Choosing a Convertible Car Seat – Decisions, Decisions

We’ve come to that point.  Eudora is nine months old.  While there’s still plenty of time left for choosing a convertible car seat for her, it’s something that’s on my radar.  Right now, Eudora is using a Graco SnugRide 35.  There’s no way that she’ll outgrow it before she’s a year old.  However, it’s getting heavy and I don’t like to carry it, so I’m interested in us choosing a convertible car seat now rather than later.

With Norton, choosing a convertible car seat was easy.  I wanted him to have a Britax Advocate, and that’s what we’ve got.  The Britax Advocate is a great seat, and we got it on sale for $100 off.  I was also doing a lot more paid writing then, so money was really not an issue.  I wanted the best convertible car seat that I could get for him.

With Eudora, I find myself thinking more about what we should do.  I have three ideas for choosing a convertible car seat.

1.) Skip the Convertible Car Seat

Choosing a Convertible Car Seat – Decisions, Decisions (Motherhood Looms)  One thought I have is to skip out on choosing a convertible car seat altogether.  Instead of buying another convertible seat, just buy Norton a Britax Frontier XT.  The Britax Frontier XT is a front facing only model, which is not a big deal.  Norton is already forward facing in the Britax Advocate.  The Frontier XT can be used as a five point harness front facing car seat for up to 65 pounds and as a booster seat for up to 120.  If we did that, we’d just put Eudora in Norton’s Advocate.

Pros – The Frontier XT would be the last car seat we’d ever have to buy for Norton.  It lasts for nine years, which would put him at eleven when the seat expires.  I also don’t think that he’ll be able to ride in the Advocate until he reaches 65 pounds.  (Note: while the Britax Advocate is rated up to 70 pounds in the US, Canadian laws and standards are different.  Here, it’s the Britax Advocate CS 65.)  I expect him to hit the height limit long before he hits the weight limit.

Cons – How would Norton feel about Eudora ending up with his old seat?  Would he be jealous over it, or would he pitch a royal fit because it’s “his”?

2.) Stick with what we know

Choosing a Convertible Car Seat – Decisions, Decisions (Motherhood Looms)I already know that I love the Britax Advocate.  That seat is like a tank.  Granted, it weighs about a billion pounds (okay, really, it’s more like 22 pounds, but the point is, it’s no light and flimsy thing), so I’m not inclined to move it from car to car, but we’re a one car family anyway.  At the end of the day, I know that the Advocate is a great seat.

Pros – That seat has better lumbar support than the driver’s seat in my van.  In fits awesome to rear facing.  And it would be strictly Eudora’s, so we wouldn’t have to put up with Norton feeling slighted because Eudora is using his old seat.

Cons – It’s expensive.  Really expensive.  We’ll eventually have to move up to booster seats for both kids anyway.

3.) Go for different

Choosing a Convertible Car Seat – Decisions, Decisions (Motherhood Looms)Everyone I know that has the Diono Radian RXT (formerly known as the Sunshine Radian XT) loves it.  It would be the last car seat that I ever buy for Eudora, as it’s valid for nine years.

Pros – It’s a highly regarded seat by everyone except for Consumer Reports.  It’s reasonably priced for something that she’ll use until she’s outgrown a seat.  It has a weight range for up to 120 pounds.  It’s a narrower seat, but still quite safe.

Cons – I’ll still have to get Norton a booster seat eventually.  And I have to admit, I do feel exceptionally secure with putting my child in that huge, hulking behemoth of an Advocate.

Honestly?  I’m thinking now that I’ve talked myself into either the Radian or the Frontier… but I’m still not 100% for sure on which one will serve us best.  Which would you get?

Update: Ultimately, I did go with the Frontier, and I’m happy with that decision.

Wordless Wednesday – Christmas Cuties

Norton opens gifts

This was the first time that Norton actually opened presents. He was mad at me at first, but once he realized that there were toys to be found, he got much more interested in tearing off the paper.

