Sitting in Our Tree

baby

Getting ready for baby with Bonjour Baby Baskets

baby products, babyKelsey Bethune

While I can’t believe that I’ve been pregnant since before Thanksgiving LAST YEAR, this pregnancy has still seemed to have flown by. This is most likely due to keeping up with a 2 yr. old this time around, instead of basically spending the final three months of my pregnancy twiddling my fingers waiting for baby like I did with Crew. I still feel a little bit in denial that there’s about to be another baby in our home, & I’ve certainly put up a mental block to all the drama that comes along with those first newborn weeks, so when cute little packages like a bundle from Bonjour Baby Baskets shows up at the door, it’s a nice little reminder that there is indeed a tiny little person on the way.

 
 

This was a custom package put together for us, with the most perfect little neutral treats for our surprise gender baby. I am obsessed with all things Quincy Mae, & I can’t wait to pack up some of those pieces in our hospital bag. The swaddle from Numpfer is genuinely one of the softest things I have ever touched, & I am hopeful that Crew will have relinquished his death grip on the Minika teether by the time baby arrives. We’re already learning SO much about sharing.

Bonjour Baby Baskets have VERY perfectly curated premade baskets to choose from as you look for your next baby shower gift, but I also love that they have a Build Your Own Basket option so you can control your budget & theme. My favorite of their pre-designed neutral baskets are listed below!

Petit Dodo
Cool Cub
Bayside Baby
Palms & Sandy Toes

Crew's Nursery - 6 Month Update

baby, homeKelsey BethuneComment

We successfully kept Crew in our room until he was 6 months old, which was our goal. Yay us! This did involve some final touches that we'd managed to put off for those 6 months & minor adjustments as we figured out what we needed to do to make his nursery conducive to his baby sleep needs. Alongside this book, we pretty seamlessly made the jump, so I thought I'd share some of the things we learned & added along the way! (See the original nursery post here!)

First things first... Was getting that very bright room dark. We added the cheapest blackout curtains I could find since we needed four panels ($$$$$) & added bamboo blinds to the indoor windows, including the windowed door. The adjustment to the lighting also required moving some of the plants, SPECIFICALLY the fiddle fig, who I'm happy to report, is still alive & très happy in our bedroom.

Also peeking out there by the chair is the humidifier we added. Our apartment has radiator heat, so it's pretty constantly dry dry dry all winter. Gotta keep that baby's lungs & skin happy!

Now that we're getting back into cold weather, after a summer of newborn snuggles in DC's disgusting heat & humidity, it quickly became apparent that I did not have enough room in my closet to share with Crew's growing cold weather wardrobe. Knowing that I needed his third layer pieces to be easily accessible as we get out the door & that I typically change him right before we leave, I wanted his clothes as close to the changing table as possible. We didn't have great options for a spot to put a hanging rod or free-standing clothing rack, so we went with a more retail look.

We picked up the hooks & hangers from Ikea, & spray painted the hooks gold & the hanger metal white. Probably $15 total, since we already had the spray paint. I actually really love this concept more now that it's up - It keeps me shopping for clothes within his capsule wardrobe's aesthetic while also keeping me from shopping too much without getting rid of something else, since space is limited. Win win!

Crew would probably be sleeping in our bedroom until he was 10 if it weren't for our video monitor giving us the peace of mind we needed to move him out. The Lollipop Baby Cam was everything we were looking for in a baby monitor - Pristine imaging (including the night vision), video monitoring via our phones, multi-user/invite only access, a secure monitoring network, baby crying notifications, background audio (for when you want to have another app open), white noise/classical music capabilities, built-in microphone, event playback... I could go on & on.

