Monday, November 9, 2015

On Blogging vs. Writing and BIG MAGIC

Last week, I whizzed through the audiobook of Elizabeth Gilbert's Big Magic in two days. Granted, it was only 4 CDs, but still. I couldn't get enough. I feel as though Gilbert is a very polarizing author. I know some people who were utterly disappointed with Eat Pray Love and some who have read every single one of her books and think she is magical. I am in the latter camp. So I was essentially predisposed to love Big Magic, but I also didn't want a wishy-washy, self-help book filled with stupid cliches about following your dreams. Thankfully, that was not at all what I got.

Big Magic really got me thinking more deeply about my writing. About what I am willing to sacrifice to pursue my craft. About what my motivations are for writing. But mostly, about what is keeping me back from really, truly writing (as opposed to blogging). I started this blog almost seven years ago. SEVEN YEARS. It has served me well. It has been my outlet to document my life's beautiful journey. It has been an easy way to keep writing with limited time and energy. But I also wonder if it has held me back. I've spent seven years of my life writing for an audience. Writing in one style and one tone of voice. I have spent seven years writing in a format that is sustained by the validation of others. And that just seems like a recipe for disaster. I don't feel that my writing has improved in those seven years and I don't think this format has allowed me to grow or be challenged. I don't want to sound ungrateful or that I don't still enjoy blogging, because I really and truly do. But I do wonder if I need to explore other avenues to pursue my passion and live out my most creative life.

I haven't yet arrived at a conclusion. I have thought about journaling more. I have a journal that hasn't been touched in years. I've thought about writing letters. Perhaps a goal to write a letter to a person in my life every week. Some letters, I would send. Some I might seal in an envelope and never look at again. Of all the ideas I've tossed around in my mind, the recurring theme is this- I need to write for myself. I need to write with discipline. And I need to write without the expectation of feedback. I don't want the opinions of others (good and bad) to sway the direction my writing takes or determine who I am as a writer. In her book, Gilbert makes the stinction between pursuing creative endeavors fearlessly versus bravely. It would be impossible for me to approach writing without fear. Fear that my writing is just plain bad. Fear that other people won't like it. Fear that I have nothing original to say. There are a million and one things to feel scared and vulnerable about. But I want to be brave.

I want to write because I need to.

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What are your thoughts on writing vs. blogging? Do you have any ideas on how I can start writing outside of the blogosphere?

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Tuesday, October 27, 2015

10 Months as Mommy

I've slowly started transitioning from #babypep to #charmingcharlie on Instagram, because my baby isn't going to be a baby much longer! Every single stinking cliche is true: the minutes are long, the months are short.

I officially started back at 5 days/week. For the last several months, I've had the ability to work a half day from home on Mondays, but no more. Sad face for me. It's been hard. But I really wasn't expecting it not to be. I miss Charlie. I'm exhausted, and my house is a mess. But I'm giving myself a lot of grace to just do what I can and not giving myself a massive guilt trip every time I fall short in one or more realms of my life.

Remember how last month I said I was soooo done with pumping? Yeah, not quite. Try as I might (and when I say "I," I really mean Charlie's aunt who watches him while I'm at work), this kid will not drink formula. It was stressful for me. It was stressful for Aunt Ashlee, and I'm guessing it was stressful for Charlie who kept being offered some artificial-tasting stuff when all he wanted was some boob juice. So, I decided I was just going to keep at it until we can officially transition him to cow's milk. I've been popping Fenugreek supplements and drinking Mother's Milk tea like it's my job, and it's actually been working. I'm still only pumping enough for the following day and not a drop more, but that's all we really need at this point, so we're going with it!

No change. Still going on walks in the evenings whenever I can, but I'm a little worried about how sedentary I'm doomed to be once the cold weather hits. Maybe, just maybe, I'll get some use out of that gym membership once and for all!

As for Charlie...

