Tag Archives: car seats

Why Car Seats Might Be One of the Worst Things for Kids’ Health

I absolutely hate removing my car seat from its rightful spot in the back of the car, mostly because it’s an endeavor that that usually leaves me sweating and exasperated enough to have to dial for back-up to get it back into the car correctly. I also hate it because it’s confirmation that, yes, my car seat is just as nasty, if not more so, than I had imagined.

And it’s not like I don’t try to keep it as clean as possible. I brush my kid’s car seat free from crumbs and other debris nearly every time we use it. And about once I week I probably take a rag to it to try to rub out obvious stains. But it’s when I actually get the time to do a deep clean that I start to really get grossed out. Because for as much as moms focus onĀ  health and cleanliness for our babies, spending small fortunes on products like hand sanitizer, antibacterial wipes, and immune boosting vitamins, the car seats we put our kids in day in, day out are crawling with germs.

Or at least I know mine is.

My first step in de-grubbing the car seat is always just to get the darn seat out of the car, which comes with its requisite huffing, puffing and pushing, pulling to get it free. Immediately, I remove the cover and hose it down while aggressively going at the crumbs smooshed into every corner and crevice with a hand-held scrubber brush. (Sometimes I also just throw it in the washer.)

Once the cover is hanging up drying somewhere, I move on to the actual seat. It also gets the hose and a soapy water rubdown. I’ve learned that I need to actually flip the seat upside down and spray the bottom as well to be sure it gets really clean. Why? Because sometimes stuff like this is hanging out under the seat:

Ewwwwwww!

Yes, that is a Wheat Thin stuck to some gunk that probably was milk at some point. I still don’t understand how this stuff managed to harden into a solid and adhere itself to the underside of the seat, but it did.

Next, I move on to cleaning up the back seat. Also disturbing:

Yuck!

This stuff actually required scrubbing to remove it. But it’s curious to me how much stuff ends up under the seat given how much seems to end up either in baby’s belly or all down the front of him.

And of course the door:

Not so yummy

It sort of freaks me out when I think about how many germs the typical coffee cup contains, you know, the ones that kind of hang out in people’s cubicles never getting a truly thorough washing. So, when I see this, my inner germ-a-phobe comes rushing to the surface. Can this really be healthy for our kids?

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Filed under babies, baby travel, car seats, cleaning, daily life, health, hygiene, transportation, travel

Where Sleeping Dogs Lie

As a mommy, you learn to pick your battles. However, for me, between the baby and the puppy, I’m pretty sure I’m losing every one that I can even muster up the energy to try and fight.

Case in point was my trip this morning to the doggy dentist. Yes, that’s right, I’ve got a knack for picking animals that end up needing expensive, specialist care. My six-month-old puppy now has something close to veneers on four of his front teeth.

Incidentally, I was informed this morning by a colleague that February was Pet Dental Month. Whoops, I guess I missed that and any possible discount that doggy dentists in my area might be offering.

At any rate, the appointment was for 8:30am–prime rush hour for D.C. And I was totally late getting out the door.

I attribute my inability to get anywhere on time these days to events similar to the ones I found myself dealing with this morning. First, baby woke up later than usual. And for some reason, I always feel I can’t leave the house without baby getting something in his belly, which always takes longer than I think it’s going to take. Then the cleaning lady, who I adore, showed up and wanted to dote on baby for a few minutes. (I may or may not have ripped him out of her arms as I ran out the door.) When I get baby and dog out to the car, I realize that my wonderful hubby never secured the dog barrier or the spare tire floating around in the back of the truck, so I had to try and work minute magic on some ratchet straps to fit the dog in. (And I’m not so good with the ratchet straps, I have to admit.) Then there was the pit stop at the other car to grab the umbrella stroller that I conveniently forgot to bring into the house the night before. Did I mention the construction happening on and all around my street?

At any rate, I’m on the road (finally) and just as I start to think, “Gee, I might make the appointment,” traffic comes to a screeching halt. Literally. The dog pretty much goes flying into the dog barrier thing that’s supposed to sequester him in the back of the truck so he doesn’t clobber the baby; it collapses down on him. As I look in the rear view mirror, all I see is a giant nose and two giant paws hanging over the backseat.

Crap.

Next thing I hear is baby making some mildly irritated noises. I crane my neck around to find this:

big dog + small baby = hysterical mommy

The 50+ lb dog is literally curled up on top of the baby in his car seat. I start yelling for him to get off and trying to wildly reach around to grab him by his collar and yank him off the baby. My monkey arms prove to be too short. Out of the corner of my eye, I see the dog slinking down further into the baby seat, further out of my frantic reach.

Now, I’m in bumper to bumper traffic, there’s no good place to pull off, and I’m nearly losing it on the dog when I get a small moment of clarity: The baby’s not crying and the dog isn’t moving. In fact, when I swivel my head around again, I see baby taking his fingers and poking the dog in the nose and giggling to himself. I’m the one who’s flipping out for apparently no reason.

So, I say screw it (or something like it) and keep on trucking. I guess that’s how we roll these days.

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