Their customer service has been wonderful & the only glitches we've run into have been due to our wifi/apartment walls, not the camera itself. I guess the downfall being not having a monitor that doesn't rely on wifi but the other wifi driven capabilities far outweigh that. We'll be mounting the Lollipop to the wall with the very cute white branch mount that comes with the camera once Crew can grab it, but so far, he hasn't figured out that he can sit OR stand up in his crib. Fine by meeee.

nursery-9.jpg

Our only other additions have been adding a blue tooth speaker that syncs to our ipad for white noise at night, classical music during daytime naps (again, our wifi isn't reliable enough to have consistent white noise run on the video camera), & our mesh crib liner. (I know this is a topic of debate, so just know that this was the right decision for us & we only advocate doing your own research. YOU DO YOU.) Obviously, we've also removed all the pretty in-crib decor now that he's in there for something like 16 hours a day. 

Lastly, you'll be glad to know that my little nursing corner is getting all sorts of use these days! 

I think that about wraps things up! Sources for our updates below.


SOURCES

Blinds: Ikea // Blackout curtains: Ikea // Humidifier: Amazon // Video Monitor: Lollipop Baby Cam* // Clothing Hooks: Ikea // Baby Hangers: Ikea

Lollipop Baby Cam is a company that we’ve had the honor to partner with in exchange for a product review. Thoughts & opinions on this product are ours. We 100% stand behind the quality & use of this product, unless otherwise noted in blog post review.

Crew's Nursery

baby, homeKelsey Bethune1 Comment

Let me start by saying that I took these photos when Crew was three weeks old. THREE. WEEKS. OLD. In case you need a refresher, he is now seven months old. What year is it, where am I? What counts is that we're here, & the bonus is that I have some updates now that he's, you know, actually sleeping in his room. When I took these in May, it was more of, well, an art exhibit. It is very well loved & lived in now.

Anyways, let's get to it!

It's important to know that Crew's nursery is an 8 x 8' space, & yes, it has indoor windows in it. There are three windows looking into the nursery from the kitchen, in addition to a windowed door. As you can imagine, it's not technically what our building management would call a rooooom, persay. I think it's called a "sunroom" on the floorplan. It is gloriously sunshiney, so, perfect for plants & taking dreamy photos of a baby's nursery. Less awesome for an actual sleeping babe, but we'll come back to that.

There is ONE way that the furniture fits, regardless of how once every three months or so, I've convinced Jared to try a new configuration, without removing any of the current pieces of the puzzle. He is a good man, & he obliges,.. & then we sigh a breath of defeat & move everything back into the same spot. I'm learning to accept this.

I started designing our future nursery before we moved into this apartment, before we knew whether we were having a boy or girl, & maybe a little bit before I was pregnant. It started on Pinterest & blossomed into a fairly neutral look, featuring natural woods, whimsical lettering, peaches & greens, & botanic elements. 

I must have been subconsciously tuned into retail trends, because Spring came, & peaches & greens of every shade were everywhere I turned. Both Target & H&M got the memo, making my life a loooot easier. It also really helped that our registry was built around the same neutral color palette, so things like wraps & slings, swaddles & blankets toys & books, etc. all fit in perfectly once we had it all unwrapped.

Without further ado & presented with a slight design commentary, here it is!

We aren't planning on staying in this apartment too, too long, so I wanted to work with the wall color that came with the apartment. Fortunately, it's a rather pleasant greige, that more than a couple of people have asked me for the paint color for on Instagram (sadly, I don't know what it is). The wall color combined with the white trim actually worked really well with the natural woods & color pops that we had planned.

We bought these ball lights when we visited Paris in 2014, knowing that they'd most likely make their way to our nursery down the line. I still really love this color combination of olives, light peach & neutrals, & it happened to play really perfectly into the nursery design. Originally, I had pops of bright yellow incorporated (for a family room color scheme that doesn't need to see the light of day), but my business partner conveniently vacationed in Paris right before Crew arrived & grabbed some extra neutrals for me to replace them with.

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While reading Bringing Up Bébé, I really loved her passage on the French teaching their children the word "gently!" as an instruction. It reminded me of hearing my own mom tell my younger sisters & now my nieces & nephews to "be gentle" as babies, & I think that's such a wonderful concept to start so young. Jared & I prayed every day for our unborn babe to be kind & gentle, & still whisper that over him now that he's here. "Doucement" is French for "gently, slowly, softly" & I love that he is sleeping under this word whenever he's in his crib, thanks to a custom piece by Amanda Krovic Designs. (She did our blog logo too!)

