Tag Archives: car

She Says… Disproportionately Excited

Guess what I just did?!

I’ll give you a hint…




Yes. After 23 months of Owen being uncomfortable and carsick in his carseat, I turned it around. No, he’s not quite 2. But I know that I waited longer than most people, and really, what difference is one little month going to make? We’re driving four hours in the car tomorrow and I’m pulling out all of the stops to make it as painless (and puke-free) as possible.

I am irrationally excited about this. I was babbling to Owen about it all morning. “When you come home from school today, you get to FACE FORWARDS in your carseat just like Mommy and Daddy!”. I was clearly far more excited than he was.

You see, I have this theory. Well, it’s more like a wish. And it might be totally wrong. But still. I’ve been holding out for this moment as “the moment when Owen will be content riding in the car”.

So tomorrow is the test. I’m still going to dose him up with the anti-nausea meds the doctor recommends (I’m not THAT convinced this is the answer to all of our problems!), but I’m hoping the novelty of facing forward will give us at least a few peaceful hours on our drive. And we’re going during naptime. That should help too.

Side note: The seat feels SO much more secure and solid in the forward-facing position. It was never loose or installed incorrectly, but something about the way it is supported now feels rock solid, and it’s latched in much tighter. Maybe it’s the shape of our car seats or something. In any case, I can’t wait to toss him in his seat from now on without having to wedge him in the tiny space that the rear-facing position left us with. Hooray! What a milestone.

Here’s to no puking tomorrow. I’ll drink to that.


She Says… Bouncing Back and Carseat Conundrum

Whew, that was a rough few days there. The virus is finally gone and I have my precious computer back. Unfortunately now I’m digging my way out of my insanely huge inbox that piled up while I was out of commission.

C’est la vie. On to the next thing.

The next thing, at least today, is carseats. Let’s tawlk about carseats.

When Owen was born, we bought this bucket seat, the Chicco Keyfit 30.

It has a pretty high weight limit for a bucket seat. It is easily clipped in and out of the car and has an easily washable cover (perhaps the MOST IMPORTANT FEATURE for a car puker). It coordinated with our Snap-n-Go. Worked great. Being able to unclip the whole seat on the rare occasion that Owen fell asleep in the car was hugely helpful, and having a place for him to sit in restaurants and on the go was imperative. I think we made the right choice.

Since a few days before Owen was born (remember how preggo I was when we bought our minivan?!), we’ve had 2 cars. In the beginning, when we were living in the city, I generally walked everywhere and Benjamin took the car. So the carseat pretty much lived in the car. Since we moved, I’m driving a bit more, sometimes even into the office, and Benjamin is often driving elsewhere in his car. In the first few weeks at the new house we had several occasions where Benjamin drove away with the carseat and I wanted to drive Owen somewhere. FAIL. Thankfully it was summer so I was able to walk or take the train where I needed to go. Anyway, slowly we realized that having 1 car seat and 2 cars wasn’t going to cut it.

At this point Owen’s car puking was getting worse and we thought that a more upright “convertible” seat would be our best bet. So, after scouring prices, reviews and asking for rec’s (and asking ourselves, “Do we really need a Britax?” over and over and over again, because goshdarnit, their marketing is awesome and for obvious reasons you feel like a terrible parent if you don’t buy the most expensive seat for your most precious cargo), we decided to go with this convertible, the Evenflo Symphony 65 e3 All-In-One.

So I’ve been using the bucket seat in my car (which we really only use for short trips like to school or the grocery store), and the convertible seat has been in Benjamin’s car for longer trips. It has worked out great, and Owen seems to be a bit happier in the convertible than he was in the bucket (except, as you know, it hasn’t helped the puking issue). We’re crossing our fingers and toes that the puking will stop once we turn him forward-facing, but we’re going to follow current AAP recommendations and keep him rear-facing until he’s 2.

