Monday, January 30, 2012

Crib Notes

We have now totally cleared out the room that will soon house our twin boys. 

Gone are the sports portraits, the paintings we never hung up and the pile of clothing that didn't make the cut last week. A guest bed and the personal effects that defined this space as ours are now gone, replaced by bare, white walls.
Pictured: Not good enough.

So, what to put up in their place? What is the most baby-friendly move to make next? Should we paint the walls? If so, what color? What kind of artwork should we hang? What type of mobiles do we hover above their little heads?

In short, what type of environment do we create to inspire and foster the Stephen Hawking-level of intelligence that we demand expect of our children? 

I have no Earthly idea. 

So, this weekend, we started simple: with baby furniture. Specifically, we've now got two cribs and a changing table. (Special thanks to Mrs. Blackwell's parents for this wonderful gift.)

And while so many baby products are considered with the goal of inspiring baby intelligence, creativity and overall mental awesomeness, furniture is not one of them for us. 

I'm not even sure what kind of wood these pieces are made out of, I only know that they're quite heavy and, we think, quite pretty. As far as what impact the crib will have on the kids' development, I don't know. For us, we just wanted cribs with few moving parts. So the ones we've got have no sliding gate, no hinges, no nothing that could open or move. 

If one of our twin boys decides he wants out, he's either going to have to burrow down through the mattress and the wood, or fashion some sort of baby catapult. And, if they take after their parents, neither child will have much luck with such hands-on projects. (That said, wouldn't this qualify as "inspiring" the kids?) 

It's a testament to how much one's worldview changes when you begin viewing furniture as potentially lethal. Aside from a chair being thrown in a bar fight, I can't think of many instances where this is the case.

Dark wood = excellence in physics
But, you put a sliding gate on a crib and, all of a sudden, you've got yourself a point of concern, apparently. The way some folks sound the alarm, you'd think there are cribs doubling as guillotines. I'd bet there are plenty of instances where having a sliding door is more safe, we just made the decision that worked best for us.

With the safety issue resolved, what are kids doing while awake in their cribs? What are they looking at? Are their little minds being stimulated? Is the time spent in there being maximized?

I suppose we'll learn when they're older if we provided a stimulating enough  setting. Until then, I just hope they use their room for the most important childhood activity: sleeping.

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