The Old Bailey House

Welcome to the September 2014 Carnival of Natural Parenting: Home Tour
This post was written for inclusion in the monthly Carnival of Natural Parenting hosted by Hobo Mama and Code Name: Mama. This month our participants have opened up their doors and given us a photo-rich glimpse into how they arrange their living spaces.

house in trees

I love my house, I knew from the instant that we walked in approximately 13 years ago that this was where I wanted to live. It has character and style. It’s has soul and a beautiful history about it.
It was built in approximately 1890. The mayor lived here and there was a store in the front corner of the yard. There was a post office in the area behind our house and the town doctor lived next store. Sadly all of that is now gone. The glory days of the house didn’t end, however. Ed Bailey, five-time All-Star professional baseball player was raised here. That is when the house was given its name, The Old Bailey House.

The view out our window.

Nothing is even and there are no clear corners in the house. It is crooked and leaning, but I like it that way. We don’t have many doors, except for on the bathroom,(which is kind of a necessity). There are hardwood floors throughout the house, with lots of crown molding and tin looking ceilings on the bottom level. All of the bedrooms are upstairs, again with no doors. There are two old fireplaces, and large wooden beams highlight the kitchen.

In recent years, however, my house has become a great source of frustration. Old houses require a lot of patient upkeep. Since I’m a single parent now, I have kind of dropped the ball in that area. I guess I just don’t have the know how to keep up with it all, so as a result this last year has been filled with many growing pains. It’s been a struggle to find competent workers that do quality work at a decent price. One man just ran away with $600. of my money, never to return. There are also such a wide variety of opinions on what needs to be done, that it often leaves me frozen with indecision.

Our dining room

This year I’ve had to spend a lot of my focus on our kitchen. I’ve had to replace the kitchen countertops twice this year. I first used bamboo counter tops, but they molded almost right away, so then I went with a ceramic tile. We replaced the floors. There were over 5 layers of flooring underneath. I was shocked when we found the most beautiful, thick hardwood had been covered up with linoleum.

The process took a lot longer than I was originally expecting. Our dining room was filled with boxes for months. I was so thrilled when we were finally able to put everything back into the kitchen and use our dining room again.

stove backsplash

The backsplash behind the stove is a lot of small tiles. I had new cupboards put in around the corner from the stove. By the way, don’t you love the old stove. It’s so cute. Old homes never have enough storage, so I also had the large cupboard to the left of the stove installed. It has large pull out drawers which work perfectly for pantry items.


Do you love old homes, or prefer the convenience of a nice, new home? My parents love new homes and having everything perfect and neat. I am content with crooked and cute. You?
Carnival of Natural Parenting -- Hobo Mama and Code Name: MamaVisit Hobo Mama and Code Name: Mama to find out how you can participate in the next Carnival of Natural Parenting!
Please take time to read the submissions by the other carnival participants:
(This list will be updated by afternoon September 9 with all the carnival links.)

