Black & White: The New Baby Colors?

If you haven’t heard of Pinterest, it’s definitely worth checking out — it’s a fun, sort of Twitter-like social bookmarking site that focuses on images. I started an account there a few weeks ago (you can see my pinnings here), and I’ve been using it to collect nursery images (and other fun things) all magpie-like.

The social component of Pinterest means that you can follow other users, and if someone pins something you find interesting, you can re-pin it to one of your own pinboards. I bring all this up because of something interesting that happened when I pinned the following image:

Black and white nursery.
Image from here.

It’s an extremely high-contrast black and white nursery that I pinned mostly because it seemed visually striking next to all of the more traditional nurseries. But that was about the extent of it — personally, this doesn’t seem all that fitting or appealing as a baby’s room, and overall it kind of reminds me of something out of that movie Beetlejuice.

But lots of people have been re-pinning it — about thirty as of this writing, which seems remarkable given that I don’t really have any contacts or followers on that site. And that led me to wonder: do people really find this to be an appealing design for a nursery? Or does it keep getting re-pinned because people see it and think, “Oh, that’s weird and interesting like something out of Beetlejuice”?

I mean, I know there are some strange trends in interior design these days, so I guess I wouldn’t be too surprised if this turns out to be the hip new thing in nurseries. But I’d be curious to hear anyone else’s thoughts on the subject. Is black and white with no colors your idea of the ideal nursery design?

Novelty Nurseries

Lately, I’ve been looking at a lot of nursery pictures online — maybe it’s just the pregnancy talking, but I really love looking at different nursery themes and seeing what kinds of creative things people have done for decorations. I’ve actually started a little collection of nursery pictures, and I figured I’d start sharing some of my favorites on this blog.

But I’ll say that even within my collection so far, there seem to be a number of very different approaches that people take with nursery design in general. Some are traditional-looking, some stick tightly to a specific theme, and some are so stark and modern that they hardly look like a baby belongs there at all.

For this post, I thought it would be fun to focus on some the more over-the-top novelty nurseries I’ve found — the ones that take a theme and really run with it. For instance, this nursery took the nautical and beach theme so far as to actually include a giant mural with a beach and lighthouse:

Nautical-themed nursery with lighthouse mural. Image from here.

But in case the lighthouse mural is a bit much, here’s another slightly more subdued variation on the nautical theme, which includes a giant wall of fishes — each individually cut from colored pieces of felt — as well as little starfish and seahorses scattered around elsewhere in the room:

Nursery with fish wall. Image from here.

This next one was inspired by the children’s book Where the Wild Things Are, complete with fake jungle plants and a massive wrap-around jungle mural. The mural was painted using sample-size cans of Behr Premium wall paint, and took a full 30 hours to complete:

Nursery with jungle mural. Image from here.

This next example went in a more urban industrial direction, with city-themed crib bedding and artwork featuring bicycles and helicopters. They also painted the silhouette of a city skyline in soft shades of grey on the walls:

Nursery with city skyline. Image from here.

In a similar vein, this next nursery also went for the urban feel, but in a slightly different way — this one seems less like an industrial metropolis and more like a downtown street or park. And they actually hired a graffiti artist off of Craigslist to paint the baby’s name in big graffiti-style letters on the wall:

Nursery with graffiti wall. Image from here.

The last item in my over-the-top novelty nursery pictures showcase is this circus-themed one, decorated with vintage posters from the Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey purchased on Ebay. They also painted the nursery walls to look like the inside of a big blue and white circus tent:

Nursery with circus tent walls. Image from here.

Anyway, while all of these nursery designs are interesting and fun to look at, I’m not sure we’d want to do anything nearly this crazy or elaborate when it comes to setting up our own — especially the types of designs that would involve complex painting projects or heavy wallpaper use. I think something sweet, simple, and (at least mostly) gender-neutral is more what we’re going for.

So in my next nursery-themed blog post, I’ll include some examples I’ve found that are more our speed — stay tuned! And in the meantime, if anyone reading has stumbled upon any interesting nursery picture websites or blogs, feel free to share a link in the comments.

Mysterious Pregnancy Abbreviations Defined

Over the past few months, I’ve noticed something rather curious while browsing the various pregnancy-related blogs and forums: people really like to abbreviate things. This has admittedly been a source of confusion and mild frustration, especially when I’d come across the some of the more Google-resistant ones that happen to match company names and job titles and whatever else.

So in the interest of improving the information quality of the internet, I’ve decided to put together a list defining as many of these abbreviations as I could. In alphabetical order:

  • BPP = Biophysical Profile
  • CFM = Continuous Fetal Monitoring
  • CNM = Certified Nurse Midwife
  • CS = Caesarean Section
  • DD = Dear Daughter
  • DF = Dear Fiance
  • DH = Dear Husband
  • DS = Dear Son
  • EFM = Electronic Fetal Monitoring
  • FTP = Failure to Progress (in labor)
  • FTT = Failure to Thrive (infants)
  • GBS = Group B Strep
  • GDM = Gestational Diabetes
  • HB = Home Birth
  • LO = Little One
  • NST = Fetal Non-Stress Test
  • PIH = Pregnancy Induced Hypertension
  • PPD = Postpartum Depression
  • TOL = Trial of Labor
  • UC = Unassisted Childbirth
  • US = Ultrasound
  • VBAC = Vaginal Birth after Caesarean

And I’m sure I’ll update this list as time goes by, since there are likely tons that I’ve missed. (Although I’m not sure how I feel about the fact that there are so many of these in the first place. Is it really that hard to write out two or three extra words?)

The Perils of Homeownership?

If there’s one thing I’ve learned over the past few months, it’s that getting a mortgage is complicated. Part of this weekend will be devoted to working on another batch of paperwork, hopefully the last batch, but aside from that things seem to be going well. We should still be on track to close later this month unless some terrible unforeseen complication pops up.

On a somewhat related note, the other day one of my favorite webcomics featured a strip that seemed pretty relevant to our situation:

Despite being first time homebuyers, we probably won’t get carried away and drill so many holes into the house that it falls down. Although we’ll probably have to be careful and resist the temptation.