Apr
25

Our Nursery Inspiration Board

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It was probably fairly obvious from last Wednesday's post, but we've decided to go the mostly-neutral route for our nursery. Especially since this is our first baby, I want to stick with simple and classic items, so they'll still be "in style" for all our future kids, and will work just as well for a girl. So we're going to start with a nice, neutral backdrop--most of the furniture and major pieces will be white, grey, or taupe. Then, to add some personality and color, we're doing an adventure, outdoorsy theme. I'm collecting pieces with stars, clouds, mountains, trees, water, ocean creatures, and forest animals. All of those things coexist in Washington state (where we live) so hopefully they'll also mesh together well in the room. As for color, I'm mostly using soft shades of blue, green and yellow. I'm sure we'll get some toys with primary colors too, but for the decor I'm sticking with that color palette. When I decorate a new room, I like to start with an inspiration board to help me visualize everything and make purchasing decisions. It's really helpful! I'll often Photoshop in two different options that I'm considering, so I can compare them right there and see what fits better (I've already done this with the glider, artwork, etc.) Here's our nursery inspiration board...

Nursery inspiration board

What do you think? I really like the soft and serene vibe, with a little bit of color thrown in. Hopefully everything will come together well in real life!

Since we're house hunting, I've been waiting to set up our nursery so we don't end up doing it twice...so we have a bunch of boxes in there now, with items waiting to be assembled. At this point, however, it seems pretty likely that we'll be continue to rent our current house. We have to decide whether to renew our lease by the end of May, and since we haven't found a house to buy yet, I'm guessing we'll renew. The plus side is, we should be able to start decorating our nursery by June! That will be fun and exciting, whether it's in a new house or not.

Image sources: 1 / 2 / 3 / 4 / 5

6 COMMENTS
Apr
22

DIY Textured Planter + $50 Giveaway

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Happy Earth Day! I'm excited to partner with EcoScraps today to show you guys an easy DIY project, share some eye-opening facts, and give away a $50 Home Depot gift card! First off, the facts. Did you know that in the United States, we waste 40% of the food produced, enough to fill the Rose Bowl every day?! It sits in landfills producing methane, which is 20x more harmful than CO2...and the #1 most wasted food is bagged salads. That one really got me, since I am totally guilty of throwing away bagged salads that we intended to eat but forgot about. It happens way too often. So one thing I'm planning to do is to buy bagged salad on the same day that we plan to eat it, and only in the amount that we'll actually finish in that day. That's something small I can change in my life. On a larger scale, EcoScraps has been working hard to reuse food waste and keep it out of landfills. Between 2011 and 2015, they recycled 75 millions lbs of food waste by turning it into organic, all natural garden products. And in 2016 alone, they are planning to match that number with another 75 millions lbs recycled! So if you're doing some gardening this year, definitely look for EcoScraps soil at your local Home Depot.

Potted plants for spring

Since we live in a rental, I've never put a lot of effort into landscaping our tiny garden space. It just didn't seem worth it for something we couldn't take with us when we move. However, I do love plants and was feeling a little left out this spring, with so many of my friends posting photos of their gardens and yards. So I decided to add some potted plants by the front door! It's a small-scale way to add some greenery to our lives, and can easily be taken with us if we end up moving this year. Also...one of these planters was a DIY project! Can you tell which one?

DIY textured planter

If you guessed the square one, you are correct. I liked the shape of it, but wanted to add a little texture to give it some personality (inspired by this planter). In the spirit of Earth Day, I decided to use materials I already had at home. I found a square wooden dowel that was leftover from another project (this table runner), and cut it into 1.5" pieces.

Make a textured planter using pieces of scrap wood

I drew two parallel lines around the center of the planter as guides and carefully glued the wood pieces within the guide lines. Then, I spray painted the whole thing white.

DIY textured planter

Lastly, I transplanted my plant and filled the planter with EcoScraps potting mix.

DIY planter

EcoScraps potting soil

What I like about this project is that it's easy to make your own version. Look around your house and see what you already have that could add some texture to a plain planter. Pieces of wood, wine corks cut in half, etc. There are lots of possibilities! You can do a random pattern or something more orderly, like mine. Whatever you choose to do, have fun with it.

Textured planter pots

Also! EcoScraps is giving away a $50 Home Depot gift card that you can use for whatever gardening and home projects you're working on this spring. Enter below.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Let me know what you think of this project...and I'd also love to hear if there's anything you do to reduce food waste in your life? I'll be honest, it's not something I've given a lot of thought to in the past, and I think Ben and I could definitely make some improvements that would be good for the earth and good for our bank account.

Thanks to EcoScraps for sponsoring this post, and giving me some food for thought this Earth Day! If you'd like to know more about them, be sure to check out this video.

