Taking Infant Buckets Out Of Car- EDITED FIRST POST, PLEASE READ - Mothering Forums

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Old 03-05-2009, 04:31 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Every day I see people carrying their infants in their car seat buckets. I see these car seats in shopping carts, overturned restaurant high chairs, and sitting on the floor. I do. not. understand. this.

Is this common everywhere or just in my geographical area?

Wasn't there just recently a widely publicized study saying that infants should not spend more time than absolutely necessary in bucket seats and that they should never be used outside of the car?

I know that the AAP isn't our collective favorite for parenting advice but they have come out strongly against buckets in shopping carts: one article here.

I see people flipping restaurant style high chairs upside down and plopping the bucket seat on top of that. Really??? That is so obviously unsafe...

Why not just buy a sling? Ring slings and pouches are quite easy to use.

I just don't get it... it is a CAR seat. Meant to restrain a baby in the CAR.

:


ETA: Okay, I'd like to say here that I am not being judgmental here. I had to go to toys r us the other day and saw 3 different babies in buckets clipped into the toddler seat on the cart even though there was a sign that said not to. All three were screaming bloody murder. THEN while I was still there, I saw a preschooler grab onto their parents cart, while it was holding the baby seat, and the weight FLIPPED THE CART. Traumatizing, much?!?!

I saw the highchair thing flip with a kid in it with the slightest accidental brush from a waitress a month or so ago. It was horrible. AND I had heard a DIFFERENT waitress ask the family to not use the high chair in that way only 5 minutes prior. I wanted to never eat out again.

And every time I go to the WIC office I see babies sitting in buckets SCREAMING their heads off and being completely ignored. This was not a random babywearing plug and me being holier than thou. I am NOT like that. If you use your bucket seat correctly, whatever, I just think that the amount of suffering that I personally see on a daily basis sucks. If your kid is happy than fine but I'm talking about unhappy babies in dangerous situations here. Sorry for the misunderstanding.
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Old 03-05-2009, 04:53 AM
 
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I know what you mean. I've only seen the highchair upside down thing once & was shocked. I cringe when I see them on shopping carts. I have taken it in when the weather was bad or baby was asleep, but he goes in the basket not on top. I've also taken it in restaurants so he has a place to sit part time. I'm a chubby momma so babywearing in a booth doesn't work out so well.

It seems like there are just so mant contraptions to snap a carseat on. There is that SweetPeace thing (aka neglect-o-matic in many cases, used in moderation isn't so bad), swing frames & stroller frames. Some things are fine in moderation, but they are often over used. So many babies go from car to stroller to car to upside down highchair to car to swing thingy. I see it a lot in IN & OH.
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Old 03-05-2009, 05:37 AM
 
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We live in the desert, and so I found I took the bucket out of the car a lot in the middle of the summer and middle of the winter. I didn't want to return my baby to a burning hot or freezing cold car seat, and it's not very practical to remove the baby from the seat and carry both inside the store separately. Our sling got a lot of use too, but there were times when the bucket made more sense.

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Old 03-05-2009, 05:59 AM
 
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No, it's everywhere. People even ask me why I don't have mine with me, or if they are with me keep asking if I am sure I don't want to bring it with us. I only take it out of the car if she is asleep and really needs to stay that way for a minute.

And as far as studies go, most people don't really care. They are going to do what they've seen and what's 'convenient'. Sad but true.

Oh, and the worst is when I see moms carrying it walking around with the handle on their inner elbow! Oww! How do they do this?!!? And not with just newborns either.
Some even call carseats baby carriers nowadays, btw.
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Old 03-05-2009, 07:51 AM
 
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If she was sleeping, and I just needed to get a couple things at the grocery store then absolutely I'll leave her sleeping in there. If I took her out to put in her mei tai or sling then she would *always* wake up and want to nurse.

I wasn't a fan of putting the car seat in the grocery cart seat, but I would put her in the cart itself.

