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Sunday, October 23, 2011

The Great Debate: Nursery Furniture

Nursery furniture has been a pretty big decision (much like all of the others) in the Baum house.  The problem that we're having is that Dan is cheap "likes to get value for his money" (his words, not mine), where as I will find the only $100 item in a store filled with all $1 items and have to have that one like pretty things and probably don't pay as much attention to price as I should.  One thing is for sure: nursery furniture is a LOT more expensive than either of us anticipated it being. 

We weren't really sure where to start, so we began by just looking at things we liked online to get an idea of style.  We did this mostly on furniture websites.  Luckily, we agreed on style (which I never thought would happen), but when it came time to price things we liked, we were shocked at some of what we saw.  Just birthing a child is so expensive, even with deductibles and maximum out of pockets, so the problem we were having is that it was going to be really hard to justify spending $2,000 on furniture.  The nursery is a special place, one in which we will be spending a LOT of time with Baby Geronimina, so you can see why I want it to be beautiful.  However, while furniture truly is an investment, the furniture itself is just the beginning of the nursery - $2,000 just seemed ridiculous when we still hadn't considered bedding, a rug, decorations - anything else. 

SO, back to square one.  Let's start with the nursery wish list.  In the nursery of my dreams, here is what I would have wanted:
  • Crib
  • Dresser/Changing Table Combo
  • Hutch for Dresser/Changing Table Combo
  • Armoire
  • Glider
Obviously, a baby does not need all of these furniture pieces - those are just on the wish list for the nursery of my dreams slash when the money tree starts producing $100s.  Realistically, I knew that the crib and changing table were most important, with glider in a very close 2nd (3rd?) - I am planning to breast feed and every Mom I've talked to said that a glider/rocker of some sort is as must. 

Once we decided furniture stores were probably more than we wanted to spend, I started looking online for furniture at both BuyBuy Baby and Babies R Us.  Babies R Us has a lot more to choose from online, but they do not carry the stroller we're registering for (yes, we finally decided on a stroller!).  We set aside some time yesterday to go to both - BuyBuy Baby (from here on out known as BBB) to look at strollers for the 18th time and Babies R Us (from here on out known as BRU) to take a look at furniture.  We swung by BBB first and were pleasantly surprised at the amount of furniture in store.  After looking at all of it several times and picking out our top three, we were finally able to come to an agreement.  Yes, an agreement!  Behold, our nursery furniture:

All Available Pieces
When I saw this crib, I fell in love - isn't it so pretty?!  Part of it was the legs.  I don't know why, but I love how they are rounded at the front.  Anyway, we ordered it in dark wood.  I like the idea of white, but in our current house, when we have more than one child they will probably share a room, and I just for whatever reason felt like dark wood would be better.  Espresso was the exact color we chose.
We debated a lot about convertible cribs.  We didn't have too much of a choice - 99% of what's out there these days is convertible (but you can choose not to purchase conversion kits).  Our dilemma was this: they tell you to go ahead and get all conversion kits up front, because a lot of times furniture will be discontinued, the company will stop making the conversion kits, or they will change their wood and then conversion kits won't match your furniture.  In addition, we found ourselves wondering if it was realistic to expect furniture to last for 18+ years.  I have heard from several Mom friends that babies/toddlers can be pretty rough on their beds, so did we really think we could go 18+ years with the same furniture?  Additionally, there is the dilemma of when baby #2 eventually comes: do we then spend the extra money and get the convertible bed for that baby as well, or do we just use it as a crib and get different furniture as we need it?  It's a lot to think about.  In the end, we decided that we are going to register for the toddler bed conversion kit.  Here is how it looks as a toddler bed:
Converts to Toddler Bed
This way, Baby Geronimina will stick with her same bed until she's a toddler, and then we'll cross other bridges as we get to them.  The sales associate did tell us that if we didn't get the kit that converts to a full bed but decided later on to go that route, all we'd have to do is get a full bed frame and drill it directly into the headboard.  Excellent to know - it's always nice to have options!

The pieces we ended up with were only two off of my original wish list: the crib and the convertible dresser/changing table (in the picture, it's the shorter dresser with the hutch).  I really, really, R E A L L Y wanted that hutch (cannot express to you how much I want the hutch), but couldn't get Dan to budge.  All we could agree on is that we will put it on the registry.  It is definitely not a necessity - I just think it looks nice.  We briefly considered getting the second, taller dresser, but decided we would see how it goes and if we need it we can always order later.  My dreams of an armoire were crushed because they are stupid expensive, but maybe when our money tree sprouts in the back yard I'll go back for it.

The only other thing we should still need for the nursery, furniture-wise, is a glider.  I am currently trying to convince Dan that I am not, in fact, being high maintenance, and this is something that is a necessity, not a want.  I sold the furniture that's currently in that room this week, so I'm hoping I can talk him into putting our proceeds towards a glider.  We're going back to register next weekend, so fingers crossed that I can talk him into it before we go back!

All in all, we had a very productive weekend and as a result I am feeling a lot less stressed about where we stand.  We got a great deal on this furniture and were able to use 20% off coupons in addition, so we spent a lot less than we originally anticipated, and we're really happy with that.  The only downside is that we had to special order the furniture, so they told us it would be 16-18 weeks before it arrives.  Newsflash: baby girl is due in 16 weeks.  They assured us that 16-18 weeks is the worst case scenario, and that most of the time the furniture arrives earlier.  Fingers crossed!  I'm sure we will have a bassinet that she can sleep in if the furniture doesn't come in, but y'all know how I like for things to just be done.

Next weekend, we're planning to register, so that will be one more thing to mark off the list - lots of research to do this week!  Then, it's back to nursery decorating: we need to make a final decision on bedding, and I need to get Dan on board with my vision.  So far, he has put his foot down that wall paper is not allowed (even though I only want one wall!).  Not to worry, I'll keep trying!

Happy football watching!


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