Our Finished Basement

Over the weekend I had to look up something so I used my Home Tour page and realized how out of date it was!  I decided to fix that and started in the basement mostly because it was the cleanest at the time!

I’ve shown updates here and there like our Christmas decorations, but never a full tour of the space and how it looks most of the time.

Finished Basement

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There was a lot of work done to get it to this point below (check out this tag to see all the work), and after that it was easy in comparison to finish it off to become one of the most comfortable spots in the house.

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I actually prefer to watch TV down here, but in the winter months it’s a little chilly and thinking ahead to turn the space heater on beforehand is sometimes too much.  Now that the weather is finally warming up here, (not to mention we’ve found Archer wakes up if we watch TV right below him right after he goes to bed), we’ve been spending more time down here again.

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We bought the sectional used and it will probably stay with the house because it was a hassle getting it down the stairs and its the perfect size for the space.  We also added a fauxdenza using Ikea kitchen cabinets the same way we did for the living room

Finished Basement Fauxdenza

It’s awesome for storage, and it helps to even out the room since the sectional and TV are set up further into the room.  Making it almost the whole wall keeps the room from feeling lopsided.

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Finished Basement Fauxdenza 2

I’ve explained the art above the sofa before, but for those new here the larger art on the right is actually hiding our circuit breaker access!

Finished Basement Gallery Wall

On the other side are the stairs and anyone who’s been around for awhile knows the work that went into building and finishing them, and they had to get worse before getting better.

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But, all the work paid off and not only do we have gorgeous new stairs, but we have a lot more efficient storage.

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The paneling was actually designed to hide the new storage spaces.

Basement Under Stair Storage

To the right of the stairs is the little hall with the beer keezer and the bathroom, as well as the new closet.  And a special sighting of my little llama helper!

Finished Basement Stairs

Finished Basement Hall

Finished Basement Keezer

Beer Tap Chalkboard Sign

Since the beer was over here and I wanted a way to show off Mike’s homebrewing accomplishments I thought a little gallery wall above the paneling would be perfect.  It’s a lot of beer art with some photos from our Europe trip including our trip to the Pislner Urquell brewery and the Hofbräuhaus München.  There’s also a spot for some of Mike’s medals! 

Finished Basement Beer Gallery Wall

Overall, I love this space down here! It’s bright and comfy, two descriptives rarely used for a basement, and I can’t wait to keep cool for some Netflix binge sessions during the upcoming warmer months.

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For more photos of what this space looked like when we bought the house and links to all the work we did, check out the Home Tour page!

Lifesavers and Special Items in the Nursery

When I talked about Archer’s nursery I pointed out the main components of most nurseries: the crib, the dresser/changing table, the rocking chair.  While those are obviously important, I’ve collected a few special items that were handmade for Archer, or unique lifesavers that I thought I’d share.  These are obviously personal to our situation, but I thought by sharing they may be helpful to someone else too!

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The first our the crib sheets.  From the photo above they look pretty basic, but they’re actually a genius zippered crib sheet called QuickZip.

QuickZip Top SheetWhat’s so great is that it’s a fitted sheet that can be changed quickly by zipping off the top sheet instead of removing the entire fitted sheet.  I didn’t realize it but crib mattresses are heavy!  I’d hate to pick that thing up every time I needed to change the sheet.  Archer hasn’t had any diaper disasters on the sheets (yet) but he has spit up his lunch a time or two and I can easily pick him up, unzip the old sheet, toss in the hamper, grab a new one and zip up, all with one hand!

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I got mine from Amazon and got a set of 3 top sheets with one base.  It was a pricey investment to buy the whole set at once, but well worth it!

The next lifesaver wasn’t shown in the nursery reveal because it is a little bulky (for the small table) and doesn’t look great in photos.  On the little table next to the chair usually sits our little mini fridge.

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And when I say mini fridge, this isn’t your dorm room fridge, more like a micro mini fridge.

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Mike bought it for me from Amazon and it’s a 4 liter (6 can) mini fridge!  We were running downstairs multiple times each night/day for milk and Mike being Mike figured there had to be a better way!  This fits a couple bottles and bags of milk and is right next to me in the middle of the night.

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The best part is, when we’re done needing the milk throughout the night (during the day Archer will be at a sitters), we can use this for the car or camping!

The next item I mentioned in the reveal, but I think it’s worth noting here too, are the book ledges.  I knew if Archer was anything like his dad, I would need to think about the items I installed not only in terms of a little baby, but also a rambunctious toddler.  That means these ledges had to be strong!