We've got a crawler on our hands and holy cow- I cannot keep up with this kid! He is constantly wanting to move, crawl, and explore. Which is cute and fun to watch, until he climbs off the edge of the bed, or bashes his head off a chair. He's wearing us out! Charlie also went trick-or-treating for the first time. No candy for this little one, but we had a ton of fun going around to the local, downtown businesses with him and his cousins.

He's not consistently eating grown-up food, but nearly everything we offer him off our plates, he gobbles right up! I made pork chops with cinnamon apples last week, which he loved and he had some shredded chicken when we went pumpkin picking two weekends ago that he packed away! He's still not a big eater, but we're making tortoise-like progress each week. His absolute favorite food, however, is his Stonyfield baby yogurt. No product placement, I swear- he really does love the stuff! I'm so glad we've found something that he'll eat a lot of!

Not too much newness in the family department except for spending a lot more time with Aunt Ashlee and cousin Lucie!

He hasn't been weighed since his  9-month appointment, so based on his growth, I'm going to estimate he's somewhere between 15-16 lbs. Still a shrimp!

He's still wearing Size 3 diapers and is mostly in 12-month clothing, save for a handful of lengthier onesies.

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I ordered his first birthday invitations a few weeks ago and am already starting to plan. It's so hard to believe I'm about to become a toddler mom!

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Monday, October 26, 2015

30 Before 30

This past April, I turned 27. I don't know why, but 27 just felt so much older than 26. So much closer to 30. I don't think 30 is "old," but I still mentally feel like a 16 year old girl so it just doesn't seem real that I'm a full-fledged grown-up. I have a husband, a baby, a house, and yet I just feel like I'm playing a game of "house." I can't be old enough to have all those things!

Despite the fact that I feel like I can't possibly be nearing 30, the fact remains, I'm literally 30 months from turning 30 today. Goals and bucket lists have never really been a strong point, but I'm doing it anyway. I'm giving myself 30 things to accomplish in the next 30 months:

1. Take an international trip | I don't care where- Germany, Ireland, Thailand, or maybe even Jamaica 2.0. My only requirements are that it's not in the U.S. and that I have my handsome hubby by my side.

2. Read fifty books in a year | My all-time record was 47 books in 2014. Can I beat it?! 

3. Submit a grant proposal | One of my professional goals has been to gain some experience in grant writing. I've done a very small amount of studying in my spare time, but have a long way to go before I feel like I'm ready to tackle the challenge of actually submitting a proposal. If I can complete one in this time, I will feel so incredibly accomplished.

4. Get my third (and fourth?) tattoo | I have a tattoo that I've been wanting to get for years now, but I just can't justify spending the money when we've had so much else going on in our life! 

5. Take a kayak trip | I have literally never stepped foot in a kayak. This needs to change, stat.

6. Pay off a student loan | My student loan debt is out of control, so I'm trying to be realistic with this goal. If I can pay off just one loan before I hit 30, I will probably cry tears of joy.

7. Live with my sister | This probably sounds super weird, but my baby sister is my favorite person in the whole wide world (husbands don't count). She graduates from grad school in the spring and I feel like it's our last possible opportunity in our lives to live together one last time. We've got two extra bedrooms in our new house and Chuck is on-board, so I'm praying Kelly will finally make my dream come true and come stay with us, even if it's just for a few weeks.

8. Visit a new state |  Top of my list? Colorado and Montana. Rocky Mountains, I'm coming for you.

9. Grow my blog | I don't want to record a definitive number, because I don't ever want my blog to cease being a source of joy in my life, and start feeling like a job. But if I'm being honest, I would love to have more people come follow along on my journey.

10. Volunteer more | Again, I'm not placing a specific number of times, etc. But I've really been feeling convicted about this lately. For someone who wants to leave the world a better place, the only good I feel like I do is the work I get paid to do. In my profession, I interact with so many amazing people who give hours, days, weeks of their lives to serving their communities. It's so inspiring and I want to start paying it forward.

