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Monthly Archive:: September 2011

A Glossary of Common Carseat Terms

How many times have you been looking at carseats and come across a word that you didn’t understand? In this specialized field, we have lots of terms that are important to you as a consumer and parent. Hopefully this list will make reading labels and manuals a bit easier! These terms apply to TYPICAL situations and are terms you’ll see mentioned often here on the blog; however, child passenger safety is a field of exceptions. Read your owners’ manuals for further clarification on your setup.

A Few Good Deals on Recommended Carseats and Amazon Lightning Deals!

It’s September.  Child Passenger Safety week and Super Safety Seat Check Saturday are coming up.  It’s Baby month at Amazon!  We do have to pay the bills, so here are a few links to some deals we found that are 25% to 30% below retail, with free shipping and free returns!

Safety 1st On Board 35 Air is $135.99 in Rio Grande

Britax Advocate 70 CS is $246.49 in Onyx

Combi Coccoro is $183.53 in Licorice

First Years True Fit is $138.54 in Casino

Sunshine Kids Radian XTSL is $219.27 in Petal

Britax Frontier 85 is $212.49 in Onyx

Graco Nautilus is $137.98 in Adventure

Clek Oobr is $206.51 in Shadow

Evenflo Big Kid Amp is $23.54 in Red

There are plenty of other good deals, but these stuck out as being big discounts off suggested retail price.  You can find our Recommended Car Seats list here!

Last, but not least, you can find Lightning Deals at the Amazon Baby store throughout the day today!  Big Discounts on various baby gear for a very limited time!  Coming up soon I see a Bob Revolution SE Stroller in Plum and a Ju Ju Be PackaBe Diaper Bag in Evening Vines.

Check out their Best Sellers, too.  Like the Thermos Foogo Food Jars for $14.98 in blue or pink!

Looking Back

Ah, the good ol’ days. Remember when phones had cords? When people used typewriters? When cartoons were almost solely for Saturday morning enjoyment? When kids bounced around unrestrained in cars…and it wasn’t considered illegal or even unsafe?

Times certainly have changed.

Parents reading this blog today probably spent a good chunk of their childhoods unrestrained, or at least under-restrained, in cars. Looking back it seems scary, but at the time, it’s just how things were.

I was born in the late 1970s, and my mom was actually quite progressive about keeping me safe. I almost always used a car seat (albeit a dinosaur by today’s standards) until I was 4 years old. In fact, I distinctly remember the afternoon when my mom was washing our Chevy Nova in the driveway and asked if I’d like to stop using my car seat. I agreed, and I felt so grown up that I insisted on sitting in the back seat (buckled up) as she pulled the car into the garage.

Today my mom admits that having me ride in the car seat was less about safety and more about helping me see out the window. Still, she took car safety seriously. She always wore her seatbelt and insisted that I do, too, even if I did “graduate” to the front seat as soon as I graduated from the child restraint. I did often wear the shoulder belt behind my back, but she always reminded me to keep the lap belt on my hips, not my tummy (something that was often easier said than done).

I also remember a time when my mom was transporting a group of kids to some sort of YMCA event. She told everyone to buckle up, and a girl (I didn’t know her, but for some reason I remember her name was Pam) said that she didn’t have to wear a seatbelt because she was 16. My mom replied “I’m a lot older than 16, and I have to wear a seatbelt, so you do, too. Buckle up.”

Like I said, buckling up might have meant a shoulder belt behind my back, or lying on the back seat with a lap belt “secured” loosely around my waist during a long road trip, but it was (slightly) better than nothing.

Then there were the times I wasn’t with my mom, like the time my grandparents took me on vacation to California (we lived in the midwest at the time) when I was 6.

The trip involved staying a few nights with some distant cousins who had a convertible jeep. The dad decided to take us out for a ride, so my grandpa sat in front and two older cousins and I sat in the back. By “back” I don’t mean the back seat. I’m pretty there was a back seat but we sat on the back sill and held onto the roll bar. I remember looking behind us as we sped down an iconic palm-tree-lined Southern California street…and feeling nothing but sheer terror. Even at 6, I knew that balancing on the edge of a fast-moving car was probably a stupid idea. Perhaps that’s where my interest in child passenger safety began.

What cringe-worthy moments do you remember about riding in the car as a kid? Did you have a car seat? Did you use seatbelts? Did you stand up in convertible cars? Did you narrowly escape harm because you were restrained, or despite being unrestrained? Did your experiences play a role in how you go about restraining your own kids?

Carseats That Are Now Available at Amazon.com

Sometimes, retailers get dibs on an exclusive carseat or specific patterns.  Other times, you might only find something at the manufacturer’s or distributor’s website.  We’ve had a few situations like this from past reviews, but wanted to alert you that these and other seats can now be found at great prices from Amazon!

The BubbleBum Booster currently $39.99 - CarseatBlog review

Safety 1st Comfy Carry Elite Plus in Mystic or in Eiffel Lavender or in Wildflowers currently $79.99- CarseatBlog review

Graco SmartSeat in Jemma or Rosin (coming soon) pre-order $299 - CarseatBlog review

Graco SnugRide 30 Review – The SnugRide Infant Seat for Smaller Babies!

The Graco SnugRide 30 Classic Connect is a fairly recent addition to the Graco infant carseat line.  Graco still sells the original SnugRide Classic Connect (22 lbs. max) and the SnugRide 35 Classic Connect as well as their newest offerings of SnugRide 35 Click Connect, SnugRide 35 LX Click Connect and SnugRide 40 Click Connect. All of these models are listed on the Graco Children’s Products website.  That may be a bit intimidating for parents.  Are the 35 or 40 models naturally the best because they have the highest number?  Not necessarily!  They all vary a bit in features and price as well.  The number refers to the maximum weight limit of the infant seat. “Classic Connect” carseat models attach to older Graco Strollers to create a travel system. “Click Connect” carseat models will only attach to Graco’s newest Click Connect strollers.

 

The SnugRide 30 has a couple advantages over the other models.  With a 4 pound minimum weight limit and no stated minimum height requirement, it should fit small newborns and premature infants a bit better than Graco infant seat models that have 5 lb. weight minimum ratings.  It also has a relatively narrow design and squarish base that could help it fit next to other carseats a bit better in some cases.  The SnugRide 30 is rated from 4 to 30 pounds in weight and up to 30″ in height.  Like other Graco infant seats, it is also outgrown by height when the baby’s head is within 1 inch of the top of the plastic shell of the carrier.

Unless you are having multiples, you don’t always know to expect a small birth weight newborn.  That can be a problem in some cases, because while most infant seats fit most full term newborns well, only a few the tiniest babies in an acceptable manner.  Does the SnugRide 30 make the cut?  Read on to find out!