Lean Green Mommy Machine

Thoughts on health, wellness, living green and motherhood

Car Seat Safety


There is a LOT to be said about car seat safety. There is so much info out there it’s overwhelming. Just buying a car seat can have you needing a nap (ask my expectant cousin, Beth). But this is one of those subjects where the exhaustive research is worthwhile.
There are plenty of things I did in the past that I never knew weren’t safe. One thing is putting that infant car seat in the top part of the shopping cart (where a child would sit). It’s not meant to go there and can be very dangerous.
Another thing I did was turn my children’s car seat forward facing at one year. I did this even with my youngest, even though there was this nagging in the back of my mind not to. I’m grateful nothing tragic has happened to my children as I sort through all of the car seat do’s and don’ts. Even the AAP now recommends rear facing until at least 2 years.
I’m not going to go into every bit of car seat safety info you should know. This post would go on for.ev.er.
I know you are perfectly capable and intelligent people reading this and I know you can dig deep out there and find out what you need to know.

But I did want to show a couple of pictures today. I was headed off to the vet to have a situation with my cat looked at. I had to tote along my 6-year-old, my (almost) 4-year-old and my daycare kiddo, 2-year-old, Lillian.
When I take Lillian places I choose to keep her rear facing. As I put her in her seat I thought that I should snap some pics so that those wondering might see what rear facing at 2 looks like.
Say “Hi”, Lil!

Lil in seat

Don’t be fooled by the look on her face. She was wondering why I was taking her picture as she sat in the car in my driveway. She’s quite comfy in there and happily plays and chats as we drive about. The bent legs are NOT uncomfortable. Children this age rarely sit with their legs dangling down from a seat. My 4-year-old (it’s nearly her birthday, I’ll just call her 4 now) is forward facing and she props her feet up on the back of the seat in front of her or tucks them into her seat.
Other things to note:
– Chest clip is at armpit level
– Straps are tightened
– Top of straps are slightly below shoulders. The tops need to be at or below shoulders when rear facing and at or above when forward facing.
– No bulky coat

Yep. That’s one more safety thing that many aren’t aware of. But it’s something you’ll find in nearly ever car seat manual. Wearing bulky coats can cause the child to be ejected from the car seat.
But…it’s really cold out, you say?
It is here too. I live in Ohio. Yesterday, when we headed to the vet, it was the first day of spring and it was less than 30 degrees F out there.
So what’s a mom (or dad, or grandma, or nanny) to do?

Warm AND stylish with her cow-print coat!

Warm AND stylish with her cow-print coat!

Lil wore her coat from the house to the car and then we promptly removed it to put her in her seat. My 4-year-old did the same thing (she is in the same seat as Lil, just forward facing). We’ve been doing this for many years and my kids just know it’s what we do. It’s a minute of cold (while you get buckled) for miles of safety.

*Pictures of the adorable Lillian were used with permission from her mother.


Author: leangreenmommy

Hi, I'm Sonia! I'm the mom of 4 wonderful daughters and wife to one amazing man, trying to live a healthier life, care for the earth and just survive the day. When I'm not cooking up new recipes in the kitchen or shuttling kids to soccer, volleyball and lacrosse I run an in-home daycare and am a freelance writer.

2 thoughts on “Car Seat Safety

  1. I am always shocked by how soon most parents want to “graduate” their children to the next stage of car seats. My “child” is 20 now and was the ONLY kid we knew who was in a booster seat until age 7, as was recommended at the time. In my province, it is now 9 years old or 4’9″!

    • I think at that time it must have been unheard of. Good for you! My second daughter is 8 1/2 and still in a highback booster. Nearly every one of her peers is not in any type of booster at all. I have refused to transport friend’s children due to a lack of booster seat. I think sometimes people find me odd! 😉

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