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Rock-a-buy for baby in all the shops

by Tammy Keith | October 16, 2016 at 12:00 a.m.

When my son and daughter-in-law told me they were going to be parents, I did three things: cried, cheered and went online.

My shopping gene has kicked into overdrive with my impending grandmotherhood.

Thus far, I have bought my daughter-in-law a T-shirt that says “Napping for two” and a photo frame for the ultrasound picture that says “Already Sweet; Already Perfect; Already Loved.” I’ve ordered something else that’s a surprise.

Whereas before I only shopped for baby gifts if I were going to a shower, now it’s open season on all things baby, all the time. I linger on the aisles of adorable Onesies, buttery-soft blankets and tiny tennis shoes.

After I announced my good news last weekend in my column, I got some wonderful phone calls and emails. One woman warned me that “whatever you do, DO NOT” go to a certain website. Of course, I immediately went to the website. I looked at the adorable clothes — there were even some matching outfits for the whole family, including the dog — although I stopped myself from ordering anything. Yet.

The woman wrote in her email that “I could probably have bought another home” with the money she spent on her granddaughter, but the little girl’s parents appreciated the help, and the child is a “fashion plate.”

“So dust off the credit cards, or get a second mortgage — you will not believe how easy it is to spend, spend, spend on that sweet baby!” she said.

Oh, I believe it.

It reminds me of when my older son — this baby’s daddy — was born almost 27 years ago. One day I went to my mother’s house, and she had baby clothes covering an entire twin bed. “I just couldn’t help myself,” she said. On display were little one-piece outfits with different designs, such as a watermelon and a sailboat, along with all kinds of cute little boy clothes.

Even though clothes for boys are so much cuter these days, I cannot even imagine the tailspin of spending I’ll be thrown into if my daughter-in-law has a little girl.

My mother likes to tell the story she heard years ago about a little leather jacket that cost $100 in the children’s section of a store. Someone asked, “Who would buy that?” The saleswoman answered: “A grandmother.”

My daughter-in-law and I went shopping last weekend, and we looked at baby paraphernalia and clothes. A lot has changed since I had my boys — especially the gadgets. When my sons were babies, they had a simple little bouncy seat. There weren’t even toys attached.

My DIL showed me a few massive seats that rocked, vibrated, spun and looked like you’d need a computer-programming degree to operate.

I suggested to her that she register

— yes, that’s a thing nowadays — for baby items at a local store before her showers.

She said she is “overwhelmed” by everything a baby needs.

Yes, but lucky for her, she has a mother-in-law with a credit card or two.

Senior writer Tammy Keith can be reached at (501) 327-0370 or tkeith@arkansasonline.com.

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