Eudora

Eudora in her pretty red dress.

Eudora and Norton checking out Eudora's My Pal Violet

Eudora and Norton checking out Eudora’s My Pal Violet

 

Vtech Baby’s Learning Laptop – Sturdy and Durable

For Norton’s first Christmas, we went a bit overboard on buying presents.  Granted, my family tradition is excess, so it’s not surprising.  We still have Norton’s toys from that first Christmas.  Some he still plays with, others he’s outgrown and have been passed on to Eudora.  Then there are those that they “share.”  The Vtech Baby’s Learning Laptop is one that they “share.” [Read more…]

Infant Mobility – We Have Crawling!

Infant Mobility - We Have Crawling!Watching the development of infant mobility is such an awesome thing.  It starts out with rolling over.  Next we’re thrilled by an infant milestone that involves being still: sitting.  The final frontier of infant mobility is one that represents a need to baby proof things that you’d never dreamed of: crawling.  It’s the last milestone that is truly a baby milestone before our babies become toddlers.

Eudora has hit that last milestone.  At eight months old, she is the terror of the floor.  No one’s toes are safe as she roams the sea of carpet.

On the bright side, though, she seldom sneaks up on you when she’s truly excited to go.  She laughs and giggles and makes so much noise that you can hear her long before you see her… or feel her drool on your feet.

As much as we delight in watching Eudora get around, the reactions from the rest of the family have been mixed.  T’akaya the Brilliant Border Collie is unperturbed by this development.  She’s already been there, done that with Norton.  Winston the Wonder Chihuahua isn’t to thrilled; he has to chase her down to lick her face.  Norton is definitely not a fan.  Now that Eudora can get around, it takes more effort for him to take toys away from her.  Moving it just out of her reach is no longer an option.  Now he has to take it away from her multiple times as she chases after it.

It’s wonderful.  I love watching her explore the world around her.  It helps that the house was already somewhat childproofed from when Norton started developing his own infant mobility skills.

What was your favorite part of having a newly mobile baby?

Together – Mostly Wordless Wednesday

It’s not too often that I can get Norton and Eudora in the same shot.  It’s even more rare that I can get them in the same shot short of playing nicely together.  Here they are playing on the LeapFrog Learn & Groove Musical Table.  (Wearing Rumparooz pocket diapers just adds to the cuteness.)

together-2

Where to buy Rumparooz – Diaper Junction (US/Canada), Lagoon Baby (Canada), Kelly’s Closet (US),  Nicki’s Diapers (US/Canada), Cloth Diaper Addicts Amazon Shoppe (US)

Being a Good Mom Doesn’t Mean “More Stuff”

Every now and again, I read something about “simplicity parenting.”  When I read it, it seems like such a remarkably wonderful parenting style that I’d love to accomplish.  Abandoning the idea of having the latest and greatest toddler toys for Norton just seems like an absolutely amazing idea.  Divorcing the concept of “more stuff” = “being a good mom” as we start gearing up for the holidays seems amazing and foreign.

Still, though, as much as I can pile on the toys and things for Norton, there’s one thing that I absolutely cannot buy.  And, really, it’s the one thing that I should be focusing on.  I cannot buy him my time and attention.  Really, Norton seems to get the most enjoyment out of us doing stuff together that doesn’t cost a dime.  It costs nothing for us to dance to music.  It costs nothing to sing our own version of Elmo’s World.  (Replace “Elmo” with kid’s name; replace “goldfish” and “crayon” with kid’s favorite things.  We use “loves his mommy… and Pillow, too.”)  When he leads me into singing Elmo’s World, I know that I’m being a good mom by how happy he is.

With Eudora, her needs are simpler since she’s smaller.  Sitting down and playing with her on the floor or cheering her on when she crawls to me are the things that excite her the most.  The smile that lights up her entire tiny face when I correctly interpret what she wants does it, too.

