Baby Go Round
Baby consignment stores are scary, scary places. The faded plastic toys. The car seats with no manuals or instructions. The cheap nappy stuffed animals. And of course, the racks and racks of old, slightly smelly, scratchy polyester baby clothes.
And yet, I cannot resist a good deal on baby crap, so I always always stop. It’s part of my furniture-on-the-curb-free-books-OMG-A-YARD-SALE-STOP-THE-CAR disease. My case comes from my mother’s side of the family and is very severe and totally incurable. E handles my condition very well for the most part, indulging me sometimes but preventing the house from filling up with wobbly end tables, dressers to refinish, and broken chairs I’m going to recane just as soon as I learn to how exactly one recanes a chair.
During my pregnancy, my disease totally reversed itself and I suddenly hated anything that had been touched by hands other than my own. I wanted things totally new, straight from a box, wrapped in bubble wrap and smelling like plastic chemicals. If I could have gone directly to the car seat/stroller/crib/exersaucer factory and done the actual production myself I would have, just to make sure no one else’s germs every got on my stuff. Who cares what it costs? Nothing is too good for my precious snowflake! (My only exception was a Craigslist crib and changing table, barely two years old, for only $100. I figured the hundreds of dollars I saved on furniture would come in hand for buying other stuff. Like baby hats. HUNDREDS OF BABY HATS.)
But now that I already own every baby gadget known to man, I’ve realized “new” only lasts an hour and pretty much anything your baby can get on their stuff washes out. A baby swing used by someone else’s kid for three months works just as well as a new one and costs a quarter of the price. Until a kid is mobile their clothes are mostly decoration – adorable decoration, yes, but at the rate these little monsters grow you better take a picture the first time they wear something. We’re quickly reaching the Playskool age, where giant plastic monstrosities in primary colors begin to breed and multiply across our house until we’re left cowering in a corner with the dog frantically trying to take the batteries out of anything that makes music or talks.
Unfortunately, those Playskool toys don’t actually breed – you have to buy them (or get them as Christmas gift from your mom. Hi Mom!) – so I’m on the hunt for a quality baby consignment store. The one I’ve been to already is…not quality. That doesn’t mean I haven’t bought stuff, I just haven’t hauled away a car full of amazing bargains. So far I’ve stuck mainly to lightly worn clothes and stayed away from the gear, but this past week I picked up an umbrella stroller for $7, and that d0ggie-eared hat in the hat fashion show for $2. I’m really excited about the stroller, which came with the owner’s manual and is BRIGHT ORANGE, which will make it easy to find in the black hole pit of blankets, empty cups and baby toys that is the back seat of my car. Plus it matches my little ginger’s hair and I am all about making him look as red-headed as possible.
I’m going to check out our local Goodwill and I’ve heard good things about a consignment shop down in Mystic and of course I check my local Craigslist regularly (E: What are you doing on Craigslist? We don’t need any more STUFF! Me: But what if it’s a really really good deal? I mean, look! A real wooden rocking horse for only $100!!! E: NO NO NO NO NO) but I’m afraid that stroller might be my greatest find.