The other pieces are: a Marcella Kriebel (local DC artist) grapefruit illustration, vintage French post card, "C" straight from my printer, vintage butterfly botanic print from Paris, "Hopalong Hollow" print by Jeri Landers (picked up our 1st Christmas for a future baby's room!), green abstract watercolor by me.

These "shelves" are actually two Ikea nightstands that you can grab for $15/each, in raw wood. We used them as bathroom storage in our last apartment & keep finding ways to repurpose them. I did a super light wash of white paint on the outside of it to blend in with Crew's crib, keeping the raw wood on the inside to tie in the light wood on the chair, crib & baskets.

It was super important to me to create a sort of nursing zone/midnight landing corner in the nursery. The salt rock lamp is the perfect amount of low light for a middle of the night diaper change, along with an iphone charger, a coaster for that nursing mom glass of water that never leaves my side, & a cozy rocker. To be honest, this didn't all come into play very much until we moved Crew into his nursery overnight at 6 months, but it's the best thing ever now!

At our baby shower, thrown by my wonderful friend & business partner Amelia, guests each decorated a wooden block for Crew in our nursery color scheme. The sweetest gift & cutest guestbook idea ever.

I couldn't believe how incredibly well everything pulled together as all my online purchases & baby shower gifts rolled in. From the crib sheet to Target's palette perfect pillow to ice cream cones to Jared's childhood stuffed bear, everything looked like it was made for our little greige nursery. 

To top it all off, my parents are the real rockstars of this nursery. They not only diligently hunted for an antique dresser for us to use as a changing table... & bought one that I thought had fine measurements but turns out I maybe shouldn't measure things?... Then graciously swapped their antique find with the dresser my babiest sister had her diaper changed on 20+ years ago... AND ALSO followed this design to a T, making my changing table/baby dresser dreams come true. They are seriously the best humans.

My mom & I are both obsessed with this subtle green color we found for the dresser.

I can't even tell you how thrilled a one Mr. Jared Bethune was when I explained that the Lorena Canals rug that we were receiving was washable. I could see it warming his clean freak soul from head to toe. It was an insanely tough choice to narrow down which rug we wanted from their expansive collection, but ultimately we chose the "Stripe Glacier" style in grey to add in a stripe pattern & use the oversized tassels to add an extra touch of whimsy. Strangely enough, once we got it in the room, it picked up a LOT of the green tones, & almost has a sage color tone to the grey. I love it.

Aside from being washable (& successfully washable in our apartment laundromat, which is no small feat) & a rug that we can use elsewhere in our home once Crew's room gets its eventual big-kid upgrade, we love that this is made from all natural dyes, handmade in India, eco-friendly & VOC's-free... What more could you want from a nursery rug? Even better is that Lorena Canals uses their proceeds to support their Sakûla project, which provides school for children in India. 

I was overjoyed to have a spot that so perfect fit this vintage milk glass lamp that I've been carrying with me from apartment to apartment since college, and to have found a plant that perfect showcased our peach & green color palette. 

Side note: How cute is that tiny Crew & proud Jared peeking through the doorway? Jared was showing off the baby to my younger sister. *tears*

These are our apartment's quirky indoor windows, which I imagine are lovely if you're using the sunroom as an office or greenroom. For the first few months, it was actually great to be able to spy on Crew during his daytime crib naps, or Jared & Crew reading books in the rocker on the weekend. It got a little less awesome once we moved Crew from our bedroom to his nursery at 6 months. We recently fixed all that drama when he officially moved in -- See the updates here!

As a final treat, here some captured moments of teeny tiny Crew & us in his nursery when he was about 5 weeks old. I dieeeee.


