Oh, goodness. I'm THAT mom. But here we go. Let's just start this thing off by saying that I do NOT judge you for the way you do things, but I'm just simply here to help pass along some facts and show you how we do it. Also, not saying my way is the best way. Because Lord knows I had no clue what I was doing until I had help! Jessi and I were hit by another car when she was only 5 months old. My kids safety is not something I take lightly. I may let them eat dirt and lick a bathroom floor, but you better believe they will be as safe as they can be in my swagger wagon! (Blah, I'm even MORE of that mom.)
In honor of Child Passenger Safety Week, I want to pass along some things I've learned and some things I do to keep my tiny humans safe! The #1 thing I hear from moms about carseats is "Wow, I had no idea", so I figured I should do my part and tell what I've learned!
BASIC CARSEAT SAFETY
Chest Clip - Ummmm, it's called a chest clip for a reason. It's as easy as that. Make sure that thing stays on their chest. I know it may seem silly, but in an accident your child could be thrown from their seat if they are not in properly. So take the extra second to make sure!
Rear Facing - I was heartbroken when 2 days before Jessi's first birthday new guidelines came out recommending to rear face until 2 years. I wanted to turn her around SO BAD. It's totally your call when you turn them, but after reading the facts it changed my mind a lot. I love this post from Tie A Little Ribbon, she's my carseat go to person!
No Jackets - Yes, it's annoying in the winter and it gets cold. But when they have a puffy, thick coat on...they just aren't strapped in properly. A lot of times I will put them in layers so they aren't cold in the car and then put jackets on when we reach our destination.
Proper Install & Fit - You can go places to get your seat checked. We took ours to the local police station to have it installed and a really sweet lady taught us all about installing carseats and knowing what to make sure of. Learn the rules, and don't put them in a loose seat with loose straps!
There are many other things I do to make sure they are in their seats safe, but those are my key factors. I always buckle them in and before I pull out I turn to make sure my 2 year old is STILL buckled in correctly. They are the tough ones because they like to "do it themselves" but we work with Jessi on staying safe and she's great about knowing where the chest clip belongs!
Oh, and a big question from moms is where is the best place to put the carseat in the car, especially with multiple kids? The lovely Krystal from Tie A Little Ribbon just wrote a post about this that is so helpful! What we do is have Zoey (13 months) on the driver side rear facing, and Jessi (2.5 years) is in the middle forward facing. With a single child, the middle of the car is best, but if you're like me and multiplying like bunnies, you do what you gotta do! My rear facing kiddo is safest, so I put her on the drivers side (in my opinion that is the more protected side), and my forward facing kid in the middle. I have a minivan so I have those options, but you do what you can! When our baby arrives, Jessi will go in the back, both rear facing younger ones will be on the front row.
I really want to encourage you to be educated and make the best choices for your family! I still have a LOT to learn but I try to make every effort to keep those kiddos safe. They are just way too cute not to!