The Sizing of Baby Clothes

When I was pregnant with my first son, we were blessed with a ton of clothes from our showers and hand-me-downs.

I had so much fun organizing his little clothes. I sorted everything by size, putting newborn items in one drawer, 0-3 month and 3-6 month clothes in another drawer. I had two totes underneath his crib containing clothes that were 6-12 months and the other stored clothes that were larger than 12 months.

I thought I was super organized and ready for baby. The 0-3 and 3-6 month clothing would get our April baby through the summer and we had a ton of 6 month sizes for fall and 9 months for winter. He was set, I thought I wouldn’t have to buy a stitch of clothing for him because everything was so perfectly planned out!

I look back and laugh. I believed that because a little tag said 3-6 months on it that my child would wear it when he was in the age range of 3 to 6 months. I never even considered the fact that some of those 3-6 month items were as small as some newborn items we had or as large as some 12 month items. The tag said it, so I believed it!

My son was born weighing 8 pounds, 8 ounces and quickly began growing, my organized system was thrown out the window. He was wearing 9 to 12 month rompers and bodysuits by 3 months because he was so long! Items that he could have worn, never were worn just because the tag didn’t say he should be able to fit in the garment. And my perfectly planned out fall and winter wardrobe didn’t fit him so perfectly.

Once I finally realized that the tag doesn’t matter, I started talking to friends who admitted to me that they also thought the same thing when they were a first time mama.

With my second and third babies, I organized their clothes based upon what they looked like. If the tag said 6 months but was teeny tiny, I put it in the drawer with the newborn clothes. If it said 3 months but was big, it went in the bin of clothes to grow into.

So mamas, the reality is the size on the tag doesn’t really matter since all babies are different.

Of course you can still stock up on all sizes of baby basics like cotton bodysuits, pants and sleepers since babies wear them year round. And those new baby clothes you receive, leave the tag on them until after baby arrives in case you need to exchange.

As my children have grown, I’ve stopped focusing so much on what the tag said. Cecilia currently has clothes ranging in size 6 months to 2T in her wardrobe, the majority are 12-18 months but depending on the garment, the size may be smaller or larger. And, Weston has clothes ranging from 18 months (shorts) to 4T.

At the end of each season, any item that currently fits with a bit of room is tucked into their off season clothing storage bin. I’ve been surprised at the number of items, both tops and shorts, that they’ve been able to wear over the course of 2 summers or 2 winters.

Did you focus more on what the tag said than what the garment looked like with your first baby too?

Shared Bedroom

Our boys have been sharing a room for almost 3 years and they’ve had bunk beds for a year.

When we first got the bunk beds, they slept together in the bottom bunk but now Weston sleeps on the top bunk and Paxton is in the bottom. Both boys are heavy sleepers so we haven’t had any issues with them waking each other up during the night.

Our bunk bed has the built in staircase which makes me feel much better about our young children having bunk beds! So far, we haven’t had any bunk bed accidents and the kids know that they are not allowed to play on the top bunk. Our bunk bed also has built in drawers under the bed and on the end of the staircase which gives us some extra storage space for pajamas, underwear, socks and some toys.

One fun part of having bunk beds is the bottom bunk can easily be turned into a fun fort, ship, clubhouse or whatever they can imagine by putting a sheet up!

Our home is around 1,300 square feet and roughly half of that space is living area and half is 3 bedroms which means our living space is a bit small but the bedrooms are pretty large.

With the bunk beds, the boys have a ton of floor space in their room to play, make believe and create.

Art-Wall

We have a fun, colorful gallery wall in their room. Most of the artwork was painted by me and each boy painted a canvas. We have an art line up so they can proudly display their latest creations in their room. And, their table is perfect for coloring, playing house, building with Legos or anything they can think up!

Boys-Room

We’ve taken advantage of door and wall space to serve as storage for a few items. The back of the door is perfect for their backpacks!

ClosetAround the time we purchased the bunk bed, my husband also designed and built a built-in wooden shelving system in the closet to maximize the closet space. This has allowed us to keep the space organized with a toy library as well as store their games, sleeping bags, hanging clothes and memory boxes. The time and money spent on this built-in project was well worth it!

Our home may be a bit on the small side and our children don’t have the luxury of having their own rooms but we’re making the space we have work for our family by living with less. And, even if we lived in a larger home with more bedrooms, I have a feeling our boys would still want to share a room!

Related Posts:

Cecilia’s Nursery

Why We’re Staying in Our Small Home

Our Brick Ranch Home Tour

Creating Space in Your Home

Power and Water Budget
Nearly every household has monthly power and water bills. These are priority bills because if they’re not paid, you don’t have water or electricity!

