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Greetings from Lake Minnewaska

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Sunset at Peter\'s ResortIt’s not as exciting CPS-wise as the Kidz In Motion conference or the ABC Kids Expo, but the sunsets sure are better!  The view was great from our doorstep at Peter’s Resort, though I had zero luck (ok, skill) with catching my son the “big one” he wanted.  Of course, his 6 year old cousin caught one…  Anyway, I’m taking a week long break from carseats while taking my mom to a mini family reunion.  10 hours is a long drive, but it was made easier since my only tag-along was 3-year old DS riding in his Britax Frontier.  Beyond that,

LATCH Then and Now

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Costco Triad

It is a sad moment.  My trusty Cosco Triad is finally going to the carseat graveyard.  It was returned to me last week by a friend who borrowed it years ago.  I had forgotten all about it.  Though it served 3 kids very well in its day, at 8 years old it is beyond its useable lifetime, so it is headed to the junk heap.  The sentiment reminded me of this video…  Back in 1999, I became involved in Child Passenger Safety when I couldn’t get a Century Smartmove to fit in a Saturn SL2 sedan.  If an engineer couldn’t do it, who could?  (Well, turns out those happened to be among the most difficult carseat and vehicle combinations at the time but I didn’t know that!).  It didn’t seem like it should be rocket science, but in some cases it certainly is.  There was hope, though- a new system called LATCH was coming.  In late 2000, I bought one of the first LATCH carseats on the market, a souped-up Cosco Touriva called the Triad.  Despite the cumbersome 2-ring tether adjuster, it installed quite nicely in my 2001 Honda Odyssey, also equipped with LATCH.  Less than a year later, I made a webpage (that’s a link to the archived version that appeared in spring/summer 2001) to help other parents learn as much as I did.

Kia Sedona Mini Review

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Just a short recap on our Kia Sedona rental I mentioned previously.

Our 2008 Sedona proved to be an excellent minivan overall, really on par with the offerings from Toyota and Honda.  While there are some advantages and disadvantages as I mentioned previously, I think it will appeal to many families.  I’ll add to my earlier post that braking was very good throughout our trip, especially in the mountains.  Unlike the steering and accelerator pedal, I had no complaints at all about the brakes in terms of performance or feel.  Traction was solid on dry pavement, rain and even a couple hail storms on the Trail Ridge road in Rocky Mountain National Park. I drove it for a week and couldn’t come up with any major complaints at all.

The interior was really up to par, too. There were no rattles or squeaks of any kind. The controls all worked well and had a good feel to them, even though they were sometimes awkward in placement and function compared to our current vehicles. While this was an LX model without power sliders, the manual ones operated easily enough that our 7 and 9 year olds could open and close them.

The price is right too, as the LX sells for under $25k and even less when the big rebates are in effect. I wouldn’t trade in my Odyssey EX-L for one, but if I was shopping for a new vehicles at this price and had safety as a top priority, the Sedona Base would be a finalist.

The Train Ride Home

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As I wrote in a previous entry, we opted to take the Amtrak California Zephyr home, rather than fly.  Our youngest loves trains and we thought it would be a fun thing to do.  As a bonus, airports are always a bit stressful with 3 kids so the train had to be better, right?