ReplyDelete
  22. I absolutely love it~ can totally identify with the evolution of a nursery or lack thereof - I found similar peace when our fifth was born. I blinked twice and she's 2 1/2 moving in with her sister who's 6. So glad I didn't fret much over that. :) I'm not a great commenter but read faithfully. Appreciate your common sense and joy over things and people in life that really matter. :)

    ReplyDelete
  23. absolutely perfectly precious!
    i love your simplicity so very much!!
    blessings to you for a quick delivery. can't wait to hear boy or girl!!

    ReplyDelete
  24. I very much relate to your journey of decision-making when it comes to where everyone will sleep each time a new one comes along. I love the bassinet!

    ReplyDelete
  25. I love this post. Thank you for your honesty. You are keeping it real here.

    ReplyDelete
  26. It is SO perfect in every single way Sarah! I have been having major issues with my computer letting me comment..so I haven't in a lonnnng time but I still check on you every day :) You have got to be the smartest woman in the world! Thanks for all your helpfulness :) Praying for a safe delivery!!!!! I reeeally hope this lets me comment!!!!!!!

    ReplyDelete
  27. Perfect! Just perfect! Looks so peaceful....

    ReplyDelete
  28. Love your nursery reveal! Everyone keeps asking me what my 'nursery theme' is and if it's all done. The first two slept in our room for the first few months, and being that I'm 41, I don't see myself stumbling upstairs several times a night to a cute nursery anyway, so sweet little one will be in our room for awhile. Beautiful nurseries are sweet, but in real life, a little impractical. You've just inspired me to clear out a few shelves on our bedroom bookshelves for baskets of burp cloths and onesies! Best wishes!

    ReplyDelete
  29. I love this. It is exactly what I did on my fifth baby (who is 7 weeks old now). The less stuff the better! Best wishes for a smooth delivery.

    ReplyDelete
  30. I did the same with my #5 with a very simple bassinet and changing table in our bedroom. She never slept in it. NEVER slept in the crib. Still will not sleep in her toddler bed.

    Like you...I do not care. I get my sleep. She gets her sleep. Everybody gets there sleep. That is what it is all about.

    very cute set up and we are all praying and so excited about this little one!

    ReplyDelete
  31. I love it! You are soooo wise, Sarah! :-)

    ReplyDelete
  32. This post makes me smile!! I am 59 and learning about simplicty. I used to have everything so fussy.. but with my babies things were fairly simple. I'm learning to edit from my husband.. My daughter had a baby a year ago. I went to visit several times and we set up the nursery.. It was so much fun. I love your ideas and your blog!
    http://martha-theothermartha.blogspot.com/

    ReplyDelete
  33. I love this post and your "nursery" Sarah! Nothing drives me more crazy than when I hear moms say they can't wait to find out the sex of the baby because of prepping the nursery. Thank you for showing all of us what really matters when bringing home a new little one- being close to mom and a place for them to rest their head :). It looks perfect to me. Good luck these last couple of weeks.

    ReplyDelete
  34. My daughter was like Abbey. She couldn't sleep anywhere except with me! Even at 12 it's where she would prefer to sleep. So I made a deal with her that when she is sick or scared or we are away from home or daddy is traveling, she gets to sleep with me! Drives my mom nuts. She never got it and still doesn't. Years ago in the 60s some doctor told her the worst thing you could do as a parent is let your baby sleep in the same room with you. I went nuts when I was pregnant with my one and only child and the nursery was just about the end of me. She never slept in it enough to matter, and never napped. C
    Can't wait to hear about this next baby...looks like you are ready!

    ReplyDelete
  35. I love how confident you are in your mothering. You are so sure of what is right for you and your family. It is really an inspiration to me. Good luck with the sweet new baby. By the way, I recently read "A Lantern in her Hand" on your recommendation. It spoke to me in such a profound way. I cried and cried. Thank you for sharing such a wonderful book.

    ReplyDelete
  36. Looks like you are ready whenever the baby is!

    Could be ANY day! I was due right with you (on the 19th) and met my sweet Lucy at 12:33 on August 2 (full moon!).

