Molly’s Toddler Room Reveal

Molly’s Toddler Room Reveal
This blog post features sponsored items from Rocky Mountain Decals and MASHROOMkids.

Well, it’s been a long time in the making, but I finally have another bedroom reveal on the blog!  As I’ve already mentioned in previous blog posts, we decided to shuffle our kids to different rooms this summer to make space for baby #4.  Our two big kids moved down to the basement, and Molly moved out of the nursery and into her own toddler room.

IMG_2082

I have to admit, for as fun as all of the home updates have been so far, this bedroom really gives me all the feels!  Molly’s toddler room is surprisingly large; it’s actually the bedroom that Isla and Ben used to share before we moved them downstairs this past July.  So, figuring out how to decorate this large space for only one child took some time and creativity.  I ultimately decided to break the room up into three spaces – the bed area, the play area, and the dressing area.

IMG_4079

Although the majority of my house has a very neutral colour palette, I love for my kids’ rooms to be something special and reflective of who they are as people.  Obviously Molly doesn’t have a lot of opinions when it comes to what her room looks like at this point, so I was really able to dream up my version of the perfect girly bedroom.

This room was also a lot of fun because of the many fun details I found to incorporate into the space, while also avoiding having to paint again. (This room was actually given a fresh coat of white paint only two years ago when we moved our big kids into the bedroom to share to make room for Molly in the nursery.) At that time, we had also painted one entire wall with chalkboard paint, so I knew my colour scheme for Molly’s toddler room needed to work well with a chalkboard wall, because I just love the feature too much to paint over.

IMG_4033

My vision for the room really started to take shape when I came across this gorgeous removable wallpaper from Rocky Mountain Decals.  I had never used removable wallpaper before – in fact, I’ve never used regular wallpaper before!  I’ve always found it a bit daunting.  However, the idea of removable wallpaper was super appealing, and the patterns by Rocky Mountain Decals were so lovely that I knew I wanted to incorporate a statement wall in Molly’s room.  It was a tough decision, but I ended up choosing the Snowy Rose print, as I knew it would work great with the white and chalk walls already in the room.  It was also really easy to install!  Jeff and I spent a couple of hours one afternoon putting it up, and I was amazed at how easy the process was.

The wallpaper really served as the main source of inspiration for the entire room, and it was fun finding pieces that would compliment it.  I was able to use a few pieces that we already had, such as the bedside table, and the vintage dresser (although we did add a fresh coat of pink paint to the dresser so it would match a bit better).  I was also really excited to have spotted a gorgeous vintage bed frame at a garage sale this summer that works perfectly with the whole feel of the room.  A new duvet cover from HomeSense, and a few throw pillows from Chapters Indigo really brought her bed setup together.

IMG_1079

One of the most special details in the room by far, however, is the play area/reading nook.  I am absolutely in love with the gorgeous canopy from MASHROOMkids, as well as the play mat which just add the perfect touch of magic to Molly’s space.  I can imagine her and Isla snuggled up in the space looking at picture books for hours; one day, when Molly gets older, the reading tent will transition perfectly to a canopy for above her bed. It also has to be said that the quality of this canopy and play mat are amazing!  A few shelves from Ikea adorned with Molly’s favourite bedtime stories, paper lanterns and throw pillows in the tent, and a couple of storage baskets for all of Molly’s favourite toys make this a really sweet and simple play-space.

IMG_4074

 

Putting together these spaces for my kids this summer has really been such a fun process for me, and for them as well.  It’s so fun to see their personalities emerge, and also how they delight in their new spaces and really take ownership of them.  How do you blend your sense of home-styling with what your little people love?

 

August is here! Be part of (5)

Isla’s Big Girl Room Reveal

Isla’s Big Girl Room Reveal
*This post includes sponsored items from Lorena Canals, Urban Walls, and Loloi Rugs.

This was most definitely the summer of home renovations for our family.  When our plans changed suddenly and we found out we couldn’t go on any of our scheduled trips, we decided to redirect our energy to doing some of the projects we have been talking about completing since we bought this house three years ago.

While almost every room in the house needed a touch-up here or there, one of the most fun rooms to tackle was Isla’s “Big Girl” bedroom.  We had been planning for several months to move Isla down to the basement this summer so that we could make space for Baby #4 upstairs.  I think both she and I were a tad nervous about moving her so far away, but with our basement being completely finished, it just didn’t make sense to cram four kids into two bedrooms upstairs when we had two spacious rooms sitting empty in the basement.

