8.22.2014

{summer fun} circle line sightseeing cruise


This past Sunday was "Dia del Niño" {Child's day} in my home country. We wanted  to celebrate with a little outing with the boys. So we decided to play tourist and head to the city to go on a little boat ride on the Hudson river.
I've done the Circle Line sightseeing cruise some years ago when my sister was visiting and it was great. We did it during the winter months and even though it was freezing cold we had so much fun. I thought it'll be even better during a nice Summer day.

We got our tickets in advance to avoid waiting in lines {I definitely recommend doing this especially if you have kids. Besides you can always do a quick search for online coupon codes and most likely you'll find a few}. We got some time to kill before our ride so we walked around. The boys were amazed by the "big, big boat" as G called it so we put the Intrepid Sea, Air, Space Museum in our list of places to visit soon.
{watching the kayakers}
 {too bad we didn't know about this splash pad}

{Lady of Liberty}
{or "tatu de libeta verde", green Statue of Liberty in Spanish, as G called it}
{beautiful NYC skyline}
{We had planned to go to Shake Shack for lunch. On our way there this sign caught my attention. "Miraflores" is a neighborhood in my home city, Lima. Not sure what it means here}
{Silly us we didn't anticipated this Shake Shack location in Times Square will be packed.
There was not seating available, so we opted for a another place nearby}
{But on our way back, the boys got the famous Shake Shack milkshake. To be honest I don't like it. And it's not something I like my kids to have. In fact this was G's first time having a milkshake. But we allowed since we were celebrating "their" day}
{G had to share his with daddy. Too much sugar for just one little guy}
{G seems to be wondering how did the big "green" statue he just saw on the water made
its way to the street. He kept staring at it for a long time}
We all had a good time. And everything would have been, dare I say perfect, if it weren't because we forgot the stroller. G doesn't like the stroller anymore but we always bring it just in case. Except for this time. We had a good 25 minutes walk to and from lunch. G was fine for most part of it. But we had to carry him from time to time. We also made a stop to play at a playground we found on our way back, so he got really tired at the end.  The truth is we all ended up exhausted {L and I may have taken a power nap on our way back home!}. NYC outings are great and fun but tiring!

8.19.2014

{diy} wall hanging banner

Decorating rooms is definitely fun and exciting. But at the same time overwhelming. At least to me. Especially in the last stages, when it's time to accessorize. Why? Because there are so many great things out there. Art, décor objects, pillows, shelves, accessories...the options are endless.
There are so many great artists and so many great companies making amazing stuff. That's why I usually have a hard time when it's time to put the last details into a room. I want it all. I want everything. But obviously that's not possible {and most importantly not good for our budget}.
 
So instead of going crazy after spending hours {hours I should be sleeping I have to say} on the web looking for stuff for the kids new rooms,  I decided to make my own. My own stuff that is. My own prints, my own décor.
 
Today I'm sharing one of those little projects I worked on these past weeks {and that I mentioned here} over at Home is Where the Heart is. So please head over there and check it out. Hope you like it!

 
Happy Tuesday!

8.13.2014

{interiors} nursery into toddler's room


When I designed G's nursery {three years ago} one of my requirements was to create a space that would easily transform into a toddler's room. I knew the "baby/nursery" phase will last a couple of years at most and so I designed his nursery in a way that with just a few changes it would become a toddler's room. That was the main reason for going with a neutral color scheme and including a full size bed.

I thought I had achieved my goal. And somehow I think I did. When G was about two years old I started thinking about what changes I'd make, what things I'd keep and what new pieces I'd bring into his space to make it a toddler's room. And it was very easy {at least in my head}. We'd keep his crib for now, making it a toddler bed by removing the front rail. We'd lower the full bed removing the metal frame and leaving just the box spring and mattress on the floor. We'd remove the rocker chair and bring in a tee pee, and the changing table would convert into a dresser by removing the top. When the time came for G to move to the big bed, we'd remove the crib/toddler's bed, move the dresser to that side of the wall and add a small table and chairs or a low bookshelf to storage and organize toys. And there would still be some open space for him to play. I'd get him new bedding for his new "big bed", remove the mobile and add some other pieces to bring in more color into his neutral room.  It was easy. I had it all planned. No need for new furniture, no need to repaint. G's nursery transforming into G's toddler room would be a breeze. Here's what I had in mind.
 
 {actual nursery floor plan layout}

{new toddler room floor plan layout}
 
Well, a year after those initial thoughts, G's nursery will be transforming not into a toddler's room, but....my office! The "nursery" phase lasted one more year than planned. G loves his room and crib so we decided not to make any changes until he was ready. However, M and I talked about how as the kids grow, their needs change {obviously, right?}. G will soon make the transition into a bed {he's still in a crib and we decided to skip the toddler bed}, and with that comes potential sleeping problems, like waking more often, getting out of bed, wanting to come to our room. At the same time, L is growing into a young boy and so he would need more space and privacy. So having L's room across from our bedroom and G's nursery down the hall next to the stairs didn't make sense anymore. We had to swap rooms.

I know. We should have thought about this when planning the nursery. But at that time, moving L to another bedroom was not an option for us. We didn't want L to feel displaced or to feel his new little brother was more important to us. And because of our circumstances we know L would have felt that way if we moved him down the hall and put G in his room. We really thought we'd be fine with this arrangement for a few more years, but things change, kids grow and well, we have to adjust.

 {after just a few weeks of nursing G in his room, I realized I needed an ottoman. We had it downstairs so I made a cover for it to match the pillows on the chair}
{After G's first birthday I changed a bit the art in his room. I hung the poster people signed
on his first birthday and re-used the "happy" part of his happy birthday banner.
It was perfect for his nursery}
 {I also made and effort to expand his Spanish books collection}
 {some more pillows and toys made it to his crib during the first year}
 
Another reason for the rooms swapping was our bathrooms remodeling plans. One of them, the kids bathroom, is next to G's nursery and to be able to gain more space and fit a bathtub, we may need to take over G's actual closet space.
 
So there I was, with two new rooms to create. L's room was already too child-ish for him and he asked for something more sophisticated. He required three colors in particular: black, blue and gold {I know, a designer mom's dream, right? Well, without the blue}. G's room was a blank slate, the possibilities were endless. In a way I was thrilled, two new rooms {three if you add my office, but that's another story} to design and decorate. On the other hand I was a little sad my original vision for G's nursery didn't come to life. I put a lot of thought and work into it and I was looking forward to seeing it transform into a happy toddler's space. There are so many memories in that room I knew I'd have a hard time dismantling it. I started little by little, removing some accessories first, the frames next, then his closet and lastly moving the changing table, which is now a dresser, into his new room. The new room is almost ready but we haven't moved G yet.

The chevron wall in his nursery? That one was a lot of work, so that one is staying for my office. I can't say I'm not thrilled. Chevron lover here.