Thursday, August 7, 2008

Freecycle Baby...Oh Yeah!

Babies sure do require a lot of stuff. At first it's fun because the stuff is all so cute. And there's the initial first-time parent fear that if you don't have all the stuff, you may be missing that one item essential to your baby's growth and development or that one magic gadget that will miraculously lull your baby into a full night's sleep.

However, once the novelty wears off, you're left with just a bunch of stuff. So, here I am with a bunch of stuff, some which I never even used (slings, backpacks, breast feeding supplies) and now I'm ready for the next stage of stuff. Tessie is ready for some kind of exersaucer toy. She loves rolling around on the ground, but she spends way too much time on her back (her favored position, as anyone who has seen the infamous "back arch" knows) and that has left her with a pretty flat noggin. Wendy has an exersaucer she said we can use, but I think it will be nice to have one at her house.

In an effort to keep Tess more upright, I've been on the hunt for the next stage of baby things. While checking out Babies R Us last weekend, Ry whispered to me, "When you see all of these couples expecting their first baby, don't feel a sense of superiority? They just don't know what they're doing!"

It's hilarious how they set up the aisles in that store. Ry calls it the "How much do you love your baby?" principle. The "baby entertainers" aisle starts out with the Cadillac of exersaucers, which retails for $120 and looks to me like it should be able to double either as a car wash or a NASA simulation station to prepare your baby for space exploration:

As you move down the aisle, the exersaucers become increasingly low key until you reach the most pathetic of models, which they will grudgingly take your $35 for:

The mid-grade model we liked best was $80--and I just couldn't bring myself to do it. Spend $80 on a glorified piece of giant Tupperware? Something just seemed faintly immoral about that--even if it will help to round out my baby's flat head.

So I decided to try an online community group I heard about--Freecycle. Basic premise: people give away stuff they don't need anymore for free. To join, you have to give at least one thing away first.

I gave away 4 cans of sample formula I received at the hospital, but never used because it's not Tessie's brand. I also gave away a box of breast pads I never used and my bassinet (which I brought practically new secondhand, but never got much use out of). Tons of people wanted these things I was never going to use--I got about 10 responses for each item, and I got rid of my "stuff!"

Long story long, I picked up Tessie's new (to us) exersaucer today. She may not be able to fly to the moon in it, but it's not pathetic; I helped someone clear out their house; and, hey, it was free! And when she outgrows it, I won't have to find a place to store the enormous Tupperware--I'll probably just freecycle it!

Tessie likes it, and I just realized how easy it's going to be to take a shower now! A few moments of alone time--priceless!


Dipsy said...

Tess should be a model for the exersaucer, then it could sell for 10 times as much! Love, Dipsy

Maureen said...

She looks delighted with it! You got a pretty decent one. Our Freecycle is pretty sad, but sometimes you can find good stuff for cheap on our Craigs List.

Have you seen IJ's exersaucer gadget? Search for the Fisher-Price Intellitainer and have a good laugh.

Maureen said...

P.S. I didn't dish out the $70 retail on it, of course... I got it for $40 at Big Lots. Not too shabby, if I say so myself...

Nathan, Laura, Brooke & Andrew said...

I do have the first exersaucer pictured!!! (actually, i am borrowing it from a friend that has all the baby gear one could imagine).

Nathan, Laura, Brooke & Andrew said...

Fuzzers is in heaven in his cadillac space station exersaucer. I just wish it was ours. He's been spoiled. I am sure Brooke feels giped since we had preatically nothing for her.

Nathan, Laura, Brooke & Andrew said...

sorry, i spelled pratically wrong!

Ryan & Miriam said...

Wow! Fuzz totally ranks in the "how much do you love your baby" contest! Borrowing--now that's the way to go!


Ann said...

Miriam! That is the same excersaucer we bought for Kate!!! It lasted three wonderful children. We just got rid of it--it was pretty used! Funny post!