Wednesday, January 18, 2012

I am really beginning to dislike car seats. We transferred Cheech from an infant car seat to a Britax Marathon when she was about 3 months old. Although she was definitely happier in her "big kid" seat, she never really got too comfortable, considering I still sit in the backseat with her if both Joe and I are in the car. For a few months there, it was looking like she might actually, eventually, be totally content in her car seat. But I kid you not, the very day she became mobile, that dream was shattered. Basically, she can't stand to be strapped into anything. If we avoid the shoulder straps in her stroller, she's pretty cool, but there's no way we can/would want to do that in her car seat.

I have a feeling that there are two things we might be able to do to hopefully help with our arduous car rides. Currently, her seat is strapped onto the middle seat and in a reclining position. I was under the impression that the seat HAD to be in the middle, but with all the seats I see placed on the side, maybe I was misled? I'm assuming that putting her on the side will give her the option of looking out the window, which might actually keep her distracted from those pesky straps. Is this wishful thinking, or am I, perhaps, on to something here?

I also have a feeling that putting her seat in a more upright position might make for a more enjoyable ride. She's been sitting up for months, now, and lounging isn't something she's exactly fond of. My only concern with this option is how it will affect her naps in the car. I do try to avoid car ride naps as much as possible because I've noticed that she naps better and longer at home. I think the longest she's ever napped in our car has been about 40 minutes (for her, that's a very short nap). BUT, with the way life works, sometimes she just has to spend one of her naps on the road.

So, were going to try both of these techniques out this week and I'll report back. I can't be the only one with a baby who starts screaming the second she sees her car seat, right?


  1. Hi Celia! I'm a follower from A Desert Fete. I don't have children, so no personal experience with this. But I did have to write about this topic in the past. If I remember correctly, the side-seat warning mostly applies to cars with side airbags. Check your carseat manual to see if it has any special instructions about use in side seats. You may be able to deactivate side airbags somehow, too. Good luck! Amy

  2. Oh man, the car seat woes just never end. To get through a particularly tough drive, we actually stopped at a Babies R Us, bought one of those battery-powered fish aquarium crib-soother things (which I swore I would never use) and then engineered a way to mount it to the headrest where she could look at it and zone out. A bad parenting moment for sure, but IT WORKED!

    Also, all parents who use car seats should read this: This Week In F—k You: Child Car Seats

  3. I had our car seat installation checked by our local police department. The guy that did it was a retired Captain so he had time and stories to tell (his daughter was 7 mo pregnant at the time, too). I was worried that we could only put the seat one one side because we have an Element that doesn't have a middle seat. He said that the reason the suggest putting them in the middle is because it is more secure in side impact crashes, but only be a smidge. He also said that if you are putting them on one side it should be the passenger (we had him behind the driver so I could interact with him from the front passenger side) because "when you parallel park do you really want to trust your child's safety to oncoming traffic?" Point taken.

    No suggestions for keeping her entertained though...I still haven't figured that one out.

  4. Car seats are the biggest pain, aren't they? I am glad we are done with those some days. And then other days, I miss it : ) Little is the best!

  5. We have had luck with keeping a toy in the car that is only used in the car so it is something to look forward to. We use a fisherprice fake iphone. You can even pretend someone is calling and then hand the phone to the baby before you start your drive. That usually works but if he starts fussing, I put on a cd of kid's music which usually helps a lot. If I am by myself I'll sing :)