In order to prep Isla for the move and also to get her excited about it, we decided to give her a bedroom make-over as part of her birthday gift this year.  We also gave her a lot of say in how she wanted the room to come together.  At first, the control freak in me was nervous about letting her have design control, ha ha, but I set her up on my Pinterest account and let her find images that inspired her.  I have to say, I was very impressed with the images she selected.  Not only were they lovely and completely appropriate for a seven year old girl, they were also trendy and had a clear point of view.  She wasn’t all over the place, selecting a million different looks – she definitely had a vision for her space, and that made it really easy to put into action.

I have to admit, Isla’s bedroom is such a perfect mixture of whimsy and “big girl” details.  The overall colour palette is a blend of pinks, purples, and whites.  We decided to paint the walls a soft purple, and went with Lavender Sparkle 640C-2 by Behr Paint, in an eggshell finish.  I think it’s a great shade of purple that almost looks grey in certain light, and will probably transition nicely as Isla gets older and maybe grows out of some of the frillier details in her room right now.  We also created a feature wall in her room using the Twinkle Star removable decals from Urban Walls.  This was a really fun element to put together and It really gives the room a soft, fanciful feel.  It was also great that we could use the decals to create our own design and pattern, making it unique to Isla’s space.

IMG_1422

For Isla’s bed, we decided to go with a day-bed, so we could get some extra storage underneath and avoid having to find a dresser for her space.  We found the perfect bedspread from Homesense, and throw pillows from a range of places, including the gorgeous multi-pink throw pillows that were gifted to us from Loloi Rugs.  I love that they are fun and playful, but could easily transition into a more mature look as Isla gets older.  Loloi Rugs also set Isla up with a gorgeous, ivory, faux fur blanket for her bed, which doubles up for added warmth as the nights get cooler.  The finishing touch to Isla’s bed is the netting which was purchased from Ikea.

IMG_1426

Another area in the room that was really important to Isla was that she have an “office space” in her room.  Her favourite things to do are colour, draw, write, and make lists, and she adores playing “office”.  We accomplished this by making space for a really cute desk and chair, both purchased from Ikea, and finishing the space off with a fun desk lamp in a matching shade of pink, and some office supplies such as coloured pens and notebooks.  She also has great storage and shelving for all her craft supplies now as well.

IMG_1428

Once we had those two areas of the room set up, we really just needed some final decor accents to pull the whole room together.  We ended up heading to our local party store and purchasing some fun wedding decorations – poms, lanterns, mini lights, etc, which we have strategically strung from the ceiling to tie all the areas of the room together. We also added a photo ledge, some fun art pieces, and hooks for a few of her favourite outfits to hang on.  In addition, we found the perfect pink fur rug for when she steps out of bed, and Lorena Canals sent us the most gorgeous tassel basket for all of Isla’s extra throw pillows, blankets, and stuffed animals.

IMG_1436

Putting this room together was such a fun project for Isla and I!  I loved watching her creativity come through in her colour and decor choices, and I think her room is the perfect reflection of who she is.  I also love that she has really taken ownership of her space – she makes her own bed (strategically arranging all her throw pillows), organizes her desk space, and makes sure all her clothes are put away so that her space almost always looks the way it did when we were finally finished decorating it for the first time.  It has also made her transition into the basement so much easier, because it really is a space she loves spending time.

Thanks for taking the time to check out Isla’s big girl room reveal!  I have to admit, this room gives me all the girly-feels every time I step into it, and I feel like I’m getting the chance to relive my own childhood through my kiddos at times like this!  What does your fantasy kids room look like?!  Any suggestions for fun details we should add to Isla’s room?  Would love to hear your thoughts!

August is here! Be part of (5)

What’s in a Name?

What’s in a Name?

A lot of people have been asking me recently how we chose names for our children, and what factors will go into choosing the name for our newest addition, so I thought it might be fun to blog about it!  Truthfully, I have always found the naming process really stressful.  I know it should be fun, but I feel like choosing the right name is so important and so I feel that burden of responsibility.

I’ve never been hung up on selecting names that actually have deep significant meaning, although I do always check what the historic meanings of the names are.  However, I do care about family ties to names, traditions, and also any special meaning I connect to a name personally.

It’s fair to say that I’ve also always been a fan of classic names – I like trendy names, but have never been drawn to them for my own children.  I wanted my children to have names that would stand the test of time.  As teachers, Jeff and I also have the added struggle of associating certain names with certain students… which can be good and bad! So that is something that often plays into how we feel about names.

After we named our first child, it was important to me that our other children had names that had a similar feel.  I know this isn’t important to everyone, but for me, I wanted all of my kids to have names that flowed together.

Additionally, because we have always waited until the delivery to find out the gender of our babies, with each pregnancy we have had to decide on two names – one for a girl, and one for a boy, to ensure our bases are all covered!  However, we have almost never gone back to the names we had selected for previous babies, as we typically find ourselves drawn to something new or different with each pregnancy, although I still think the similar vibe of the names we’ve chosen for each child is evident.

