Perambulation!

by Esther on Fri, Apr 2nd, 2010

in Challenges,Design,Pregnancy by week,Week 34

Researching baby gear was by far one of the more frustrating experiences of pregnancy preparation.  There is so much information out there, so many reviews to read, and so many people who believe they’ve got it just right who want to offer you every bit of advice they have.  I didn’t know where to start when it came to diapering, sleeping, strolling, or feeding.

Luckily, pregnancy is long.  I’ve dedicated myself to hours of baby homework in a way that I wish I had once poured myself into academic study.  Probably like a lot of parents-to-be, we have become a wealth of information spouting, carefully planned and hopefully prepared moms and pops.  In our minds during a good moment, anyhow…

One of my biggest concerns was the early sleeping arrangements.  We believe in co-sleeping to an extent, but I definitely wanted the baby to have a space of his own in which to snooze.  I wanted something that would easily rock him to sleep, and something that would leave me to my own bed when I needed a break.  I just can’t imagine myself doing the full-on attachment parenting thing, (but that’s another post).  Finding a bassinet was easy if I could have my pick of anything off of any design site.  Unfortunately, the bassinets that I found myself drawn to were on often out dated European design blogs entries.  Beautiful, located thousands of miles away, and massively expensive if they were even in production to begin with.  There was very little for me to fall in love with state side, and certainly nothing in the plastic filled baby superstores where 75% of Americans happen to register for baby goods.

As we don’t really know what kind of baby this Axelrod will be, we don’t want to buy a crib just yet.  We want to let him tell us what he needs as time passes, and possibly figure out how to use the Montessori Sleep Method in our loft.  Also, I have to admit that I’m not a huge crib fan.  This could be a result of our living in a very open space-  I don’t want to see bars anywhere in the loft!  It’ll break up the space and, hey, I gotta have the right energy flow.  I’m sure that most parents out there will poo-poo my musing about design, but I’m also pretty sure that most parents out there don’t live in a loft that they’d ultimately like to sell to another design oriented downtown individual.

Eventually, while reading one of my very favorite pregnancy/baby blogs, I came across a most spectacular idea!  And… I’ll admit!  I ran with that idea, obsessed.  The folks over at Dear Baby got their gorgeous baby girl a sweet vintage pram.  I saw the post about it and just fell in love.  I immediately (and obsessively) started combing antique stores, craigslist, and ebay for a pram of our own.

This wasn’t an easy feat!  A brand new pram costs thousands of dollars.  A well-kept vintage pram could cost you a good grand.  Out here on the west coast, we don’t see to many vintage prams.  They are only manufactured in Europe, and rarely seem to make it to the east coast of the states, much less all the way across the Rockies and the Cascades.  And, of course, we don’t need a pram.  They’re big!  You can only use them for basinet purposes for maybe 8 months, and that’s if your baby is not so bouncy!  They’re no where to be found for a cost-conscious price!  I didn’t care.  We have an open space with a sweet mixture of modern (from my husband) and antique (from me) fixins, and I could totally see the right pram fitting into the shape of things very nicely.

I bid on a pram in Florida and was outbid.  I bid on it again.  I got caught up in a bidding war!  My husband raised his eyebrows when I told him how the war had gotten to $350 and the sellers reserve had STILL not been met (thanks for being patient with that, Milton) I lost the war and was heart-broken.  I found other prams on ebay that were too kitschy for our aesthetic.  I found prams that didn’t match our colors.  I found a pram that my husband declared was “too dirty 70s”, prams that were too victorian, prams that were ugly.  I thought I’d never find the perfect one at the right price in time…

Until!  Suddenly one day I changed my usual ebay search words and came up with a sweet, very well kept, pram that was exactly like the one I had lost in my  exorbitant bidding war!  This pram was located about 20 minutes from my hometown, right down the street from family!  The price?  Well.  It still wasn’t cheap, but it wasn’t ridiculous.  I won the pram for $180 (which was the starting bid) and sent my awesome mom to pick it up!  Unfortunately, the East Coast had been so pummeled with snow that the pram took weeks and weeks to procure.  Then, my parents had the heady duty of figuring out how to ship this huge crazy beast all the way to Seattle.  My dad built 2 boxes and they lovingly wrapped the whole shebang in plastic bubbles, which we received yesterday!  Yay!!!

Behold!  Our mobile bassinet!!

Panda Perambulation!

{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Dante Fri, Apr 2nd, 2010 at 3:14 pm

As a former childful loft-dweller*, I have to tell you that it’s OK to have a crib in a loft. It really is.

Also, mind you well the point in the Montessori Method entry where the author points out that empowering your child to make her own decisions regarding waking/sleeping is a “double edge sword”. Not much of an issue before Junior is mobile, but thenceforth…

* Take heart — it wasn’t easy, but it turns out that the loft was much, much easier to get rid of than, for instance, the kids.

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2 Esther Fri, Apr 2nd, 2010 at 10:48 pm

I’ve seen pictures of your former dwelling… and as I recall, you actually had rooms. With WALLS! You didn’t have to stare at crib bars from your living room.

I hear you on that Montessori Method. I reserve right to take back every idea I ever had about baby raising at will, every 3.8 seconds. (Especially if we keep deliberately reading each book from every opposite side of the idea spectrum!)

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3 Jen Sun, Apr 4th, 2010 at 6:36 pm

That is one epic pram. I’d like to use one to hold an herb garden some day.

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4 Mariah Mon, Apr 5th, 2010 at 7:47 am

I keep forgetting to send you a picture of Linus at 8 mos. in the late 19th century pram my parents found in someone’s attic. I cannot believe someone actually had a kid in thing. It’s monsterously huge, and has these huge wicker spikes coming out of the sides.

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5 misha Wed, Apr 7th, 2010 at 6:16 pm

It’s so cute! We used a pram too. It was awesome and super convenient. We put the crib up but never put Ilan in it until he was too big for the pram. Ours is not as fancy as yours – it’s a simple navy 70′s style and is stored in our closet for future baby number 2. Make sure you get one of those sort of cushiony ramp things for it though so Axlerod’s head is slightly elevated at all times!

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