I never woke up my sleeping baby, it was rare enough for her to be asleep when not attached to my boob that I took advantage of any slumber moments I could get!
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Old 03-05-2009, 08:14 AM
 
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For me a sleeping baby was not disturbed so I carried the bucket in with me all the time to the store, visiting, church etc. But if they where awake I would usually get them out and carry them (I only learned about slings after ds was born) unfortunatly he hated it so never used it.

I have never seen a mama in my area using a sling

 
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Old 03-05-2009, 11:30 AM
 
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Let me preface this by saying that MOST of the time my baby is worn in a wrap or getting held, or playing on the floor/tummy time. I do leave the seat in the car when we go places like church, gym, and music class, and just stick the baby in the wrap.

When running errands, I carry baby in the carseat a lot. If we go somewhere to eat, and I need to set him down for a minute (to wipe ds1's face, help him with something, etc.) I'd rather put him in the seat than on the floor or booth next to me. If he's sleeping I won't wake him up so he'll finish that nap in it, especially if I'm running errands. Most shopping carts only have one seat with a belt, so I'll put the infant seat in the basket and belt my toddler into the seat, so they're both restrained (it freaks me out to see toddlers unrestrained and jumping around in the basket part!). Putting the seat in the crook of my elbow gives me two free hands, one to hold ds1's hand, the other my purse. It hurts but it works to keep them both safe without destroying ds2's sleep patterns and leaving us both cranky, and without having to tailor every single errand around baby's naps.

Yes it is unsafe to flip over a highchair that isn't designed to do so. But some are. We usually get a booth and put the carrier in next to us.

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Old 03-05-2009, 12:07 PM
 
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For DS's first 3 1/2 months I took the bucket in and out of the car. It was cold and it was just easier. But he never spent more time than necessary in it. The kid wouldn't allow it. He demanded to be held and nursed all the time.

We didn't even have a bucket for DD. She was carried *everywhere*.

It's really not safe to have it on top of the grocery cart. It says so right in the manual. I imagine an overturned high chair wouldn't be safe either. I think the manual says not to set it on a raised surface. People just see everyone else doing it and assumes it's just what you are *supposed* to do.

All you can do is educate.
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Old 03-05-2009, 12:32 PM
 
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I rarely carried the bucket in anywhere when ds1 was little. By the time we were really running around it was nice out and it was easy to put him in the ring sling and carry him that way and I loved having him close to me.
I wear ds2 often too but it is really : and has been for much of his young life since he was born in Sept. I wear him ANY time I can but standing out in the cold trying to get him in the sling while the cold wind(Monday was a -4 wind chill) whips through the open van door freezing us all just doesn't make sense. Plus one of the saddest things to me is that "I can't breathe" thing babies do when it's really windy. He does much better if I put a blanket over the bucket and put him in the back of the cart. Then put him in the carrier if I need to after I am in the store. For quick trips though I leave him in there. Because it's too much to have the bucket, ds and ds2 in the carrier :
I do agree that most people don't know about babywearing and we should try to educate them because bwing is so convenient. But I think buckets can be useful - pain in the butt to carry but useful in moderation.

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Old 03-05-2009, 12:46 PM
 
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Originally Posted by tinyactsofcharity View Post
I see people flipping restaurant style high chairs upside down and plopping the bucket seat on top of that. Really??? That is so obviously unsafe...
Some of them are made to be flipped - I don't know if it works with all of them but some of them are made to be used as a high chair one way and a bucket holder the other way.

Reasons to leave the baby in the bucket - baby is sleeping... mom wants to eat a meal with hands/lap free (nothing wrong with this!!!)... mom doesn't like wearing baby... baby doesn't like being worn ... baby is happy where he/she is and picking him/her up is liable to start a cycle of cry/comfort/put down/cry/comfort/put down which doesn't go over well in a restaurant...

Baby wearing is not always mutually enjoyable for mom and baby, and having the baby in a car seat/carrier/bucket does not make an inferior parent. As long as everyone is happy and the baby isn't screaming and being ignored - hang the "experts."

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Old 03-05-2009, 12:59 PM
 
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I agree it totally depends on the baby and situation.