11. Attend regular yoga classes | If my former cheerleader self knew how inflexible I've become, she would be so, so ashamed. 

12. Finish designing and decorating one room in our house | My hope is that every room in our house will be decorated to my liking in two and a half years, but I'm setting the bar low. I'm planning lots of posts about my design inspiration in the near future- owning a house is so exciting (minus the crickets, leaky plumbing, and windowless bedroom, but that's a story for another day!)

13. Learn a new skill | The possibilities on this are endless. I want to learn to can and preserve, how to sew, how to play a musical instrument, how to build things. If I can summon the motivation, patience and energy to learn one new skill by the time I'm 30, I will be so proud of myself. 

14. Baby Pep 2.0 | Surprise, surprise. I've already talked about my baby fever, so does it come as any surprise that I'm totally hoping to add another little one to our brood?

15. Do something BIG for our 5th anniversary | Whether it's taking a trip, renewing our vows, or throwing a party, I want to celebrate five years of marriage in style!

16. Open up a college savings account for Charlie | Honestly, I should have done this 9 months ago. 

17. Have a girls' weekend | I want to have a weekend with my girl(s). No babies. No husband. Just me and my bestie(s)...and probably some booze.

18. Invest in a DSLR | I don't want my child's entire childhood to be captured on a grainy cell phone camera. I want to buy an actual decent camera, and figure out how the heck to use it.

19. Run a half marathon | This is potentially my most lofty goal. It is sooo much harder than I was anticipating to get back into running with a little one. But I finished a Quarter Marathon, and I know that if I really disciplined myself and trained hard, I could totally do it.

20. Finish Charlie's baby book | Okay, so maybe not technically finish it, since he'll only be three when I turn 30 and will still have some milestones yet to go, but I've been slacking on keeping up with it, so I want to make sure I have his first year done, if nothing else, before I start forgetting all these beautiful memories!

21. Do a Wine & Canvas night | They look like so much fun! I want to drink and paint!!!

22. Attend a game | Ideally, a Reds or Bengals game, but I'm not choosy.

23. Visit Frankie's grave | Two years ago, a wonderful friend of mine was killed in Afghanistan and is now buried in Arlington National Cemetary. I wasn't able to be there for his service, and I've been wanting to finally say a proper goodbye and pay my respects to the man who was my pretend big brother. 

24. Plant a backyard garden | For those who may not know, for the last five years, my life has kind of revolved around gardening. It has been a large part of two of my jobs, and I've container gardened nearly everywhere we've lived. But I have never had my own garden. I am so pumped to finally change this.

25. Dye my hair a fun color | I am so envious of all the girls with their pastel, ombre, colorful dye-jobs. I'd like to mix it up and try something new, just for kicks!

26. Go to King's Island |  For the non-Ohioans, KI is a local amusement park that I have never been to. This may not sound like a big deal, but as a self-described roller coaster nut, it totally is.

27. Wear my wedding dress again | I specifically bought my wedding dress so that I could wear it again one day. But there was one problem with this plan: I don't want to wear my wedding dress just anywhere! If I have an excuse to wear it again, I would really, really love to. 

28. Get promoted | I don't even know if this is possible in my current position, but I never want to feel like my career is stagnant. I always want to feel like I'm growing, being challenged, and advancing. 

29. Attend a book signing | I will never forgive myself for wussing out on attending Glennon Doyle Melton's book signing for Carry On, Warrior when she was FIVE MINUTES AWAY from my Pittsburgh apartment. Here's hoping I can redeem myself.

30. Give my husband 3,000 kisses | He deserves every one.

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What are some of your pre-30 goals?