Continue reading if you’re interested in how we named each of our kids and what their names mean to us!


Summer Party

Isla Deanne –

When I was pregnant with Isla, in 2011, I was really drawn to simple and classic names, like Emma and Ava.  However, I had several friends who had babies around the same time who used these names, so I wanted something that had a similar feel, but was still different.  I first heard the name “Isla” from the movie actress, Isla Fisher.  I remember actually googling how to pronounce the name to make sure I was pronouncing it correctly – thankfully, I loved the pronunciation (Eye-La), and so we decided to go ahead with that for the first name.  “Isla” is traditionally a Scottish name meaning “island”, although this didn’t really play a role in our choosing of the name. When we chose the name, it was still very uncommon, and a lot of people commented on how unique it was – despite the fact that it’s in fact a very old name!  However, within a couple of years of our Isla being born, it became a very popular name, and we now know of several little Isla’s.

The middle name “Deanne” was selected because it is my mom’s middle name, and also my middle name, so I loved the significance of passing my middle name on to my first born daughter, just as my mom passed in on to me – her firstborn daughter.  Deanne is  a variant of the name Diane, and means “divine”.


Summer Party (1)

Benson Jeffrey

I always struggle with boys names far more than with girls names; I’m not sure why this is, but I do find naming boys so much more difficult.  Because we already had an Isla, I wanted a name that would compliment it, sticking with the “short, simple, and classic” trend we started with our firstborn.  We tossed around a lot of different names,  but couldn’t seem to agree for quite some time.  We finally agreed that we liked the name “Ben”, but we wanted to give him options when he was older by giving him a slightly longer name.  The obvious choice was “Benjamin”, but again, we knew several Benjamin’s, so when we came across the name “Benson”, we knew it was the perfect way for us to have our own little Ben in a slightly less traditional way.  The name “Benson” is actually traditionally a surname, and it’s no surprise that the actual meaning is “Son of Ben”.  However, the name Ben is a family name on my mom’s side of the family, so it held special meaning in that it can be passed on to another generation.

As far as Ben’s middle name, no surprise here either, but he was named after my husband.  We had originally selected a different middle name, but a few days before Ben was born, Jeff asked if we could just his name as the middle name, and of course, I was ok with that.   “Jeffrey” is a German name that means “pledge of peace”, which I actually love for our sweet boy, who has become such a balm for my mamas soul.


Summer Party (2)

Molly Blythe

Molly’s name makes me smile every time I say it.  It took us awhile to settle on her name, and in fact, we didn’t choose it officially until a few weeks before she was born.  We have both always loved the name Molly, but for some reason, it never made the top of our list with previous children.  When we were first married, we vacationed to Bali and we stayed at a resort where another family from Australia was staying – they had a little one named Molly, and we both loved it when we heard it, and attributed it to this darling little girl we saw playing in the pool everyday.  I think our hesitancy in using the name earlier on had more to do with our belief that the name was too common – however, I have come to realize that while the name Molly is familiar to everyone, it’s actually not that common. “Molly” is actually a Hebrew name, which means “bitter”, and while I wasn’t a huge fan of the meaning of the name itself, for us, it wasn’t enough of an issue not to use the name.

Molly’s middle name, Blythe, is actually inspired by a novel I was reading when I was pregnant with her.  There was a character in the story named “Juniper Blythe”, and I absolutely loved the way the name sounded.  When I tried it out with Molly, it just clicked – to me, Molly Blythe sounds like the name of a storybook character, and as an English teacher, I love the tie of the name to literature.  I also absolutely love the meaning of the name Blyth, which is an English name meaning “happy and carefree”.  This is our little one to a tee – and thankfully it not balances out the meaning of her first name, but also gives us a new family name unique to our little unit.

 


Summer Party (3)

Baby #4

If you’ve noticed any sort of pattern in our name selections, then you might have some ideas of the types of names that we love and are considering for our newest babe – classic, simple, traditional, short, simple, sweet.  These are all words I would use to describe our name style.

We have a few that we are considering right now for each gender, but with two expectant sisters, and several expectant friends, it remains to be seen what we will end up selecting!  Although I no longer have the same qualms about using names that others have used, I still personally wouldn’t choose the same name that a family member or close personal friend has chosen, simply due to the confusion that can cause when everyone is together!

However, because we still aren’t 100% settled, I would LOVE some baby name suggestions for both a girl and a boy that you think would fit our family trend! What perfect name combo would you add to our mix of little people?!


 

August is here! Be part of (5)