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Up Up & Away

Tomorrow we fly with the boys for the first time. Wish us luck.

plane

Car Seat Safety

I missed yesterday’s Child Passenger Safety Twitter chat, but check out Parents Central. Especially in light of recent events concerning kids in cars.

Shut the Front Door

doorsAs long time Beyond the Car Seat readers know all too well, BB is freakishly strong. His bull like strength is displayed mainly on his new favorite task, shutting doors. Whenever we pass through an open door, BB stops and tries to shut it. This new hobby has two central challenges. The first is that I need to constantly make sure his wee fingers are not going to get crushed (as I did to LTD’s digits in the car door the other day) and the second problem occurs when I am trying to hold the door open for someone. When we leave school he turns and pushes the door closed telling gravity to go to hell, but if I’m holding it open for a fellow parent then a battle of wills erupts.Normally, he would win since he is so strong, but I cheat by picking him up, but in the end he can claim victory because when I pick him he screams in my face giving me a headache. At the end of the day, the good news is that I never have to worry about the heating bill since I’ll never have to tell him to shut the door he’s letting the heat out. 

Caped Crusader

adam-west-batmanAs long time Beyond the Car Seat readers know BB only speaks a few words. Sure, he babbles in complete sentences but no one but him knows what he is talking about. So in addition, to car and ball and the occasion daddy or mommy sprinkled with some animal noises (moo and woof) we now have a new random word to add to his lexicon. The Batman. It all started a few weeks ago when we went to a 75 anniversary event at the Barnes & Noble and then the comic store and now whenever he sees an image of the dark knight we are treated to “ba-ma” Trust me it is clearer than I wrote and it is obvious he is saying Batman. In conclusion, how do I feel that BB says Batman but doesn’t really ever say, daddy? I feel pretty great.

A Mydal Moment

bedSo in the crazy world of raising two boys things happen fast. This Saturday things happened really fast. We had previously removed bins from the boys room as BB was using them to get on to LTD’s bed. We didn’t really care that he was getting on the bed but it was concerning that he was going from the bed to the changing table/dresser. However, this Saturday we discovered that BB can get on to LTD’s bed without the aid of any bin or object. The Mommy and me thought we could just move the dresser away from the bed and this began a chain of events that in retrospect was predictable. We placed BB in his crib so we could move the furniture around and he quickly let us know that you can’t put the toothpaste back in the tube. Thankfully, we stopped him but he basically was prepared to re-enact The Great Escape as he put one leg over the crib wall. Throughout the day as The Mommy was researching options, he tried to summit the bookcases. To make a long story short, we made an emergency trip to Ikea and now the boys have bunk beds. 

If You Build It…He Will Take It Apart

hotwheelsBB consistently says the word, car and very little else. So for that reason we give him a lot of cars to play with and when he isn’t throwing them at my head he seems to be enjoying them. The other day I saw that they sell race track pieces separately. BB is still a little young to do anything with a track piece besides whip it back and forth and use it as yet another object to try and hit in the head with. The real reason the individual track pieces caught my eye is that it is very cool to be able to custom your racing experience to your environment and it is the kind of thing that is so simple, I can’t believe they didn’t have it when I was a kid. Of course, they probably did but the only thing I used my matchbox cars for when I was young was to re-create episodes of Chips. I don’t know if BB will still be into cars when he is old enough to build his own track but if he I will be excited to see what cool thing he designs and hopefully his race track will not involve anything hitting me in the head. 

hotwheels (2)

Story Corps

storycorps_logo_10_yearsI always enjoy listening to Story Corps and today I heard one about a pretty cool dad. Here.

 

Hell No I Won’t Go

distraction-quoteBB has taken to the belief that the sixties still exist and the time to protest is now. He isn’t trying to stop a war or get the vote. He simply does not want to go in his car seat. He has taken a page out of the Gandhi playbook of using non-violent forms of protest. His signature move is to go rigid as a board requiring the use of not an insignificant amount of force to bend him. Another tactic is to grab on to the side and employ a jaws of life style grip on the arm of the car seat. Finally, he uses his sonic scream to try and drive off anyone who tries to simply take him anywhere via automobile. However, all of these methods eventually fail when any one of a 1000 simple counter measures are used. That’s right folks, I’m talking about distraction, the scourge of the toddle protest. I now never go near the car without a toy in my pocket or frankly anything in my pocket. The only draw back is that the same idea loses its power and can only be used a few times before it is taken out of rotation. I have the best luck with Matchbox cars but have used a bottle of sunscreen, house keys, empty iced tea bottle, receipt and a shoe. He puts up a good fight but in the end nothing can compete with something new, no matter how valueless to a grown up it is. Unfortunately, I still lose to his stubbornness one time out of 20 when I simply have nothing to distract him with having exhausted my usual rogues gallery of items. In those cases it is time to walk.  

