Preparing for little new family members means...shopping, decorating, & just generally making lists and plans!!! My laptop (yay Google), my funky notebook and I are in our glory (other than the fact that work and my thesis are really interfering :)
So, if you turn your attention to the sample photo, above, you will see Motet graciously modelling one of our Beco Baby Carriers (this is one of the last of the retired "4th Generation", and we also have another in the new "Butterfly" model). These are "soft structured carriers" that are bit more ergonomic than slings and wraps (I've got that residual whiplash to consider, after all), and carry children from newborn to advanced toddlerhood (i.e., 45 lbs) - unlike most other structured carriers that only go up to 20 lbs or so (if one feels so inclined to carry an older toddler, and if the toddler is inclined to be carried). Anyway, I've been getting sort of earthy here and there, and have been reading a bit about babywearing and attachment parenting - not likely to become a guru or anything, but there are some good points to be made, and in trying to facilitate as much healthy attachment as possible with adopted babies, we're thinking we'd rather wear them than push them as much as we can (yes, we'll have the stroller along, too, just in case - realistically, wearing a heavy baby in 30 degree Ontario weather while trekking the zoo isn't really something I envision as part of my future). For one mom's experience with the Beco, see http://www.bostonmamas.com/2007/09/baby_wearing_with_beco.html
Ok, so for all those stroller times, I don't think anything quite compares to the beauty of our marine blue Bumbleride Queen B! This gorgeous and classic multi-terrain pram-style stroller is no lightweight, but looks perfect for meandering around our mostly sidewalk-free town in ultimate parent-child comfort. One of our main requirements was the ability to have baby facing us (more attachment parenting stuff) or the world, and we also considered things like adjustable handle height, bumpy ground versatility, etc. Now, we do expect to be in the position of being a multi-stroller family, given that a twin stroller will likely be needed for a time, whether we have twins or siblings...but we also figure that a single stroller is handy, too, even with twins. AND, this stroller comes with an optional toddler seat that attaches to the handlebar (a pretty neat, sturdy design), turning the Queen B into a double for shorter rides (no headrest on the attached seat). In the double stroller department there's the whole tandem vs. side-by-side debate - good points on each side, but I think we're more tandem people (less potential for wrestling/physical altercations, easier doorway fit). I LOVE the Inglesina Domino & plan to get my hands on one to have a look at, but it's not at all compact (not that tandems really are petite, generally). The Kolcraft Contours Options double looks really neat, too. Both have multiple seating configurations, which is a major criterion for us. The Joovy Caboose is not bad, either.
So that takes care of the stroller discussion. Cribs are another story altogether. I am much less passionate in this department. Cribs are not really all that interesting to me, and are used for such a short time that I can't get all excited about them. What is exciting, though, is that we (meaning "I") made use of http://www.kijiji.ca/ to find a great deal on matching cribs & matresses (matching mattered since we've decided to have a shared nursery for now) - the cribs are in beautiful condition, are a current model despite being 4 years old, and as a bonus, they provided the opportunity for a lovely drive to Kitchener area with Hesper, including a side stop for some delicious cheese & curds at the Bright cheese factory. But I digress...In cribs, I would have picked cherry tone, but maple will do the job nicely...
Thanks to a friend clearing out baby items, we also have a jungle animal themed Pack n' Play & a cute vibrating bouncy chair. Ok, and I've collected a few more baby clothes over the years than I realized...but hey, I was just being forward-thinking. Eventually we'll need car seats & feeding seats (the type of high chair seat that straps to a regular chair - we can't possibly put two full high chairs in our kitchen) - but I think I can hold off on those items for a while (just a little research here and there to satisfy the need)!
We do have some work ahead on the nursery...my sister managed to live in that room for a while, but it's definitely in desperate need of some love. Window upgrades, baseboards, floor refinishing, doorway trim, repainting, etc. are all on the agenda over the next few months. The cribs look great in the room, though, and the finishing touch is a very quaint, rustic antique dresser that a friend bought & painted for me for Christmas - it sets the tone perfectly!