Thursday, August 11, 2011

Random advice needed! :)

Decisions, decisions!

I feel like we made it through a lot of the bigger ones, but here I am trying to put together a nursery and I have realized just how much I don't know about being a mom and having little ones! And obviously many things are personal preference, but I don't know how to have much personal preference when I don't even know what to expect! :) So I thought I would ask you ladies what you would do. Mind you, these things are rather trivial, but we still have to decide about them, right?!

1. Window coverings. Our nursery room is on the smaller side (11'x9' I think), with a window on one wall, wide but narrow closet on another, and the door swings out onto the 3rd. This leaves only 1 full wall which I think we will have to put the crib on. Therefore, I do think something will have to go under the window (dresser with changing pad on top or a small bookcase). This makes me think it would not be a good idea to use long curtains because they would have to go behind some piece of furniture, so I started thinking of getting some black out cellular blinds like this.

We have one of these in our bedroom that came with our house when we bought it, and I love how easy they are to pull up and down. Plus, you can get one without any cords. The downside is that it's either blocking the whole window or up - you can't "turn" the blinds to let some light in. But the nursery is on the back of the house, so it would be ok to have it all the way open when we want to let light in. Anyway, I was thinking about getting that and then putting up a cute valance. What do you think? Would that block enough light for a little one napping? Does it sound practical, or can you think of a better option?

2. Fans. We live along the coast and it rarely gets hot. Nobody we know has air conditioning. However, we can have summer and fall days where it is in the 80's and the house does get quite warm. My husband and I have a ceiling fan in our room that we probably use 2 months per year when we are going to sleep, and on those nights when we need it we are so glad we have one. We definitely need a new light fixture in the nursery, so I am debating whether or not to put in a ceiling fan. Aesthetically a ceiling fan isn't the cutest, but it could be practical and useful. OR we could just get a floor fan for those random warm nights. I'm also trying to think ahead to when we may have 2 kids in there (hopefully someday!), and we would need bunk beds. Would a ceiling fan be a no-no with bunk beds? But it would also save floor space if we did have 2 littles in there. Suggestions?

3. Dresser. I am debating between getting a 3 drawer narrow dresser or a 8 drawer wider dresser that has small drawers on top and 4 wide drawers below. On the one hand, I don't think one child needs all of those drawers. We would have more flexibility about where it is placed in the room if it's smaller and it wouldn't take up a lot of the room in general. We could even fit it in the closet if we wanted to. We could eventually get two of these smaller ones if we needed more drawer space for 2 kids. My husband leans towards the smaller one, since he doesn't want to plan for what we don't have or don't know we'll need. On the other hand, I like the look of the bigger one and that it has small drawers for small things. We could grow into it. It would fit the changing pad plus a lamp. How much drawer space do you need? Do you put more baby/ kid things in drawers or hang in the closet?

Alright I think that's all for now. As I typed these out I realized they are indeed very silly, but if you do have any suggestions it would be helpful to hear them! :)


Heather said...

About the window coverings - you'll want something that a little one can't grab or crinkle! My little one is constantly grabbing and swinging our planation blinds if he can reach them. We try to keep most of them half way up the window so he can't reach them.

As far as blocking light... my *personal preference* when mine were little was to let them nap with daylight and some noise (I often left a tv on low volume) so they could get used to napping anywhere. And I wanted them to learn day and night so I left it light in the day and dark at night. I would close the blinds in the day to make it shady but I didn't make it "dark". With blackout curtains, they may get day and night mixed up if you make it dark in the day or turn on a bunch of lights at night.

That's just my 2 cents on it! Both my boys slept through the night by 6 weeks. :) And they can both take a nap pretty much anywhere - on the beach, in the car, at a friend's house, etc becuase they are used to napping with things going on around them.

BTW, I'm very excited for you!!

Anonymous said...

My little guy is obsessed with fans. He loves staring at them... I guess it's like a giant mobile. I say go for it - it's practical and it will provide visual interest for baby.

kmjba8 said...

