Moving house twice in less than a year takes its toll on a family’s ability to really root itself in a community. Not to mention the impact it has on children. Oh and a marriage, we laugh about it now, but while you’re in the middle of it that one last bowl which has to fit in that last bulging box can cause quite a fighting match!
So when we felt we settled in really nicely in our new home, we decided not to do this again soon. To make it a solid promise we decided to give Mishka a new room. She is becoming a young lady now and although we never want her to grow up, there comes a time when some of those favourite toys just sitting there waiting to be played with but never will be again, have to find another place. Time to let it go and reorganise a few things.
I must say that part is the most difficult, children can be very sentimental, but it is our job to remind them about not becoming too attached to things.
If you’ve been following my blog you probably know that I am all about reduce, reuse and recycle. But I also want to emphasise the importance of supporting small local businesses. Most of Mishka’s decor and toys are handmade and manufactured in Hermanus or somewhere in South Africa. This project would not have been so special without the amazingly talented entrepreneurs who supplied these beautifully crafted pieces.
That is what this project was all about for us. We looked at everything Mish already had and decided to simply use it in a way every item is truly complemented by another. You really don’t have to break the bank to create something new and special.
I’ll gladly share some tips with you:
1. Firstly and most importantly, make your little girl part of the planning process, make sure what you have in mind lines up with her interests and likes, you can then build a theme around it
2. Having a theme makes it so much easier to plan in terms of colour and texture and how to use what you already have
3. Don’t throw anything out until you have a very clear idea of how the theme comes together, don’t buy anything new either.
4. Hand draw a little floor plan and let her help you colour it in with colouring pencils, this gives you even more clues to what she likes. Then simplify it and reduce it to 3 main theme colours
5. Invest in a mural artist, it is so important to keep your child’s imagination active for as long as possible
6. Paint changes everything! If you use chalk paint remember to finish it off with a good wax to protect it from spills and scratches. It takes a lot of work to get it the way you want it, don’t regret it later, rather go for that last step.
7. If there’s ever a time to hang on to girly, now is the time, as soon as they reach puberty, you will have no say and the flowers and pretties disappear along with their smiles : )
8. If you invest in new bedding make sure you get a throw to cover it for when doggie comes to play in the room.
9. Privacy will become more important now so perhaps bring the homework desk into the room rather than part of your living room. She will want to spend more time by herself, drawing, reading, daydreaming.
10. Enjoy this process, there is no rush! Don’t spoil this bonding opportunity with the need for perfection. A good plan A always make way for an even better plan B!