Thursday, March 27, 2014


I think I've gushed about Marktplaats a gazillion times on this blog.  It's how I found most of kidlet's baby clothes, some of kidlet's toys, and a lot of kidlet stuff, in general.  Yesterday's haul included a reiswiegje and an iPad (the original).

A reiswiegje is a compound word; like most compound words in the Germanic languages, once you figure out the parts, it's easy to come to a conclusion about the meaning.  Therefore, some of you might have already figured out that this is a little (-je) travel (reis) bassinet (wieg), and inferred that we're taking a trip shortly.  Except this is Dutch we're talking about, and things tend not to translate so nicely.  Because the actual object it refers to is what I've always known as a playpen.  Indeed, it was even listed on Marktplaats as a "Graco Pack 'n Play", although the one we ended up getting wasn't nearly this fancy, consisting only of the playpen area.

In my admittedly limted experience with Dutch babies, these things are used exclusively as folding cribs--if you have a visiting baby, you whip it out and voila, baby bed (whether or not the baby will actually sleep in it, as opposed to screaming bloody murder for 3 hours, is a different matter...not that I have any experience with a baby screaming bloody murder in a reiswiegje).  Or if you're going somewhere where baby beds aren't provided, you can fold it up and take it with you.  For its enormity--and the thing is pretty big, taking up almost 1/3 of our dining area when it's all set up--it does compact quite nicely, though it's still quite a big package.  

Playpens, on the other hand, are permanent fixtures, usually made of wood or something nice.  They do not have a nice mattress on the bottom, usually being lined with a blanket.  They might have some beads-on-a-stick built in to the walls.  And it is called a box.  Regardless of what it's called, though, unless you have a lid on it, the kid inside will invariably through all of his toys outside and then start whining about how bored he is.  
We therefore have a Pack 'n Play, but it is not a playpen, though don't tell that to kidlet, who had the time of his little life in it this morning when we tried it out to see what he thought of it.  We never had a box--we considered getting one for all of five minutes back in 2012 when I was going kidlet-shopping, but we quickly came to the conclusion that our apartment is tiny and there would be nowhere to put it.  As for where we're going...well, you'll just have to stay tuned.  And hope that I remember to bring my camera.  

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