Lately, we have been sending Gracie to her room when she gets really worked up. If we can’t play in water for whatever reason and I can’t get her to calm down any other way, then she has to go to her room until she stops crying. Then she can come out and play with us again. This is not a punishment. It is just to get her into a quiet place where she can calm herself down. And she usually does within about 3 minutes. It is amazing. This afternoon I sent her to her room and less then a minute later, it was quiet upstairs. I peeked down the hall to check on her, and this is what I found:
She was just sitting there quietly, happily reading her books.
Sometimes, she just needs some time away from everyone before the demons can leave her pretty little head. The good news is that now that her bedroom is finished, she has a pretty little place to exorcise her pretty little head!
We did Gracie’s room in stages. First we painted and then we set up her toddler furniture (you can read about that here). The last step was to put in a bookshelf and toy storage something, and then to move her changing table out when she became potty trained. We are in the process of selling our crib and so we decided to sell the changing table with the crib as a set. Gracie isn’t done potty training yet and still uses a changing table, though. So, we took the little mattress pad off her changing table and set it up on top of a dresser in the guest bedroom as a make-shift changing table until she no longer needs one.
We originally talked about building a bench seat under her window with toy storage, but when we put her furniture all in her room, we worried that a built-in wouldn’t leave us many options now or in the future when it came to moving furniture around. Plus, with the way her room is set up now, I really liked her table and chairs under the window.
Her toddler sleigh bed came from Amazon, and is made by Dream on Me. It is beautiful, but I would not recommend this brand. What you can’t see in the pictures (you can’t even really see it in person unless you know to look for it…) is that the slats on the footboard and headboard are chipped. When they packed up the pieces, the paint stuck together and so when we pulled it all out to put it together, the paint scraped away in some places. Plus, it was not easy to put together at all. Just an FYI if anyone is interested in the style. Now that it is all put together and the paint has been touched up, though, it is a very sturdy bed and Gracie loves it. My mom made the drapes and matching duvet cover out of fabric we found online. It is gorgeous in person! Even more than the pictures show.
(Note: I’m still trying to figure out what to do above Gracie’s bed. I’m very close to turning it into a huge fabric bulletin board to hold pictures and artwork. I’ll keep you posted.)
The only thing not yet in the room is a five-drawer chest of drawers that belonged to my dad. It was one of the things of his I wanted after he died. My mom and I are going to paint it white this summer and put new hardware on it. It will go in Gracie’s room to the left of her bed and hold a little lamp.
For her bookshelf and toy storage, we found one piece at Ikea to do it all. And I love it! I have always wanted to use one of their big storage bookshelves. I really want one of the 4×4 bookshelves in this same style, but her bedroom is too small. I might try one in our master bedroom, though, since this little one worked so well in Gracie’s room. The bookshelf was $70 and then we paid $4.99 for each of the storage bins. The bins are fabric and very light, but they are this suede-type material that gives the appearance of them being more expensive. I really love them.
I hung her butterfly mobile over it, and I’m debating about what to do above the bookshelf. I’m thinking either white letters to spell her name or just leave it blank. I kind of like the blank wall right now since there is so much else going on with the mobile and all the trinkets on the tabletop. I’ll have to keep thinking about that one.
I love everything that is on top of her bookshelf now, too. We didn’t have any place to put keepsakes in her room, and this tabletop has given us just the perfect place.
This lamb was in Gracie’s bassinet when she was a baby. And the little Precious Moments figurine was in Chris’s sister, Annie’s, room when she was growing up. Annie gave it to Gracie for her first birthday. I figure we’ll hold it until Annie has kids of her own one day. Until then, I love that it is part of Gracie’s room. I also have keepsake books that hold special meaning to us. Normally, this little collection of books includes a set of three books that were mine when I was a baby, but Gracie loves those and she was reading them when I took this picture so they aren’t shown here.
My favorite, though, is this bunny lamp. My mom made it for my nursery when I was a baby. It was in my bedroom from the time I was a baby until I left for college. I can’t tell you how much I love that it now sits in Gracie’s room.
Besides the bins under the bookshelf which hold an obscene amount of toys, we are also using Gracie’s closet for toy storage.
We have things she can’t play with on the top shelf, and then her clothes and shoes, of course. Her clothes hamper is also in her closet now, instead of sitting in a corner of her room. But we decided to use the bottom shelf for toys instead of clothes. I keep larger toys that would take up a lot of space in her room if we left them out in the bottom of the closet. We park her grocery cart and baby stroller there at the moment.
On the shelf itself are toy storage bins that both the kids use to sort and collect small toys. I have one for her tea sets (she has three; we drink a lot of tea…), one of little figurines and small dolls, and one for her Mrs. Potato Head and all its pieces. She and Bean both are really good about only taking out one bin at a time, and that helps keep those bins organized and cleaned out.
So, that’s Gracie’s big girl room. I really love it, but Gracie loves it most of all. It is the perfect, quiet retreat for her when she needs some space to herself, but it is also the central playground these days when she and Bean are playing together, too. I love a cute, functional room!