DD (now 2-1/2) HATED the bucket seat. So much so that we ditched it when she was 3 months old and went with a convertible (which she still hated and screamed most of her first year in the car no matter how short the trip ). She never fell asleep in the car as a baby...so she was always in a carrier when we went out and about to shop or eat or whatever.

DS (now 5) was happy in the seat, and would fall asleep sometimes...and I'd be damned if I was gonna wake a sleeping baby (because he did NOT transfer well and would wake up)...so if he was sleeping, I'd leave him in. Or if he was happily playing and it was a quick errand, I'd leave him in. Or, yeah, if we were going out to eat and I wanted both hands free, and it was before he was sitting well on his own so we couldn't put him in a highchair at the table...yep, I'd leave him in (we go out to eat like once every few months, at most) for as long as he was happy so that I didn't have to eat one handed, or play pass the baby the whole meal and eat in shifts. It didn't scar him, and didn't harm our attachment. He's about as happy and outgoing and social as they come, and definitely attached to me. Sometimes he was in the bucket, sometimes he was in a carrier. He was happy either way.

IMO there's a huge difference between leaving a kid in a car seat every day for hours on end and not interacting with them, and using it on occasion when it makes more sense than bringing the baby out, IF the baby is content to be in the seat and you're still interacting with them. I fondly remember many a conversation with DS in his bucket in the top of a shopping cart while walking through the grocery store or target (in both carts, the locking mechanism would latch onto the cart, I wonder why all carts don't do that?) - I'm short, so we were pretty much eye to eye and would just chat the whole time (OK, I would chat, and he would stare at me, and people would give me weird looks for having an ongoing conversation with a baby - but whatever. ).

I am a carrier and babywearing lover, but don't find the occasional use of a bucket offensive. In fact, there were times I wished DD would just stay in the flipping seat for me for 15 minutes instead of having to get her out of it and wear her for a brief shopping trip. There, I said it. You can have my membership card now. :

This is another one of those instances where IMO it's the *over*use/misuse (misuse IMO being the parent not interacting with the baby while in the bucket) of the gadget being problematic, not the container itself.

Heather, WAHM to DS (01/04)DD (06/06). Wed to DH(09/97)
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Old 03-05-2009, 01:03 PM
 
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My kids all loved their bucket seats when they were babies. They also love/loved strollers. Carrying a baby everywhere doesn't work for me. This may sound main stream to you, but it's good for babies to be able to be put down once in a while. Sitting in a restaurant trying to eat, going to the bathroom, doing laundry, helping my other kids, riding a bike with a baby attached to me. No thank you. Thanks for judging though.
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Old 03-05-2009, 01:16 PM
 
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Ugh, i do this!!! Somebody help me out. It's winter here in Jersey, there's snow on the ground, it's cold as hell. I've got a giant winter coat on, DD is in her carseat in normal clothes and a Bundle Me. I have a 2 door car. Am I supposed to take the carseat out, set it on the ground, take her out of it in the freezing cold and finagle her into the moby?

9 times out of 10 she's sound asleep in the carseat. It's so much easier to just carry the bucket and put it in the shopping cart, run my errands and then go back home. The whole taking her out in the cold thing has really got me concerned. Even if I have the moby on and get her in it successfully, it's hard to get her back out and I'd hate to have to do that in the cold as well! For her sake as well as for mine.

Maybe some pro babywearers can help me out? Would it be terrible to just get her into the store or wherever we're going in the bucket and then wear her around the store? I mean, that way I can get her back in the seat while inside. That might work... what do you guys DO??? TIA!!

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Old 03-05-2009, 01:29 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Baby_Cakes View Post
Maybe some pro babywearers can help me out? Would it be terrible to just get her into the store or wherever we're going in the bucket and then wear her around the store? I mean, that way I can get her back in the seat while inside. That might work... what do you guys DO??? TIA!!
That is what I do on the really cold days. I park near the carts put him in back and load ds1 in the front. Then if we are going to be in there a while I put him in the carrier in the store. But if it's a quick trip I don't feel bad about not wearing him.