  • Being Barlow Home Tour — Follow along as Jessica at Being Barlow gives you the tour of her family’s home.
  • A Tour Of My Hybrid Rasta Kitchen — Jennifer at Hybrid Rasta Mama takes you on a tour of her kitchen complete with a Kombucha Corner, a large turtle, her tea stash, and of course, all her must-have kitchen gadgets. Check out Hybrid Rasta Mama’s most favorite space!
  • Dreaming of a Sisters Room — Bianca, The Pierogie Mama, dreams, schemes and pins ideas for when her younger daughter is ready to move out of the family bed and share a room with her older sister.
  • Building a life — Constructing a dream — Survivor at Surviving Mexico-Adventures and Disasters shows you a glimpse inside the home her family built and talks about adaptions they made in constructing their lives in Mexico.
  • Why I’m Sleeping in the Dining Room — Becca at The Earthling’s Handbook welcomed a new baby but didn’t have a spare bedroom. She explains how her family rearranged the house to create Lydia’s nursing nest and changed room in spaces they already had.
  • The Gratitude Tour — Inspired by Momastry’s recent “home tour,” That Mama Gretchen is highlighting imperfect snapshots of things she’s thankful for around her home. Don’t plan to pin anything!
  • Our Home in the Forest — Tara from Up the Dempster gives you a peek into life lived off-grid in Canada’s Yukon Territory.
  • natural bedding for kids — Emma at Your Fonder Heart shows you how her family of 3 (soon to be 4) manages to keep their two cotton & wool beds clean and dry (plus a little on the end of cosleeping — for now).
  • I love our home — ANonyMous at Radical Ramblings explains how lucky she feels to have the home she does, and why she strives so hard to keep it tidy.
  • Not-So-Extreme Makeover: Sunshine and Rainbows Edition — Dionna at Code Name: Mama was tired of her dark, outdated house, so she brightened it up and added some color.
  • Our little outdoor space — Tat at Mum in search invites you to visit her balcony, where her children make friends with wildlife.
  • Our Funky, Bright, Eclectic, Montessori Home — Rachel at Bread and Roses shows you her family’s newly renovated home and how it’s set up with Montessori principles in mind for her 15-month-old to have independence.
  • Beach cottage in progress — Ever tried to turn a 1980s condo into a 1920s beach bungalow? Lauren at Hobo Mama is giving it a try!
  • Conjuring home: intention in renovation — Jessica at Crunchy-Chewy Mama explains why she and her husband took on a huge renovation with two little kids and shares the downsides and the ups, too.
  • Learning At Home — Kerry at City Kids Homeschooling helps us to re-imagine the ordinary spaces of our homes to ignite natural learning.
  • My Dining Room Table — Kellie at Our Mindful Life loves her dining room table — and everything surrounding it!
  • Sight words and life lessons — The room that seemed to fit the least in Laura from Pug in the Kitchen‘s life is now host to her family’s homeschool adventures and a room they couldn’t imagine life without!
  • A Tour of Our Church — Garry at Postilius invites you virtually visit him in the 19th-century, one-room church where he lives with his spouse and two kids.
  • Preparing a Montessori Baby-Toddler Space at Home — Deb Chitwood at Living Montessori Now shares the Montessori baby-toddler space she’s created in the main living area of her home along with a variety of resources for creating a Montessori-friendly home.
  • The Old Bailey House — Come peek through the window of The Old Bailey House where Erica at ChildOrganics resides with her little ones.
  • My New House Not-Monday: The Stairs — Claire at The Adventures of Lactating Girl shows you her new laminate stairs in her not-so-new-anymore house.
  • To Minimalist and Back Again — Jorje of Momma Jorje shares how she went to the extreme as a minimalist and bounced right back. Read how she finds it difficult to maintain the minimalist lifestyle when upsizing living space.
  • Our Life As Modern-Day Nomads — This family of five lives in 194 square feet of space — with the whole of North America as a back yard. Paige of Our Road Less Traveled guest posts at Natural Parents Network.


Mamatography 2014- Week 1: Cookies

A dear friend of mine invited us over to make cookies with a few other kids. Little did I know it was a cookie extravaganza!  The cookie dough was made ahead of time, then we just had to roll out the dough, place the cookie cutters and bake. The kids had a blast decorating farm animals, dinosaurs, cowboy boots and random shapes. It was great for the moms to get together to chat while the kids had a blast running and laughing together.
Instead of focusing on the artificial food coloring I tried to focus on the fun (while encouraging the nibbling of carrots).  How do you deal with parties and times with friend and family that includes food that you’d prefer to avoid?


We are taking (at least) a photo a day, a collage or a picture each week to keep a record of our year. Join us at any point during the year and start sharing your own daily photos!
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Co-Sleeping with the Humanity Family Sleeper

Father’s Lib (at 2:00 a.m.)
 by Wally Bennett
Oh, how nice it would be,
If other dads could be like me.
While they’re up and bottles pouring,
I’m in bed soundly snoring!
-That is, of course, if there is room.
At 1 a.m. Baby pops in,
Then a toddler kicks me in the shin.
Mommy’s hanging off the edge,
Sister’s on the other ledge.
Poor dad can’t move or do a thing-
Except to buy a SUPER KING!

