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Tuesday, December 13, 2011

WINTER WHITE

White is a perfect choice for nursery decor, and works beautifully no matter what your style. To achieve a great white room, start with white walls and a white floor. By surrounding the space in white, your room is wrapped in the purity of the color and half the work is done. Next, choose white furnishings that bring the style you want to the room. By adding a few neutral touches, you give your white pallet some depth, and add overall interest to the room.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Nesting 101

At some point in your pregnancy, that primal urge called nesting wakes up and takes over your entire being. You fantasize about fabric and crave cribs. It's o.k. It's normal, and I'm here to help you create the nursery of your dreams, on time, on budget and just the way you want it. In fact, being the professional that I am, I'm going to break it down for you in 3 easy steps. Ready?

Step 1: Consider your space, choose your furnishings
Step 2: Form meets function
Step 3: Bring in the love

1. O.K., so let's look at the room. Consider the size, features, light, and style of the space. Often the nurseries are the smallest room in the house, so you're going to want to maximize the look and feel of that space. Choose light colored walls, and make the most of any light coming in from the windows. This will make the room seem bigger. Next choose your furnishings. So often people with small rooms make the fatal mistake of choosing small scaled furniture. This just makes your room feel even more diminutive, like a doll house. Rather, choose regular size pieces, but ones that can do double duty so you end up using less furnishings. Choose a changer that can doubles as a dresser, for example. If your room is really large, you will want to make sure you have great floor coverings to cut down on noise, and feel free to use rich, warm or dark wall colors which will help create a more cozy atmosphere. Every room has its own personality, so find out what's unique about your s and highlight that. Maybe you have beautiful old molding, if so, maximize its affect by painting it a contrasting color. Maybe you have a great arch, or window seat, or fabulous wide planked floors. Whatever it is, if its beautiful, show it off.

2. Once you've chosen your color scheme and furnishings, you're off to a great start. By now, the room should begin to take shape and reflect your style. But, this isn't just a beautiful room, its a room that has work to do. It has to provide for a safe sleeping environment, a place to change baby, and, ideally, offer a place to feed and rock your little rock star. So, now we've got to get practical. I know you've chosen a brand new beautiful crib (hopefully one from Bratt Decor) that meets all of the latest safety requirements, and you've decked it out with a great mattress and bedding. So, that area is all taken care of. And, I'm sure you heeded all of your manufacturers warnings about crib placement, etc. If you don't know what I'm talking about, check at the CPSC website for all that very important info. Next, you need to set up a changing station. Believe me you'll be spending way more time than you ever imagined doing this one little task. Make sure you have everything at your fingertips that you need, so you never are tempted to leave baby. Stock it with wipes, diapers, a change of clothes, ointments and powders, everything you could possibly need, and don't forget the diaper genie. Next, do yourself a favor and get a fabulously comfy chair, and make sure your hubby likes it too. You will be in this chair a lot. There are so many great options, one for every style. So, you've covered SEP functions. What's SEP, you ask, oh, that's Sleep, Eat and Poop.

3. Finally, the love. Honestly, if this room isn't absolutely oozing with the love, you've missed the whole point. Remember, this first room is for you. After the SEP is covered, it really is all about you. This is where you will while away the hours, as night turns into day. This is the room you will remember, as you bring that brand new baby home and place him in his gorgeous crib that you so lovingly prepared for him. So, as you love on the baby this room needs to love on you. Put things that you love all around the room. I love things from your personal history, your childhood. Do you have a favorite stuffy, or a silver rattle, or maybe your own christening gown that you can frame and put on the wall. Whatever objects you choose, make sure they are personal and that they melt your heart whenever you look at them. You will be soothed and peaceful and that most definitely will transfer to baby.

So there you have it, as easy as 123. I want you to have so much fun putting this room together, and I want you to love the end result. Be kind to yourself. Include your husband in the process. Give yourself enough time to do all the things you want to do. Create a budget and make it work. Be flexible if things don't go exactly the way you planned, it's really not that big of a deal in the grand scheme of the miracle that you're experiencing. Laugh, a lot. It's a fantastic time and one that should be savored.

