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As expectant mothers are preparing to welcome a new baby into the world, they also begin to put together the babyâ€™s new home! This space is a place to support and nurture your newborn. It also represents how you want to receive your new family member into your life. I work with new and expecting mothers to implement holistic living changes, specifically by looking at the babyâ€™s space and entire home. As a registered New York State Architect and Interior Designer for over a decade, I have been creating beautiful and nourishing spaces using environmental psychology, feng shui and green design principles.
Feng shui is an ancient Eastern philosophy that examines the way that energy can best and most positively flow into and through your environment. Feng shui isnâ€™t just about moving furniture around, but about shifting your space to physically and energetically support and nurture you, your family and your new child. Following are five simple ways to welcome your baby into your home using these principles.
The first step is to create a space for your new family member. You have created space emotionally, mentally, and physically in your body and now itâ€™s time to create space physically in your home. This means selecting a room or area dedicated to your child. Physically, if the area is not a separate room, partition the space if possible. You can do this with freestanding shelves, panels or even a curtain. Whatever it is, it should be sturdy and not unstable. This is important because you create physical, emotional and well-defined boundaries that are imperative for your relationship to your partner and with your child. Carve out a separate space for your child, their own space.
Whether you have a room or an area, take some time and remove all the objects and furniture that will not be used for the baby. Offer the universe some space for your new one to fill with his or her own energy. The baby will know you created a new space for them in your life.
What was the purpose of the room or area that will now be dedicated as the babyâ€™s nursery? Was this area once a guest bedroom, an office, or have you carved out an area of an existing room? Whatever the previous use, be sure to do some space clearing as a second step to rededicate the invisible energy of space. Itâ€™s vital to clear the space of any stagnant energy and create a clean slate for your baby.
First, open all the windows and doors for a minimum of 9 minutes. Allow fresh air to move through the area. Second, purchase some orange essential oil spray, or you can make your own with water and 9 drops of orange essential oil. Shake up the bottle and spray around the room 9 sprays. Start by facing the door and move around the room in a clockwise fashion. In feng shui, oranges and orange peels contribute positive, fresh, and brightening energy to our inner and outer environments. The orange spray will transform the area into a space with vibrant life giving positive energy. If you have a lot of second hand items, I suggest you do this ritual with the items in the room a minimum of 9 days before the baby moves in.
The simplest way to redefine the area is with paint colors. Stick with low-VOC or no-VOC paints. These paints have low or zero levels of VOCs, volatile organic compounds, which release toxins into the air for years after the paint is applied. In no way is that good for anyone in your family, but especially the little ones. There are even zero-VOC food based paints out now. In feng shui, pastel and neutral colors are recommended, as they are comforting and relaxing.
Eliminate EMFS and Toxic Cleaning Products
The sad truth is we are inundated with visibly undetectable toxins in our environments. New babies and children are particularly susceptible to these pollutants because their immune systems are less developed and they have not yet been conditioned to be numb to the effects. The health impacts can be huge and there are so many toxins added to our environments everyday with yet undetermined long term effects. Luckily, there are some pollutants we can easily eliminate, such as toxic cleaning products and EMFs. Instead of feeling overwhelmed, just start with these two items.
EMFS are electromagnetic fields and radiation that are harmful to us that are emitted by electronic devices such as WiFi, mobile phones, computers and even the electrical wiring in your home. EMFs produce stress on the body, especially in children. Reduce the number of plugged in and electronic devices in the bedroom. Unplug things or put them on power strips with a switch, so the devices can be turned â€śoff.â€ť Anything with a light thatâ€™s always on should be unplugged. Itâ€™s best to keep any electronic devices (including extension cords and any cords or charging devices) a minimum of five feet from the babyâ€™s sleep area. Battery operated devices are okay.
The chemicals are absorbed easily through the air and skin, and are also extremely dangerous if swallowed. Non-toxic green cleaning products are easy to find now at your local grocery stores. There are some great green cleaning products out there, but don’t be fooled by greenwashing! Greenwashing is when a product looks like itâ€™s green, but itâ€™s really not. Make sure there are no “warning” or “danger” labels. It is also very easy to make your own cleaning products with household items like vinegar and baking soda. Recipes for non-toxic, homemade cleaners are available here.
Photo of Parents
Finally, I always suggest placing a photo of the family in the babyâ€™s nursery. A square or rectangular frame is the best. Square shapes relate to the earth element in feng shui. The earth element represents stability, groundedness and mother earth. This creates a connection between the babyâ€™s space and the family. Choose a photo thatâ€™s meaningful for you, and symbolizes unity and protection for the baby.