Saturday, January 26, 2008

What to do with Mr. B's Room?

Everyone who knows me, knows that my favorite rooms to decorate are my children's rooms. Charlotte Baby & Child readers have seen Mr. B's nursery in the book (, the WG's nursery and her big girl room too. And now, it's time to start thinking about Mr. B's big boy room, which (surprise, surprise) is scheduled to appear in our October 2008 issue. I have three major ideas and am wondering which you guys like best. Leave a comment and let me know! Here are the rough ideas:

A Cabin in the Woods Theme
My first idea is to do a woodsy theme but with a whimsical and cartoony twist, perhaps even a little bit modern. Something, really bright and whimsical. I was thinking that a moose, raccoon, etc standing in a stream or going for a swim could be a cute mural. (My good friend Allison has a nursery with a great outdoorsy cartoon mural.) Skiing animals could be fun. Bears fishing with poles could also be fun. I was thinking something with a fun, cartoony feel would work best with the bedding. Or something bright and solid. It might be fun to have a real tent in the room and paint a campfire on the wall, etc.

I was thinking about this bed

With a rocking moose

Lighting like this...

A rug like this one

And for added effect, there's a company that makes amazing firefly like lighting....We could use that for a "nightlight" effect.We can install them in fake trees or perhaps even in the wall. Check them out here.

And we'd have to have one of these nightlights by his bedside table....

City Boy
In a totally different direction, I also thought a New York City theme might be a lot of fun. I thought that some sort of skyline mural could be fun. Especially if we could make it on MDF and mount lights behind it somehow so that the city lights could be his "nightlight". (ambitious, i know)

We could use a fun taxi pedal car

Street signs on the walls

This lamp

Traffic light clock

Bears with "I love NY" shirts on, Broadway posters, maybe even a manhole cover rug?

Nautical Theme
My first idea was a nautical theme, which my family pooh-poohed as ordinary, but I still kind of like....
We could do something bright and whimsical so it's still very "little boy" like. Maybe big whales swimming in the sea. Funny cartoony animals sailing?

I'd love to do this in one corner...

And I love this snuggling cutter

I love this bedding

These flags are great too!

So, what do you think? Which do you like best? Which gives Mr. B the most longevity? Which is most original? And which do you think he'll love most? Can't wait to hear all your opinions!

Thursday, January 24, 2008

How I'm Coping with the Writer's Strike

Okay, so I'm all for the writer's getting more money. And I think the studios should break down and settle it already. Mel is traveling, so I'm on my own in the quiet house most evenings. I write the new issue of the magazine a bit. I have a new trash novel. But my favorite diversions, Fox's House with the scrumptious Hugh Laurie and My Name is Earl have not been new since God was a boy. So, I've decided to branch out.

I'm one of those people that usually Tivos three or four shows for myself and about 42 shows for my children. How horrible would it be if they requested Wow Wow Wubzy and I couldn't deliver! But now, I'm recording a whole mess of shows and trying to get into them. Luckily, I've found a winner.

I'm embarrassed to admit it, but I'm an OC junkie now. Because it's on SoapNet twice a day, I've already caught up on one whole season in a little more than a week. There's Marissa, the earnest albeit slightly melodramatic protagonist. Ryan, the troubled teen from the hood taken in be wealthy benefactors. Seth, the adorable, funny one that I totally would have fallen for in high school. Summer, the endearingly vapid and shallow one. It's just yummy. Campy, indulgent, with all the plot twists you'd expect from a night time high school soap.

I blame Ira Glass for my new found addiction. If you don't know who Ira is, then you're not a terrifically geeky NPR junkie like I am. My love of NPR has been life long (I was the only seven year old I knew who counted Mara Liason and Nina Totenberg among her heroines). On one episode of This American Life, he shared his passion for the OC and how sad he was that is was being canceled. That was it, if it was good enough for Ira, it was good enough for me. All I needed was the impetus of a disastrously long writers strike.

So Hollywood execs listen up. We're not turning to new reality TV. But we are willing to get turned on to new dramas and scripted shows that we haven't made time for in the past. Hurry up, pay the writers more already, before we all decide to take up crochet.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

All About Me!

My One New Year’s Resolution

Right now, I’ll bet that you and I are doing the exact same thing – making our New Year’s resolutions. My mommy-friends have been busily sharing them via email over the past few days. Each woman has laudable goals – to be more organized, to go to the gym more often, to find a church home, to go on more dates with their spouses. But this year, my resolution is far more selfish. This year, I am going to pay attention to myself.

At first it may sound strange, but if you think about it, I’ll bet you too find it hard to pay attention to yourself. Almost every mom I know has busily made lunch for her kids, changed diapers, put babies to bed only to look up and realize it’s after three o’clock and she hasn’t eaten all day. There have been whole days where I have forgotten to go to the bathroom. Or worse, rather than paying attention to my building frustration or resentment, I busily move on to the next task and totally loose my cool when something goes wrong.

This year is going to be different. I know because the resolution is already different. Last year, I resolved to be a more attentive mother, to play on the floor with my kids more, to do more activities with them, and to spend time one-on-one with each of them. I resolved to be a more patient and forgiving spouse. And I resolved to become more active and involved in my church. Are you noticing a trend? Although all my resolutions were wonderful ones, they were all organized around other people’s experiences.

This year, I am going to try to care just at much about how my day is going, as I do about my four year old’s time at preschool. I’m going to make sure that I get a good night sleep in the same way that I try to maximize the baby’s sleep. I’m going to play outings that I enjoy in the same way that I plan them for the children. And I’m going to help enable my own good eating and workout routine in the same way that I facilities those healthy habits for my husband.
I am quite certain that I’m still going to be frustrated by how many hours there are in a day. And the limitations on my time may mean that my kids get fewer outings and a few less craft projects this year. But what they will gain, a mom that is happy, healthy and content to live in the present moment, will likely far surpass that one additional experience.