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Old 03-05-2009, 01:31 PM
 
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Originally Posted by tinyactsofcharity View Post
I see people flipping restaurant style high chairs upside down and plopping the bucket seat on top of that. Really??? That is so obviously unsafe...

Why not just buy a sling? Ring slings and pouches are quite easy to use.

I just don't get it... it is a CAR seat. Meant to restrain a baby in the CAR.

:
Uh, most of the flipped restaraunt high chairs I have seen are made to be upside down for a bucket. I just don't get the outrage on that.

Regarding the sling. Its pouring down rain or freezing cold with 30mph winds. I am not going to stand there at the car with the door open and get the baby out of her seat and in a sling. I am going to throw a blanket over the baby and cover her up and get her out. Seat and all.

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Old 03-05-2009, 01:34 PM
 
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My kids all loved their bucket seats when they were babies. They also love/loved strollers. Carrying a baby everywhere doesn't work for me. This may sound main stream to you, but it's good for babies to be able to be put down once in a while. Sitting in a restaurant trying to eat, going to the bathroom, doing laundry, helping my other kids, riding a bike with a baby attached to me. No thank you. Thanks for judging though.
I have a bad back and my DD2 weighs over 18 pounds. Not to mention I sometimes have to carry DD1 because she tires out.

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Old 03-05-2009, 01:36 PM
 
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Maybe some pro babywearers can help me out? Would it be terrible to just get her into the store or wherever we're going in the bucket and then wear her around the store? I mean, that way I can get her back in the seat while inside. That might work... what do you guys DO??? TIA!!

OK, so I replied above, my daughter HATED the bucket and regular car seat, so I wore her everywhere. I wouldn't take the bucket out of the car, I'd just leave it hooked in and have your carrier all ready, and pop baby in. Yeah the seat might be cold for a couple minutes when you put baby back in, but it's not like the kiddo won't have on warm clothes and you'll be turning the heat on in the car. I bought myself a 2XL fleece zip up jacket to wear over *both* of us once I got her into the carrier to walk to the store, or back to the car.

So there you go, that's how I did it in all weather. When she was old wnough to ride on my back, I'd put her in front for the quick walk to the store, then get her hat and coat off and switch her to my back for the store part - took less than a minute.

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Old 03-05-2009, 01:37 PM
 
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Baby Cakes, my baby was a bit bigger than yours by the time winter rolled around, but I slung her everywhere we went, even in the cold. I don't know, it just worked for us. No tricks involved, I just took her out, nursed her if needed there in the car, tucked her in the sling, and went about my business. It was just as easy to me as bringing in the bucket would have been (only easier because I had two free hands and nothing that heavey to carry!).

I never took the infant seat out of the car once, sleeping baby or no. I wanted DD close to me, all the time. If I woke her up and she wanted to nurse, we nursed. I never, ever had anybody question me, maybe I was lucky that way? Friend after friend used the bucket, I used my sling, no problem.

FWIW, I don't care if someone else wants to use the bucket from time to time with their child. I might not understand it, but I only have control over me . I knew how I felt about it, and I knew what I wanted DD to experience, so that's what we did!

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Old 03-05-2009, 01:39 PM
 
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We carry dd in her carseat whenever there is ice on the ground. I don't want to risk slipping on the ice while wearing her. If we slip while carrying the seat, then even if it falls, she is still strapped in. :
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Old 03-05-2009, 01:42 PM
 
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Kind of OT but relevant. My personal experience has been that the longer I am a mother the more often I have found that I eat crow. So I think lots of times it's beneficial to tread lightly in the area of judement. There are obviously things that all of us do because we think they are best for our babes but just because someone else doesn't do them exactly the same way doesn't mean they love their children any less. And making infrences to such are ridiculous. It would have been really easy for me to judge when ds1 was little and it was summer and I had ONE. Now I am trying to juggle the care and safety of two and I often make different choices. I am not going to freeze my toddler to death because I am trying to get my infant in the carrier.

