Disclaimer: I started drafting this post back in January. I didn’t post it then because I needed to collect some pictures of the various projects. I’ve been kind of busy with all other life stuff and forgot about this post. But better late than never, I suppose! Enjoy.
So, it turns out the nesting instinct is just as strong when you’re adopting as it is when you’re actually pregnant. And, you’re not too pregnant to actually do all of the stuff that looms over you, so that’s a plus.
Paul has been on break for the last two weeks and we have had the most productive two weeks we’ve had in a long, long time. Two weeks ago doesn’t even feel like two weeks, that’s how much has happened!
The first big project that we completed is the office/guest room smoosh. I wanted to clear out the guest room to convert it into a nursery, but to do that, we had to make space in the office. So we had to completely reorganize the office, get rid of one of the desks, and make room for the bed. In the process, we also baby proofed the office, covering all the outlets, organizing cords and making sure it meets all of the home study standards. I still have a pair of scissors on the desk, lol, but I’ll be sure to put them in a locked cabinet before the home study. I will also mention that when I redid the office a few years ago, I did not create enough storage space. This turned out to be very problematic because as time passed, the office turned into a dumping ground for random stuff. All that had to be dealt with before we could bring down the guest bed.
One element of this project that I am particularly proud of is the new wall shelves. There was an old cheap, falling apart bookshelf in the garage that wasn’t storing anything too important. So, we moved things around and dismantled it. We salvaged the shelves and Paul put some brackets on the wall above the desk. And Boom! We had more storage space for the office supplies that need to be readily accessible!
Once we got the office ready, we brought down the bed and it turned out it was too tight of a fit to leave the corner bookshelf where I had wanted it. So, we got creative and tipped it on it’s side. Paul built some stools for the other side of the bed and now there is a lot of storage space under the bed. I’m also calling it a loft bed, now, because it’s just too high tobe a normal bed. Haha!
The next project we completed during this Christmas break is refinishing an old dresser I had bought from a local buy/sell group. I sanded it down, and painted it a dark peacock blue green color and swapped out the ugly old handles for brushed nickel looking ones. I also decided to paint an old end table we’d had tucked into a closet to match the dresser. Paul was a little concerned about the color I picked, but once it was on the dresser, he loved it as much as I did from the beginning.
Another project we worked on was getting the previously called guest room to qualify as a nursery. So what does that mean??? It means a crib! Yay! My parents gave us the crib for Christmas, so Paul got it set up. I also created some prints (inspired by Pinterest, of course), framed them and hung them on the walls. I would still like to do a little more decorating, but I think that will come with time.
The next project we worked on was building gates for the top and bottom of our stairs. This is one of the requirements for the adoption process, so it was a high priority. I had been thinking about a gate for the top of the stairs since we had Harry, but he’s never really been allowed to roam free upstairs. And now, he knows how to do stairs by himself so I thought we sidestepped that phase. But since we needed to get it done, I revisited the ideas I’d had floating around from way back. I am not crazy about the pre-fabbed baby gates. They tend to be cumbersome and expensive and not to mention major eye-soars. Pinterest to the rescue yet again! I’d seen a number of homemade, farm-door style gates and we decided to use that as inspiration. Eventually, we used plywood covered in fabric and chalkboard with some pretty and chunky hardware. I am very happy with the outcome! And it’s a good thing I like it since we have two!
Once the gates were completed, I moved on to the closet for the nursery. A few years ago, I painted it green to match the green in the room. That actually made a huge difference in making it so much more attractive. There are no doors, so we’d hung a curtain up instead. The problem was that there was only one shelf and one rod across the length of the closet. It was a very inefficient use of space!
I went back and forth in my mind about how much time and effort I wanted to invest in the closet. I also didn’t want to spend a fortune on it. So I scoured Pinterest yet again and took a field trip out to The Container Store in Pasadena with a couple friends to get ideas. Eventually, I decided to add a column of shelves on one side and another rod with a shelf above it that only reaches half way across the closet. I also wanted another high shelf that stretched the length of the closet. But of course, I couldn’t do any of this until is was painted pretty to match the room! I used the same paint I had used on the dresser and end table. By using left over wood from other projects, our total cost for this closet makeover was only about $75, which makes us both happy!
With a few final touches to the nursery, like a ribbon chandelier I made from a wire cupcake tower and some more art on the walls, I feel like the nursery is officially ready. I know that once we actually start using it, it will start to fill up and looked lived in. I can’t wait to get to that point.