upgrading the nursery to a toddler room

Holy cow! Who replaced my baby with a toddler?!

I’m sure that I’m not the first nor the last mom to utter those words. But seriously, Sumner seems to have morphed into a toddler overnight. He’s much more mobile now and is constantly exploring his surroundings. It seems that we need to start changing his room from being focused on helping dad and I complete tasks to Sumner’s own personal space.

It took us about three months to completely transform his room. Sumner is not a fan of change and it takes him a while to get used to new things.

Sumner’s sleeping area was both the first and last spot that we changed. While he was still on nighttime oxygen, I appreciated having him confined to a small space. Even so, we still found him wrapped in his tubing every morning.

The first thing we did was remove his mobile as he was able to reach it. I didn’t want him to damage it or himself.

Once Sumner was off nighttime oxygen (woot!), I started contemplating a floor bed for him. That decision was accelerated when he figured out how to pull himself up to standing in the crib. I knew the next step for him would be climbing out and I wasn’t interested in him learning about gravity with a three foot drop to the floor.

In addition to reducing his chances of hurting himself, the floor bed has the added benefit of fostering some independence. When he wakes up in the morning, he’s able to start playing for a bit before we come get him. This means that mom and dad have a chance to get a few sips of coffee.

Sumner’s organizer previously contained his washcloths, heavy receiving blankets, muslin blankets, hats, and a few toys. With some careful reorganizing of his medical supplies, we were able to fit the blankets and washcloths in the upstairs linen closet. (Organizing his supplies is another post on its own. It’s amazing how many supplies you end up with when you have a tubie baby!) His organizer now holds his toys and clothes. We installed a few shelves for his books. Yes, he has lots of books. He loves to flip through the pages and babbles his own stories.

We also had a rocking chair for late night bottles and, later, for bed time stories. Now, the rocking chair has moved to my office in the room next door. I spent many hours sitting in that chair during his first year home. It has held up well and I’m not ready to move it on yet. In Sumner’s room, a floor pillow has taken the place of the chair. It’s a great cuddle spot for our nightly reading and he likes to climb all over it.

Lastly, his nursery had his dresser and self-care supplies. The left side of his dresser held his clothes and the right side held his cloth diapers and diapering supplies. There is also his laundry basket and diaper pail.

My main goal was to move all of his toileting and self-care supplies to his bathroom. This was easier said than done as his bathroom is quite small and many of his feeding supplies (syringes and extensions) take up a good portion of the storage space already. However, I was determined to make room for Sumner’s play structure. I got a basket the perfect size to fit between his vanity and toilet. It now holds all his diapers. We repurposed a slim tote that we had for his diaper pail. As I mentioned above, his organizer was repurposed for his clothes. I put his laundry basket in the closet.

Sumner loves his play structure. He’s mastered pulling himself up to standing at the rope ladder and enjoys his swing. Pretty soon we’ll add on the slide attachment for him to start working on those skills.

As Sumner gets older, I hope to include him more in the choices for his room. At this point, we’ve kept it fairly minimal in order to keep the space safe and inviting for him to play in.

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