Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Registries and Baby Gear

You would not believe how many people I know that are pregnant.  It's. In. Sane.  But really exciting!  A lot of those people are having their first child. 

And generally, most of them are swimming in the sea of trying to get a baby registry together. 

I remember how exciting it was to do our registry, but I also remember how crazy it was to try to figure out what we needed to put on there and what we could leave off.  Also, later, there were several things that I wish someone would have told me to forget completely.

So, here's the beginning of my tips.  I'll be continuing this for about a week, once a day, until I get all my tips out there.  (Because trying to get it all in one entry?  WHO AM I KIDDING?!)

Ahem.  Here we go:

1.  Every baby needs a carseat.  Consider this a true MUST-HAVE on your registry.  But there's more variety out there than not.  First you have to consider whether you want a convertible car seat that can go from the time the baby is born until they're well into their toddler years, a bucket car  seat that will serve you well from birth until close to one, or both. 

Convertible Car Seat Pros
*  You only have to buy one carseat for the duration of your child's early years.  (Obviously, there are some exceptions... a second car, an exceptionally tall and skinny or short and round child, etc.).
*  They're bigger and generally sturdier than a traditional bucket.

Convertible Car Seat Cons
*  You have to transport a sleeping baby out of the carseat into the stroller, instead of taking the whole carseat.
*  They're generally much bigger than a bucket seat, so for smaller cars, it can seem a bit daunting to have your tiny baby swallowed by a huge seat.  (Though the ones that are made for use from birth are absolutely safe for newborns). 

Bucket Car Seat Pros
*  It's awesome to be able to transport a delicately sleeping baby into the house without disrupting a nap.
*  The bucket is a nice place for a baby to sit that is much less germy than a shopping cart, etc.
*  They're great for babies with reflux to nap in because they allow them to be upright.  

Bucket Car Seat Cons
*  They are ridiculously heavy and cumbersome.  And that only gets worse as your baby grows.
*  Your child is likely to outgrow the seat before they turn one, which forces you to buy another seat that can face backwards AND forwards that is the right size. 
*  The convenience of the seat often takes away from time where you could be holding your baby. 

My opinion?
I like the option of having the bucket seat along with the convertible.  Although I hate the bucket seat's cumbersome and ridiculously heavy presence at times, I do love that C has a safe place to sit at the grocery store and that when she falls asleep in the car, I don't have to disturb her when we reach our destination.  I'm careful to take her out as often as she wishes when we're out and generally will wear her at that point.  But I love having the option. 

Tomorrow I'll chat a bit about strollers.  We bucked the trend of traditional travel systems and I would never go back.  Tune in tomorrow for the why.  :)


  1. Okay, seriously, I just read the first line as, "You would not believe how many people know that I am pregnant."

    I don't know what my brain was thinking, but I freaked out for a moment and once I calmed down, read it again.

    Don't scare me like that!

    ---I like the carrier (bucket seat) too. At a young age, it is so much easier for transport. Now, the convertible carseat is the way to go!

  2. I'm with you on the "bucket" too...however, I don't know if we produce odd shaped babies or what, but my first didn't even come close to the height/weight limitations and was busting out of that thing by 8 months...and #2 is 4 months (and QUITE bigger than #1, lol) and is close to being out of it too...sheesh!

    I look forward to strollers...we went against the norm too :)

  3. I loved the bucket seat when E was little but I wimped out on carrying her in it after a while cause it got to be SO darn heavy that I couldn't carry it without it knocking into my leg with every step. However, I was lucky that she never outgrew it-she was still within the weight limit at 13months when we finally got the convertible seat so if you have a small kid, you can get your money's worth :-)

  4. I just wanted to add that we found a bucket seat that was good for a child up to 30 lbs! We actually returned the one we bought- that was only good up to 23 lbs and bought the other one.

    Also, if you plan on having more than one kid, you will need to have both the bucket and the convertible.

    Just my thoughts.

  5. Christopher outgrew his bucket seat at four months. I would definitely check for the maximum length before buying one if I had to do it over.

    The hardest part was that, at four months, he wasn't yet sitting up on his own. We ended up keeping the bucket car seat in the trunk to use in restaurants and the grocery store until he could sit in a cart or a high chair.

  6. Thank you for this post. As a mom who is expecting her first, it is exhausting trying to find the "perfect" stuff. After reading LOTS of Amazon reviews etc. I decided on the Graco SafeSeat. It does go to 30 pounds. We also live in Alaska and don't own a garage so having a seat that could come in and warm up was important to us. I do like that you pointed out that a lot of times car seats replace holding and carrying a baby. I really don't want that! It's one of my pet peeves that babies seem to spend a lot of time in their carseat during church, etc. Of course, when I'm a mom, I might cave into the "if it ain't broke, don't fix it" mentality of leaving a baby in a car seat as long as they are happy. However, I did read recently that long amounts of time in a car seat leads to slow oxygen deprevation, for whatever reason. Babies' blood has been tested after 30 and 45 minutes to find that even those short times can begin to lessen the oxygen found in their blood. Yikes!

    I am REALLY looking forward to the stroller post. I don't even know where to begin on that one, but I do know that (maybe just because I'm contrary?) I REALLY don't want a combo system. I can't wait to hear your recommendations!

  7. I guess I'm the minority ;-) I HATED the bucket seat and Ash hated being carried around in it. I used it at the food store a few times, which she would tolerate for short periods, until strangers started trying to touch her in the midst of flu season. I tossed her in the Bjorn or sling at that point and never looked back. I'm debating if it's worth even washing the cover and having it ready this time! I think I'll focus on clothes, sheets, towels,and the slings ;-) I'll be excited to read your stroller post. I'm not sure we're going to stick with the travel system stroller, though I may just treat myself to a new sling instead....

  8. We have a bucket seat and a GIANT baby (almost 14 pounds, just turned 3 months old). I have a feeling it will only last us another month or maybe two, since it's only good to 22 pounds, and I think she'll outgrow the length.

    We got a good deal on it, though, and it was SUPER helpful at first - she had reflux and wouldn't sleep for long if she was flat in the crib; so she slept in the carseat every night until 2 months, when we switched her to the crib. I also like that we have a cover for it so I don't have to bundle her up when we go out to the car. I'll probably have to buy a snowsuit or something when we switch to a convertible seat.

  9. Most babies outgrow most car seats (not just the infant buckets) by height before they outgrow them by weight. (And the seat is NOT outgrown when their legs extend farther than the edge of the seat)

    The weight on car seats is absolute. They are tested with a car seat dummy of a particular poundage. But the height is "average" -- what matters more is the torso height of the child. A Rear-facing seat is outgrown when the head is within one inch of the top of the seat (so the seat can still protect them in an accident)

    A rear-facing seat often appears to be outgrown by height before it actually does. A thread on (a great resource on car seats!) has pictures showing how to measure:

    This is why when looking at how long a car seat will last, you need to look at more than just the poundage it takes. A higher poundage when there is no difference in height room in the car seat to grow most likely means the car seat will not last any longer for most babies.


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...