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These from Amazon are advertised as twice as thick as the usual acrylic ledges and are said to be unbreakable.  We’ll see about that in a few years, but that and Mike’s anchoring made me feel a little better installing these!

Another item not pictured was something we bought after I took the photos, an iPad stand.

iPad Stand
Since I liked being in the nursery, and those first couple months it seemed like all we did was nurse and sleep, I found myself trying to get things done on my iPad but struggling to do it with only one hand.  This stand was awesome!  I could catch Queer Eye on Netflix during those dreaded cluster feedings and I could answer emails from work while Archer was napping in my arms.  I tried to cheap out and buy one that clipped onto the crib, but it couldn’t hold the weight, so Mike found this one for me.  I use it less nowadays now that we have a sort of schedule and his night feedings are more like dreamfeeds where I can do them in the dark in less than 20 minutes.  But, again it’s something we can use around the house when we aren’t using it in the nursery anymore.

The final item was something I handmade for the room, the painted globe. 

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The idea is all over Pinterest and I knew I wanted to have one in this Tibetan Sherpa themed room.  It wasn’t that difficult, and was actually kind of relaxing (which was nice those last couple weeks before Archer was due) to paint.  It’s not something I could bring down to play with, unless I clear-coated, maybe with some Modge Podge, but I like looking at it!

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Like any room in the house, some of these were designed into it from the beginning, and some were added after we saw the need, but all of these items are special and/or lifesavers and worth twice as much as we paid for them (anything that gives me 10 extra minutes of sleep is worth it’s weight in gold these days)!  If I can give that extra time to any other mamas out there I'll gladly share my finds!  My sister (who just welcomed her little one yesterday!) is already getting the zippered crib sheets after I raved about mine!

Archer’s Nursery

I’m excited to share my favorite room in the house.  I’m grateful I love it so much because I spend the most time in there these days #hello3amnursing!

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Thanks to the short lived office redo, we started with a blank slate and white walls. 

Office Painted SW6203 Spare White
I had a general plan and theme (ha!) and started with the major components – crib, dresser, chair, and rug.  I chose a lot of white furniture, knowing that anything dark would be too heavy for this tiny room, and because of that I wanted to add some visual interest to one wall to break up the white.  I painted the only full wall a deep blue with left over paint I used for a piece of furniture that lived in the office for such a short time I have no photographic evidence! 

I bought the rug first and was lucky that the left over paint worked well together.  The wall took two coats, and because it was furniture paint, it had a pretty decent sheen to it, which I normally wouldn’t choose for a wall, but now that I’ve discovered how messy everything can get with a baby I’m not too upset over the extra protection next to the crib!

Once the main furniture pieces were in place it was just adding in the accessories. 

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We added a bamboo blackout/cordless shade (above the light diffusing honeycomb shade not shown), some acrylic picture ledges for books, a shelf above the dresser, and another shelf next to the crib.

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The dresser is from Ikea, and while it’s not specifically a changing table, but I prefer the extra height for changing Archie.  The felt ball garland from Hobby Lobby was placed there temporary because I was going to cut it up to use for a mobile above the crib, but the kid stares at that for a good 20 minutes every morning and it’s enough time for this mama to brush her teeth and hair and therefore it’s staying forever!

The triangle shelf is an awesome find from World Market and besides hiding the camera and the white noise machine, it’s basically decoration, but the fun part of a nursery is that kids toys can be the décor!  

Nursery Shelf
The light box was a gift from my mom and besides being perfect for parties, it serves as a nightlight.

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The closet was one area we didn’t skimp and our son literally has the best organized and most expensive closets in the house. 

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Back when we moved in we used the cheaper ClosetMaid systems from Home Depot and Mike set up this closet supports 24” apart. 

This was a happy coincidence because I really wanted elfa drawers from The Container Store for the nursery and wouldn’t you know they’re 24” drawers, that after some research online, I read from others would fit the ClosetMaid support system we already installed!

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We bought the drawers, a shelf and hanging rod from The Container Store and was able to reuse one of our shelves.  The finished picture above shows a better angle so that you can see the closet is deep enough for the drawers to open inside.  We have so much organization in this nursery I started hanging up random onsies that could easily be folded inside the dresser. 

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While the main elements are pretty basic, the accessories have that collected/well-traveled look Mike and I wanted, and the textures (like the sheepskin and woven baskets) and whimsical items like the llamas have that Tibetan Sherpa vibe Mike specifically wanted.

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The room is tiny, but has a big personality while still feeling as though it compliments the rest of the house.

Below is a list of the major sources:

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