For the first several years of our marriage, we budgeted monthly for these two bills.

During most of the year, our power and water bills were a little below the monthly budgeted amount and whatever excess was left in that category we’d use to cover any areas where we went over budget or just spend the excess.

Some months, like the middle of winter and the middle of summer, the power bill would be greater than the amount we had budgeted. When the bill was more than we had budgeted, we’d have to scramble, moving money around from other budget categories and occasionally dipping into savings to cover the deficit.

After years of this, it finally dawned on us that by saving the monthly excess during months that our bills were low, we wouldn’t have any stress when we received bills that were higher than what we budget.

We started putting our power and water budget money together and at the end of each month, whatever amount was left rolled over into the next months category. After several months of setting aside the excess, we had a nice sum built up which started to serve as a cushion for the months when the bill is greater than the amount we budget.

Currently, we keep $200 in the power/water category and budget $150 each month. At the beginning of the month, our power/water budget category has $350.

After our power and water bills are paid, whatever is left over $200 is used towards extra principal and we end the month with a $200 balance. If we have to dip into that $200 cushion, we just allow the next couple of months excess build back up until we get back to that $200 excess.

Example:

$200 balance
+ $150 monthly budget amount
________________________________
$350 in power/water budget at the beginning of the month

$25 water bill
– $115 electric bill
________________________________

$210* left after bills are paid

*$10 would go towards an extra principal payment and $200 would remain in the power/water category for the next month.

Carrying an excess in your power/water budget category serves as a mini emergency fund that keeps high bills from causing financial stress.

And, being intentional about wisely using the excess over your minimum amount can help you reach financial goals. You can use any excess towards paying down debt, putting money in your savings account, building up an emergency fund, saving for Christmas, paying extra on your mortgage or whatever goals you’re working towards. (Our big financial goal is to pay off our mortgage in 5 years so our excess in this category goes towards our mortgage principal!)

We have decided to keep a balance of $200 excess because that’s the amount we’re comfortable with but you can choose to keep a minimum balance of $100 or even $50 and probably have a decent amount of cushion built in!

 

Power & Water Budget

All Babies are Blessings

When we were expecting our first baby, I didn’t have a gender preference. I knew that having a girl or having a boy would be wonderful!

When we found out we would be welcoming a baby boy, we were excited – I hoped he’d look like his daddy.

When he was born, he was just as I pictured, a dark haired baby boy and he did look like his daddy.

When we found out we were expecting our second baby, I just knew the baby was going to be a boy. Sure enough at our anatomy scan, we found out we were having a baby boy and we were so excited that Paxton was going to have a brother.

We did not feel like having another boy was disappointing, we were thrilled to be adding to our family.

I was quite content with my two boys. I started seeing myself as just a boy mom and couldn’t imagine having a baby girl in our family.

We decided not to find out the gender of our third baby and I was completely convinced that our third baby was a boy too. And, I was excited about the possibility of three boys and brothers so close in age. I did not view having three boys as anything but a blessing!

All during our third pregnancy, it seemed like everyone told us they thought we were having a girl and that we needed a girl. We were still sure our baby was a boy. We didn’t feel like we needed a girl for our family to be complete.

When our baby was born and we saw that we actually had a girl, we were shocked and surprised. We had a daughter! We were thrilled to welcome a baby girl into our family but we would have been just as excited to welcome a baby boy.

It seems like people think that you need one of each gender in order to be happy with your family. I think the excitement from others with my third pregnancy was because I already had two boys and everyone was just hoping I’d have a girl.

I have a feeling if/when we have a fourth baby (we hope to add to our family in a few years) that the pregnancy announcement won’t be met with as much excitement because we have one of each gender. Since Cecilia was born, when people ask me if we’re finished having kids, I jokingly say no, she needs a sister! (And, while I’d love for her to have a sister, adding another baby boy would be wonderful too.)

What is wrong with having two boys or three boys? Or two girls or three girls? Do people really think that families that have one boy and one girl are happier? Or do they think my family of two boys and one girl is better than a family of three girls or three boys? The mindset that everybody wants ‘one of each’ is crazy!

I’ve heard people make comments like, ‘maybe you’ll get your girl next time‘ or ‘you can try to have a boy next time,’ to women who are pregnant with their second (or third or forth) of the same gender. The baby they’re carrying is important and should be celebrated even though there is a same gender sibling.

Forget the silly one boy, one girl ‘perfect family’ ideal and celebrate each and every baby regardless of its gender.

All babies are blessings!

Brothers

Having same gender siblings is quite wonderful. These 2 boys are loud and full of energy but they love each other and really are the best of friends.

Babies are Blessings