Thursday, April 18, 2013

Learning from John's Coworkers

Most of my knowledge about taking care of a child has been acquired from my mom, having younger siblings, babysitting, being a nanny and my friends who are already moms.  I feel that I have learned a great amount of valuable tricks and tips from these sources and never thought twice that I was "missing" information.  I didn't discover I had missed anything until John started talking to his coworkers, which are a bunch of dads in their early thirties (and one mom).  I've actually started to yearn for more information from these people because they bring a viewpoint that I don't regularly encounter.  We have used some of their knowledge to help us register and decide what products we actually needed to spend money on.  It has honestly provided a side to parenting that I really appreciate.  

1. Immersion Blender vs. Baby Bullet:  Now I'll start off by saying that I am very excited about making homemade baby food.  We're already going to try cloth diapers/wipes and breastfeeding, so this seemed like a logical step for me.  I was excited about the Baby Bullet that I always saw at Kohls because it had everything from the blender to storage to a recipe book.  I was concerned though that the Baby Bullet is plastic and although it's BPA free studies are still out about whether what replaced BPA is actually safe.  Skipping the Baby Bullet and using an Immersion Blender was the first piece of guy advice offered to John.  We already have an immersion blender that we received as a wedding gift, so if he says it works just as well or better I guess I won't buy the cute little Baby Bullet that has a smiley face on it.  I also saved up glass baby food jars from my last nanny family, so we have great storage.  As for the recipe book, I wasn't able to stop myself and put this fun book on our registry.  

2.  Glider/Rocker vs. No Chair in the Baby's Room:  Our nursery is somewhat small, not tiny, but not huge.  We currently have a crib, dresser and bookshelf in there.  The bookshelf doesn't match, so I'm unsure if I want to keep it in there.  I know I will want a third shelf for storage of toys and books though.  All of the gliders I've seen are relatively expensive to crazy expensive.  The last nanny family didn't have one until their daughter was five months and they didn't use it very often and the current family uses one regularly.  I never had much use for them because I wasn't getting up with the baby at night.  I can definitely see the positives in having a nice one, but couldn't justify asking someone else to buy it or buying it ourselves.  Enter the man advice, we NEEDED a glider/rocker.  It was a necessity because it was a place we would spend lots of time rocking/feeding/cuddling/sleeping with our babe.  I think John's coworkers sold him on it, but I was not ready to spend the money.  We tried one out at Slumberland and with the ottoman it was still almost $300.  Towards the end of their conversation about this must-have baby product one of the dads who's girls are grown up offered to sell his chair to us.  I think we may be taking him up on his offer.    

3. Diaper Bags:  I have been eyeing the Petunia Pickle Bottom Carryall Bags, but they are SO expensive.  Both nanny families have one and my friend who just had a baby has one.  They all LOVE their bags!  The only complaint I've heard it that the Velcro is loud, which they have zippered options so I could easily avoid that.  They come in cute patterns and I just love them.  This was a topic I actually asked John to bring up at work.  I was honestly curious what they would have to say.  Unanimously the diaper bag is overrated.   It's just a bag and any old bag that will fit what we need to bring with us will work.  One coworker even said they used grocery bags for a while because it was just what was most convenient.  I told John I am not ready to use a grocery bag, but I will stop ogling Petunia Pickle Bottom.  (My sister Hannah said she wants to get us our diaper bag, so I'm sure I'll still be carrying around something cute!)

4.  Childbirth Classes:  Going into this pregnancy I wanted to do a childbirth classes and a breastfeeding class.  I asked all the mommas I knew what they thought.  I had one that did The Bradley Method classes and they enjoyed them.  Another couple just read The Bradley Method book and they said that was just fine instead of doing the 12 weeks of classes.  Another couple did nothing and said they didn't feel they were missing out on anything.  Since I couldn't get a consensus from my momma friends I asked John to ask his coworkers.  Their feedback was that there were a few cool, yet not necessary facts they learned.  They also said that the most valuable part was the tour of the hospital.  (We can tour our birth center without a class, so that's not an issue for us.)  After all that imput we decided to save money and not do a class.  We found that has an online childbirth class, so I think we're going to do that.  I'll update after we finish the class.

5. Vacationing with a Baby:  I went on vacation to Mexico last July with my last nanny family.  We had a blast!  It taught me a lot and John got a lot of information from his coworkers.   John and I love to travel, so we do not want to lose that after this little guy comes.  On our trip to Mexico there was so much that they had to pack!  John and I usually only pack carry-on luggage, so bringing a babe will be more, much more.  I was discouraged by how much we had to bring (diapers, baby food, formula, pack-n-play, clothes, blankets, carseat, stroller, etc.), but John's coworker went to Kauai and he rented baby equiptment.  Now I'd be a little wary of rentals, but the lady in Hawaii just worked out of her home.  If we could rent a crib/pack-n-play all we would have to bring is a clean sheet and blankets.  We'll see what happens when we decide to embark on our first family vacation :)  Sidenote:  I would also bring an extra person so John and I could get some time alone.

With that said, sometimes valuable advice comes from places I would least expect it.  

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