    We love her to pieces and I wish you the best!

    ReplyDelete
  37. Yay for babies sleeping with their parents. I am way too tired at night to fight biology! This second little girl of mine is staying a lot longer in our bed than her older sister. Here's to a healthy happy blissful birth. I LOVE your blog.

    ReplyDelete
  38. What else could you need? Looks just perfect. Enjoy these last few days. It's such a special time.

    ReplyDelete
  39. I think this is absolutely perfect! Lovely space for baby!!

    ReplyDelete
  40. I love this-and your words are so very true. Our 5th child joined our family 2 months ago. My thoughts of what we needed in order to be "ready" are so much simpler than what I thought we needed the first couple times...and I am so much more settled.

    ReplyDelete
  41. I don't think I could even begin to explain how that one picture nearly moved me to tears. I'm one emotional momma as of late, and I'm not even pregnant??!! We keep talking about adding a baby soon, and I talk (non stop I'm sure) about how simple I want these next babes to be. Simple clothes, simple sink baths, wooden spoons and pots and pans as toys.. ;) you get it. Just us enjoying the baby, not the things. Yes. You've got it down Sarah. Thank you for sharing!

    ReplyDelete
  42. Oh gosh, I love your blog. I love YOU. That is all. :)

    ReplyDelete
  43. You have the best perspective, as always. I think your comment section always shows how many moms just need someone to say it's okay to calm downand do things in a simple, functional way.

    ReplyDelete
  44. I LOVE this post. I want to show it to all my friends and family who gave us the hardest time ever when our first slept in our bed until he was 3.5. And guess what? He sleeps in his own bed now just fine and is probably our best sleeper (he's 10). Then, when we had our 2nd I was all ready for him to sleep with us and he wanted NOTHING to do with it. He would sleep in his crib or nothing. Our third slept wherever he could find sleep and our fourth will ONLY sleep in her crib. I'm like you, I don't care. They can sleep wherever they choose and as long as everyone is sleeping we are happy. Oh, and we miss having a baby that will sleep with us.

    ReplyDelete
  45. So perfect! Boy, I wish I would have read your blog before my first, I was too obsessed with making everything perfect, when all babies need is their mama and a few other things :) Best to you as you prepare for your little one's arrival!

    ReplyDelete
  46. our last was born during a remodel to our home - he slept in a bassinet in our room and his clothes and diapers were in a basket on a chair. I didn't even bother unearthing the changing table (although looking at yours, I wish I had, but my chair was more than adequate for the job). Its amazing how much "stuff" you don't need for a baby and I'd say the same for toddlers and beyond. My house is still filled with clutter that none of us needs. The simplicity of your home is so inspiring. I keep procrastinating while the clutter piles up and I keep thinking I need to pull myself up from my bootstraps and get some of the work ethic you describe that your father has and get to it, little by little, pile by pile.

    thanks for all the inspiration and also the chuckle on the blog title.

    ReplyDelete
  47. It really is the simple things. There are sooo many gadgets out there now for babies, but all they really need is love and attention (and a mom who is frazzled all the time).
    It is just beautiful Sarah!
    Praying for a safe delivery, and a wonderful start for Isaac in college.

    ReplyDelete
  48. Sarah, I get so excited every time I see your new posts are up...thinking maybe you've had that sweet baby of yours! I love your practicality. We have two and I'm due with #3 at the end of November, while we have four bedrooms one is currently being used as storage because we don't have a garage or basement. I'm panicking because we have not yet set up room for baby.

    I know baby will sleep in our bedroom, but that doesn't last long for me. Ellie was adopted so she spent months 3 through 6 with us in our room and by the time Grant turned 3 months old I was more than ready to give him the boot. He was such a noisy sleeper (sucked on anything he could get in his mouth, except for pacifiers) and any move I made he could hear or smell, because he'd wake up hungry even if I had just fed him.

    Please let me know if there is anything I can do to help you in the near future. We have never met in person, but have spoken a few times over email and we do live relatively close. I'd like to help if you need it. I know how those last days can be so anxious and hectic.

