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!
One of the first baby products I ever received was a big, giant tub of Boudreaux’s Butt Paste. I remember it so well. Ahhh…memories… It was at my very first shower when I was pregnant with Michael, and a girlfriend gave it to me as a joke because it had “butt paste” in the name. (You know you’ve had children too young when phrases like “butt paste” make you explode in fits of giggles!)
Michael hardly ever had diaper rash. Like, ever. In fact, I don’t think he had it once. And so my giant tub of Butt Paste sat unused in his closet. By the time Gracie was born, it had disappeared in one of our moves. Gracie was a completely different story when it came to diaper rash. That poor child hardly ever DOESN’T have diaper rash. One good diaper and her poor little bottom looks like a 17-year-old face with acne. Oh, it’s terrible! Big ol’ welts all over! I’m not sure if it’s a girl thing or a Gracie thing, but girlfriend has some issues! We tried several different methods of fighting diaper rash, but one of the most effective methods we have found is using diaper cream before diaper rash is a problem. We use it every night for Gracie, or any period of time when I know it might be a bit longer between regular diaper changes (ex. out running errands and on trips). This is preventative and helps us avoid the situation in the first place most of the time. I also use it any time there’s the slightest hint of red on her bum. My goal is to prevent the welts by using it before they show up. And that has worked really well.
The next step was figuring out which diaper cream to use. Since we use it so often, it has to be something that is gentle enough for her sensitive skin, but still really darn effective. That’s why we use Boudreaux’s Butt Paste. You may think this is a product review, but I think of this post as more of a consumer report. Because we consume Boudreaux’s Butt Paste. We consume much. I love that it comes in a tub, too. It fits in the drawer of Gracie’s changing table, and I can literally scoop out handfuls of the stuff to cover her toosh. More than the convenience, though, I love that it is actually what the silly name says. It is a BUTT PASTE, y’all. I’m talking full coverage, you-might-be-able-to-spackle-your-dining-room kind of coverage. That might sound too harsh for a baby, but if you’ve ever seen your child suffer from severe diaper rash, you know that that thick, creamy coverage is exactly what you want. Ain’t nothin’ gettin’ through that Butt Paste. Gracie’s tooshy stays dry and welt free, which is exactly what you want. While I found Boudreaux’s Butt Paste when I was a new mom, it really wasn’t until I was a more seasoned mom that I realized what a gold mine it was. We are hardly ever without it around my house. As their very entertaining video says, “Our butts are saved!!!”
Boudreaux’s Butt Paste and BlogHer are sponsoring a $100 Visa gift card giveaway on Marriage Confessions today! Enter to win by leaving a comment below telling me how you have “kicked some butt” while parenting. Be sure to especially share any good tips you have for treating or preventing diaper rash! You can also enter the giveaway a second time by posting a link to your Facebook, Twitter (be sure to use the hashtag #SweepstakesEntry), or blog post that either shares the funny video above or a link to this blog post. For more information about Boudreaux’s Butt Paste, be sure to check out their Facebook page.
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I have discovered Zulily. And my life will never be the same.
My sister and my mom have mentioned Zulily to me before as having great deals, but my budget is usually a bit tighter than theirs and so a “great deal” to them is sometimes not so great for me. BUT! Zulily is for me, too!
I stumbled on it tonight when I accidentally clicked an ad in the sidebar on Facebook. And my mind was BLOWN. Seriously. I am embarrassed to admit how many pairs of shoes I just bought Gracie. So, I won’t admit it. I’ll just show you the shoes that I “hypothetically” would have bought her. And if my husband asks, this blog post never existed.
Look at these! I mean, I don’t even think Gracie owns anything that’s purple, but these shoes were adorable and only $7.99! Which means I will now go out and buy her purple clothes to match her new purple shoes. Hypothetically.
And look at these! She’s going to look like a little rock star! If Gracie were a shoe, I think she would be this shoe. So sassy! So complex! So adorable! She just had to have them! Hypothetically. ($8.99)
And since I bought her two pair of impractical sneakers, I figured I had to offset those with a pair of totally versatile and super cute sandals that would match everything she owns. Hypothetically. ($7.99)
And, of course, searching for white sandals led to an even bigger selection of white sandals. So, of course she needed these little ankle sandals! How cute are they???? Hypothetically. ($8.99)
Thinking about her little sundresses reminded me that I just bought her a navy sundress that she didn’t have any shoes to wear with, so I just happened to stumble upon these suckers. I love the pop of pink! It’s going to look great with her little navy sundress. Hypothetically. ($9.99)
And while I was looking at flats, I found these which serve no purpose whatsoever in Gracie’s wardrobe and matching nothing she owns or probably ever will own. But how does one walk away from leopard and pink? How, I ask? Hypothetically. ($9.99)
Here’s the great thing about Zulily. If you refer people and they join through your link, then you get a $20 credit when they place their first order. YEE HAW! Momma needs a new pair of shoes, y’all! Hypothetically. And they aren’t just a shoe website. They have children’s and adults clothing, shoes, accessories – even toys and furniture (though I found the best deals were on shoes). So, click my link, join up, and shop until you drop.
Hypothetically, of course.
“POOOOOOPY!” she’d yell, and then she’d grab her bottom and start dancing around.
After the third time, I finally caught on. (I’m slow on the uptake sometimes…) She wasn’t able to tell me before she actually went, though. Usually, she’d tell me just after and she would demand a diaper change. “Poopy, Mommy. Poopy die-py.”
I started praising her like crazy when I realized what was going on. I remembered that this was the first indication that a toddler might be ready to start potty training. She’s becoming aware of the sensation – all good.
So, she’d tell me she had a dirty diaper, and then I’d go sit her on the potty before I changed her. Sometimes she was okay with that. Sometimes it freaked her out. Though, she does do better when Bean’s in there. I think he keeps her entertained while she sits there. I’m not expecting her to go yet, but I want her to get the feel of sitting on a potty and Bean really helps that.
Last week, I started noticing that now when Gracie tells me she has to go potty, she hasn’t actually gone yet. Which means she is inching closer and closer to actual potty training because she can tell when she needs to go potty now. I’m getting ready to buy her a little potty training seat for Christmas. I threw out Bean’s a while ago, and she doesn’t like sitting on the big potty by herself. I’m hoping a good little Elmo seat will do wonders for that part. Gracie is a sucker for Elmo.
I’m seriously contemplating potty training her for real the week after Christmas. We’ll be home, company will be gone, and I really don’t think it’s going to take Gracie a long time. She’ll be 21 months old. I actually have no idea what the legit age is for potty training. I haven’t looked that up yet. We go with the theory that kids pretty much let you know when they’re ready, and I think Gracie is letting us know.
I’m beyond excited. It will be the last baby expense we cut from our budget. (And all God’s children said, “AMEN!”) I’m also excited because I’m tired of washing Spider Man and Thomas the Train underwear. I’m ready for a few princesses and Care Bears in my white loads! Pink makes everything more fun!