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Tuesday, March 29, 2011

The Car Seat Saga

You probably already know that the AAP recently published new recommendations for car seats (if not, you can check it out here) so unfortunately for Little Bear (at least it's unfortunate in his opinion) he will be studying the back seat of the car for awhile longer.
The first car seat ride!

We learned fairly early on that Little Bear hated his car seat.
Problem #1: His car seat was HOT!  Even dressed as minimally as possible with the air conditioning on full blast, he would be soaked in sweat. Now granted, he naturally is a little furnace, but still...
Problem #2: His car seat was BORING!  Really I can't blame him - to have nothing to do but stare at the back of the seat?  B-o-r-i-n-g!

So Papa Bear and I couldn't wait for Little Bear to turn one and turn around.  We new that the standard for switching to a front facing seat was 1 year and 20 lbs.  We also new that studies showed that staying rear facing until age 2 was safer.  This became a huge debate for us because we wanted to keep Little Bear safe, but he was miserable in his car seat and that made us miserable too.  We rarely traveled and when we did we had to listen to him scream the whole time.  Sleeping in his seat was not an option, according to Little Bear.

Getting ready for the last ride in the old car seat

As Little Bear got older and began to play with toys, things improved but the heat was still a problem.  My mom and I made a car seat cooler for him using ice packs and I would put that on his seat whenever we were getting ready to go out which helped a little.  With the onset of fall and cooler weather, Little Bear finally got comfortable traveling (of course Papa Bear and I were freezing since we couldn't turn the heat on!).

Many of our friends were turning their children's seats around at the one year mark (and some actually do so earlier - eek!), but since things were improving, Papa Bear and I decided that we would leave Little Bear rear facing until at least the end of winter and then re-evaluate.  As it turns out we made a good choice!

At his 1 year visit, Little Bear did not even make the 20 lb. turn around mark, so facing forward was not even an option for us.  We opted instead to get him a new convertible car seat in the hopes of making him more comfortable.  So far Little Bear loves the new seat!  It gave him a little more space and lifted him up higher so that he can see a little out of the windows.  While I obviously can't take his seat out of the car anymore (makes buckling him in a little harder), I love how much sturdier the seat seems.  It was a win win for everyone!

Preparing for the first ride in the new car seat

Now with the new recommendations, it is a definite that Little Bear will be rear facing until he is at least 2.  Chances are, he will be that way even longer since he's a little peanut.  Let's just hope that the new car seat love will last with the warm weather!


  1. aw! i love the photo comparisons!

    new follower from the hop
    would love a follow back

  2. WOW! I didn't know they were recommending rear facing till 2!

    Your son is a every carseat! ;)

    Here from
    Boobies, Babies, & A Blog to return your follow & thank you for linking up with FMBT!

  3. The new seat looks super comfy!
    Newest follower from the Fun Tuesday Hop Blog Hop!
    Come return the visit when you have the chance :)
    The Sleppery Mind

  4. i'm following from the all week blog hop :)


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