    Happy wishes!

    ReplyDelete
  49. I just wanted to share two things:

    one is that I love the nursery. It's perfect.

    two is that my husband and his oldest brother (three sisters in between) are 18 years apart. They are close--surprisingly close, for that age gap.

    ReplyDelete
  50. Love it! With 6 kids in a tiny 3 bedroom townhome I hold tightly to the words of St. Thomas More, "Where there's room in the heart, there's room in the home."

    ReplyDelete
  51. Looks like the best place for your little one- close to you. Blessings to you all.

    ReplyDelete
  52. It's perfect! My babies sleep near me as well. Take care.

    ReplyDelete
  53. I am laughing so hard because when your post came through to my email inbox, I read the title "nursery reveal" and thought-"sarah is doing a nursery?? what the WHAT?" Haha, I knew better! ;)

    A sweet little space for your sweet little one! We don't have a room for a nursery in our cottage (and wynn NEVER used the one I made for him) so I made over our walk-in closet to be a sweet little baby nook. It satisfied my need to nest and design, it was simple and cheap and baby will be right there by me where I need him to sleep best!

    ReplyDelete
  54. Awesome, I say AWESOME post. We are kindred spirits. And I love the bassinet and the details.

    Giulia

    ReplyDelete
  55. serious perfection, sarah! beautifully done. Just this week I am working on the boys' room. I did enjoy the hours I spent on the first two nurseries. But now, in a way, it's a relief. Can I tell you how many people asked us if we were moving - or rather expected us to move because we didn't have a separate bedroom for our third. Crazy. Ryan slept on me for six months, and it was the best.

    ReplyDelete
  56. I had to laugh at the "nursery reveal"...wondered when I saw it what new medication you were on? I *love* the ball fringe and the calmness and simplicity of it all. Can't believe it's here, Sarah!!

    ReplyDelete
  57. Yup....I came to the same conclusion you did....at about child number 3, I believe. We have 6 now and when we moved in 3 years ago with a newborn....one of the criteria was that there was a big enough master bedroom for a crib....however, honestly, she slept with us most nights...seeing us from her crib just wasn't enough for her!

    ReplyDelete
  58. I love your wisdom in this post. Those simple truths and motherly wisdom are why I enjoy your blog so much. The nursery is beautiful, and the bassinet is just lovely! Enjoy your new little one.

    ReplyDelete
  59. Great post! I'm pregnant with #5 and I've been thinking and stressing about room arrangements. I love your simple area for baby. I'm going to copy and do something like that in our bedroom.

    ReplyDelete
  60. "By today's standards". Just like with everything else in mothering, it can be so hard to pull myself away from the idea that thing have to be decorated in a certain way as if every other mother in the free world outfits her nursery with a consult from a stylist at Pottery Barn. It is so fun to have a pretty place for a baby, but that space that is most important is that space between our body and theirs, don't you think?

    P.S. I don't think I would every add ball fringe to anything, but I smile to see it in the details of your home.

    ReplyDelete
  61. thanks for this. Since our #5 is on the way I have been worried about room sharing. For some reason it does not bother me in the least our 2 boys share, but now our 2 girls are going to share and I feel bad. Maybe b/c I never had to share, or most kids in suburbialand (our neck of the woods!) come from 2.2 kids/family and don't have to share, but now my large family does - jealousy I suppose- ridiculous of me! I must remind myself of the families living in one room shacks on dirt floors...
    anyhoo, your baby's space is perfect - so blessed to have such a loving/happy/big! family!

    ReplyDelete
  62. Did exactly what you did and do not regret it for a minute.Only when a baby is sleeping on you at night can you forget about how uncomfortable you really are! And how it all seems so right.

    ReplyDelete
  63. Thank you. I am at a different crossroads than you (I'm moving, not having a baby), but for some reason I needed to hear this! Our babies shared our room, too; between 6 weeks and 2 years each, depending on the little. It was wonderful, and I'm happy to realize that even though circumstances "forced" us into those sleeping arrangements, I wouldn't have had it any other way.

    ReplyDelete