behind door #2
Before all the hurly-burly starts, we had hoped to write about the new nursery we’ve been getting ready. But it’s not quite ready, yet, and it’s long overdue that we write a post about Valor’s “big boy room.”
Our earliest ideas when we were still pregnant with Carolina involved something substantially more complicated, some sort of castle bed made of wood and cloth with stairs and stuff like that. We’re not the first ones to have the idea, although most people are thinking “princess” rather than “knight.” At some point it became pretty clear that Valor’s bedroom was not vast enough to create the monstrosity of our imagination. Instead, when the weather cooled down in the fall we painted the walls grey like stone (Valspar “Urban Sunrise”) and tried to create the impression that he was inside a castle.
Well, inside a castle with inexpensive modern Swedish furnishings from Ikea, anyways. The inspiration actually started with the torch sconces we saw a long time ago at Ikea called MINNEN FACKLA. Unfortunately, Ikea stopped carrying the MINNEN FACKLA, but we managed to find someone on Ebay willing to part with a pair even cheaper. They actually have a flicker setting, which backfired on us for a few weeks as Valor was pretty much scared of them. We put his mattress on a piece of reinforced plywood while we keep his box springs up in the attic so he can climb in and out of bed easily himself. The bedspread with knights, castles, and dragons was on Amazon, and I don’t even remember what it was called. All I remember is there was only one left and we got it.
On the wall above the bed, we crossed two foam swords that Abby found in the dollar bins at Target. Valor loves to “hit swords” with me,
and his buddy Henry,
and with really just about every male who spends any time in our house. That he never attempts swordplay with the fairer gender is a curious manifestation of chivalry that I don’t think we ever taught him.
Also from Ikea: the dragon hand puppet (KLAPPAR DRAKE, not pictured) which often also plays a role in the sword duels, the floating shelves (LACK), the dresser (MALM customized with rustic cup pulls), the shelves/changing table (EXPEDIT), and the ledges used to display books (RIBBA). The bed did not come from Ikea because, as you might recall, we “dare not trust the Swedish frame.”
It was while Abby and I were painting these walls grey about nine months ago that we had a brief but unforgettable discussion about how her cycle was a couple days late. How totally bizarre that seemed, since we were actually trying not to be pregnant while we were waiting on the results of genetic testing to tell us whether we should ever try for kids again.
Ever since our unexplained infertility was inexplicably lifted, our regret over never being able to conceive morphed into a smaller (and more vain) regret that the process of babymaking was forever going to be so meticulously planned and monitored that we wouldn’t ever enjoy that feeling of total surprise that many times couples experience.
And so the story of Grant Perseverance Gjertsen begins with God, who generously granted us a pregnancy at a time we were afraid to ask, and surprised the couple who thought they could not be surprised.