SOURCES

Crib - Babyletto "Scoot" // Crib sheet - Kid Wild Organics // Pillow - Target // Sheepskin - Ikea // Ice Cream Rattle: Spearmint Love

Ball lights - Le Case de Cousin Paul (similar, US based) // Large Basket - Home Goods // “Doucement” Print - Amanda Krovic Designs // Metal Frames - Terrain, Home Goods // White Frames - Ikea // Diaper Pail - Dekor

Plants & pots - Terrain // Salt Rock Lamp - Home Goods // Shelves - Ikea // Storage Totes - The Container Store // Rocker - Ikea // Blanket - Target // Foot Stool - Vintage via Miss Pixie’s // Curtains - Ikea 

Dresser - Refurbished via this tutorial // Rug - Lorena Canals, Stripes Glacier - Grey* // Milk Glass Lamp - Antique // Giraffe - Anthropologie // Book Caddy - Home Goods

*Lorena Canals is a company that we’ve had the honor to partner with in exchange for a product review. Thoughts & opinions on this product are ours. We 100% stand behind the quality & use of this product, unless otherwise noted in blog post review.

baby in a pumpkin patch + hi!

baby, halloweenKelsey Bethune1 Comment

Hi blog world! It has been a hot minute. I have such a back up of posts I *still* need to write, & the time finally feels right to dive back in! July & August got pretty intense with a huge wedding I had with Tart Event Co. - A wedding that predated babies & required nearly all of our attention & energy, with the rest going straight to baby & husband. Then, quite frankly, it took all of September to sort of relax, regroup & reengage with my little family. October has been filled with travel & puppies & my birthday & most recently, our 7th wedding anniversary. So, things have been busy, but I unapologetically just didn't prioritize spending too much time here -- I've spent my days receiving the most slobbery kisses from my baby & my evenings soaking up time (& adult conversation, a respite after a day with a non-verbal baby) with my babe of a husband. It was a good summer/early fall.It's so crazy to look back at my last post over 4th of July & see how big our little bear has gotten! Crew's development has been incredible to watch this past month, with his independence & capabilities growing stronger every day. It's been way harder for me to register his newfound autonomy than it has for him to flex his little-human capabilities, but when I finally take a step back & listen to what he's telling me, I realize things like... He can play by himself on the floor for 30 minutes. He's ready for bed by 6:15pm. He enjoys napping in his own room. I'm not quite at the point that my heart breaks over my tiny baby getting older -- Honestly, most days, I'm over the moon about these little leaps and bounds of his aptitude & abilities, since the... Is paralysis too strong a word? of the newborn months is still rather fresh in my mind. But he's half a year old, & I'm sure the my-baby-is-growing-up heartache will begin soon enough.ANYWAYS, that's a lot of mom talk. I have so, SO many photos that I need to share, which I am forever putting off because there's is nearly always a monthly photo book I need to be assembling. Time, you thief. But this is a start!Crew got to visit TWO pumpkin patches when I took him back to my parents for a weekend while Jared went on his annual camping trip. His mind was pretty much blown -  I could hardly get him to look up at the camera, even after enlisting Poppy's help. Watching him experience new things, textures & places is just the best. He has the best little mind. With Halloween around the corner (& you better hold onto your butts for how cute a certain someone's costume is), the holidays are NEARLY here & I just can't wait to share it with our little family. Babies & Christmas? It's basically my lifelong dream come true. For now, I will soak up these photos of my 23 week old baby, as he tried his hardest to comprehend the wonderland of round orange objects that mom let him sit amongst ALL by himself. His chubby little nearly-6-month-old hands trying to touch as many pumpkins as possible at one time, as if they'd disappear if he took his hands off him. His squinty eyes trying so hard to peek up at his beckoning mama, "Crew! Crew! Smile!" with the bright grey sky behind my head, glancing quickly away with the most delighted smirk on his face, like he was getting away with something & couldn't believe his luck. The smell of outside lingering on his fine little duckling hairs when I picked him up & pulled his face to mine, & his chunky cheeks being so much colder than the rest of his warm body as I held him close. Brushing his diapered booty off, & thinking this is a first of many times that I'll brush grass & dirt off his little legs, or wipe dirt from his tightly fisted hands. Where do you store these mama moments? How do you keep them all fresh & close to your heart, ripe for reminiscing when he goes to bed too early or is suddenly 3, 13, 23 years old? I know there isn't any answer, but I sure am glad to at least have a blog to put away some of these moments.

