My Impending Arrival….


The Good News:  It’s arriving this Thursday. It’s sexy in a big, powerful but quiet way. I’m taking requests for photos of specific positions and restraints. 😉   

The Bad News:  It’s not a hot, young, mail-order groom. I only have it for a week. It will probably make me hate what I already have. 

Here’s your one and only hint:



Guest Review: Graco Nautilus Elite Follow-Up


So, I’ve been itching for a new seat. My husband, while noticing the various seats stashed around the house and garage- and forgetting that his truck was seat-less at that moment- challenged my desire. I was quick to remind him how nice it is to have extra seats when one of us unexpectedly takes the “other” car or a kid pees through two seats in one day- both of which had just happened that week.  I reminded him that all my seats were purchased at significant discounts.  Then, there is the issue that my Radian won’t go in the third row of my Mazda and the Recaro is about to expire. My reasoning was falling on deaf ears. I was worried he was contemplating about drugging me with Benadryl to cure the itch. Then, it came to me: the blog NEEDS a review. It would be a service to all mankind- or at least mommykind- to do a review. I added the ammunition that I haven’t bought a car seat in (drumroll please) three years. I reminded him of the new toys he’s gotten in the last three years. He smiled. He caved. I didn’t even have to get out the poochy lip.

So, the object of my desire- what is it? A $300+ seat that I had yet to lay eyes on? Nope, I wanted a Graco Nautilus.  See, it’s a seat that all my kids could use- though I won’t put my 18 month old in for a while yet it since he’s much safer rear-facing. My 3.5 year old can use it harnessed and my 7 year old can use it as a booster seat. It fits in any back seat in my car. It has the world’s coolest cubbies and cupholders.  The Nautilus Elite model I’m reviewing has an MSRP $229. You can get the standard model for $139- $179 or less depending on cover style and how much bargain hunting you are willing to do.  Darren’s First Look Review can be found here.

The Elite version has a few nice extras. It has lockoffs, which are great for anyone installing in an older vehicle without locking seatbelts or in a vehicle that may have problems with tipping or other rare but pesky problems.  It also has adjustable headwings that pivot in or out depending on your child’s head size and preferences. My daughter loves headwings that are cozy- but my son likes a more open seat- so it’s perfect. The Elite version comes in two cover choices: “Gabe” and “Monti,” which is shown in these photos. The height limits, weight limits, and dimensions of the seat are the same as the standard Nautilus.

Britax Chaperone Recall


Britax is recalling certain Chaperone infant seats due to chest clips that may break when in use.  Britax received complaints that the clips were breaking when being closed.  There is a risk of skin laceration and/or a choking hazard.  All Chaperone seats made between April 2009 and May 2010 are included in the recall campaign.  This includes Canadian models.  Model numbers include: E9L69N9 (Moonstone), E9L69P2 (Red Mill), E9L69P3 (Savannah), E9L69P5 (Cowmooflage).  Britax is prepared to  make replacement chest clips kits available to consumers and retailers soon.  For more information, see the Britax USA advisory notice.

Update 10/30/2010: Here is the NHTSA recall notice.  Replacement chest clip kits should be mailed beginning November 11th, 2010.   Britax will also notify Transport Canada as the Chaperone Infant Car Seat was also sold in Canada.

Recommended Child Safety Seats Redux


Our list of Recommended Carseats evolves over time.  Usually, we make a minor update, fix a link or replace an old model with a newer version and no one notices.  Every once in a while, though, we make a number of changes at once because too many seats have been discontinued, too many models have been released since the last update or just because we want to replace the old with the new.  Our list hadn’t changed since May, but Heather has just finished editing our updated list of models for your perusal.  As before, please remember that these are just our opinions.  We don’t list every seat we like.  We can’t guarantee these models will fit your child or your vehicle.  We can’t say they are the best or the safest for your situation.  We just know from personal experience that all of them offer something, from a rock bottom price to a unique safety feature.  Even Heather, Kecia and I have trouble agreeing on some of these seats, but we are confident that this is a pretty good starting place for anyone’s search for the perfect carseat!