So this “convertible in 1 car and bucket seat in 1 car” system has been working out pretty well for the last few months. But in the last few weeks we reached the limits of our bucket seat straps. Owen + a winter coat = impossible to strap in to the tiny seat. I know, I know, most of you with kids Owen’s age are probably laughing at me for still using our bucket seat at all. But hey, I was trying to be economical! And we’ve been able to make it work… until now.

I have to face the facts. He’s a big kid now. And given that we are often in situations where one parent is dropping off at daycare, one parent is picking up, one parent didn’t know they were going to have to pick him up from daycare, one parent needs to run an errand and the other one is gone, etc. … we need another rear-facing carseat.

So we went back to Babies R Us and got this seat, an Evenflo Tribute DLX.

Even though OF COURSE price is nothing in comparison to safety, let’s review what we’ve spent so far –

Bucket seat: $189.99
Extra base: $79.99
Convertible #1: $229.99
Convertible #2:$59.99

I know… our most recent one is dirt cheap compared to the other 2. First things first, it goes through the same safety tests as the others — price does NOT necessarily equal safety. The biggest difference is that it has a relatively low weight limit for forward facing (40 pounds, when most of the more expensive convertibles go to 100 pounds), so we will also have to get a booster seat someday. But cost of that seat PLUS a booster is still less expensive than one of the pricier convertible seats. And, seeing how Owen is an active little boy, I think he’ll prefer the more open design of a booster to being stuck in a padded convertible when he is 40+ pounds. Also, we’ve made some of these decisions with a 2nd baby in mind. Someday we will have two little munchkins in carseats and I think we’ve figured it out so that we won’t have to buy any more seats. This is all conjecture, though — I really have no idea what we’re doing!

But, OY! Carseats are expensive! I don’t know how people with twins do it.

Did you get multiple carseats if you had multiple cars? Did you do a bucket seat, then a convertible, then a booster?

He Says… Driving Home

We had a wedding in northeast Pennsylvania on Sunday, and drove home yesterday.  The 2 car rides (about 6 hours each) went pretty smoothly.  Owen is a champ in the car for the first while, but (like me) gets a little cranky after a while.  We definitely push his feedings a bit as we tried to get to our destination, and he didn’t really like that but it’s probably good practice.

So, since we had a long drive home yesterday I decided to test out this little camera I just got.  So I put together this little video (which is somewhat embarrasing, but oh well).


He Says… Expanding

So this is the thing that I was so excited about:

We’ve been a one car family for the last 5 years.  It’s been fine.  Kate can take the T to work (or work from home).  But we knew that once we had a baby, we’d probably need a second car.  I travel a decent amount for work and often take the car, and didn’t want to leave Kate and the baby without a car.  So then it came time to decide what to get.  It took me a while to come around to the idea of a minivan, but that was really the most practical thing for us.  We drive most places, and we don’t pack lightly.  With our giant dog, a child, and all the stuff that comes with the 4 four us, a minivan was really the most practical option.  Plus, I cram our other car (a Mazda 3 wagon) with gear for my shoots, so full that I cannot see anything or fit anyone, so the idea of a bigger car for my job seemed very exciting.  We thought of some of the compact SUVs but they aren’t that much bigger than our Mazda and I think having the third row of seats is great if we want to transport a few other people.

Packing for a work trip in the Mazda

Fortunately some of the newer minivans are pretty slick, and a lot “cooler” (I say this mostly for self-assurance) than the minivans I remembered growing up.  In fact, the Toyota Sienna that we decided on is quite luxurious.  I LOVE the dual sliding doors for loading in gear, and the way the seats move and can fold into the floor is awesome.  When we test drove it, Kate said we could move out of our house and move into the car!  Toyota did a great job with their marketing on this car, because Kate and I kept saying “Mommy Like” and “Daddy Like” as we were on our test drive.  So I am proud and happy to be a minivan family now.  (I don’t care what all my friends think… I think they’re just jealous!)

Testing out the new Sienna