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Thursday, October 22, 2015

Travel Bucket List: Europe

About a million years ago, I published a couple posts about the top places on my Travel Bucket List starting with the good ol' USA and Africa. Today, I'm daydreaming and wanderlusting over my top European travel destinations:


munich photo: Munich IMG_1498.jpg

Because a rich history, good beer and great food aren't enough- both Chuck and I have a shared German heritage and I would love to connect with our grandparents and great-grandparents' homeland.


ireland photo: Ireland photo_lg_ireland1.jpg

If there's one place my husband would choose to travel to, it would be Ireland. He is obsessed with the lush green landscape and castles. Growing up, my Mom loved Irish culture and immersed us in Irish step dancing lessons, Irish movies and always made a big deal of St. Paddy's day. Dublin is a place on the top of my list, and I could use a little luck o' the Irish!


amsterdam photo: Amsterdam 300579_10150329030707536_690377535_8558885_686629612_n.jpg

Upon my return home from Uganda, I had a several hour-long layover in Amsterdam and regret that I wasn't able to venture out and take in this gorgeous city. I would love to peruse the canals and visit the Anne Frank house. I've only heard good things about Amsterdam!



I mean...really. From what I've seen there's virtually no place in the world that even compares to the white-washed homes, and crystal blue waters of the Greek isles. Not to mention the food. Oh, the food.


This photo was actually taken by my blogger crush, Katie. Check out her recent trip to Stockholm, here.

Scandinavia is on the very top of my list. I mean, these are the happiest people in the world, after all! Although, I've heard that it's among the most expensive travel destinations, it just looks so darn fun and picturesque! It's also a dream of mine to hop over to Copenhagen and eat at the world famous, Noma!

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Have you been to any of my top European destinations? Travel tips and must-see items are always appreciated!

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Stitch Fix: Round 5

It had been over two years since I received my last fix when I signed up for a shipment a few weeks ago. I stopped receiving them because plain and simple, the items were a little outside my typical price range. However, now that I'm a Mommy, shopping for clothes has become inordinately more difficult than I anticipated. I know it sounds lame, but it's true. I have zero time after work to do any shopping because I have to head straight home to pick up Charlie and then on the weekends there is always the debate: Do I pack the stroller and try to navigate it through the narrow racks of clothing and try to fit it in the dressing room or do I wear my ErgoBaby carrier and put Charlie on the floor while I'm trying things on (Ew!)? I decided that the option of having cute things mailed to me was worth the heftier price tag and received Stitch Fix: Round 5 last week!

When filling out my style profile, I requested items that I could incorporate into my business casual work wardrobe. I also added the additional note that I was breastfeeding and would appreciate that the items I received were nursing-friendly. My stylist, Kelly, did a great job picking things out for me. My past fixes have been hit or miss, but she nailed it!

Here's what she sent me:

ITEM 1: Zad Marigold Arrow Bangle in Gold

I have pretty skinny wrists as it is, but I feel like this bracelet would be oversized on anyone! I loved the style, but there is no way I would be able to keep this thing from flying off my wrist.
Verdict: Return

ITEM 2: Market & Spruce Alan French Terry Asymmetrical Zip Cardigan in Grey

Because obviously I had to pose with a pumpkin! Kelly noticed that I had a nearly identical asymmetrical sweater on my Pinterest board, so she sent this to me. I loved the style, but it was a smidge too big. If I had gotten a size S, it probably would have been much harder to say "no" to, but alas, I wasn't crazy about the price or fit, so I bid it adieu. 
Verdict: Return

ITEM 3: Liverpool Anita Skinny Pant in Black
ITEM 4: Market & Spruce Calmia Roll Tab Top in Off-White

Oh my goodness, the fit of these pants was divine. Unfortunately, I can barely justify spending $20 on a pair of pants, let alone $78. I did like the style and pattern of the top, but I felt like it made me look wider that I actually am. If it was more of a tunic, I'd be on board. Plus, it obviously wrinkles pretty easily which is problematic for me since I think I've used an iron like three times in my entire life. 
Verdict: Return

ITEM 5: 41Hawthorn Queensland Dolman Jersey Top in Dark Purple

Ding, ding, ding! We have a winner. This top fit me so well and was suuuuper comfy. Chuck actually pointed out that it would be a perfect top to wear to Thanksgiving, so I could hardly say no. Thanks, fashion forward Hubby! (If you ever saw my husband pick out clothes, you would know how funny this is).
Verdict: Keep

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So what do you think of my selection? Do you think I made the right choice?

