When you first found out you were pregnant, how long did it take before you started visualizing what the perfect nursery for baby was going to look like?
Go ahead, be honest. I won’t judge. Because for me, it was about an hour and a half.
At first, I was thinking an Under the Sea theme. But then, I thought about how much I used to love Mickey and Minnie Mouse, and how cute would a Mickey and Minnie Mouse nursery be? Later on, I changed my mind and decided that a simple sky and clouds theme was the way to go.
If I had known then what I know now, I would have painted it a nice, neutral earth-tone and spent the rest of my time researching crib mattresses and sleep sacks.
Because when it comes to the perfect nursery for baby, I’ve got four words of advice for you.
Dark, cool, comfortable, and boring.
I know how tempting it is to stuff baby’s nursery with adorable mobiles, inspiring images, and some cuddly, cute stuffed friends. After all, wouldn’t baby want to be surrounded by a sea of cuteness while they drift off to sleep?
Well, probably not.
I mean, they may like it in theory. But unfortunately, it’s not conducive to a good night’s sleep, for the same reasons that you shouldn’t bring your iPad to bed, or watch TV while you’re drifting off. It’s stimulating, and stimulation and sleep are best kept at a good distance from one another.
So, then what does the perfect nursery for baby look like?
●It should be DARK!
Not dark as in some ominous, grim theme. I’m talking pitch black. A good set of blackout curtains or blinds are a much better investment than a colorful mural. I’m a huge advocate of baby sleeping in the same place all the time, which means naps should be in the crib. With no light coming into the room, you’ll find naps go down with a lot less fuss.
●Keep it COOL!
It may sound cold, but studies show that babies sleep best in a room that kept between 68 and 70 degrees. Obviously, you should follow your baby’s lead on this, but a warm, comfortable sleep sack or onesie in a cool room will often lead to better sleep than no cover in a warm one.
●Let’s get COMFORTABLE!
Babies sleep a lot, so a great mattress is a wise investment. It’s well worth your time to do some extensive research and spend the money you had set aside for mobiles and cutesy décor on the surface baby’s actually going to be spending the vast majority of their time on. Which brings me to my major point…
Music and soft light, pictures of Disney characters, swirling colors and little plastic fish – all of them seem like they should have a calming effect on a baby, but it’s just the opposite. These standard nursery accompaniments are distracting and stimulating. Your best decorating choices for the perfect nursery for baby are an easily accessible changing station, blank walls and a comfortable crib mattress with a soft, fitted sheet.
I know it’s probably a little bit of a tough pill to swallow for new parents because we really do look forward to putting together a little corner of baby-themed paradise for our little ones. But bear in mind, this room serves a crucial function in your baby’s day-to-day life, and that’s to be a quiet, relaxing environment for them to get the extensive amount of sleep that their growing bodies need.
Baby may love Disney characters, zoo animals or Mickey Mouse – or they may not – but baby will definitely appreciate a calm, comforting environment meant to help him get quality sleep. Plus, your baby will be a little person with his own ideas about how to decorate his room very soon. There will be plenty of time to put up some zoo animal, Mickey Mouse or his favorite sports-themed décor throughout his childhood!