Holy freakin’ heart attack!

February 24, 2008

So, we’re at Babies-r-Us because it is the last day our 15% off coupons are good, and we’re getting carseats for The Boy now since, well, we have the coupon. We went with Britax, the known quantity, over the Maxi-Cosi, the unknown… unless someone can convince me otherwise.

But anyway, that’s not the point. The point is, never take your wife’s Prius when you’ve got the whole family and want to purchase and take home two infant car seats.

No, wait, that’s not the point, either (though it is a good point!).

So, the kids are in their respective shopping carts and Ms. Kaz is watching me as I try to figure out how we are going to fit these car seats, the kids, and us into the Prius. I figure one will have to go in the front seat, so I take it out, turn around and…

“Where’s our daughter* ?” I asked Ms. Kaz. [*obviously, I used her real name here]

We both look around. “I don’t know!”

“Holy shit!” (in my head). We both look around. “Sweetie* ??!!?” I yell, panic setting in. [*again, see above]

After a few seconds, which felt like minutes, Ms. Kaz points across the row of the parking lot. This project at work is killing me, but I can honestly say I’ve never felt more panicked in my life than I did right before we found her.

She was just sitting there, in the cart, eating her lollipop, thinking nothing of just rolling 15+ feet in the parking lot. I turn the wheels when I stop those things, too, just so this doesn’t happen. Maybe I bumped the cart or something.

Anyhow, thank god she’s safe. We’re reinforced with her that she really should say something next time she starts rolling away.

Oh, and it isn’t fun riding between two car seats in the back seat of a Prius.


Green to Grow Bottles

November 28, 2007

Oh, hey, did I mention we got our http://www.greentogrow.com/ a couple weeks ago? I mentioned them originally here. You know, the Bisphenol-A and Phthalate free ones?

Well, we used them fairly extensively for the first time on our trip back home for Thanksgiving. I like ’em. There are, like with everything, good and bad point about them, which I will attempt to outline here:

Good:

  • Plastic. And not the bad plastic. We like glass, but to put the glass in a diaper bag is not something we like to do.
  • 5 ounce size. The glass we have are 4 oz. Believe me, the extra ounce comes in handy. Especially when travelling. We also have some Born Free Bottles, but they only come in sizes which are way too big right now.
  • They are kind of cool looking. Yeah, I know – silly, but a plus, none the less.

Not-so-Good:

  • As I mentioned before, they are a bit pricier than glass. Maybe that will change if more people buy them.
  • The stuff printed on the bottle scratches easily. We didn’t have this problem with the Avent plastic bottles we used with my daughter. And we used those for years. It isn’t really that big a deal if the cute cartoon fruit guy on the front gets scratched. But, if we lose the measurement stuff on the back… that won’t be quite so okay.

Overall, we’re happy with them. Will we buy more? Probably not. We use glass in the house, and three is sufficient for most travelling. Maybe when we move up to a bigger size for him, but then again, we already have the Born Free in the bigger size…


Giving Thanks

November 26, 2007

Hope everyone had a good Thanksgiving. Sorry for the late wishes. Especially sorry to our Canadian readers, to whom this greeting is especially late.

Our Thanksgiving was, well… a lot of driving. And the first time with two kids instead of one.

We weren’t sure how it was going to go. In the past, one of us sat in the back seat next to my daughter. This allowed us to interact with her – playing, reading, singing. This time, with both kids in the back seat and both of us up front, we weren’t sure how either kid would react and how we would deal with it if they needed attention. I set up the third row seat, just in case. It was piled up with stuff, but it could be moved.

Oh yeah, the stuff – two kids requires more stuff. And a baby requires more stuff than a 3-year-old. Fortunately, we had the car-top carrier from my last car in the garage.

We wound up not needing the third row. This time. Both kids did great. This time. The baby slept just about all of the trip. This time.

Ms. Kaz is still worried. That’s why I am researching Toyota Highlander Hybirds and Toyota Siennas (Ms. Kaz’s suggestion).

Yeah, I’ve got a Highlander Hybrid now, but the 2008 has a 2nd row center console which can be removed, creating a bit of a pass-through… sort of like a minivan. The third row seating is a little more spacious, as well. And the Sienna? Well, it is a mini-van, and offers all a mini-van has to offer to a family of four.

The thought is — and if anyone has any knowledge or advice on carseats in third row seating, it is greatly appreciated — we could put one carseat in the second row, and on in the third, and we could move about, as needed, to offer attention.

I think Thanksgiving travel went well enough that we are going to see how Christmas goes with the car we have.

Oh, and I asked my daughter, at the dinner table, what she was thankful for. I had high hopes – a week or so before, we had been watching the Little Match Girl, and she was telling me things like, “We’re lucky to have a home,” and, “We’re luck to have a family.” I was hoping everyone could hear some of these gems.

Her response? “I’m thankful for my toys”.

Oh, well. Maybe next year. Now, she and I have to go back to browsing through toy catalogs.


Bedroom Antics

November 20, 2007

Ms. Kaz asked me the same question every day for a week and a half, “Did those monitors arrive yet?”

My son is a grunter. And a snorter. And a shuffler. Especially when he sleeps.