To see my prior fixes, go here.
If you'd like to try Stitch Fix for yourself, you can use my referral link, here.

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Monday, October 19, 2015

Winter 2015 Book Challenge: Preliminary List

Remember that time I talked about how I've NEVER FINISHED A BOOK CHALLENGE? Sigh. One of these days, I will!!! Thankfully, I'm never short on opportunities for redemption. Megan at Semi-Charmed Kind of Life has posted the Winter 2015 installment of her reading challenge series, and I'm in love with the categories this time around!

Here is my preliminary list:

5 points: Read a book that has between 100 and 200 pages | The Giver by Lois Lowry 
10 points: Read a debut book by any author | Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher 
10 points: Read a book that does not take place in your current country of residence | After You by Jojo Moyes 
10 points: Read a book that someone else has already used for the challenge. | TBD 
15 points: Read a book published under a pseudonym | Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte 
15 points: Read a book with “boy,” “girl,” “man” or “woman” in the title | A Year of Biblical Womanhood by Rachel Held Evans or Running Like a Girl by Alexandra Heminsley
15 points: Read a book with a one-word title | Sold by Patricia McCormick 
20 points: Read a book with a person's first and last name in the title | The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry by Gabrielle Zevin 
20 points: Read a book with a verb in the title | Big Magic: Creative Living Beyond Fear by Elizabeth Gilbert 
30 points: Read two books with the same title (by different authors) | TBD (My back-up is Revolution by Russell Brand and Revolution by Deborah Wiles, but I want to see what other readers come up with) 
30 points: Read a nonfiction book and a fiction book about the same subject | Let It Snow by John Green and Being Santa Claus: What I Learned about the True Meaning of Christmas by Sal Lizard
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Want to play along? Visit Megan's book challenge and see what other bloggers are reading!

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Friday, October 16, 2015

Blogger Love v.12

It has been nearly two months since I shared some blogger love. Which is way overdue, in my book. As an introvert and Mama to an infant- my social life is seemingly non-existent. This weird community of bloggers? These are my people. I have made friendships through this nerdy hobby of mine that I wouldn't trade for the world. I love delighting in the joys of other wanna-be writers, watching their families grow, and asking their advice when they've been "through it" before me. So to all the blogger ladies in my life, thank you. I love this community so much.

And without further ado, here are the ladies especially deserving of some blogger love:

All the Joys - Blogger Love

Motherhood: My Sweet Surprise by The Life of Bon | "And then I met June and just like that it all changed." It always sounds like such a cliche, but it's always true! Motherhood truly has been the sweetest surprise, and Bonnie hits a homerun with this post.

Is 'having it all' a feminist fiction? by Rage Against the Minivan | "I love being a mom, and I love having a career, but I can’t help feeling like somewhere along the lines I was sold a bill of goods that anyone could adequately do them both." It feels so validating to know I'm not the one who feels like I'm going off the deep end trying to play this working Mom balancing act.

Double Your Instagram Following? by The Daily Tay | "Blogging is my hobby, my job, my thing. It might not always be, but for now it is and I enjoy it. So when someone cuts it down it bugs me. No one likes to be told their job isn't important anymore." Some days I really hate that I haven't figured out how to play the blogging game. My Instagram feed is an eyesore, I don't want to spend the money to buy followers, and my social media usage is sporadic at best. It was really humbling to know that someone as big as The Daily Tay feels the same way I do about this dying art called blogging.

The End of our Nursing Journey by | LaNeshe is one of those blogging friends I alluded to at the beginning. This woman is also a proud (former) breastfeeding, working Mama, and I honestly don't know if I would be handling all this pumping/breastfeeding shenanigans without her help along the way!