46 COMMENTS
Apr
20

Oh, Baby: Gathering Baby Stuff

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The first few months of my pregnancy didn't feel very real. We hadn't told many people yet, and I looked and felt about the same. I would forget sometimes, and then suddenly remember "Whoa, I'm pregnant!" Now that I'm almost 25 weeks, it's finally starting to hit me that this is actually happening. I feel the baby kick all the time now, my belly is getting noticeably bigger (I had a stranger stop me and ask when I was due for the first time on Monday), and in just three weeks we'll be in the LAST TRIMESTER. Whaaaat. Time is going by so quickly, and I'm starting to feel a little anxious about getting everything ready in time! It's funny, for those first few months, I felt like it was "too soon" to start prepping anything, like I was going to jinx our pregnancy or something. Now, I feel like there's so much left to do, I'm almost behind! So I've started researching baby gear, planning our nursery, and gathering baby stuff like it's my job. I thought I'd share some of the items we've collected so far and some things that are on our list, in case it's helpful for other mamas-to-be out there. Plus, I'd love to get feedback from those of you with experience...anything major that we're missing here? Anything on the list that is really not necessary?

Gathering baby stuff

What we have

Gathering baby stuff

Stroller: We bought our stroller from Ben's brother. A lot of our friends have BOBs and recommend them, so we were already thinking of getting one. Getting a deal on a used one clinched it! / Car seat: Ben's sister is letting us borrow her newborn car seat. Her baby is only a year old, so I think it should still be in good shape as far as safety standards, etc. / Crib: We picked out the Hudson crib from Babyletto. I really like how it looks, and the price is not outrageous. / Mobile: We both loved this sweet moon and stars mobile from Land of Nod. / Baby booties: I know these aren't really a necessity, but I couldn't resist getting some cute baby booties. I got a darling pair from Donsje Amsterdam, as well as some Freshly Picked moccasins. / Canvas baskets: These canvas baskets from Pehr Designs are awesome and come in lots of great patterns. / Swaddle blankets: I kept hearing rave reviews for Aden & Anais swaddle blankets, so I got a pack and registered for a few more. / Nursery artwork: We got most of the art for our nursery from Minted. We're going with a nature/outdoorsy theme since my husband loves hiking and getting outside. / Toys and stuffed animals: I used to work as an assistant buyer for zulily's toy department, so I have a soft spot for beautiful toys! We've collected a few so far, from various places.

What we need

Oh, baby! Wish list / registry for a new baby

Glider: I heard these are a must, for nighttime feedings. I'm trying to pick a nice, neutral glider that can also transition to another room of the house someday (and won't cost us our firstborn child, cuz what would be the point then?). / Swing: I really like the way the Nuna Leaf looks, and it has mostly positive reviews...but I did see a couple not-so-great ones. Anyone own it and care to chime in? / Baby monitor: I definitely want a good quality video monitor. They're expensive, but I think the peace of mind would be worth it. / Baby carrier: We've heard good things about the Ergo 360 and Ben likes that it's not too feminine so he won't be embarrassed to wear it. I'm debating whether I should also get one of the wrap baby carriers for myself, like the Solly or Moby ones. A lot of people seem to love them, but I figure maybe one carrier is good enough? / Pack 'n play: We want one that is easy to use and light for travel. Some friends of ours have this Baby Bjorn one and recommended it. It's not the cheapest, but it looks nice, has great reviews, and is super light. / Bassinet: I heard if you have a pack 'n play, you don't really need a bassinet. But I still like the idea of something smaller and cozier for those first few months...and since this is our first baby, we'll get good use out of it with all our future babies too. Justifiable? / Nursing pillow: Did you guys use a nursing pillow? I've heard good things about the Boppy so I'm thinking of getting one of those. / Diaper pail: Not sure if one of these is really necessary, but I might get one anyways just in case, so we don't have to take the trash out all the time. / Baby clothes: Last but not least, I'm probably most excited for baby clothes!!! I'm trying to hold off for now--we've already gotten some free hand-me-downs, and I know we'll have a baby shower too...but it's definitely tempting to start buying some little outfits for our baby. Where are your favorite places to shop for cute, inexpensive baby clothes?

I know that in the end, the "stuff" isn't so important, and what our baby really needs is just our love and care. But I also want to be prepared...plus, it's kind of fun to shop for a whole new category of things (especially tiny, cute baby things!).

So, tell me. Anything else we should get/add to our registry? Anything we can skip? I totally want to hear your opinions.

10 COMMENTS
Apr
14

DIY Stamped Clay Coasters

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I'm guessing this isn't the first coaster DIY you've ever seen (nor is it the first I've ever done--remember my wood slice coasters and emoji coasters?). But these are my new favorite...and I figure there's no such thing as too many coasters. Plus, they're super fun and easy to make! Want to know how? Head over to the Kendall-Jackson blog today, I'm sharing the DIY instructions over there.

DIY stamped clay coasters

I love how these coasters turned out, and plan to make a few more so I have a bigger set! Any ideas for other drink-related sayings?

Thanks to Kendall-Jackson for partnering with me on this post.

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