Organizing is hard. And not just because it takes physical & mental energy, determination, and stamina. It’s also hard because there are so many layers. You can’t just go into a room and tackle it right then and there. You have to clean, discard, sort, relocate, and improve. As much as I wish I could tackle room after room in one epic sweep, it’s just not possible.
One of the January goals I set as part of my month of being an ORGANIZED mom was to prepare the nursery in anticipation of our second child. This seemed like a pretty achievable goal, since I knew I’d have to do it fairly soon anyway, and the room was completely empty going into the Challenge. I thought I would breeze through this without issue.
But then came the layers. First, I realized we would need curtains. Curtains! Yes, probably a good idea if we ever want to transition the baby from nocturnal tendencies into night sleeping over the coming months. Curtains require shopping (something I hate), color coordination, measuring… Should I go on in this ridiculously boring list? I’ll spare you.
Then, we needed to figure out furniture. The plan was to move my son out of his crib so we could use it for the baby. My son is almost two, but he has not yet climbed his way out of the crib. The thought of putting him in a toddler bed gives me heartburn, mostly because getting him to bed is hard enough. I can’t imagine how it will go when he’s not literally contained. I decided we would need to implement this transition ASAP, because it’s not something I wanted to work on once the baby was here. However, a friend offered us their crib for the new baby, to my great relief. Now I’ve decided to hold off on the toddler bed idea, and wait to see how long my son can tolerate being confined behind the bars.
The absolute hardest part of organizing the nursery was the baby clothes. I had boxes and boxes of baby clothes from my son, but I had done a terrible job labeling and organizing them. I had to go through them, onesie by onesie, to determine the size and reallocate them either to the baby’s dresser or back into a (better labeled) box. This took me hours.
The most challenging part was discarding clothes I knew we didn’t need. We had about 60 pieces of clothes altogether… more than any one person would ever need. And we only had so much space in the dresser, so I was determined to donate the excess. But I’m terrible at getting rid of things, especially sentimental items. Going through clothes my son wore as an itty bitty baby and saying goodbye to them was heartbreaking, and exhausting. And the little voice in the back of my head kept screaming at me “It’s not very practical to be getting rid of baby clothes when you have a baby on the way!” But who needs 10 white newborn onesies (seriously, who invented the white onesie anyway… what were they thinking??), in addition to dozens in other colors too? Talk about excess. I managed to complete this task, but I had to drive to Salvation Army immediately with my bags, or I feared I would rethink my decision.
Finally, came the décor. I ordered jungle themed wall decals over a year ago from Amazon
for my son’s room. They never went up. In the meantime, we re-painted so it made sense to continue to wait. As my son’s personality developed, I felt like he had outgrown the whole jungle theme anyway, and wanted to decorate his room with something more up his alley, like sports or a train theme. This left my jungle décor collecting more dust.
Once we found out we were having another boy, the obvious solution was to use the decals in the nursery. After the clothes were put away, the furniture was decided on, and the curtains were ordered, I decorated the walls. This was easy, mostly because I did it myself. I considered involving my husband in this task, but frankly he could not care less about where to put fake leaves on a fake tree. I decided I would spare him and tackle it myself. And everyone was happier.
The special bonus prize in all of this was that one of the furniture pieces I wanted to go in the nursery was a small cabinet sitting in the office. This cabinet was stuffed with old photos my husband has been housing for years and years. Under my encouragement (duress), he finally went through the photos and cleared out the cabinet. OK, so he moved the photos from the cabinet to a box he labeled “photos” but beggars can’t be choosers. I’ll take it!
Operation “Organize the Nursery” was completed, and it was successful. My husband was a huge help with moving furniture, putting up the curtains, and helping with the clean up. One regret I have was not involving my son more. However, I tried to get him involved in organizing the baby clothes. I thought he’d get a kick out of sorting them by color. Instead, he only wanted to wear them. After squeezing him into a baby onesie to show him he’s a big boy now and these clothes are for the baby, it only led to screaming and shirts too small to remove. It was a disaster. Apparently my son has trouble letting go of things too, just like his mommy.