Yesterday afternoon we went to a cookout at my friend's house. The kids were having a blast, splashing in the pool, adults swapping small talk, delicious smells wafting from the barbecue. But I was just a bit removed. It'd been a hard couple of days and I just wasn't engaging. I felt like there was a fog around me. My friend went to make plates for the kiddos and asked me to hold her youngest, Savannah, who is 3 1/2 months old. Of course I did; I've always loved babies. And then, she looked into my eyes and smiled at me. A wholehearted, utterly innocent expression of happiness. And everything melted away. Nothing mattered in that moment except for her and me.
It reminded me of why I love doing what I do. Why nurseries in particular are so very rewarding to create. Here's why the pieces that go into a nursery are so important.
Crib and bedding
Granted, they may not sleep in their crib as tiny tiny ones, but they will eventually (I promise!). When they do? It stands in for your arms, keeping them safe and comfortable while they sleep. The fabrics inside? The softest of the soft. But beyond that: chemical-free. All-natural. Organic. Nothing but the best next to their skin.
Rocker, glider, comfy chair....it's a place for you and tiny one to be together. Comfortable you makes for comfortable baby. And during those late night feedings? You're going to want to be comfortable. As they grow older, you'll read stories to them in this chair. Kiss away skinned knees in this chair. Comfort them from nightmares in this chair. Truly priceless.
Furniture like dressers and bookshelves
Whether it's diapers and the bajillion things that go into changing one or having toys accessible (and also INACCESSIBLE) to newly crawling little ones, you want quality. You want safe. You want timeless. Play your cards right and these, like your comfy chair can find other homes and uses in your home. My son's dresser? Was mine as a baby. That's the ultimate in quality, eco-friendly furniture.
Now, I will admit, the idea of "decor" gets some crap sometimes. The fluffy stuff that designers put on bookshelves, right? But in a nursery, decor has a chance to be so much more. It's a chance to share with your little ones the things that make your family your family. Share a favorite movie with a print of an obscure quote on it. Frame a bit of that concert shirt you wore all the time in college (this is an excellent excuse to get it out of current rotation). Share pictures of family members no longer with you. The important part is to start conversations. Share stories. And leave room to make new ones. The best decor doesn't come from Pottery Barn or Babies 'R' Us. It comes from you. And it's really one of the best gifts you can share with your little one.
Building a nursery is like building a nest to welcome your baby. Piece by piece you accumulate a space that keeps them safe, warm and loved. Little ones like Savannah have all the potential in the world. The world is their oyster and for a moment at least, anything is possible. Nurseries are places where little ones (and their loved ones) can dream big.