Ikea Book Ledges {and some of our favorite books}

Ok – this is take 2 of this post {as those of you who subscribe may have noticed}. I started a draft while baby girl was napping, but didn’t get very far before she woke up. I came back to save what little I had written and Lucy girl decided it was good enough and hit publish. ha! ;) 

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Ikea Book Ledges {and some of our favorite books}I have another nursery project for you today! Now, this one is not earth shattering or new…but I love it! As a former preschool teacher, I’m a little bit obsessed with children’s books and instilling the love of reading in our kids. Studies show that having books in the home is directly linked to academic achievement. I use all of those statistics as my excuse for endless amounts of books. 

Ikea Book Ledges {and some of our favorite books}Now, if you’re going to create your own little Einstein by having all of the books, you have to find some creative ways to store them and have them easily accessible. We have a cube bookcase that holds a majority of the books and toys, but why not have some of those beautiful books double as wall art? 

Ikea Book Ledges {and some of our favorite books}When I started dreaming up ideas for decorating a nursery, I was always drawn to the look of book ledges. Children’s book covers are bright, beautiful and meant to be seen. I love the idea of having them on display not only to look pretty, but as a visual reminder to enjoy a good book. 

Ikea Book Ledges {and some of our favorite books}I bought 5 of the Ikea Ribba shelves in white. They are just under 22 inches, which  the perfect size for the space we have. They are really easy to install, you just need to measure carefully so that the spacing is right and the edges are even. The ledges should be screwed directly into the studs or supported by wall anchors to be sure that they are secure. 

Ikea Book Ledges {and some of our favorite books}

Ikea Book Ledges {and some of our favorite books}I used the higher shelves to hold special books that we want to keep safe from being damaged. The lower shelves are great for books that you want your little ones to be able to easily grab. 

Ikea Book Ledges {and some of our favorite books}

Ikea Book Ledges {and some of our favorite books}I love it, and I have to say that Lucy seems to love it as well! There has been lots of smiling and reaching towards her favorite books. :) 

There are so many children’s books out there, it’s hard to know which ones are great! Here are some of our favorites for toddlers and preschoolers:

Baby Lit Books {We have several Little Miss Austen books *cough cough, early brainwashing*, The Jungle Book, and The Secret Garden. These are great board book primers, plus the illustrations are lovely!}.

Sandra Boynton Books {We especially love Doggies}

Eric Carl (The Very Hungry Caterpillar, Brown Bear, Brown Bear What do you see?

Anything Dr. Seuss

The Jesus Storybook Bible

The Beginner’s Bible

Skippy Jon Jones

Maisy Books

Llama Llama Red Pajamas

Pete the Cat

What are some of your favorite children’s books? 

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Baby Name Hoop

Hi y’all! I am this close to finishing the nursery! I have a couple of small projects to wrap up and then I’m calling it done! This has been my favorite room makeover of all time. It has been so much fun to put thought and care into creating a special space for my girl. I have especially loved creating personal touches along the way; i.e. putting her name on ever-y-thing {hello, monogram!}. 

I created a piece of personalized hoop art for her room. This is great for any kid’s room and can easily be customized for a boy or girl, or to match the room decor. 

Baby Name HoopTo make you own name hoop art, you’ll need an oversized embroidery hoop {I used a 14″ hoop}, fabric, felt and embroidery floss in a variety of colors, scissors and a hot glue gun. 

Baby Name HoopBefore you get started, iron your fabric to get rid of any wrinkles. Once the fabric is looking good and wrinkle-free, pull it tightly on the embroidery hoop.

Baby Name Hoop

I printed off and cut out letters in the size I needed to serve as a template. I pinned the template to a piece of felt and cut out the letters. 

Baby Name Hoop

Once I had my letters cut out, I eyeballed the placement on the fabric. I used a couple dabs of hot glue on each letter to secure them onto the hoop. 

Baby Name Hoop

The next step is stitching on the name. If you have glued the letters on, this is really more for looks than anything else. I just used a simple running stitch along the edges. If you want to try something a bit fancier, there are a ton of stitch tutorials online. It doesn’t have to be perfect! In fact, the imperfect-ness adds to the charm. 

Baby Name HoopWhen you have completed stitching on the name, it’s time to have some fun with felt embellishments! I chose to add rolled felt flowers. You could cut any variety of felt shapes to add; like kites, balloons, or animals. I attached the flowers and leaves with hot glue. 

Baby Name HoopAll that’s left to do is trimming the fabric, folding it over and gluing it to the back side of the hoop. I added a ribbon to the top of the hoop to hang on a hook on the door. 

Baby Name HoopYou could hang it alone or in a grouping for a gallery wall. It is a special custom piece for any child’s room! You could also do you last name or initial and use it as a wreath on your front door. So many possibilities! 