Have fun little birdies.

Monday, January 31, 2011

The Meaning of Life According to My Acupuncturist

Once upon a time I had a very nasty red, bumpy rash on my thighs and it itched like crazy. Normally I'm the type to generally suck it up when it comes to life's little illnesses or physical inconveniences, but this was not to be ignored. So, after a week of oatmeal baths and aloe vera rubs, I went to see a dermatologist. The doctor looked me over and promptly announced I was experiencing a reaction to antibiotics. When I informed said doctor that I hadn't been on antibiotics in at least ten years, he told me I must be mistaken because that rash was definitely the result of a reaction to antibiotics. Don't you just a love a good doctor who listens? He prescribed some pills and some creams and sent me on my way. I used all the stupid medicine and had no relief whatsoever. Finally, I went to see an acupuncturist who spent a lot of time asking me all kinds of questions about my life. To my surprise she pulled out a pamphlet that pictured a rash that looked exactly like mine. She then went on to educate me on the cycles we go through in life, and they are broken into four seasons: spring, summer, winter and fall. Now, our personal seasons don't necessarily coincide with the actual seasons, but rather reflect important points within our life. Spring is a time in your life when you are full of new ideas and new directions. It can be when you are buying a new house, or starting a business, or having a child. It can be as simple as beginning a new work out regime. It represents beginnings, newness. We all have many, many springs within our lifetime. Summer is the fullness of the new idea. It's when we bare the fruit of our new endeavor. Fall is a slowing down of the growth. It represents the coming of the end. Now, I know that sounds bad, but it's really not. It can mean we've reached our goals, it's time to for a well deserved rest. And then winter is a time for rest. It's a peaceful time when we are designed to restore and renew our energy. We need the quiet to settle and generate new directions. All of these seasons are essential and ongoing within ones lifetime. And, there are wonderful and difficult things that can happen in all the stages. The wonderful scripture: for all things there is a season, speaks of this exact concept. If we don't move through the stages as they natural begin and end, there can be physical repercussions. As it turns out, my rash was the result of my refusing to move through my Fall. At that time, I didn't even know I was in a Fall, but I had been dealing with some really hard things. I thought I was handling everything quite swimmingly, however, my rash was proof to the contrary. My sister had died about 6 weeks earlier, way too young of cancer. Also, at that time, it became very apparent that I had to close my store, which I had only just opened. It seems wrong somehow to even mention my store in the same sentence as my sister, because one represents a priceless human life and the other is just a business. But, for me it was more than that. It represented what I saw as a pinnacle of years of hard work and sacrifice, an arrival, my greatest work so far. And, it didn't just fail, it fail spectacularly. I lost all the money I had managed to save in 10 years of business. I lost my vision, and I lost my confidence. It was a devastating loss. And, well, loosing my sister, I guess I don't need to explain how heartbreaking that was. I moved through my Fall. I let go. I mourned. I rested. And I waited for something new.

I didn't want either of those things to be true, but they were true none the less. We all know deep within ourselves, all truth, but sometimes we just don't have the courage to look at it, really look at it. So, we play a game with mind, attempt to convince ourselves that we're just fine, handling everything. And then comes the rash, or the heart attack, or the failed marriage, or the break down.

So, take my wise tail of the angry red rash, and learn from it. If you're stuck, I'm here to stand with you. I will hold your hand as you face the truths of this life that you just don't want to face, and I promise you, Spring will come again.

I don't know why I wanted to tell you this story. Maybe because I'm sensing a long awaited Springtime. Maybe you're stuck and don't know it. Maybe you're in the thralls of Springtime or the fullness of summer and I want you to stand still and enjoy it. Wherever you are, embrace all that this time has to offer. For me, I feel change and possibility swirling all around me. Spring is in the air.