When a grandmother is expecting her first grandchild, I think we need to throw her a shower. You see – your house has to be as hospitable as possible so that the children and grandchildren will come over often without the burden of packing the entire contents of the infant’s room into the car before the trip over. That, at least in my head, was the reasoning behind buying all the essentials. Just what are the essentials, you may wonder? I’m glad you asked!
First on our list is the Pack & Play. It’s a wonderful invention, a crib-like device that easily opens up so the baby can sleep and then folds into a nice little package that can be easily stored in a closet. Of course that’s assuming you remember how to fold it up.
I’ve found setting it up to be much easier than folding it. After the kids’ last visit, I pulled the middle up and pushed down on the sides. Nothing. I pressed the little buttons on the side rails and the stubborn sides refused to budge. It was late. I wanted to go to sleep but was worried someone would trip over the darn thing in the middle of the night. I somehow managed to stuff it into a closet in its half opened state. The next morning, I looked for a video on how to close it. Ah! The side rails do not go down. They fold up! In two minutes, I had it folded away.
One will also need a couple of sheets for the Pack & Play. Here’s a little tip: don’t bother hunting for the elusive small sheets that perfectly fit. You will only drive yourself insane with that nearly impossible task. Crib sheets work just fine if you fold them under. And you do want two because… well babies are messy.
Another essential is a step stool so the toddlers can easily reach the bathroom sink. For us old folks, that is easier than trying to hold a toddler with one arm while cleaning mud covered hands with only one free hand. Not to mention lifting a toddler in an awkward position isn’t great on old backs.
Let’s not forget child safety locks, especially on the cabinets that contain cleaners, sharp objects, and medications. Then, you may want to get your kids to open everything back up again before they leave. Those devices should be renamed, ” Child & Old People Safety Locks.”
In the corner of my dining room is a little, toddler sized table and chairs. That’s not actually a necessity but I just couldn’t resist buying it when I saw it in a store. I also couldn’t resist buying crayons, coloring books, blocks, trucks, and that all time classic, Mr. Potato Head.
Now that I think of it, the table laden with toddler toys probably is an essential, judging by the way my grandson made a beeline for his table as soon as he walked into my house.