Baby Name Hoop

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Newborn Survival Guide : My Favorite Baby Items

Our little Lucy girl is already 4 months old! The first 3 months of her life were fabulous, but the past month has been really fun! She is awake more during the day and interacting with us. We’re getting lots of smiles and chatter! :) So much fun! She’s also sleeping a lot longer at night. PRAISE.THE.LORD.

Newborn Survival Guide

Bringing home your baby is one of the most joyous occasions of your life. And snuggling your new little squish those first days and weeks is one of the best things ever….but those first days and weeks are also hard. Your life is thrown for one big, wonderful loop and you’re running on sleep fumes. It’s great to have a few things on hand to help make life a little easier. I thought I’d share my favorite baby gear items that helped me survive the first few months of motherhood! 

Baby Carrier

hava sling

Baby carriers are a must. Baby wearing not only helps keep your hands free, but its great for bonding with your baby. Babies that are worn are typically calmer and better sleepers. The Hava Sling has been my favorite for the first few months. I wear it around the house, to church, and the grocery store. Lucy pretty much always falls asleep when I wear her in the sling and is great for calming her when she gets fussy. One of the reasons I love the Hava over other slings, is the padded rails on the top and bottom of the sling. It makes it a little more comfy for mom and baby, and provides the support they need under their legs and especially behind the neck. 

Burp Cloths

burp cloths

 

You can not have enough or too many burp cloths. Babies are messy, and unless you want to be doing a ton of laundry every day….you need burp cloths. I love the Carter’s Burp Cloths for tucking under her chin while feeding. They’re soft and easy to get under there to catch any extra dribbles. Just your average, cheapo burp cloths are great to catch spit up.

Swaddle Sacks

swaddle sacks

Swaddling is awesome and helps baby sleep better. They feel cozy, safe and secure and it keeps baby from waking herself up with that startle reflex. We love swaddle sacks since they are easier to use than a blanket and you don’t have to worry about the swaddle coming undone. No blankets in the face! The first two months we used the Summer Infant SwaddleMe sleep sack. It is simple to use which is a huge bonus during middle of the night changes. Once she got a bit bigger and turned into a Houdini baby, we moved up to the Miracle Blanket. It truly lives up to the name! Once you get over the fact that it feels like a baby straight jacket….you will love it! ;)

Snuza Sleep Monitor

snuza

I was worried I would be one of those moms who stayed awake making sure my baby was still breathing instead of catching sleep when I could. Our Snuza Monitor was a life saver! It just clips onto the baby’s diaper and senses breathing and movement. If it doesn’t sense movement for a certain amount of time, it will vibrate to stimulate the baby. If it still doesn’t sense breathing, it will sound a {loud} alarm. The Snuza has given me such peace of mind! I definitely sleep better when we use it. We’ve had a couple of false alarms since switching to cloth diapers {sometimes the night-time diapers are a bit bulky and it’s hard to clip on}, but other than that it’s been great!

Wubbanub Pacifiers

wubbanub

We love our Wubbanub! They are like the soother pacifiers that you will get in the hospital, but with a small light weight stuffed animal attached. The benefits to these are endless! They’re easier to lose, I can find and reach it one handed in the car, and it’s easier for the baby to get the paci back into his mouth {once they are able to start grabbing}. Plus, they’re really cute. We have the Longhorn Wubbanub…because Texas. :)

Graco FastAction Fold Jogger Click Connect Travel System

stroller and car seat

I love love love our stroller and car seat combo. It’s so nice to just click the car seat into place, whether in the car or stroller. The stroller is the best one I have ever used. It is a jogging stroller…but I’m not a jogger. However, I chose it because it is so smooth and steady. I can push it one handed without the stroller swaying to one direction or another. It also has a lot of storage and even a place to clip your phone in. It can also be closed with one hand. It is by far the best stroller I have ever used! We have enjoyed using it for walks around the neighborhood or at the park. I’m sure it will be getting a lot more mileage this fall one the weather cools off a bit. Amazon often has this stroller system on sale. I bought it after Thanksgiving for about $100 off the normal price. 

Graco Soothing System Glider {bassinet, swing, bouncer – all in one!}

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I have never been a fan of buying a bunch of large baby equipment that will only be used for a couple of months. It’s a pain finding space to store such bulky things. I was super resistant to buying a bassinet for that very reason. I knew we’d only use it for a few weeks, and then it would take up space in the attic or garage. I was super excited to find the Graco Soothing System. It has a base that is a glider {swing} that can play music or nature sounds. Then, you can either place the bouncer seat onto the base and use as a swing, or the bassinet attachment to use for sleeping. The bouncer also vibrates for soothing. I loved not having 3 separate pieces of baby gear in our small house! 

What are/were your favorite baby items for those first few months? 

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