Archive for the ‘house’ Category

Bump The Crib Bumpers? 09-18-14

Tuesday, September 16th, 2014

Crib bumpers...decorative touch or death trap?

When I was pregnant with my first baby, my favorite thing about decorating her nursery was finding the perfect crib set. I mean, the overpriced, matching bedding is what the nursery is all about, right? Your tiny person has to come home to a cushy, finished room worthy of your expectant friends pinning to their “Future Nursery” boards on Pinterest.

Daughter's nursery with pink and yellow walls.

I followed the guidelines about no “pillowlike” bumpers to avoid suffocation. Her bumpers were more “quilt-like” and tied tight to the sides. They were on her crib for most of her first year.

Then the American Academy of Pediatrics came out with new guidelines saying, and I’m paraphrasing here, “No bumpers!!! Your infant will die!!!!” I promptly untied those baby killers and stashed them in the closet. She was an older infant at that point. We had already dropped her crib down. What happened next, I didn’t expect.

The thrashing! My God the thrashing! She was a mobile, rolling, crawling baby, even in her sleep. We would hear bangs and bumps, then the occasional cry over the monitor in the middle of the night. We would go get her in the morning and her feet would be wedged between the bars of the crib. I suddenly understood the need for bumpers, even though her crib met the safety guidelines for proper for crib bar spacing. How foolish of me to believe bumpers were just aesthetic.

Okay, so crib bumpers are a suffocation danger and the ties pose a strangulation threat, but if you don’t have bumpers your kid will bang into the side of the crib at night?

So, when I had my second baby I weighed the pros and cons and went ahead and got my son a full crib set with bumpers. Again, they were quilt-like and tied tight to the crib. The ties are not long enough to go around a throat, just a crib bar. The bumpers looked adorable and posed no hazard that I could see. No hazard until the night his face got close to the bumper and I freaked. He was too little to roll over at that point and I didn’t want his face so close to the bumper. SIDS! Ah! I couldn’t sleep. I tiptoed around his crib and took them off that night. I put them back on in the morning. I did the same the next day. Hey, I paid for the second baby’s bumpers. I didn’t get them at a baby shower, so I was going to use them! The on and off got old real fast.

My son's nursery with gray walls and blue sailboats.

By the time he was rolling over and crawling, I figured he was big enough to move his face away from a thin bumper and I left them on all the time. I watched him. He was fine. It wasn’t a problem. Then he started pulling up and we lowered the mattress. Pulling up means he pulled the bumpers down or off or used them as a pillow. I also heard of babies using them to step up on and subsequently flip out of the crib. I took them out. He’s 10-months-old now.

I kid you not, the day I am writing this he starts screaming when I put him down for his nap. I go up there to check it out and his leg is wedged through the bars, up to his thigh. He couldn’t pull his knee through. Poor little guy. He was all traumatized and weepy when I rescued him.

So, that leaves me to wonder if I should put the bumpers back on. Do I need to buy the mesh bumpers? (Please say “no.” I’m not a fan.) What’s your take on this?

  • Did you use crib bumpers at all? What type?
  • How long did you leave them on?
  • Did your child ever get hurt from having bumpers on his/her crib? Did they get hurt NOT having bumpers on their crib?

Sacrifice- June 26, 2014

Thursday, June 26th, 2014

I’m feeling foolish as I write this. Foolish because my last post was begging for your advice about strollers as my brain was consumed with our upcoming travels. We had grandiose plans to take our family of four to a family reunion in Nebraska this weekend. Now that it’s almost here I’m a little embarrassed to say we had to cancel at the last minute. Why, you ask? The short answer, money.

money pic

So often money is a taboo thing to discuss. I figure I talk about my leaking boobs and stitched up lady-parts on my mommy blog, so why should I be ashamed of discussing finances? I don’t know, but money is a touchy subject for most people. It’s private. It shows how vulnerable we are. That’s funny for a generation of people who are putting every mundane personal detail of their lives on the Internet to say that money is the thing that most shows our vulnerability, but it’s true.

Don’t get me wrong. Technically our family could afford to go on this trip, but at the price of some real financial strain later this year. It was going to cost an absurd amount to fly, rent a car and get a hotel room. We didn’t want to put a ton on credit cards. You know, credit cards. The cards people our age got when they walked on campus freshman year with their school logo on it.

