It’s a Jungle Out There

Happy Easter! To celebrate spring and new life, we went shopping. Seven hours, 100 miles up, down and across the Bay Area. There are approximately 894 gajillion options/suggestions on stuff babies need. I think we looked at all of them.

Naturally, I have used the past several weeks obsessively researching and compulsively organizing lists of what we would need. I pestered all the mama’s I know about their experiences, I highlighted key recommendations in Baby Bargain and Consumer Reports books, I asked the Internet thousands of questions and noted all contradictions. I set out equipped with notes, books, spreadsheets, notebook and pen; I felt ready.

Our goal for the weekend was to procure the “big stuff.” Furniture and important gear like car seats. Furniture often takes up to 12 weeks to arrive, you can’t leave the hospital without car seats (who knows when the boys plan to make their debut) and more importantly – I still fit in the stores to look at the merchandise.

Our adventure expedition included me and the boys (naturally), my mom (Grandma Janet), my mother-in-law (Grandma Nancy), and Dad (my very brave husband).

First we headed up to Lullaby Lane in San Bruno, CA. It’s ranked as one of the best baby stores in the U.S.; it takes up three city blocks. Directly upon entering, I encountered the books. I was quickly dragged away. Jon laughed at me and Grandma Janet reminded me, “You can look at all these later . . .” Oh yeah. We were there to look at furniture. (I will return to the fun subject of baby books in a future post.)

I wandered among the cribs, checking model types against my rankings. Jon shared his opinion on style – noting we needed to remember that these “lifestyle cribs” will also be serving pre-teen and teenage boys. Grandma Nancy remained in awe, constantly repeating that babies were on their way. She followed us around taking pictures to document the occasion.

We decided upon our nursery theme: it’s a jungle. I figure this fits – two boys on their way and a room already decorated with a mural of trees and sky inhabited by a tiger. View the adorableness that is Coco Tails.

Example of the boys bedding (not our nursery).

Next we headed down the peninsula to Direct Buy to find bargains. Success! Grandma Janet bought the babies (and their likely very tired mother) a glider. She also surprised us with two additional Coco Tails minky blankets. No, I don’t know what a minky is either – but the blanket is adorable.

Food was absolutely necessary at this point as each of the above paragraphs took about an hour each to achieve. Nobody would share where they wanted to go, so I picked P.F. Changs Chinese food. The expedition crew didn’t seem thrilled about this, but everyone was hungry and I don’t think anyone had a better idea – or at least didn’t want to argue with the hungry pregnant lady. I tell you our lunch saga only to share the fortune’s Jon and I received in our cookies:

Tricia’s: “Good things come in small packages. Yours is coming!”

Jon’s: “Welcome the change coming soon into your life.”

Refreshed, reinvigorated and re-motivated, we steeled ourselves and entered Babies R Us. This is the scariest store known to mankind. 1) The one near our house in Sunnyvale, CA is haunted. (I am not making this up: http://www.snopes.com/horrors/ghosts/toysrus.asp.) 2) Everything has several brands and they try to sell you everything. 3) The salespeople are unhelpful and clueless.

The vast majority of their cribs received had an F ranking in my books and notes. One of the floor models was actually falling apart in plain view. Jon took this opportunity to wander over to the attached Toys R Us to investigate the new generation of automatic Nerf guns (now with 35 ball capacity!) Still a successful outing – we purchased two infant car seats. Ah, are you now remembering that we have to buy two of everything? Fun!

As it was now 4:15 p.m. PT, we made a break to escape from the haunted overwhelming toy store and dash over to Babyland – a baby furniture store that has been a fixture in not-the-greatest-area San Jose. (It is located directly next to the “world famous Pink Poodle,” San Jose’s strip club.)

Babyland may well indeed carry every single baby crib option ever made. Even more than the three city blocks worth in Lullaby Lane! We found our crib(s). Jon plans to return this week to pick them up. Already!

The dogs have already thoroughly sniffed and investigated the assembled car seat (yes, Jon put it together already), which is currently protecting the safety of a very fuzzy bunny Great-Grandma Winnie sent for the Easter holiday. And frighteningly not that much smaller than a newborn.

There is now a baby registry in existence. I’m still not sure if we’re missing anything or actually need everything on it. I guess the twins will let us know when the time comes.

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