Thursday, November 15, 2012

Redemption for the Second Born: A Room of Her Own

In the months leading up our firstborn's arrival, I pored over nursery bedding, studied paint swatches, researched cribs, and literally obsessed over getting her room just perfect.

In contrast, four months AFTER our secondborn arrived, we shoved our clothes into one side of our bedroom closet, crammed a pack 'n play into the other side, and called it good.

(first she slept in the bouncy chair)

(then in the pack n play)

Oh, to be a secondborn.

Then we moved into a new house!  To assuage the guilt of banishing Tess to sleep in a closet for the first year of her life, I wanted to create a really awesome room for her in the new place.  Without spending much money.  And with limited snatches of time.  The previous occupant was a 14-year-old boy, so it is taking some work to transform the room from a teenaged-boy-cave to baby girl sanctuary, a process that very well might take months.  Or years.

But for now, here is project #1, the refinishing of an old dresser.

I picked up this cute little dresser at our neighborhood yard sale, where it was offered for $15.  After some discussion, I ended up paying . . . $20.  Seriously, I might be a cheapskate, but I am the world's worst barterer.

Anyhow, the little dresser was so cute, but someone had decided to paint it eggplant and forest green.  Seriously?  I'm not sure which decade this color combo was hot.  So we read this awesome tutorial on painting old furniture and went crazy.

First came the sanding.  This took forever with our little sander and my hands are vibrating just remembering it.

Then with a half-empty bottle of spray primer, some old ceiling paint from a prior plumbing disaster, and some new drawer pulls from Home Depot, we transformed it into this:

Now it matches her crib, and one day we'll re-do the little dresser that we use as a changing table to match as well.  Every time I walk into her room and see this dresser, my heart does a little happy dance knowing that soon my little girl will have a room as sweet as she is.  Plus it sure beats sneaking into the closet to get clothes without waking her up every morning.

Friday, November 9, 2012

Crocheted Flower Hat 2: the baby sister version

I wrote this post several months ago, but I forgot to post it with all of the craziness of buying and selling a house plus travel and work.  Then all of a sudden it was summer and fuzzy winter hats and mittens were replaced by sunhats and sunscreen!  Alas, it was hard to let go, but we are full-on into cold weather again.  Once I made it through the denial stage, I realized that I truly do love fall, with its autumn leaves, hot drinks, hearty soups, and of course, warm fuzzy clothes:

At 9 months of age, baby Tess (above) almost had as much hair as Anna had at birth (below).  Almost.

But it's not quite enough to keep that little noggin warm in these cold, breezy days.  So with the leftover yarn from Anna's hat, I whipped together a little matching beanie for Tess.  I used a spiral pattern rather than crocheting in rounds and joining with a slip stitch, since I wanted to avoid the subtle "seam" that comes with crocheting in rounds.  I modified this pattern to make a hat that had some room for Tess to grow.  The spiral pattern gets a little funky where I start and end the border, but a well-placed flower motif hides that bit.

I couldn't get a good shot of the hat before Tess would pull it off, so I borrowed Anna's bear for a close-up.  Hold still, Baby Grandma Bear: