Friday, October 22, 2010

Who DOES This???

It used to be that I was known at the cosmetic counters at the mall (yes, by name, and yes, that's embarrassing) ... Now I'm known at the customer service counter at Buy Buy Baby (yes, still by name, yes, still embarrassing).
Gone are the days where I'd peruse the latest anti-aging creams at Clinique and drop a hundred bucks on lip gloss and liner at Lancome.
I'm a mommy, and mommies still buy stuff.  They just don't buy stuff for themselves anymore.
Instead of spending money on expensive anti-cellulite creams (which don't work anyway, let's face it), I'm buying fragrance-free diaper rash ointment.
Instead of testing dozens of foundations to find the perfect match, I'm trying different diaper brands in search of a no-leak solution.

So it's safe to say that I frequent the baby mega stores often. But you know you have a problem when the sales associates know your name, your child's name, and your home phone number.
Unfortunately, becoming infamous at Buy Buy Baby is just the start of a long and treacherous excursion through the Rohrbeck's own personal Project Nursery.

It all started with the crib bedding.  We found a cute green and brown set that was perfect for our gender-neutral room (since we swore we wouldn't find out the sex of our little peanut until "The Big Day").
Then we needed a chair.
The swiveling, gliding, rocking, reclining kind was right up our alley.  Naturally it needed to match the crib bedding so we custom ordered a chocolate brown chair with apple green trim.  It was going to take months for delivery but I just loved the color combo.

Fast forward to our 20 week ultrasound appointment where we could find out if we were having a boy or a girl.  After a month of promising each other that we'd wait until D-Day and be surprised, Doug and I decided 10 minutes before our doctor's visit that the suspense was killing us and we

Well, it turns out that once you're told you're having a girl, some weird switch inside of you goes haywire and you find yourself day dreaming about unicorns, fairies, and pink cotton candy.

Needless to say the color green was out the window in a flash.

It took three phone calls and a whole lot of Doug's charm to sweet talk the woman at Buy Buy Baby into allowing us to cancel a custom order for a chair that had already been shipped from the warehouse... OOPS!


Once Chair-Gate was over it was time to plan the nursery for real.

But being as neurotic as we are I am, nothing was simple.

* The Nursery Works Sea Holly Rose crib bedding I just HAD. TO. HAVE. was out of stock everywhere.  Thanks to my eBay addiction I was able to find it for less than half the retail price from a trusted seller.

This ended up being the easiest part of our mission. Everything else turned out to be a three-ring circus of ridiculousness.

* The paint color was matched perfectly to the crib bedding.  If you've been following this blog you know that we chose Sherwin-Williams "Fussy Pink".  And if you've seen it in person I apologize for the permanent eye damage it's caused you.  And WTF - could they have come up with a dumber name for a paint color that clearly will only work in a baby nursery? Doug still wonders why no one thought to call it "Sleeps Through The Night Pink".

* The furniture came next... a gorgeous espresso brown crib from Buy Buy Baby that would convert into a toddler bed down the road.  I waited months for a matching Pottery Barn changing table to go on sale.   When it finally arrived, it looked more cherry red than espresso brown (although Doug really couldn't tell the difference... MEN!)
After he'd taken all the parts out of the box I decided it needed to be returned, stat! As I cursed PB for their irresponsible characterization of the wood finish Doug cursed ME for making him pack up the table just moments after unpacking it all (because no matter how hard you try, you can never box something like that and have everything fit the way it did when you got it in the first place.)
We ended up getting a TRUE espresso changing table from Babies "R" Us.  There was ONE model left in all the stores in Northern VA.  It was totally worth driving 20 miles, sitting in two hours of traffic, and nearly getting into an accident on the way home... right?!?!?


So now that the heavy lifting was done we were well on our way to decorating this little baby's room.
This is when we realized just how crazy we were I am.

* The tree mural was supposed to be easy to put on the wall; it was a decal that was basically made out of contact paper.
Not only did it take us hours, the pregnancy bug bit me hard that day and I was a Grade A bitch to Doug, who was trying his best to get every tiny branch to seamlessly adhere to the wall.  Because this task required a ladder, I wasn't allowed to participate.
After patiently dealing with my nagging ("Is that an air bubble?"... "That one doesn't look so straight.") he finally gave up and allowed me to give it a shot.  Well, haste makes waste, and as soon as I peeled back piece # 9 (the last tree branch!) it collapsed onto itself, creating a crumbled mess that looked like a pile of tape from an old cassette.
We ended up getting an extra piece from the seller on Etsy and finished a few days later:
crisis averted/marriage a little rocky.