Hi. Can't remember if I've commented here before or not, and can't remember now how I stumbled upon your blog, but I think you're darling, and I wish you the best, and I'm happy to lend my opinion! :)

For the blinds, have you considered plantation shutters or something of the like? Something like this:

I don't ever close the blinds during the day - I read that keeping it bright and noise during the day helps them distinguish day from night, even when they're sleeping. At night, I do like to have the windows covered because my children's rooms are on the front of the house and there are occasional cars that pass by (especially when your kids go to bed at 7:00 and many families aren't even home yet!).

I would prefer a ceiling fan because once your two or three year old is out of the crib and into everything, you'll be terrified that they'll put their fingers into the fan. I supposed you could get an electric tower model that might not be as dangerous, but then you've spent as much as a ceiling fan!

When it comes to the dressers, I have one of each, and I can tell you that the "small things" are often the things you have the most of - socks, undies, tights, etc. and even though they're small, you need more space than the little drawers offer. Also, I LOVE our smaller dresser (which IS in a closet) because I don't worry about my youngest climbing the drawers and pulling the dresser over on herself (my oldest one did that with the taller set, and a trip to the hospital feeling like the worst mother in the world is something I'd like to avoid happening again).

Something else to mention, since you enjoy reading for information about where you're headed - Your Baby Week by Week, and later, Your Toddler Week by Week were great for us. I didn't grow up with babies around, so I needed to "learn" about everything and these books were a great resource.

Hooray for babies! There are so many who need love! Good luck and blessings!


RMCarter said...

Our nursery is set up very similar, and we chose to have the long curtains, even though they are covered up by a dresser. We haven’t put them up yet, so I’ll let you know how it goes!

I have an opinion on the ceiling fan however! :) In our infant safety class, they suggested if you have one, it’s good to run it on low when the baby’s sleeping, even if it’s not hot. Babies get warm when sleeping in the winter too and the movement in the air is good for them. Apparently, circulating the air helps reduce SIDS. This was from the nurse who taught our class, so take it for what it’s worth!

Anonymous said...

I would suggest a fan...studies show that using a fan reduces the risk of SIDS as it improves the air flow. I use a fan in my daycare naping room for this reason and also the white noise blocks sounds from outside the room.

As for the window coverings and dresser...I have no thoughts! :)

Carrie said...

1. For the windows....have you considered getting a roman shade? I think they are so cute in coordinating bedding fabric or some type of neutral fabric with decorative ties. That way you can have the shade down for napping or up to let sunlight in...but it still looks cute either way. I think we're going to do that in our nursery and have blinds underneath.
2. If you are going to get a new light fixture anyway, I would totally go for a ceiling fan. That way you always have the option if you need it. I have heard having some type of fan is good for the nursery to keep the air from getting stale and reducing SIDS. If you have a fan that sits on the floor it is more likely to get knocked over, fingers in it, and just be in the way. Dont't worry about having bunk beds and the fan. I would think the top bunk would be far enough away that it would be safe. Also, by the time your child/children are in a bunk bed, they should be old enough to know not to mess with the fan.
3. I think you should go for the bigger dresser. You don't think a baby needs a whole lot of stuff, but it does add up. I have a feeling you will get a lot of goodies from friends and family and the more storage you have, the better. OR....if you are worried about space, you could go for the smaller dresser and then get closet organizers. They have them at babies r us where they are canvas shelves that hang from the clothes rod. I registered for the "kit" that comes with several pieces. If you didn't get the big dresser, what would you use as the "changing table?" Can you fit a changing pad on the smaller one?

Also, these are not silly questions at all! You want your nursery to be as organized as possible and to use the space you have in a smart way. Can't wait to see it all come together!!!

A said...

I think the cellular blind sounds like a great idea! If you wanted something "in between" and/or with color, you could always get a colored sheer type curtain, and hang it in front of the blind, that way you could have some coverage if the blind was all the way up.

I think the fan would be good! I have heard that we aren't supposed to let the room where the baby sleeps get too hot, so I'd probably have some sort of fan in there for summer nights, if you don't get a ceiling one. But I agree with PP- it seems like babies would love to watch them!

Our dresser is wide, and while it only has three larger drawers and a cabinet section, we like that it can double as a changing table. I think you will like all the drawers- as I am organizing our nursery, I am finding myself wanting lots of storage for things like towels/washcloths, blankets, sheets, etc. I doubt you will be looking for things to tuck away into the drawers!!