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Old 03-05-2009, 01:46 PM
 
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Some of them are made to be flipped - I don't know if it works with all of them but some of them are made to be used as a high chair one way and a bucket holder the other way.

Reasons to leave the baby in the bucket - baby is sleeping... mom wants to eat a meal with hands/lap free (nothing wrong with this!!!)... mom doesn't like wearing baby... baby doesn't like being worn ... baby is happy where he/she is and picking him/her up is liable to start a cycle of cry/comfort/put down/cry/comfort/put down which doesn't go over well in a restaurant...

Baby wearing is not always mutually enjoyable for mom and baby, and having the baby in a car seat/carrier/bucket does not make an inferior parent. As long as everyone is happy and the baby isn't screaming and being ignored - hang the "experts."
Yes!! You said it much kinder than I would have.

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Old 03-05-2009, 01:46 PM
 
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I could never leave my boys in the bucket seat, I only used it for ease of switching cars. They would and will to this day only tolerate being in a carseat in a car that is in motion. Yes I have the children who cry at red lights.

I have two problems with carrying the seat around and that is that most times the ones I see the babies are not secured properly with the harness loose b/c proper harnesses look too tight (my MIL is always complaining our boys are strapped in too tight, I always explain that the harness is their seatbelt and seatbelts do not help if they are loose) and number two most women I see don't use the strollers set up for these seats and are carrying about 8-10lbs of carseat plus 8-10lbs (at least) of baby. Its not good for your body.

I know about the risks of sleeping in the seats but have to wonder what if they sleep in the car? Are you supposed to stop and wake them up? How does that work? Sometimes safety guidelines are not followed because they are not convient or reasonable to people.

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Old 03-05-2009, 01:58 PM
 
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While I don't put the bucket seat in a shopping cart, because I can't see around it, they are very convenient as portable baby seats. Not everyone is comfortable wearing a baby while jammed into a narrow restaurant booth.

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I do what works and when it stops working, then I do something else.
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Old 03-05-2009, 01:59 PM
 
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Some of them are made to be flipped - I don't know if it works with all of them but some of them are made to be used as a high chair one way and a bucket holder the other way.

Reasons to leave the baby in the bucket - baby is sleeping... mom wants to eat a meal with hands/lap free (nothing wrong with this!!!)... mom doesn't like wearing baby... baby doesn't like being worn ... baby is happy where he/she is and picking him/her up is liable to start a cycle of cry/comfort/put down/cry/comfort/put down which doesn't go over well in a restaurant...

Baby wearing is not always mutually enjoyable for mom and baby, and having the baby in a car seat/carrier/bucket does not make an inferior parent. As long as everyone is happy and the baby isn't screaming and being ignored - hang the "experts."

I agree. Can't make general rules about all parenting styles. I mostly wore DD when she was younger but we also took the bucket seat with us because DD would be happier in there sometimes.
I do not think that bucket seats when used correctly are a safety hazard whatsoever.

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Old 03-05-2009, 02:07 PM
 
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Personally, I have never been able to eat while holding a baby without most of the food ending up on the baby. Right there is my reason for taking the bucket seat into restaurants.

Now don't get me wrong - I hate it when I see a baby come in, strapped in the seat, plopped down and ignored the entire meal, having a paci shoved in its mouth if it protests and then taken back out to the car still strapped in...after an hour and a half dinner.

We didn't do that though. We brought the seat in, took the baby out and held it, nursed it, etc. until the meal came and then baby sat in seat while we ate. We would usually pick baby back up, take it for a diaper change, offer another nursing, etc. before buckling baby back in. It was no more than a high chair for a baby who was too little to sit up in a high chair.

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Old 03-05-2009, 02:12 PM
 
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Interesting. I wonder if it's just a cultural thing then? B/c I view bucket seats as normal and frankly one of the best things since sliced bread.

DD was born in November so I kept her in the bucket seat when moving from the car to where ever we are going. As bad as you think it is to see a kid in a bucket seat...well, that's how I bad I think it is to see a newborn "gagging" because cold air/snow/rain is blowing in his or her face. Actually, I think it's a lot worse.

