Toddler Closet Update

By far the most trafficked and pinned post on my blog is the DIY custom baby closet that we put into Penelope's room. Since we live in an apartment, every square inch of space is a treasure and when we started turning our second bedroom into a nursery, I knew one of the biggest challenges would be creating a closet with tons of space and function. After using the closet for over two years, I'm happy to say that it's still one of my favorite spaces in our entire apartment and though it's been updated in how we use it, the closet has all the space and function that I could hope for.

The closet shelves reach up to the ceiling. On the top shelves, which I cannot possibly reach, we keep items out of season or out of use. Moving down, I still love the double hanging bar for all of her jackets, zip ups and dresses. On the shelf in between we keep some blankets and her big diaper bag.

Her long things, like dresses, usually go on the bottom hanging bar. On the floor, we use the same bins as before, but instead of 3,000 baby wipes, we now also use these to corral extra diapers and wipes, and all of her crib mattress covers and sheets.

The inside of the door is still my favorite feature. These baskets provide so much extra storage, I can't even tell you how much of a difference it has made. We installed this inside door system in under 30 minutes, and though it wasn't cheap (from Container Store), it was worth every single penny. Of course, we've moved on from bibs and burp cloths, but the space is still very valuable. Near the top, I keep extra sunscreens, boogie wipes, her monitor that we don't use anymore, her music class books and really any other random items that I just don't know what to do with. I also have a basket for some of her smaller tote bags and her diaper changing mat.

We use the lower half to wrangle Penelope's many snacks. Our kitchen is overflowing at the moment, and so it's nice to have a space just for her little goodies. There is always a mix of fruit snacks (her absolute favorite, to my chagrin), freeze dried fruit (climbing the ranks to favorite), raisins, applesauce pouches, dry cereal and occasionally yogurt melts or gerber cheese puffs.


So that's how we are using her closet these days. It continues to be a great investment in her bedroom and I'm confident it will grow with Penelope!

I'm always on the hunt for kiddo organizing tips (toys, anyone? Helllp!), so tell me, what are your favorite ways to organize your kid stuff?

PS: the original baby closet/p's final nursery (which also needs an update on here!)/more baby talk

Chip 'n Dip Hostess Gift Basket

On Sunday, we were invited to a little gathering at our new neighbor's home. We were so excited to welcome Megan and Nick to the building and we wanted to bring a little something for them. I love hostess gifts that are for post-gathering enjoyment so that it really is something for the host/hostess to have all to themselves. Perhaps on another evening when they want a treat while catching up on their DVR. Or something like that.


Since Sunday was also Cinco de Mayo, I whipped up a little gift basket of Mexican-themed goodies. I stocked the basket with quality, organic tortilla chips. Shaun and I love these because they are so thin and salty and I adore the rustic brown paper packaging, which also looks great in this basket.


And who wants chips without dip? I picked up 3 different dips for the chips. 2 types of salsa and a con queso...mild to medium heat does the trick I think.

Lastly, we finished it off with a bottle of white wine...something nice that can be chilled and balance out the medium heat of the salsas. A good tequila would also be nice here. I used pretty green tissue paper, tied it all with a purple paper raffia ribbon and added a little note to our hosts.

So there it is. A stocked gift basket that I wouldn't mind receiving anytime! I am a serious chip 'n dip lover, after all. And I think that using high quality, pretty-looking items really ups the ante for a simple gift like this.  

What are your favorite hostess gifts to give? To receive?

Did you celebrate on Cinco de Mayo?