I’ve never bothered to paint and decorate for the arrival of my children. I figured they wouldn’t notice anyway. But since moving to a new home, with a new baby (though now somewhat grown up already) and with my daughter growing ever more social each day and wanting to have her little friends over to play. It struck me that she really did need not just her own space but for that space to be special, light, friendly, organised.

So it began. I recruited my mother (owner of the house that we rent) to help me in my endeavours. I had a very clear picture of the colour scheme that I wanted to use and purchased a rug to fit before we even started (it arrived today- yay!). We headed to the hardware store, I won the battles of colour selection and on arriving home began the massive task ahead of us.

Mum and I stripped back corners, bogged up holes (how I loathe lath and plaster) and loaded up rollers and brushes with paint. We worked solidly all day, barely stopping for lunch and although the effect was instant we knew we had a long way to go.

I was excited, I thought the colours looked great, my vision was coming to fruition and my daughter would be stoked- or so I thought.

You see, I had proposed a move to this room because it was bigger and more suitable for her. She is as stubborn as only a three year old can be and did not want to move. I persisted, sure that with new paint, pink- her current favourite colour, and a new bed that she would jump at the opportunity.

My mum and I worked flat out trying to get it at least to the point of her being able to visualise it when she got home from day-care. When my dad arrived he seemed pretty unimpressed but I assured myself that Belle would “flip” when she saw the room.

The next thing I heard was Belle sobbing as she came up the stairs, “But I don’t want to change rooms”. Thanks to my husband, she had worked herself into an hysterical frenzy of room-change distress before she had even entered the house let alone her “new” room. I was devastated! I was tired, disappointed, annoyed. I didn’t want to do anything but shower and go to bed. Instead I ate with everyone, talked politely, juggled kids to bed and skyped in to my unit meeting (all be it with my suit jacket over the top of my paint spotted tracky-daks and t-shirt).

The next day progressed more slowly, mum and I were both super tired and the wind had been knocked out of my sails. We got it all done- the bed arrived and I went to work on the flat pack from hell. Racing the clock to get it done in time to get Belle to bed at a reasonable time, in her new bed, in her new room.

I have to say, by the time this all happened, Belle had come around to the whole idea. She liked the colours, she liked her new bed, she liked her new room. I was quite relieved.

Apart from a lapse in the middle of the night two days later, with Belle howling for her old bed, she is now settled in and I’m just trying to get all of the clutter tidied up and put away. The rug arrived today, the butterfly decals and doona covers arrived the other day and are in place. Everything is starting to look really good.


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