You have no idea how excited I am for you that you are setting up a nursery!!!

Buck said...

Like some have mentioned above the light-blocking is tricky. If it's too dark, your baby will get use to that and need it very dark to sleep. This is fine until you're at a hotel/friend's house/grandma's etc. where it's not as dark. We have fairly dark wooden blinds in the nursery but they aren't blackout. As an experiment my husband actually rigged up a "blackout" situation so we could see if the toddler-peep would sleep later. It didn't change her wake up time...

Again, as someone mentioned, the fan is not only nice for temperature control but recommended for SIDS prevention. But for the coldest winter days when the nursery was freezing, we have the ceiling fan always going.

That's about as useful as I can be. Still reading along quietly and cheering for you guys!

Amanda said...

We put a "light filtering" double, cordless cellular shade in Michael's room. It works very well to dim the room for naps and bedtime. We wanted some light so that he followed the natural rhythm of the day. You could always put a shade or curtain over it that coordinates with the room (cute) and will help to block a little extra light. My nursery post is here is you want ideas:

I'd go with the ceiling fan. A little air flow is nice and you can run it as often as you need and not have to work around a floor fan. You might need that floor space for a humidifier.

Go with the bigger dresser. Even though kid clothing doesn't take up much room you always have clothes they have grown out of and the next size up to deal with too and that takes up room. Better to have more space than not enough. And you said it looks cuter anyways.

The Lane Family said...

I just found your blog through a friend who was going through infertility and it worked and then we have multiple friends who adopted... after many loses and mulitple in-vitro;'s if our last two had not worked we were looking at adoption as well. Therefore it is near to my heart.

So anyway with that said!! COngrats on the adoption and on getting things ready!!!

Also when it comes to getting ready for a baby and when it comes to raising them there are NO silly questions.

1.Like many have said I would avoid long curtains or anything that has cords that the baby can grab onto.

2. I like many of the mom's did not use black out curtains because I wanted my babies to learn day and night and looking back I wish we would have had more background noise because I have one that will wake-up if a fly swings bye.

3.Fans are WONDERFUL. They provide great white noise, keep a room cool and my son and our twin girls LOVED and still LOVE watching them.

4. I have both types of dressers and I cannot say I like one better than another. I will say to remember to anchor them to the wall, you can get nice looking anchors at a LOWE's, Home Depot etc. that way when they get moving and grooving you will not have an accident.

Good look and I look forward to reading your blog.

Rachel DeBell said...

Ok I am not a mom yet, and granted I live in texas where life without A/C is unlivable. We use fans anyway, because Many of our homes don't cool even with A/C.But probably 60% of my friends with babies say they use a fan, but most of them use the rotating or box fans because they say that they keep air circulating, but even more for the white noise factor. Some of their babies seem to sleep better with the fan going for noise than anything else.

Anonymous said...

DEFINITELY get a ceiling little guy loves ours so much that sometimes I'll just keep him on his changing table for a while after his change!

And regarding the're definitely going to have more folded things than you think (towels, blankets, sheets, etc.). I have a dresser with three drawers and two shelves on one side and I don't have nearly enough folded storage.

I'm so excited for you!! I'm not able to comment as much as I'd like, but I'm following your journey and praying as hard as I can!

cjdubs13 said...

Our little guys loves fans and I wish we had a ceiling fan. A floor fan is an accident waiting to happen with little fingers and curious minds!

I would go with a smaller dresser if you can buy another for baby #2. Then every one has their own!

keeksaz said...

Babies LOVE fans, definitely go with that and they have some pretty cute ones out now, although just any fans in general seem to be so fascinating.

I have never had a blacked out room for naps and I'm really glad now because it's just so much easier and he is way more flexible as to where/how he'll nap. I also have not been too concerned with noises and it's worked out really well.

I would go with the bigger dresser because there is more than you initially think and it can be useful for storing things other than clothes. Also invest in some big bins for toys and you can leave them in different rooms. Makes cleanup SO much easier. That's down the road, but just something that has really helped me.