xo

Co-Sleeping Heaven with Plum & Sparrow

baby, baby productsKelsey Bethune3 Comments

I mentioned back in our Newborn Essentials post that figuring out our co-sleeping situation started out a little stressful to me. All we knew was that we definitely wanted our baby in the same room as us for at least the first 6 months, but that moving the entire crib into our room was NOT a feasible option due to space. It seemed like all the co-sleepers on the market that weren’t lime green & HUGE were insanely expensive or not even sold in the US. Thanks to Instagram, I knew that Moses baskets in rockers were a popular solution, & after finding Plum &Sparrow, i knew we’d discovered our perfect set-up.

Plum & Sparrow is a California based company that offers Moses baskets, market baskets and other hand-made accessories, all of which are sustainably made by African weavers. As part of the Fair Trade Federation, 10% of each purchase goes directly back to the village that creates these beautiful baskets, & that’s a mission that is worth supporting. The weavers have creative freedom with each basket that is individually crafted, so when there are beautiful color worked into the weaves, that’s the weavers personal artistic expression. Though our style is a little more neutral, there are really gorgeous, colorful options available.

Our Plum & Sparrow Moses basket has been Crew’s bassinet from Day 1. We paired it with a rocker & it sits right next to my side of the bed. When he was a newborn, it was super easy for me to lean over in the middle of the night & barely strain to pick him up for a feeding since the rocker put the basket at the perfect level with our platform bed. It was also super nice that the basket comes with a mattress that is perfectly sized to the basket… & a mattress sheet that perfectly fits the mattress. That seems obvious, but you would be amazed at how dramatic those three things all fitting together can be! The mattress is a 2” thick, hypo-allergenic waterproof pad, & the sheet is 100% cotton. Along with the fitted sheet, we simply pair this with one of our swaddles to keep him warm, creating a perfectly safe sleeping environment for our little babe. Now that we’ve got him on a more strict bedtime routine, it’s so sweet to see that he knows bedtime & he knows his bed. When I was pregnant, we never dreamed that we would have a big baby, & were definitely planning on him being under 20 lbs till he was AT LEAST 6 months old, but our nearly 3 month old is nearly 15 lbs, so we’ll see if we can make it to 6 months in the basket. I'm certainly crossing my fingers & toes that we can, because I won't know what our next transition bed would be before we move him into his own room at night. EEK.

Aside from being our ideal sleep situation, Plum & Sparrow’s basket was also an ideal home solution. Even though our apartment is pretty generously sized for being a DC apartment, there are no unused rooms or basement playrooms, & our one big storage closet is pretty full, so every baby item we picked out needed to fit in with our home aesthetic & essentially become part of the decor. This beautiful crafted basket is such a gorgeous weave with both great structure & a polished look. The leather handles are a perfect touch & feel so secure to lift as we move from room to room. I love that our bassinet gives our room a finished look, but also that I can leave it in the family room & it still looks like a piece that belongs in our home. I know that seems silly, but it’s really lovely to feel like our home is still OURS, not being overrun by baby items.

Our Plum & Sparrow Moses basket has been such a wonderful solution to these newborn & infant days. I try not to think about the day that he officially grows out of sleeping in it, but we will always be grateful for this basket being such an ease to work with as we’ve navigated our new baby & all the sleeping lessons that come along with parenthood. I can whole-heartedly recommend using a Moses basket for your bassinet, but even more sincerely, I recommend shopping with Plum & Sparrow to support their fair trade mission & give back to those creating these beautiful pieces!

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Plum & Sparrow is a company that we’ve had the honor to partner with in exchange for a product review. Thoughts & opinions on this product are ours. We 100% stand behind the quality & use of this product, unless otherwise noted in blog post review.