Friday, March 30, 2012

Decorating the Nursery: If It Can Go Wrong, It Has (or Probably Will)

After months of working on our babe's nursery, I would have expected to be posting pictures at this point. If not "After" pictures then at least "Pretty Close to After" pictures. 

Were I to climb the dozen or so steps to the room at the top left of the staircase and snap my digital camera a few times, however, all I could show you is this: white walls

That's right. No baseboards, even though we nailed them up a month and a half ago. No brown paint on the upper 1/3 of the wall, even though Brad painted three coats in January. No crib. No semi-organized closet. No dresser. No chest of drawers. No hoard of pillows. No stacks of baby clothes. Nothing nothing nothing. 


B/c we had to take it all down/out/apart and paint over it all. B/c all the clothes/pillows/pieces of furniture are sitting variously in my hallway, office, Brad's office, our bedroom.


I could recount this renovation nightmare in its painful entirity a 12th time. I could cry hysterically for a 4th time. I could become infuriated for the who-knows-how-many-eth time. But I won't, b/c I'm sick and my shower's tomorrow and I want to try to sleep for one night this week. 

So instead, I'll give the barest bones acount. In January, I spent nearly 5 hours researching VOC-free paint - the supposedly healthy, low-odor choice. We made our pick, spent a bunch o' money buying the stuff, tons of time painting, and all was well. No smell, looked pretty good. Great. As expected. 

Yeah, it's great - in theory 
Until we got back from my parents' house over spring break (a month ago) and the room reeked. Like, chemical smelling. Like bad. Except VOC-free paint ain't supposed to have those horrible chemicals. And especially not a month and a half after painting. 

Nothing worked to get rid of it - heat, air circulation, Citrus Magic. Nothing. It didn't get better. In fact, the warm weather made it worse. The customer service rep at the company was nice, but he pretty much thought I was nuts. Then the smell started going into the hallway. Then down the stairs. 

This stuff is no joke - and it ain't cheap 
That was it. We couldn't wait any longer. Last weekend Brad and I spent a nightmare day and a half clearing all the stuff out of the room and taking down every board and every batten we'd spent hours nailing up. (I pounded out EIGHTY nails.) Then his dad, my mom, and the two of us spent a nightmarish Sunday covering everything - every wall, every bit of window and door trim, every side of every piece of board and batten - with $40 a gallon Zinsser Bin odor blocking primer. 

And now, with a baby coming in 6 weeks, all the work we've done for the past three months has been undone - and we've got to do it all again. 

Any guesses as to why I got sick? The stress, as you might imagine, has been unreal. When I think about all the time, effort, money, and sheer exhaustion that went into the nursery the first time around - well, I can't really bear to think about it. Which is why I'm going to bed.


  1. So sorry to hear this.... You’re having one hell of a time setting all this up. And you’re frustrated by having so many setbacks. Keep your chin up and S M I L E!

  2. Thanks - it's been quite the nightmare, and it continues. AND I'M STILL SICK AS A DOG.