And the best advice I have - just go with your instincts, trust yourself, no matter what every baby and every parent is different so go with what works for you and don't worry about not knowing what you don't me, you'll learn it soon enough! You just get this instinct, this primal thing that kicks in, and you can trust that because it's something no one else can tell you, it's just this amazing bond with you and your baby =)

Jennifer said...

I haven't read all the other comments so if this has been said I'm sorry.
We use a ceiling fan all the time because we were told it reduces the risk of SIDS.

We have blackout curtains and I use them in the evening when I put Ellie to bed. She goes down at 7:00 and she is in the front of the house where the sun is beating in her windows at that point. I love them. During the day I don't keep them pulled, unless she's sick and having a hard time sleeping because I want her to know day from night. We've never had any sleep issues with her.

We also have a large long dresser in her room. I love it because of all the storage it provides. It's one from ikea and it was perfect. We have her changing pad on top as well as a basket for diapers and a lamp. I also have my baby dresser which I sanded and repainted. It is taller and skinny. They are both pretty full as well as the closet. You'd be surprised how much stuff you are going to have. ha!
Good luck with your decisions. Whatever you decide will be right for you!

Debbie said...

Get a ceiling fan. I agree that air circulation is key. My girls have bunk beds a a ceiling fan, and we have been fine. As far as furniture, don't forget that you'll need blankets, burp cloths, sheets, etc. These can all be stored in a bigger dresser, and are handy to have in the baby's room instead of a hall closet.

Anonymous said...

We have a ceiling fan and my son loves them. I've also heard that air circulation is possibly a preventer of SIDS. Especially if you don't have A/C, you definitely need some sort of air circulation so there isnt just stagnant air in the room.

Britney said...

You are too cute. My two cents' worth: 1) it is necessary to have at least a moderately dark room for nap. Not so much for when he/she is a baby, as they tend to acclimate/sleep anywhere, but particularly when he/she becomes a toddler and it's harder to get them to go down for naps. 2) fans are necessary, also, in my book. Not only does the white noise it create soothing and block out excess noise (i.e., you cooking, cleaning, etc.), but it has been shown to reduce the risk of SIDS. It has less to do with how warm it is, but about circulating stagnant air 3) We didn't have drawers for the nursery. We bought these wood, ladder-looking floor-ceiling shelf things at pottery barn that offer a TON of storage, with very little room. Then they had closets.


andreajennine said...

1) I like the idea of a roller shade and valance, or of a Roman shade (do those come cordless?), or of cordless cellular blinds (w/ a valance again). All would be cute and practical! If you have a changing table underneath, definitely think about what baby could grab, kick, smear poo on, etc.

2) Yes to some sort of fan! As others noted, it's good for white noise and decreases SIDS risk. We don't have central air, and we use a ceiling fan and box fan on hot days. I'm not crazy about the box fan on the floor (baby likes to grab at it), but we need it. If you go with the wider dresser, a small stand fan could be nice.

3) We have a 3 drawer dresser, and it's been more than adequate. We put a changing pad on top, but we've actually rarely used it. I mostly end up changing diapers on the floor in whatever room we're in (living room, bedroom, etc.). Going to baby's room for every diaper change is a pain!

Meg said...

I'll send you a picture of my big dresser soon. On top of it I have a) a small basket filled with diapers b)a changing pad c)the diaper wipes warmer. These 3 necessities take up the whole top of the huge dresser. I can't imagine trying to hold a wiggly, squirmy baby still (or from falling on the floor) while I reach elsewhere for the wipes or the diaper (which you'd have to do if you have a small dresser that would only hold the changing pad).

For background noise, I have an air purifier as well as a sound machine (that you find with the candles in Wal-Mart. I keep it on the "rain" setting) We have ceiling fans in every room in our house and I love them.

I'll catch up with you soon! So excited with you!

Anonymous said...

1) Some sort of heavy curtains (or shades) that block out all light saved my life - my 13 mo old sleeps 13 hours a night thanks to the curtains.
2) Some studies show lower chance of SIDS with moving air, and the others are right, once they can crawl, they will try to stick their fingers in a floor fan.
3) I vote for a wide dresser - the more drawers the better - kids have SOOOO much stuff! I have one from CostCo - 4 big drawers and 3 little ones across the top, it matches my pottery barn crib.

Just my .02 cents. You'll know what is best for you. :-)