When my mother was expecting her bundle of joy, i.e. me, she read a piece of sage advice about giving birth to a child under my star sign. “If your child is a Scorpio, you will need a sturdy crib. When testing it out in the store, climb in and feel how strong the crib is. If you cannot handle the looks of disbelief from the sales staff, you cannot handle raising a Scorpio.”
Although I doubt my mother ever followed through with the advice, she did look over her crib options carefully before buying. I’ve met numerous parents that felt dissatisfied with their crib purchases. Often what parents are looking for is something that looks good in their bedroom or nursery rather than thinking about functionality. Even we purchased one of our cribs secondhand from a couple that only put their baby in it a few times since, in the end, they let their baby sleep with them.
When I was crib shopping, my main objective was a good price. I did not give the other needs as much thought, but I should have. Probably one of the main factors for a crib that will function for the first two years is height. If you want it to serve as an extension of your own bed when nursing, the crib needs to match up with your mattress. The best solution is a crib that has multiple height settings, but even then it is best to measure for compatibility. The other height issue is how easily you can reach down into the crib to change a diaper or pick up the baby. Ironically, the simple crib that I felt we overpaid for is a better fit for us than the fancy one I got a great deal on for this reason. I’m the only one in our household that can easily reach in and pick Bryson if he is lying down. The others must use a stepstool or they cannot reach him.
Another deal breaker for some is a side rail that drops or folds under the crib. When our boys were infants, we could fit them both in a Mothercare crib with adjustable height and a drop down rail. We slid the rail under our mattress to hold the crib in place and keep them safely beside our bed for easy nighttime feedings. However, when the boys moved to individual cribs, we no longer needed a drop down rail as not even the ayis wanted to waste any time trying to get the rail down.
There are plenty of concerns about color, materials, and style when shopping for a crib, but if you select a sturdy, height adjustable unit, with the side rails that fit your needs, you will have fewer options to consider and buying will be much more straightforward, even if your baby is a Scorpio.
Photo courtesy of USCPSC (flickr)