Polyurethane alternatives? Durability, healthier?
We're in the process of remodelling parts of our house and replacing a lot of the flooring. American cherry and wide pine (30 yrs old) is what is being used and will both need new finish. Both need something that's highly durable (they're going in kitchen/entry way/dining (including baby dining) areas and we have young children/ dogs). I'm currently pregnant- and am interested in something that might be safer to be exposed to- specifically for the unborn baby, but also for my 2 year old.
Here are my questions:
Are the alternatives to polyurethane durable enough? (we don't want to sacrifice durability and won't the time/energy to refinish regularly) If so, what products are recommended?
If we do go with a traditional polyurethane, how long do I need to be out of the house? Is it reasonably safe once it's dried?
Are there any products that are safer (not just better for the environment, but also safer to breathe)? (And if so, are they durable enough?)