My Dreams for the Future by Hope Engaged | Katie is one of my favorite bloggers, possibly even people, on this planet. She is the kindest, most caring person ever, and I love that she shared her dreams for the next season of her life. She deserves each and every one. 

Prophylactic Bilateral Mastectomy by Carolina Charm | I was completely stunned by the honesty and bravery behind Christina's post about the preventative steps she's taking to reduce her risk of breast cancer.

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Who have you been loving on lately?

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Wednesday, October 14, 2015

My 3 Rules for Being a Good Working Mom

It should come as no shock that the whole working Mom gig hasn't exactly come easy to me. I work 40 hours for a non-profit job in a city an hour away. That is 50 hours a week, spent away from the love of my life. My feelings are all the more conflicting because I really do love my job. There is no other position in the world that I feel would be a better fit for me than what I'm doing now. Unfortunately, that doesn't make me miss my baby boy any less.

I'm in this job for the long haul, but I can't pretend that both my Hubby and me don't like to imagine what it would be like if I was able to be a SAHM. Any time I get the chance to stay home from work- whether it's for doctor's appointments, or lack of childcare, etc., I have so much fun playing "homemaker" for the day. I decorate the house, make freezer meals, read books with Charlie. It's glorious. The only way I've really figured out how to balance the 9-to-5 grind with trying to be a decent Mom to the world's greatest kid is to make rules for myself. Achieving work/life balance is much easier said than done, so here are my three rules for being a great (okay, good) working mom:

1. Never miss a wake up or bedtime nursing session. My schedule involves some travel, so this can sometimes be difficult to swing. But I've made a rule for myself that since it is the only time I see Charlie during the week. I will always be there when he wakes up, and when he goes to sleep (which probably explains why I never participate in any social gatherings after 7 pm. #sorrynotsorry)

2. Never miss a pumping session. This one has proven to be particularly tricky. I have three pump sessions scheduled on my Outlook calendar at work throughout the day. Which is all well and good until I get caught up in responding to emails, attending meetings, and dealing with time-sensitive issues that crop up. For the first several months of pumping at work, I was not very strict about adhering to my pumping schedule, but with the addition of a couple other nursing Mamas utilizing the lactation room, as well as a severe decrease in my supply, this is now a non-negotiable for me. I have been ten minutes late to important meetings on more than one occasion because of this. My work will still be there when I get back, but me being present for a pumping session means the difference between whether or not Charlie has enough milk to drink the next day. I know my priorities.

3. Never commit to a weekend activity that results in spending less time with Charlie. This doesn't mean that I never do fun things on the weekend. Family reunions, hiking on nearby trails and going pumpkin-picking are all things I've been able to do with Charlie along for the ride. Taking a weekend trip where I spend 9 hours not actually interacting with him in the car? That's something that I've had to pass on, even if it meant potentially not seeing friends and family for months at a time. I've had to make sacrifices, but quite honestly, it doesn't feel all that sacrificial when I already essentially spend 5 days of my week away from my Baby Pep. 

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For my fellow working Moms, what rules have you made for yourself to make family a priority in your working life?

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Friday, October 9, 2015

Motherhood is...Joy, and Surprise, and Hard, Hard Work

One of my favorite things about our new house is this spot right here:

About four feet from the foot of my bed, on a desk I've had since childhood, under a window that overlooks our back deck, sits my blogging nook. It is a keyboard. It is a place to rest my stained coffee mug. But most of all, it's mine.

And nearly every night as I crawl into bed, it rests there, patiently saying, "I'm here when you're ready." It could beg, or demand my attention, but somehow it just understands. There is an unspoken agreement between this little nook and me. It know it's loved and missed and appreciated. But it knows that my focus is elsewhere at the moment. And it knows that at some point, when I have a few moments to spare, we'll be reunited and it will be just as glorious as we remembered.

