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My first grandchild arrived early, almost two weeks before the baby shower was scheduled. Although he had a crib and some clothing, many of the items my daughter had wanted were being gifted at the shower. One of those was an infant seat – the kind with a handle for carrying and an adjustable slant to the seat. She had planned to use it to keep the baby close to her as she moved around the house. I suggested a plastic laundry basket as an interim solution. Padded with a couple of baby blankets, it made a comfortable resting spot and was lightweight enough to carry around the house. Since the sides weren’t solid, my grandson could easily observe his surroundings.
The temporary solution lasted far longer than anticipated. Although the carrier received at the baby shower got plenty of use, my grandson had become quite attached to the laundry basket and favored it over his crib. I thought of that basket twelve years later, when we priced baby furniture for my granddaughter’s nursery. Talk about sticker shock! My grandmother said that her infants slept in her bedroom, comfortably snuggled in an open bureau drawer padded with blankets. The practice was common at the time and seemed to work just fine for the babies. It certainly makes an argument for old-fashioned sleep basics.