– taken from “The Family Bed” by Tine Thevenin


humanity-bed-baby  humanity-bed-baby-mother  co-sleeper-2


 I quickly discovered with our oldest daughter over 10 years ago, that co-sleeping is a Mama’s answer to a good night’s rest and continued successful breastfeeding.  It fosters attachment and promotes long-term security. Dr. Sarah Buckley, among others, believe the Humanity Family Sleeper is a product that can make co-sleeping even safer and easier, also calling it ‘one of the best investments a new parent can make.’
So what is the Humanity Family Sleeper? It’s an organic bed topper with an attached pillow which helps prevents roll offs or pushing your bed against the wall. We are going to discuss the use of the Humanity Organics family sleeper as an aid to successful bed sharing.
Let’s start with the body/maternity pillow feature. As a pregnant mom, you quickly learn your best friend for a good night’s rest is your body pillow.  The Humanity Organic family sleeper comes with a body pillow which is easy to unzip and separate from the generously sized pad. The pillow is made from an organic cotton sateen and filled with eco-friendly kapok, which is a natural tree fiber. The body pillow can be spot cleaned or the cover can be removed for easy cleaning in cold/warm water. Once the baby arrives the pillow is easily attached to the organic pad.  The pad measures 36 inches wide by 58 inches  long; which is a perfect size for mama and baby with no seams to irritate. The family sleeper is a high-quality bed top sleeper made of 4 layers of the finest organic cotton flannel.  There is no need to worry about waking up in a puddle of breast milk or worry about a leaking diaper. The absorbent organic pad will protect your mattress. It is machine washable (cold/warm water to prevent shrinkage) and can be hung to dry or dried on low heat.
Like mentioned in the poem above, if you sleep with more than one child the Humanity Family Sleeper can really be helpful. Simply place the baby on the side with the bolster pillow and the older child on the other side of mom. Many families have commented that the Humanity Family Sleeper is easy to travel with and they like the idea of having their familiar sleeping environment with them. This makes bedtime more relaxing when you’re away from home.  This pillow top sleeper has no toxic fumes and  is made in the USA.
As if waking up snuggled next to your wee one’s face wasn’t enough, now there is a way to make co-sleeping safer, comfortable and more convenient with the use of the Humanity Family Sleeper.

Thanks for reading a post in the Safe Cosleeping Blog Carnival. On Carnival day, please follow along on Twitter using the #CosleepCar hashtag.
Please take time to read the submissions by the other carnival participants:

