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Shenelle: No Cold Bottoms!

Simply amazing so many of us survived with rough wooden cribs, laundry baskets as bassinets and wash cloths dipped in honey as teething rings. I don’t know how I have all my appendages considering the playground equipment I used as a child had metal links, (gasp), and nothing but dirt to cushion my fall. I’m pretty sure that about a month after I have my son his car seat will be recalled, the mattress pad in his crib will be found to have a sort of foam in it that when mixed with certain paints becomes toxic and breast milk will be considered unsanitary. But I’m pretty sure he’ll survive … as long as we have our trusty wipe warmer. Because no son of mine is going to have a cold bottom. Damn the cost or consequences!/Shenelle Kraack, St. Maries Gazette Record. Full column below.

Question: Are you surprised that you survived childhood?


No cold bottoms!


By Shenelle Kraack
Published: Tuesday, January 13, 2009 3:51 PM PST
It’s amazing so many of us are alive today.  Considering everything our grandparents and even our parents did when raising us was completely wrong or done the hard way.

I think about that a lot because in about a month I am going to become a mother myself and everything I have read reads contrary to what older parents have said and everything I have bought has a serious warning label on it.

Let’s start with the basics. 

The crib.  Three out of five models of crib in every store we went to was recalled. Some for serious faults like entire walls falling apart. Others because two kids in Oklahoma pinched their fingers and one of them required stitches.  Luckily the safety experts have remedied these problems with big safety booklets with each new $200 crib. I especially like the part about not allowing your newborn to put down his own guardrail. Or how you shouldn’t drop your baby into the crib but gently lay him in the foam sleeping mattress. And that mattress is another thing.


Today you can’t just put a baby, who can’t roll over by the way, in his crib on his back to sleep. No. In order to be a responsible parent you have to buy a foam pad with sides that cradle your baby and guarantees he won’t move. Again a baby that can’t move being put into a device that keeps them immobile, genius.

Then there’s the bassinet and swinging mobiles.

Although I like the idea of having another sleeping place for the baby that doesn’t require me to hike upstairs to his crib does it really need to vibrate? Or play Mozart? Or come with a heated pad? I know all those things are supposed to help calm the baby but what ever happened to rocking the baby yourself or just putting wood on the fire to keep them warm. And the swinging mobiles, they don’t just swing back and forth. Oh no they rotate in three different directions and come with all sorts of “stimulating” toys to increase brain function. They just look like a bunch of plastic rings and cheap mirrors to me. The kind of stuff my parents gave me to ruin anyways, but with a doctor saying it will make my son smarter I guess I have to shell out the $150.

Simply amazing so many of us survived with rough wooden cribs, laundry baskets as bassinets and wash cloths dipped in honey as teething rings. I don’t know how I have all my appendages considering the playground equipment I used as a child had metal links, (gasp), and nothing but dirt to cushion my fall.

I’m pretty sure that about a month after I have my son his car seat will be recalled, the mattress pad in his crib will be found to have a sort of foam in it that when mixed with certain paints becomes toxic and breast milk will be considered unsanitary.

But I’m pretty sure he’ll survive…as long as we have our trusty wipe warmer. Because no son of mine is going to have a cold bottom. Damn the cost or consequences!

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About this blog

D.F. Oliveria is a columnist and blogger for The Spokesman-Review. Print Huckleberries is a past winner of the Herb Caen Memorial Column contest by the National Association of Newspaper Columnists. The Readership Institute of Northwestern University cited this blog as a good example of online community journalism.

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