Five Tips for Organizing the NurserySunday, July 07, 2013
Last weekend, my daughter and I attended a baby shower for one of my oldest friends. And by old, I'm not referring to her age, because we were born in the same year so that would imply that I'm old. Which I'm not. What I mean is we've known each for about 30 years and I couldn't be more thrilled for her. I sat at a table with a number of friends from high school, many of whom just had a baby or were expecting. It was a virtual babe-fest, in fact. When I heard that Melissa, the creative mind behind Hitch-it ~ don't lose it, offered to organize a friend's nursery right after having baby number three, I was amazed, and a bit envious, that she seemed to have a knack for organizing. And wait, she actually enjoys it! It goes without saying that I had to tap into her motherly wisdom so that I could have the honour of sharing it with you, my readers. She claimed that she wasn't very good at writing and wasn't sure she could come up with enough tips but I think she did an amazing job. Here they are:
Five Tips for Organizing the Nursery
- Baskets, baskets and more baskets - At first, all things baby are small…socks, diapers, shoes, hats. They are easily sorted into baskets that can be stored neatly and easily accessible on the change table or on a shelf nearby. This not only makes it more convenient to have everything handy for a quick change, but it also keeps you close to your baby while you get that matching hat or pair of socks. What’s great about baskets is they also can grow with baby’s changing needs; as you need less diaper creams, powder etc., you can use the basket to fill a new need, like hair accessories, toys or books!
- Rotation - Are you afraid of getting lost in a mountain of clothes that are too big or too small? Start with clothes in the right season or size stored away in dresser drawers and hanging in a section of the closet (dresses, dress shirts). Devote another section of the closet to clothes that are for the following season or year. You can attach tags to hangers or make size dividers if needed. As clothes become too small, simply toss them into an empty bin in the closet. A rolly bin under the crib is a great place to hide, and have accessible, the “next size” in clothing washed and ready to replace the emptying dresser drawers. A simple rotation from hanging in the closet to under the crib bin to the dresser and eventually back into the closet, in the end-of-the-line storage bin. When this bin is full, it’s already conveniently sorted by size or season for long term storage or selling. Having a place for every piece is a great way to avoid a clothes avalanche. Another pro-active tip for clothes is to have a stain stick or spray in the nursery to use on stains as they go into the laundry hamper.
- Safety - A few simple steps to keep your nursery safe from dangers: keep a 2-foot radius clear from baby’s crib. Little arms will eventually reach through the crib bars. Ensure blind cords are wrapped up and secured up near the top of the window. Any power cords, from monitor or lamps, should be out of baby's reach. Outlets that are not in use need to be covered and there should be no heavy or breakable objects on the wall above the crib space. Example: My nephew threw a stuffed toy up into the air hitting the picture on the wall above his crib and the glass shattered on him upon impacting the crib. Yikes!
- A place for everything - Get creative on using as much space as you can. For example, an over-the-door shoe holder is a great way to store extra creams, powders, washes, wipes, diapers and medicines up out of reach and available when you need to replace stock. If you don’t have extra closet space for those large boxes of extra diapers, the individual sleeves slide nicely into a fabric hanging closet organiser, and you can use the other shelves for extra blankets and sheets.
- Plan ahead - Be prepared with a diaper bag ready to go, stocked with a day’s essentials. Extra clothes, diapers, blanket, feeding needs. Small travel-size essentials, like powder, creams, and shampoo fit great inside little pouches. It’s also a great idea to pack a few plastic bags for wet or soiled items, keeping them separated from the rest of your bag. You should re-stock your bag at the end of each trip, avoiding the “rush” of getting out the door and forgetting something the next time you head out. It’s handy to have extra soothers or toys in case any become misplaced. Securing favourite objects with a toy or soother hitch can help with keeping favourite items safe and secure.
Melissa studied Early Childhood Education in Hamilton and worked as a live-out nanny. A mother of two, she is the creator of Hitch-it ~ don't lose it and offers hand-made items to help parents and caregivers keep treasured items from being lost or dirty. Hitch soothers, toys, cups, mitts and much more. She also makes pant hitches, that help with pants that are too big in the waist, as well as a nursing hitch that can be used with anything from your jacket to a blanket to keep mom nursing in private. The new Helper Hitch looped over the handle bars of your baby's stroller attaches easily to the side of your diaper bag or can keep your car keys within reach.