For some soon-to-be mommies, the third trimester can be a little rough. One minute you are elated, the next minute you worry whether or not your home is ready for the arrival of your little one. Before you run yourself down with stress, check out this nursery survival guide in the District.

1. Start with the basics.
It may be tempting to buy everything you see at the furniture store. For now, plan on purchasing a crib, a changing table, dresser, diaper pail, hamper, baby monitor and a night light. According to Baby Center, a safe, well-made crib will cost somewhere between $100 and $500. More expensive cribs typically means the crib is made with higher quality materials. While a bassinet is nice, chances are your baby will most likely outgrow it in a year or so. Think long term when purchasing big ticket items.

2. Think calming colors. When planning on the look and feel of the nursery, save the flashy colors and cartoon designs for your child’s fifth birthday. Neon colors or animal print designs may keep your baby from falling asleep or feel anxious and nervous. Soft colors, like those with muted tones and pastels, may help calm your baby. When at the paint store, ask for low or no-VOC paints. This type of paint is nontoxic and doesn’t leave your nursery smelling like a hardware store. Stick to just one color for now. You can add wall stencils, pictures, paintings and other designs as time goes by.

3. Don’t forget fun and games. Sure, your baby might not be able to play with toy trucks or dolls right away but that doesn’t mean they can’t have any fun while they are lying in the crib. Start off with either a black and white or pastel colored mobile. Babies can’t really follow bright shapes and colors until they’re a few months old. A mobile will entertain the baby and help ease them to sleep. Stock the nursery with your favorite childhood books too. It’s never too early to start reading to your baby. Plus, a little bit of quiet time will help keep mommy calm and relaxed too.

4. Find a comfy chair. Within the first few months after birth, chances are you’re going to spend a lot of time in the nursery. Go ahead and find yourself a comfortable chair. Choose from a rocker, glider or simply an overstuffed arm chair. It’ll help make all of those late-night feedings and crying fits a little less maddening.

5. Say no to clutter. Got tons of baby clothes from the baby shower? Buy stackable storage containers, under-the-bed boxes or an over-the-door storage holder to help keep all of those clothes and shoes organized. Write down the clothing/shoe size on a label and stick it in an obvious place. Not only do storage containers help keep the nursery clutter-free, it also saves time when your baby outgrows their clothes and shoes. No more guessing what fits or doesn’t fit.

Below are some local businesses that may be able to help you get started.

Daisy Baby and Kids
4912-A Del Ray Ave
Bethesda, MD 20814
(301) 654-7477

Daisy Baby and Kids offers a wide variety of furniture, bedding, accessories and more for newborns and beyond. Create a completely customized look for your nursery and shop for baby-related products like books, CDs, playthings, room organizers and more.

Dawn Price Baby
3112 M St NW
Washington, DC 20007
(202) 333-3939

From cribs and bedding to gifts and traveling gear, Dawn Price Baby offers the most unique and stylish gifts for both baby and moms-to-be. Create your baby registry, read about new items in the Dawn Price Baby blog or shop online.

Monarch Home Decorating Center
504 K St NW
Washington, DC 20001
(202) 289-1601

The color consultants at Monarch Home Decorating Center will help you pick out the perfect color for your nursery. Choose from a wide variety of available colors or create a your own customized color.

Related: Best Babysitting and Nanny Agencies in DC
Related: The Benefits Of Hiring A Pro To Childproof Your Home

For more great tricks, tips and advice about your home, visit

Susan Diranian is a freelance writer living in Ashburn, VA. She is covering Travel & Outdoors. Her work can be found at


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