  • Emotive Co-Sleeping Campaign – Miriam at Diary of an Unconscious Mother talks about her feelings on Milwaukee’s anti-cosleeping crusade and its latest advertising campaign.
  • Why Cosleeping has Always been the Right Choice for My Family – Patti at Jazzy Mama shares how lucky she feels to have the privilege of sleeping with her four children.
  • Cosleeping is a safe, natural and healthy solution parents need to feel good about. – See how Tilly at Silly Blatherings set up a side-car crib configuration to meet her and her families’ needs.
  • Black and White: Race and the Cosleeping Wars – Moorea at Mama Lady: Adventures in Queer Parenting points out the problem of race, class and health when addressing co-sleeping deaths and calls to action better sleep education and breastfeeding support in underprivileged communities.
  • Reflections on Cosleeping – Jenny at I’m a Full Time Mummy shares her thoughts on cosleeping and pictures of her cosleeping beauties.
  • Cosleeping and Transitioning to Own Bed – Isil at Smiling Like Sunshine shares her experiences in moving beyond the family bed.
  • What Works for One FamilyMomma Jorje shares why cosleeping is for her and why she feels it is the natural way to go. She also discusses the actual dangers and explores why it may not be for everyone.
  • Really High Beds, Co-Sleeping Safely, and the Humanity Family Sleeper – Jennifer at Hybrid Rasta Mama gives a quick view of Jennifer’s bed-sharing journey and highlights the Humanity Family Sleeper, something Jennifer could not imagine bed-sharing without.
  • Crying in Our Family Bed – With such a sweet newborn, why has adding Ailia to the family bed made Dionna at Code Name: Mama cry?
  • Dear Mama: – Zoie at TouchstoneZ shares a letter from the viewpoint of her youngest son about cosleeping.
  • Cuddle up, Buttercup! – Nada of The MiniMOMist and her husband Michael have enjoyed cosleeping with their daughter Naomi almost since birth. Nada shares why the phrase “Cuddle up, Buttercup!” has such special significance to her.
  • Co-Sleeping With A Baby, Toddler, and Preschooler – Kerry at City Kids Homeschooling shares how co-sleeping calls us to trust our inner maternal wisdom and embrace the safety and comfort of the family bed.
  • Fear instead of Facts: An Opportunity Squandered in Milwaukee – Jenn at Monkey Butt Junction discusses Milwaukee’s missed opportunity to educate on safe cosleeping.
  • Cosleeping: A Mini-rant and a Lovely Picture – Siobhan at Res Ipsa Loquitor discusses her conversion to cosleeping and rants a little bit about the Milwaukee Health Department anti-cosleeping campaign.
  • Our Cosleeping Story – Adrienne at Mommying My Way shares her cosleeping story and the many bonus side effects of bedsharing.
  • Cosleeping can be safe and rewarding Christy at Mommy Outnumbered shares how her cosleeping experiences have been good for her family.
  • Adding one more to the family bed Lauren at Hobo Mama discusses the safety logistics of bed sharing with a new baby and a preschooler.
  • The Truth About Bedsharing – Dr. Sarah at Parenting Myths and Facts discusses the research into bedsharing and risk – and explains why it is so often misrepresented.
  • Cosleeping as a parenting survival tool – Melissa V. at Mothers of Change describes how she discovered cosleeping when her first baby was born. Melissa is the editor and a board member for the Canadian birth advocacy group, Mothers of Change.
  • Dear Delilah – Joella at Fine and Fair writes about her family bed and the process of finding the cosleeping arrangements that work best for her family.
  • CoSleeping ROCKS! – Melissa at White Noise talks about the evolution of cosleeping in her family.
  • Safe Sleep is a Choice – Tamara at Pea Wee Baby talks about safe sleep guidelines.
  • 3 Babies Later: The Evolution of our Family Bed – Kat at Loving {Almost} Every Moment talks about how her family’s cosleeping arrangements evolved as her family grew.
  • Tender MomentsThe Accidental Natural Mama discusses tender cosleeping moments.
  • Cosleeping Experiences – Lindsey at An Unschooling Adventure describes how she ended up co-sleeping with her daughter through necessity, despite having no knowledge of the risks involved and how to minimise them, and wishes more information were made available to help parents co-sleep safely.
  • The early days of bedsharing – Luschka at Diary of a First Child shares her early memories of bedsharing with her then new born and gets excited as she plans including their new arrival into their sleeping arrangements.
  • The Joys of Cosleeping in Pictures – Charise of I Thought I Knew Mama shares pictures of some of her favorite cosleeping moments.
  • Symbiotic Sleep – Mandy at Living Peacefully With Children discusses how the symbiotic cosleeping relationship benefits not only children but also parents.
  • Co-sleeping Barriers: What’s Stopping You? – Kelly at Becoming Crunchy shares how she was almost prevented from gaining the benefits of co-sleeping her family currently enjoys.
  • Co-Sleeping with the Family Humanity Sleeper – Erica at ChildOrganics shares a way to make co-sleeping safe, comfortable and more convenient. Check out her post featuring the Humanity Organic Family Sleeper.
  • Why We CosleepThat Mama Gretchen’s husband chimes in on why cosleeping is a benefit to their family.
  • Adding to the Family Bed – Darah at A Girl Named Gus writes about her co-sleeping journey and what happens when a second child comes along.

A big thank you to all of the Safe Cosleeping Blog Carnival participants!