Ms. Kaz has been having sleep difficulties beyond the ones that go with getting up in the middle of the night for feeding, and the grunting, snorting and shuffling that came after that middle of the night feeding often drove her to the daybed to try and sleep.

Of course, once the monitors arrived, we always found excuses – “Just one more day”, “Tomorrow would work better” – to keep him in our room.

Even our daughter began to ask, “Did he sleep in his own room last night?”

Two nights ago, Ms. Kaz asked again about moving him to his own room. Finally, I was ready to take the plunge. “I feel kind of guilty,” Ms. Kaz told me. “We’ve got to do it before he know the difference,” I reasoned, with myself as much as with her, “otherwise, he’ll know the difference.. and then we’ll have more difficulty.”

Besides, we needed to test the new monitors.

So, two night ago, the boy began sleeping in his own room. The next morning, Ms. Kaz awoke to tell me, “I kind of missed him, you know?”

And I told her I kind of did. As much as it keeps you awake, you grow used to the snorting and grunting and shuffling. At least you know he’s there. And still okay.

“Besides,” I told her, “you were only in the room for half the night, anyhow…”

So… two nights, and so far, so good.

*knock on wood*

ps – the Philips DECT monitors work great, but are a little freaky, in that you get used to hearing the static coming from a monitor, and these are so darned quiet until the baby makes a noise. Fortunately, we can set the sensitivity to pick up cries, but not grunts and shuffles and snorts. And when he does cry..? It is just like he’s in the room with us.


A variety of things

November 5, 2007

Lots of stuff going on, but little time to talk about them…

  • We gotta move this boy out of our room. He’s in a bassinet now, and half the night he shuffles and grunts and we just gotta get him out of here. That being said, we’ve gone with the cadillac of monitors – the Philips SCD 590. Pricey, yes, but it is very feature-laden, and Thingamababy gave it a great review. This is a newer model – sacrificing temperature readout for a second receiver.  I look forward to reviewing it here… in a few days.
  • We went with the Eco-friendly birth announcements at FineMoments. Again, a bit pricey, but they seem really nice. We’ll let you know how we like ’em.
  • Toys-R-Us has announced a recall of their Elite Operations toys due to an unsafe lead content. No injuries have been reported, but they recommend you remove the toys from your home and return them to your local Toys-R-Us for a refund. Toys-R-Us recalled their army guys — doesn’t seem to be that difficult, now, does it?
  •  The WeeGo Bottles availability date is now “early November” … and it appears they are one step closer to their on-line store.
  • Speaking of which, the Tyler Morning Telegraph (TX) quoted me in their on-line edition here, in an article titled “Are Plastics Hazardous for Babies?” They didn’t ask, but I don’t mind (although a link to the blog would have been nice!). My section is followed up by a quote from a Dr. Cherry mentioning choosing between the risk of chemicals and the risk of cuts from glass bottles. Ms. Kaz and I made a conscious decision not to give our son broken glass bottles to play with… Seriously, though, we don’t have this concern now because (a) he’s too young to hold the bottle, and thus throw the bottle, himself, and (b) we have hardwood floors, which I am sure would cushion a falling bottle enough to at least avoid breakage.

Sorry about another “quickies” post. I hope to have something more substantial soon!


Phil & Ted’s Sport … oh, and transitional issues

October 19, 2007

Our Phil & Ted’s sport stroller arrived yesterday.

The doubles kit, however, has not arrived yet. But more on that later.

The first thing I have to say about the Phil and Ted’s is this: the assembly instructions could use a little clarification. There are not a lot of steps to assembling this stroller. Often times, however, I had difficulty figuring out what they were asking me to do. Oh, they had pictures, but they were small. And they used a dark colored stroller in the example. They could have used a lighter colored stroller so the black pieces stand out more. Heck, they could have used orange — that’s what we bought — it would have made my life a lot easier.

I’m still not sure I have the hang of (a) folding or (b) converting from a baby stroller to a toddler stroller.

But, to be fair, I’ve only played with it for a couple hours.

And besides, this thing is a dream to push. After years of hard rubber tires on the Maclaren, these inflated tires of the Phil & Ted’s make this an awesomely smooth ride. My daughter seemed to love it, as well.

Ah, yes, my daughter’s ride in the Phil & Ted’s… Read the rest of this entry »


Big Girl Room: Part IV – Via Toy Box

September 26, 2007

Via Toy BoxI loved these when I first saw them… uhm… on some blog somewhere. Probably on Daddytypes. I knew I had to find an excuse a justifiable reason to have these in our home.

I mentioned them very briefly before, but Via Toy Boxes are very nice quality, configurable storage options for, well, I guess not just for kids necessarily, but they definitely seem targeted to kids.

Basically, you are purchasing each individual box. You get your choice of shape (or door) and color for the front. The rest of the box can we either natural or white. Each side and top and bottom of the box has 4 holes in it for attaching boxes together (with supplied hardware).

This allows you to configure them any way you want. With the space we had, we went 2 wide by 3 tall (click photo for larger version). But, you can do whatever you like (although bases and tops are only available for certain widths).

To help you, Via will send you a kit with cutouts for the boxes, shapes and colors. You can cut these out and plan your configuration. There are also ideas and pre-configured (but not pre-assembled) options on the website.

Now.. how easy are they to put together?

Read the rest of this entry »