As I get caught up in the “must buy ALL THE TOYS” rush of the holiday season, I really do need to just remember that my kids don’t think that stuff makes me a good mom.  It’s doing things with them that does the trick.

What do you think is part of being a good mom?

Heirloom Christmas Gifts – Royal Doulton Bunnykins

Heirloom Christmas Gifts - Royal Doulton Bunnykins (Motherhood Looms)I love heirloom Christmas gifts.  They’re always a special thing that is treasured, cared for, and passed on to later generations.  There’s one in particular that I’ve got my eye on for Eudora.  I’m thinking that baby’s first Christmas is a perfect occasion to get her a Royal Doulton Bunnykins china set.  There’s a reason for the Royal Doulton Bunnykins being our place setting of choice: my husband had a set of Royal Doulton Bunnykins.  The bowl with his set was actually his father’s, and the rest of the place settings were added for my husband.  Now that set is Norton’s.

Since that’s already been established as one of our family’s traditional heirloom Christmas gifts, getting one for Eudora is kind of a necessity.  Granted, hers will not be as old as her brother’s, but it will still be something lovely for Eudora to pass on to her first born child.

I’m not sure what it is about the Royal Doulton Bunnykins sets that make them such treasures.  Is it the variety of patterns?  Or the way that each picture pattern tells a story?  One thing that is always consistent, though, is the trail of running bunnies around the edge of the dishes.  Granted, there are some differences in the Royal Doulton Bunnykins dishes that are produced now versus when my father-in-law and my husband’s dishes were made.  Now they are made in Indonesia instead of England.  Now the images are appliquéd instead of hand painted.

Still, though, I’m determined to make sure that my daughter has a Bunnykins set of her own.  Maybe we’ll buy a vintage one at the next antique fair in town.

Do you have traditional heirloom Christmas gifts in your family?  What is it that you like to pass on?

Flower Child – Wordless Wednesday

I love that Wordless Wednesday gives me the chance to show off my babies. 🙂

My beautiful Eudora [Read more…]

Sibling Cuteness – Wordless Wednesday w/ Linky

This was the first time ever that I had been able to get a picture of Norton and Eudora together.  Generally, the sibling cuteness happens when I don’t have a camera at the ready!

Wordless Wednesday

They sort of looked in the same direction…

Wordless Wednesday

My beautiful baby girl in her beeutiful dress

 




Infant Behavior – Entering the Age of “No”

Getting into things is normal infant behavior

Getting into things is normal infant behavior – But she’s really cute, so that makes up for a lot!

It’s happened.  Eudora is growing up.  Her infant behavior is getting more complex.  She’s learning to crawl and explore… and she’s learning to get into things.  Some of the things that she likes are the same things that Norton loved.

Both of them love anything to do with my laptop.  Eudora wants to pull out the power cable, or she’ll lunge forward to try to type when she’s sitting in my lap.  Other times, she’ll slide my laptop desk away.  (It’s just a little portable table that I keep in the living room.  Nothing heavy duty.)

Today, I told her “no” for the very first time as I took something away from her.  She cried.

Of course, I understand that this is age appropriate infant behavior.  She’s supposed to object to having things taken away.  Up until this point, though, I’ve been able to give her something else and she’s been fine.  Of course, up until this point, the only thing that I’ve had to take away was a dryer sheet that she picked up when I was folding laundry on the living room floor.  My laptop is far more exciting, I guess, than a dryer sheet.

Now that she’s starting to roam around the house, her little fingers will invariably pick up things that I’d rather they not find.  No matter how well I think I’ve childproofed, there will always be something.  Maybe it will be one of Norton’s treasured toys (he already freaked out when she was chewing on Pillow).  Maybe it will be laundry.  Either way, the world is filled with appetizing things for her to chew on that don’t belong in her mouth.

On the bright side, she’s got such a sunny disposition that she doesn’t stay upset for long.  That makes it a little easier to cope with the less pleasant aspects of infant behavior.

Have your children ever found a forbidden object particularly fascinating?  What was it?