I am 26 weeks pregnant, and officially in my nesting phase. According to my official due date, I still have 97 days to go, yet I feel like Penelope will be here before I know it, and I have this intense desire to get everything ready before her arrival. And I mean everything.
The nursery, the central focus of my nesting preparations, is coming along. We decided to renovate some antique pieces of furniture, and Kevin has been working diligently to get the furniture sanded, painted, and sanded and painted again.
We found this piece several years ago (it was a distressed white at the time with different knobs), and originally had it in our kitchen, but in the back of my mind I always knew that it would make a perfect changing table. That’s right Penny, I have been secretly planning for your arrival for a very long time!
We also had a guy come out last week and put wallpaper up on one of her walls. We found it on www.anthropologie.com. It was more money than we really wanted to spend, and of course one roll wasn’t quite enough so we had to get two, but wow, I am in love. Definitely well worth it.
It is not just the nursery that I am trying to get ready, however. I want every square inch of our house to be organized long before Penny even gets here. I have this image of us walking around like sleep-deprived zombies, up to our elbows in diapers, with little time to do anything but take care of our new baby. Which I can’t wait for. We will be happy zombies. But still, I want the rest of our house in order before that happens, because I don’t foresee there being much time for housework later.
My guilty pleasure lately is scouring Pinterest for organizational ideas. I stay up at night fantasizing about baskets and storage containers. It’s bad. The problem is, storage containers can be pricey. If I had it my way, everything would be organized into good quality woven baskets, but with the amount of organizing that I anticipated doing, I knew there was no way I could justify spending a small fortune on baskets . So instead, I settled for the Dollar Tree.
The Dollar Tree is a great place to find cheap storage containers in all different shapes, sizes and colors. (I discovered this when trying to get my classroom together last summer). I stopped there on my way home from work last week, and $20 later, I was ready to tackle my pantry. Which I proceeded to do the second I walked in the door.
My plan of attack was simple:
1. Buy a variety of containers in different styles and sizes. I kept it to two different colors (aqua and white) to create a clean and simple look. I have learned that when mixing things, it’s fine to have different colors, sizes, and/or styles/shapes/textures, but only two of the three. The third has to stay the same to create a feeling of cohesion. In this case, the style was the same and the sizes and colors varied. Also, I didn’t know exactly how many I would need, so I bought plenty, knowing that I could always return what I didn’t use or find a different place for them in my house. (Which I of course ended up doing. A storage container in this house will never go unused for long).
2. Take inventory. As I emptied out my pantry, I grouped things in different areas all over my counter tops and table. I tried to group in a way that made sense (canned goods together, baking items together, breakfast foods, you get the idea). I also got rid of a lot of expired items, which felt oddly liberating. Then, I chose containers for each group of items that made the most sense based on size and amount. When Kevin got home from work, he caught me in the middle of this very step, and I had to assure him that it was not as bad as it looked.
3. Place filled containers back on the shelves. This took a bit of trial and error to get everything to fit just right and in a way that made sense for our family. Since we don’t do a lot of baking, for instance, I put those foods on the top shelf. The foods we tend to go for every day, like snacks and breakfast foods, I put on the middle shelves for easy access.
And voila! There is something I find so nice about having things in pretty jars or baskets. It just feels so much cleaner and simpler than setting random jars and cans haphazardly on shelves. Having like items stored together in containers also makes them easier to find and get to.
Last night, Kevin indulged me in yet another trip to the dollar store, and I stayed up way too late (by too late I mean 10:30pm) working on my linen closet.
My other latest project was the laundry room. I still get a rush of excitement every time I walk in the door, and I am actually excited to do laundry! Almost.
So there you have it! It feels so good to be a few steps closer to being ready for our new baby. And just maybe, having a clutter-free home and a place for everything will bring a little more calm in to our lives. I have a feeling we will need it.