Tag Archives: games

Playroom refresh + indoor toddler fun

We used some of our time off over the holidays to tackle our extra bedroom and convert it into a brighter space that works better for living with two kids in a 1.5-story, nearly 100-year-old home.

I didn’t think to snap “before” photos, so use your imagination. The guest room was formerly painted a dark indigo with a queen bed, chair and cedar chest taking up the majority of the space, and a Blues Brothers poster on the wall from Joe’s bachelor days. Here it is now:


The art on the west wall is a piece by Joe’s Uncle Mike LaVelle that we received as a wedding gift. It gives me a happy, peaceful feeling and Eileen loves staring at it.

To turn the space into a playroom/guestroom, we painted the walls Prairie Sky by Behr and swapped out the queen for an IKEA Hemnes daybed that expands into a king for when we have company, and conveniently hides a traffic-jam full of plastic vehicles as well as bedding.


(We donated our queen to the USCRI refugee resettlement program. Learn more about that here.) Joe updated the ceiling fan with more contemporary glass sconces and a coat of white spray paint. We added toy storage on either side of the bed, and brought in the easel and little desk and chair.


On the east wall, we hung the chicken wire bulletin board Joe made for me awhile back. I think it’s perfect for tacking up birth announcements and kid art. And on the north wall, we hung the embroidered alphabet blanket my Aunt Mary Lee made for Eileen. Her stitching is so impressive!


I unearthed and hung curtains I sewed for our upstairs that we had swapped out awhile ago, and the (slightly uneven thanks to an unfortunate trip in the dryer) sheers were already in the room. Now we’re just missing a rug and some throw pillows, which I’ll probably D.I.Y. later, maybe once I get my hands on some Roam collection fabric.

We’re definitely loving the extra room to snuggle and play.


Speaking of, I’ve included a few of our favorite indoor activities lately after the jump…

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Filed under At home, Family Fun, House projects

ABC Baby Shower

Last weekend, I went home for a baby shower that my mom and aunts planned to celebrate the impending arrival (6-ish weeks?) of JamJam Jellyroll – as we like to call baby Jayjack.

They chose a sweet little venue, The Pinecone Cottage Teahouse, in Downers Grove, to host it, and crafted some special details.We don’t know if Baby J is a boy or girl yet, so everything was gender neutral.


The ABC theme was inspired by the Posie Gets Cozy Daisychain alphabet crewlwork project my mom has been working on (she got down to the ‘z’ by the day of the shower!) and carried through with cute little signs and details, like these sweet cookie mix favors shaped like mason jar bottles.


Showers elicit a dreamlike ‘and you were there, and you were there!’ feeling that comes from gathering important people who would never otherwise be in the same room together to share your joy. A table of my beautiful besties from Benet and Mizzou:


I’m also smitten with the scrapbook paper origami placeholders that my mom and aunts made when they were out in California. They stand up and have little pockets on both sides. The front held a little piece of paper with the name and table on it and the back had a tea bag tucked in. I’m taking one apart and will do another post on how to make them, since they didn’t have a tutorial for it.


The game we played reminded us all of how my grandpa makes up alternate names for things using fancier synonyms (Sloppy Joes = Untidy Josephs, etc.).

Can you figure out which children’s book titles these stand for?

1.  Emerald Yolk With Accompanying Pig Product
2.  Evening Salutations To The Celestial Orb
3.  Soft Cotton Toy Bunny
4.  Trifecta Of Minute Swine
5.  Pretty Girl Slumbering
6.  Unsightly Aquatic Bird
7.  Which Female Cares For Me
8.  Brunette Furry Animal, Brunette Furry Animal, I Ask About Your Observations.
9.  Locale Of The Concrete Walkway’s Termination.
10.  Be Off Canine, Be Off
11.  Famished Butterfly Predecession
12.  Fedora Wearing Feline
13.  Locale Of The Untamed Creatures
14.  A Breeze Blowing Through The Salex Trees
15.  Diminutive Domicile Situated in Open Country
16.  Bequeathing Topiary
17.  Pentagonal Tiny Primates Bouncing on a Trundle

I was stumped on a few, so let me know in the comments if you just can’t get one and I’ll tell you the answer!

Everyone was so generous and thoughtful – I know this little person is coming into a great support system. All of the guests even created an alphabet book. Everyone got assigned a letter and came up with a word and way to illustrate it:


The new nursery windows go in tomorrow, too!

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Filed under Baby, Life lessons