Here’s the thing, we REALLY wanted to go on this trip. Bad. We had talked it up to our 3-year-old. We told her how great the zoo was going to be and how she was going to get to play with 50 million cousins she’d never met. We promised aunts they would get snuggle time with our squishy 7-month-old. I planned outfits and did laundry. I made arrangements for friends to dog sit. We bought plane tickets. We were going. We had our hearts set on it.

That’s the problem. We had our hearts set on going and wanted to go. I’ve found that Gen X/Millennials like us typically get what we want. Think about it. We came of age in the 1980’s and 1990’s. People my age knew nothing but mostly peace and prosperity until the economic collapse five years ago. Growing up, I figured things would always keep getting better and better. No, seriously. I just assumed my parents would always make more money than they did the year before, ensuring great family vacations and my college tuition taken care of.

This is not to say our generation is not innovative and hardworking. We are. I’m proud of how hard my husband and I have worked for many years to provide a great life for our children. We have a nice home near a good school, two cars and enough for preschool and dance classes.

Now that we are a single income household, we have had to make some adjustments. Sadly, we didn’t adjust enough. We didn’t plan. If we wanted to go on this trip so badly, we should have planned for it better than we did. Yeah, we did have some unexpected expenses pop up, but if we had planned better, it wouldn’t have been a problem. We made the choice for our family to have me stay home with our children. We don’t regret that decision, but we’ve still been living life as we were a double income household. We didn’t sacrifice.

Staying home from this trip is our sacrifice. We are learning the lesson of our generation. We can’t have everything we want all the time. Now, we have to raise the next generation to understand the same thing.


Settling In- April 28, 2013

Sunday, April 28th, 2013

We’re learning which lightswitch turns the light out and which one grinds up our food scraps. I’ve discovered drawers in the bathroom to stash extra shampoo and the best way to load this dishwasher. We’re going to be naked if the new washer/dryer doesn’t arrive as scheduled on Tuesday. Despite this house being about as “move-in ready” as a house can be, my couches clash with the accent wall in the living room and we spent more than expected changing the locks at Lowe’s. But, I mean, show me someone who doesn’t spend more than they plan to at freakin’ Lowe’s.

I’m having trouble looking away from Pinterest’s endless “Home Decor” category. I guess I’m a glutton for punishment who needs Pinterest to remind me of how much work I have to do and how woefully inadequate my decorating skills are. Yes! I get it Pinterest! Everything at West Elm is amazing, but $45 for a throw pillow is a little more than I want to spend right now.

In other words, we’re settling in.

I have to say, despite the boxes and misplaced serving bowl, it already feels like home. Tonight Charlotte and I built a tower higher than we’ve ever made. I was so proud of her matching the colors of her blocks and her telling me about the animals on each one of them. We’re already making memories.



New memories- April 25, 2013

Thursday, April 25th, 2013

I’m sitting with my feet up in my new living room with boxes scattered around and my darling husband talking to the TV about NFL draft picks. I’m deliriously tired and deliriously happy.  We almost didn’t get to move in because of idiot underwriters’ contract mistakes and slow bank workers, but we’re here.  This week I’ve felt stretched very thin between demands at work and the demands of moving, but we made it.  I keep looking around in disbelief that we are finally here.

We cried when we left the old house for the last time thinking of all the memories in that house.  It’s funny, just a few days later it feels right to be here. Let the new memories begin…

photo (36)


Buying and Selling Again- February 25, 2013

Monday, February 25th, 2013

7704 Astoria Pl. 2

7704 Astoria Pl. 3

7704 Astoria Pl. 20

7704 Astoria Pl. 9

Here it is, once again in all it’s glory.  This weekend we cleaned, staged and de-personalized to yet again try to convince someone to buy our house.  It’s sadly stark to see the cheap, generic art deco that has replaced our family pictures.  No one will ever know who we are by walking our halls. Just try to guess our race, creed or religion!  Bwa ha ha ha!

See those counter tops? Yeah baby.  I want to lay my naked body on that cold stone.  Too much? I don’t care.  I’ve waited a long time for granite.

We have upgraded the counter tops, the floors have been refinished.  The house is going back on the market!  It hasn’t all been rosy with the house selling so we’re anxious to get this done.  We took it off the market during the holidays because no one buys a house at Christmas, except for all the people who told us they sold their house on freakin’ December 23.  (Shut up.)

So here is our house that  I’m so anxious to sell, yet will cry when I leave.  This is where we loved and lived and it would be perfect for someone else.  If you are in the market for an adorable town home in Raleigh, NC with new granite, hard wood floors and a first floor master bedroom, then I have the place for you!  But, you better appreciate the granite!