Sometime last month, my mommy instinct wore off on the issue of DD being exposed to cold air. Could be that it just warmed up a bit, could be that she seemed "older" to me. Whatever the case, I started taking her out and slinging her or using her shopping cart cover thingie.

But if she falls asleep during the car ride, you bet your bottom booty that I'm hauling her around in the bucket seat. We have a rule in our house: die before waking the baby.

It's totally your choice. If you think it's great to pull a sleeping baby out of a warm car, expose him or her to the cold air, put them in a sling (mind you, my DD HATES the sling and is terrified of being restricted) then haul the babe around the store for the 20 minutes it takes to shop or get groceries, then repeat in reverse order....good for you. I don't know why it has to be hard to make someone feel as if they are being an awesome mom. I'll take easy any day.

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Old 03-05-2009, 02:19 PM
 
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Yes, I used to use the bucket seat out of the car - and enjoyed the few minutes of sleeping baby quietude and being hands-free in the store. If I ventured into a store or cafe with the baby in the bucket it was *because* he was sleeping. It was a special thing - not an everyday thing. And when he woke up he wouldn't tolerate being in the seat very long anyway, so I'd bring along the carrier and transfer him to it. As for restaurants - we did the flipped-highchair thing and also put the bucket right on the table, with ds1, and dh and I enjoyed the few amazing moments when he was happy just chilling out sitting and looking around! We did that about, oh, twice? We opted for convenience since it was not our routine, it was a special treat to have a meal out. Pretty sure that didn't damage him. Yes, the seat was on a "raised surface" being on the table - but with us sitting right there eating, we weren't worried that the seat would suddenly jump off the table!

And another thing is that baby in a bucket for 5 minutes driving + 10 minutes in the store is the same as 15 minutes driving and the sling in the store. You don't know how long someone else's baby has been in the bucket when you see them out in the store. It's good to understand that you shouldn't use the bucket all day every day - but you have to be practical about it and use your best judgment. Like for most things.
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Old 03-05-2009, 02:21 PM
 
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I agree it totally depends on the baby and situation.

(snip)

This is another one of those instances where IMO it's the *over*use/misuse (misuse IMO being the parent not interacting with the baby while in the bucket) of the gadget being problematic, not the container itself.
Totally that!!

Ds liked to be held almost all the time. In the beginning, there was maybe 15 minutes a day that he would tolerate not being held- and those 15 minutes were in the carseat out in a public place like a restaurant or grocery store (not in the car- he cried when in the seat in the car). I figured if he was happy in it, and it certainly didn't interfere with him getting plenty of holding time, it was all good
There was *definitely* no fear of us getting complacent and just letting him sit for hours in the car seat! He made SURE of that! And anyway, after 15 minutes or so, I missed holding him and would have picked him up regardless.

At that point, I didn't know about car seats interfering with airways. But I'm sure that I would still be ok with 15 minutes so I could have a tiny break.

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Old 03-05-2009, 02:32 PM
 
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At that point, I didn't know about car seats interfering with airways. But I'm sure that I would still be ok with 15 minutes so I could have a tiny break.
I have heard about this problem a lot IRL and online. I can't figure it out. Even when DD was brand spanking new, her neck was aligned properly and she was breathing fine.

Does it have to do with the brand/style of the seat? The incline due to the brand of the car? Chemicals in the padding/cover?

Maybe the newborn needs chiropractic care?

DH was thinking DD didn't have a problem b/c she was 11lbs at birth.

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Old 03-05-2009, 02:42 PM
 
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Ella's in hers more than I'm happy with b/c it's been so darn cold here. I carry her in in the bucket and 90% of the time she's passed out so i just leave her in. if you undo the straps she wakes up. She's a weird kid . If she's awake or it's a warm out though she's out of there. She loves sitting in our laps at restaurants and playing with straws a napkins. I never get the people who leave a wide awake baby in the bucket at a restaurant the whole time. DH and I have mastered the art of eating with one hand and baby passing.

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