* Pom Pom Palooza was our next project.  I'd seen these cool paper pom poms online and was dying to put them in the room, even though Doug continuously reminded me that they served no purpose whatsoever and were just plain dumb.
I never denied that they were completely useless, but they were so pretty I just HAD. TO. HAVE. THEM.

The pregnancy bug bit me especially hard this time, probably because I was once again prohibited from climbing a ladder and doing things the right way my way.
I think Doug downed an entire six pack while hanging these, just to keep from having a total nervous breakdown or flat out leaving me.

Here's what the scene looked like at our house...

ME: "A little to the left, no the right, slightly back, that's too far, ok, now more to the left."
DOUG: "I have no idea what it is you want me to do."
ME: "Why can't you just do what I ask?!?!??! YOU did this to me. You got me fat, and bloated, and in a hormonal rage over paper pom poms... WAHHHH!!!!"

This went on for hours until the poms were juuuuuuust right.
As it turns out, Mackenzie absolutely loves them and Doug has grown fond of them as well (at least that's what he tells me).

* The crib mobile was featured on a mommy blog that swore it was the best thing since sliced bread.  Not only would this moving, singing carousel of farm animals soothe my child to sleep, it would stimulate her senses and promote early learning.  Another thing I just HAD. TO. HAVE.  Well, Toys "R" Us shipped the wrong one, and by the time it got to me the original had sold out.  Again, eBay to the rescue, although the only seller I could find was in China so I ended up paying an obscene amount of money for it and the shipping took forever (cuz it was coming from CHINA, duh!)
Again, this is something Mackenzie has absolutely loved, but did I need to buy this on eBay from CHINA?!?!? Probably not.

WE DO.  

* Hot pink room accessories = hard to find!
Our quest took us to six, yes SIX, stores trying to find the perfect lamp.  After returning two to Target, two to Pottery Barn, and one to Pier One before we even left the store(!!!), we finally found the perfect lamp at....
It's a damn lamp! Who cares?


With the majority of the nursery done I just needed to find hot pink baskets to put on the changing table shelves for diapers, blankets, and books.
Amazon failed me.
Target failed me.
The Container Store failed me...


Home Goods had TWO hot pink baskets...
I needed more.
WAYYY more.
So we spent that Saturday at four, that's right, FOUR, Home Goods stores in Northern Virginia.

We were ready to give up after the fourth try.

But as I rounded the corner in the kids' section at the last location I saw Doug carrying a tall stack of woven fuchsia baskets in his arms.

He looked as excited as I felt.

I thought he was either...

a) happy this wasn't going on during football season
b) just as crazy as I was
c) so madly in love with me he didn't care that I was driving him off the deep end
d) all of the above

(I'm guessing the answer is d... all of the above)

Sometimes I look around this room and wonder why we spent so much time deliberating over stupid stuff like wall decals, tissue paper flowers, and matching baskets.
Mackenzie doesn't know the difference, and in a few years she may end up hating the color pink and beg us to paint her room purple.
But for now, it serves as one small victory for two overachieving parents who just wanted the best for our daughter.


We do...

and you do.

If you've ever waited in line for the hottest toy at Christmas...
Or searched high and low for the Halloween costume your kid just HAS. TO. HAVE.
If you've ever bought your teenager a car or thrown your daughter her dream wedding...

You know why we were so crazy about getting Mackenzie's room just perfect.  It wasn't because we're type-A news producers who always have a game plan.  It was because we were so excited to bring our little girl home to the best nursery we could make for her, one that she'd eventually find exciting, and interesting, and fun.

In the last few weeks leading up to Mackenzie's birth, Doug and I spent countless hours sitting on the floor, staring at the Fussy Pink walls, wondering aloud what our daughter would be like. 
Now, we rarely spend any time together in her room.  But every now and then Doug will drift in, during the graveyard shift, and lie down on the floor to keep us company.  The room is silent, except for the glug, glug, glug sound that Mackenzie makes when she eats. 

This is the new normal.  This is our peace.  This room has become our sanctuary. 
Doug has abandoned the man cave and has succumbed to the Fussy Pink Princess Palace.
Here, more than anywhere else in the house, we're a family... 
stupid, no-use, dust-collecting (but pretty!) pom poms and all.

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