You see, the reason our relationship is a long-distance one, is because of this little thing called motherhood. For those who may not know, motherhood can be tiring. As evidenced here:

So, my blog remains neglected. Every night, I lay in bed, looking longingly at my nook, thinking tonight will be the night. When I finally put pen to paper, or fingers to keys, and I write about the ten million things swirling around my brain. And yet every night, that little demon called exhaustion wins out.

Tonight, however, I decided I was going to kick that demon to the curb, push past the mushiness that is my tired Mommy brain, and just write about what's been on my mind. And what's been on my mind a lot lately is motherhood. Not just the practical, logistical parts of keeping a small human alive, but the how do I move on with my life now that I am completely changed as a person?

There's been a tsunami of pregnant ladies at work in the last few months. I like to think I started the trend. Hardy har har. Of the three that have given birth since June, two have quit to remain closer to their babies. On the one hand, I can't even think about it because it makes my heart hurt. All I want is to be closer to my baby, and for now, God is telling me, it's not the time. So yeah, I'm jealous. But on the other hand, it makes me feel almost kind of...validated. Like perhaps I'm not the only one struggling so badly with this. Like maybe, this really and truly is just as hard on other new Mommies as it is on me. And if that's the case, then the fact that I'm working 40 hours a week and still doing a pretty damn good job in my role, means maybe this is what balancing it all looks like. On the inside, it's messy and painful and stressful and overwhelming. But...maybe, just maybe I'm keeping it together enough on the outside. And maybe, if other people are keeping it together on the outside, there's a possibility that they're just as messy and confused and heartbroken on the inside as I am. So in a long, rambling, nonsensical kind of way, my co-workers quitting makes me feel a little less alone in all this.

There is so much more I could say on this, and I know that my little nook will await me when I can. But for now, that pesky demon called exhaustion is beckoning. So I will curl up in bed under my fuzzy penguin blanket, with Mindy Kaling's new book and a hot cup of Mother's Milk tea, and I will thank God for the gift of motherhood: the joy, the surprise, and the hard, hard work.

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Wednesday, October 7, 2015

My Dream Home: Nursery Inspiration

If you're just joining in, I'm currently daydreaming about how to turn our simple, new house into a fun, new home bursting with character. Last week, I shared my dreams for our living room. 

This week, I'm turning my attention to the nursery.

Here is the plain ol' realtor shot of the room:

And here's what it looks like currently:

This is what I'm dreaming about for the future:

Nursery Inspiration

Nursery Inspiration by kaity-best featuring cotton rugs

My to-do list includes:

1. Paint. I want to stay true to the Mickey-theme without it being overwhelmingly red or black. I thought going with the yellow color of his buttons and shoes would be a sweet way to tie in the theme. Sunshine by Benjamin Moore is pretty close to what I'm going for.
2. Finish Charlie's dresser. Currently, Charlie's dresser is red, but I'd like to either paint the drawer pulls or buy some new knobs to go with the Disney theme.
3.  Buy some new bedding. I love his current bedding, but the color scheme doesn't totally go. I love these Buffalo Plaid Crib Sheets I found on Etsy- perfect color without being obnoxiously over the top and cutesy. 
4. Purchase and hang curtains. The curtains pictured above are pretty close, but I'd like to do more shopping around. 
5. Collect some Disney paraphernalia. Overall, I'd like the look to be more classic and vintage Mickey, than Modern Mickey. I'd love to include some cute details, like this old Mickey rotary phone or this vintage lamp

I have no issues with Charlie's current nursery set-up and I do still like the theme. The thing I like about this updated nursery idea, however, is that it's gender neutral. Eventually, we hope that Baby Pep will be sharing his room with a younger brother or sister, so regardless, this theme would fit either gender. 

Obviously, the nursery is not on the top of our to-do list, but it's sure fun to think about!

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What do you think of the Disney theme? Are the colors too bold or is it just right?

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