A lot has changed for us over the last six months; the main thing was our house move back in November. We moved into a larger detached house still in the same area, which was great because we were starting to feel like sardines in our two bedrooms, one bathroom (between five) semi-detached. But, wowsers, I had no idea just how big a change it would be going from a small two bedroom semi-detached to a large three bedroom detached house. Hubster and I have moved house a couple of times before the boys were born so we knew how stressful it was.
To reduce stress, mostly for the boys I unashamedly become a crazy organisational addict (more so than normal). The organisational addict in me made a list of what we needed to do and what we needed to buy to make the transition flawless for the boys. I mostly broke down each task into a stage – stage one being the basics, stage two being more about adding personality to the property and stage three being mostly about organisation and storage. As crazy and OCD as it sounds, I do thin it helped smooth the transition immensely.
So, now six months on we’ve finally passed ''stage one''. The house is starting to feel like a home and our next aim is to make it more homely. I decided to blog about stage one in hope that it will help someone else out – these are our must have items if you’re moving with children and want to help them and yourself settle into a new property quickly.
Must Haves - Stage One
Flooring We opted for affordable flooring and haggled where possible as our room sizes are off roll sizes. Completely recommend haggling guys because it does work and will hopefully save you a lot of money in the long run. We chose a light grey stain resistant carpet for most of the house, as it was neutral without being too light or dark. Slate tile lino in the kitchen and the bathrooms. This can be upgraded as we move along the stages.
Now I realise not everyone can afford new flooring, if you can great, if you can't then I recommend asking on your local selling sites or even with your local council who may have grants if you are on certain benefits.
Accessories I'm not talking about expensive accessories here, instead this included little things like a new washing up bowl for the kitchen, bedding for the boys, toilet seats for the bathrooms, a few new cushions for the living space, a new candle for the house and hair removing cream - for the drains. I kid you not, it's a must have, no-one wants to go through a major drain issue when they move in due to the previous owners clogged drains.
Sleep The bedding we purchased was from Groupon believe it or not. All three single bed sets were in the clearance section and cost £5, so we basically snapped up three sets for the price of one. The boys love them because they've transitioned from character styles to teenager designs. That being said, it's no good having nice bedding if you can't sleep.
One of my sons doesn't sleep that well due to a condition he has so helping him to settle into his own room was so important. The easiest way to tackle it and to tackle the decor aspect came down to window treatments. The windows are pretty big and face onto a road with streetlights so there's a lot of unnatural light that floods in to his room. During the day it's fantastic but at night - there was no way he was getting a decent sleep.
Our way of combating this was simply by purchasing blackout blinds and lighter curtains - Roofblinds have a great selection of blackout blinds from the company Velux. We considered the black and white graphic print (which is pictured in the main header image) but eventually settled on a neutral grey so we wouldn't clash with any future wallpaper and bedding choices. Blackout blinds are the number one expense for us, even when they were babies we would forgo curtains and get blinds instead just for the darkness and privacy. These days they're so much more affordable and come in some cute prints and styles.
Extras Once we'd achieved all of above, we then decided to brighten up the tile grout by using a whitening pen to touch up and brighten - I can't recommend it enough. We even changed up the kitchen unit handles for less than £20 by purchasing handles in bulk on EBay. Let's just say the last handles we had were not great, they were filthy black (even after being cleaned) and kept falling off.
So now we're happy and settled. It feels like our home and while we still have lots of changing to do in this new abode it's not so stressful.
Home Personality - Stage Two
Expect more posts and photos on this stage. It's the exciting one. Stage ones was about getting the basics in place and stage two's about giving the house personality and effectively making it a home. We've got plenty of wallpaper options to go through, organisational products such as shelving, baskets, risers and cubes to choose from and some final touches.
Cole wants something a bit lighter and brighter but still colourful so we're thinking of adding some cushions, circular rugs, wall planners and 'teenage' things. Coop and Rome they want more organisation in their cupboards so they can see their ''stuff'' which has sat unopened since Christmas believe it or not. Oh and then there's lighting. The hardest thing in the world to settle on as everyone has their own opinions.
So, if anyone has any insight into awesome teenager suitable items for bedrooms please give me a shout.