- 9/ 7/ 2013 <--Prev : Next-->
The last time I went "Baby" shopping was thirty years ago, but I had a real treat on Saturday when I tagged along as "Surrogate Granny To Be" in a fancy shopping centre in Sandton.
HeeHoo used to be the most ardent baby shopper, he spent so much time in "Mother Care" in London way back when, that I feel he should at least have been offered shares in the place!!
But Baby shopping THEN and Baby shopping NOW are like chalk and cheese - it was a real eye opener. Yes I know my children were born in the dark ages but they survived didn't they!!
The first eye opener was the pram section. Now I still have my baby pram up in the top cupboard waiting for grandchildren, you know those beautiful old ones that Queen Victoria used, with massive wheels, frills, ribbons and antique lace all over the bassinet part? They are divine prams, no bending over, as they are the size of a Morris Minor!! However even I must admit they are a tad heavy!!!
Now these modern day prams weigh absolutely nothing, and a Mum can collapse and lift them with one hand, (you know these days it is difficult for these young mums as they do not have a governess to help with the babes as we did in the "Olden Days"!!)
And this fancy smancy thing doubles as a crib, a pram, a pushchair and a car seat!!
Now I was really fascinated with the jogging pram, I always fancied myself as a "Jogging Granny" !!
The next shock was the Baby Chair, mine was a piece of wire with fabric stretched over it, and the bairns were perfectly happy in them, the modern ones, rock, roll, are inner sprung, have music, air conditioning and a baby alarm on them. Whatever happened to those glorious days of rocking the babe in one's own arms?????
The bottle area was the next that we were ushered too and I was dazzled with the array of sizes, shapes and colors. No more glass bottles, no more Milton sterilizing fluid, no more bottle brushes. Instead a giant multi-bottle sterilizer complete with every possible combination of hygienic bells and whistles.
The poor Modern Mum must be a total basket case. So much choice, so much advice.
"is it BPA safe" was the most frequently asked question. Now BPA is not the Bulawayo Philharmonic Authority, it stands for bisphenol A.
BPA is an industrial chemical that has been used to make certain plastics and resins since the 1960s.
Some research has shown that BPA can seep into food or beverages from containers that are made with BPA. Exposure to BPA is a concern because of possible health effects of BPA on the brain, behavior and prostate gland of fetuses, infants and children.
Now I asked HeeHoo who is a chemist, what BPA was and he was nonchalant about this noxious poison, but then I suppose he sells the stuff!! To think he might have been responsible for the behavior of thousands of children is horrifying and I told him so.....
The dummy section was absolutely fascinating, my son loved his dummy, second child loved her thumb and third child had to have two dummies, one in the mouth and one in the hand!! Consequently I felt great empathy with the young father who was perusing the dummy section with such absorption that I knew his wife had sent him on this important quest!!
The old fashioned pacifier was "one size fits all" but trust me a book could be written about the modern pacifier!!
The nappy/diaper area was next and I looked around vaguely for the good old Merlin nappies that we used to buy, not a chance, there were, by the thousand, disposable huggies, pampers, no name brands etc and I gather the battle rages on.
Now the disposable nappy is also subject to scrutiny, modern thought has it that the chemicals in the disposable nappies, may have been harmful at the beginning in the sixties and seventies - think what we saved mentally and physically by using the good old Merlin toweling nappy!!
And good old "nappy bucket" has been replaced by an electronic machine that disposes, deodorizes and disseminates all things unsightly and smelly that go along with good old Motherhood!!
Moving onto the camp cot and mattress area was most enlightening; thankfully much attention was paid to the SIDS concern. SUDDEN INFANT DEATH SYNDROME, and each and every mattress was certified SIDS safe. I wonder how Vitafoam Zimbabwe is faring with their sale of foam rubber cot mattresses? I shall obviously have to get into that "Top cupboard" where I have been storing all my baby things for my potential grandchildren, and burn every last thing I have saved for all these years.
Goodness me, the old family cot could be a potential killer, were baby cots painted with non- toxic paint back in the stone age??? Even those old blankets and wraps I have kept will have to go as they (shriek) are not made of the correct safety fabric......
Onto a more delicate subject now, the subject of "shhhh "breast feeding". Now I know that conjures up visions of baby snuggled against Moms boob, making those gorgeous gurgling gooey sounds? Oh no, now there is a new fangled gadget called the suction machine!! Yes, the Modern Mom suctions the milk from her bosom, and stores it in bottles in the sterilizing area!!
I will always remember Sister Christina at the Mater Dei showing me how to suckle my infants, and there were certainly no milking machines involved!!
The Baby Monitor section was next, most important, how did we old mothers manage without them? There was even a video monitor that you could leave at the day care centre, and Mum can monitor it from her laptop at work.......
Sigh, Grannies will be phased out by modern technology before we even know it!!!