Olivia's sweet sleeping space – Katerina Buscemi
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Olivia's sweet sleeping space

I've shown you a little peak into Olivia's nursery but she's actually not sleeping there yet. She currently has her mini-crib parked in my room, where I've found the following items to be essential.

Olivia's Sleeping Space

Resource Links

1. DIY Cloud Mobile - here is my tutorial for Apartment Therapy
2. Organic Crib Sheets for Bloom Alma Mini crib ($50 for two-pack)
3. Cloud B Sleep Sheep Sound Toy ($30)- hangs off the crib and makes soothing sounds
4. Bloom Alma Mini Crib in Coconut white ($340, or $270 at Buy Buy Baby with 20% coupon)
5. Aden and Anais Cozy Sleep Sack ($45) - absolutely LOVE this but make sure you get the 4 layer "cozy" version.
6. Ferm Living Happy Harlequin Blanket ($82) - so beautiful and soft but quite delicate; I suggest hand-washing (yes, I'm rolling my eyes too)
7. Aden and Anais Muslin Swaddlers ($35 for a 4 pack) - biggest baby necessity, so versatile.
8. Coco Mat Organic Mini Mattress ($160) or Body Fit Spring Mini Mattress ($90), by Bloom

I've mentioned here before that we didn't have an ideal sleeping situation for Alex when he was born. I needed to have him in the room with me but his nursery was too small for a bed, and my room was too small to comfortably accommodate his crib. I foolishly purchased a pack n' play (play pen), thinking he could sleep on the top portion for 6 months. It seemed like the perfect solution- it's light, portable, fairly inexpensive, and can be used as a play pen/ baby jail later on. Except that the weight limit for the top portion is 15 lb (which he immediately outgrew), we never did take it anywhere (so the portability factor was moot),  and the only thing we ever put in it was Alex's ever expanding soft animal collection.

When Olivia arrived, I had different expectations for those early months and spent quite a bit of time researching sleep solutions. I'd long admired the Alma mini crib, by English company Bloom. Aside from being beautiful, non-toxic, and solidly built from 100% wood, it fits through doorways and is fully collapsable. It also comes with optional casters which makes it really easy to move the crib around from room to room. I selected the organic Coco mat mattress option because I wanted the most non-toxic option I could find. I'm very impressed with the quality of the mattress (and it's made in the UK!). And let me tell you, it's as close to natural as you will find- when you unzip the cotton cover, you see the 3 layer sandwich of lamb's wool and coconut fibre. It's the first mattress I've ever used that has no smell whatsoever (and this is the third "organic" mattress I've purchased). It also has just enough softness to be comfortable, while being firm enough for baby's safety.

One of the main criticisms of this crib you will find on the online reviews is that it is quite small. I don't agree with this assessment. It is after all, a MINI crib. While I agree that it's the rare child who can sleep in this crib comfortably until the age of two, almost any child can use it until 12 months. At 9 months of age, Olivia is in the 95th percentile for length and 70th for weight, and she still has room to grow in this crib. Until the writing of this post, I was using a breathable mesh bumper (bassinet size, which fits perfectly) but I started to become concerned after reading mesh bumpers weren't endorsed by the AAP due to possible entrapment issues. I've considered tying it around the outside of the crib to prevent her arms from falling through (which is the reason I started using it in the first place). At some point, once I lower the mattress height, I will probably have to remove it in case she tries to stand on it (though given her current lack of ambition in that department, I think it will be a while).

It's a pricey little setup... but not extreme. I purchased the crib, mattress and double pack of organic sheets from Buy Buy Baby, and was able to use 20% coupons for everything (they also accept unexpired Bed, Bath and Beyond coupons). The 3 items together came to $440 after the coupons were applied ($550 before) and because it's something BBB stocks but didn't have in the store, they shipped them to my home free of charge! I must say, I was very impressed with their service (once I spoke to the right person). Any product line that Buy Buy Baby sells can be special ordered, even if it's not an item that the company sells. For instance, I was able to order Alex's full size Naturepedic mattress through them because they sell their crib mattresses, and so I was also able to use a coupon on that purchase. They shipped it free to the store (though transporting it was tricky).

I will update with images of Olivia's sleep area when it looks presentable (assume that will be a while). I've also got a few more things coming in for her nursery and then it should FINALLY be ready for the room tour on Apartment Therapy. Unless, of course, I come up with another reason to delay ;-) 

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