The Listen in Bed Contest

solrelEnter Beyond the Car Seat’s Listen in Bed Contest. Winner will receive Sol Republic Relays. If you watch as much Netflix in bed as I do, than these will be perfect.

Sure you missed Father’s Day, but now is the perfect time to make it up to the dad in your life. He can drown out the children’s yells with nice headphones. The lightweight in ear buds are also sweat and water resistant (and yes that covers baby drool). Perhaps the best feature is that they don’t fall out like most of my gym headphones (which are really TV watching headphones, but the stupid movement of the cross trainer keeps pulling mine out while I’m watching the screen). However, if you are anything like me, the primary use will not be at the gym or jogging, but watching The Blacklist on my iphone in bed while the whole family sleeps (and snores).

Sol Republic can be found here, Facebook and @solrepublic.

The Fine Print

How to Enter:
Enter your information using the contact form. Please fill out all the information and don’t forget your email address. Winner will be chosen at random. Sol Republic graciously provided the prize. Any opinions I might have about the headphones remain my own and have not been influenced by Sol Republic.

Eligibility:
Contestants must be at least 18 years of age at the time of entry and legal residents of the 50 United States and District of Columbia. Void in Puerto Rico, and where prohibited by law or regulation. All entries become the property of beyondthecarseat.com.

The Contest begins on June 19th, 2014 and ends on July 6th, 2014. Contestwinner will be announced on July 8th, 2014.

Copyrights:
By entering into the Contest, each contestant agrees to grant beyondthecarseat.com and its owners/operators permission to copy and publish to beyondthecarseat.com any and all writings submitted by the contestant. NO PURCHASE IS NECESSARY TO ENTER OR WIN.

BRADY CAMPAIGN TO PREVENT GUN VIOLENCE LAUNCHES 2014 NATIONAL ASK DAY

ask-logoThe Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence – in collaboration with the American Academy of Pediatrics – announced today that the first day of summer, June 21, is National ASK Day (Asking Saves Kids) to remind parents and caregivers the importance of asking if there are unlocked or loaded guns in the homes where children play.

Nine children and teens are shot each day in gun accidents.  Nationwide, one out of three homes with children has a gun, many kept unlocked or loaded. Approximately 1.7 million children in the U.S. live with unsecured guns.

To help encourage more parents to ask this potentially lifesaving question, the Brady Campaign is launching a social media campaign that includes online advertisements.  Parents and caregivers will be urged to sign a pledge to spread the ASK message in their community.  The pledge can be found at www.askingsaveskids.org.  In addition, the Brady Campaign is encouraging parents to host ASK-themed play dates throughout the country on June 21st.

Dan Gross, President of the Brady Campaign, said “Parents worry a lot about mass shootings that are outside their control; however, parents do have the ability to prevent unintentional shootings by asking about guns in the homes where their children visit and play. We routinely ask other questions related to our children’s safety. Every parent should simply add this one to the list.

The campaign also includes testimonials from moms who wish they’d asked this question.

“We never had guns in our home, and we still don’t, but we are the ones without a child in our house,” said Ann Marie Crowell, of Massachusetts, who lost her son in an unintentional shooting.  “One question asked is one child’s life saved.  It could have been my son’s.”

Ashlyn Melton, of Louisiana, said she taught her son how to handle a gun and always locked up her guns.  “I never thought to ask other parents about their guns because I assumed they were as responsible as I am.  I wish I had. My son died on a playdate when his friend playfully fired a gun at my son’s head because the friend didn’t think the gun was loaded.  That gun should have been locked up and away from kids,” she said.

To help parents broach the subject, Jennie Lintz, the Brady Campaign’s Director of Public Health and Safety, suggested parents ASK by saying, “In the wake of all the terrible violence in the news, I’m worried about guns—I’m sure you are, too.  Please don’t take it personally, but can I ask you to reassure me that you don’t have unlocked guns in the house that might unintentionally hurt our kids?”

For more than a decade, the ASK Campaign has partnered with over 400 grassroots organizations to spread its message in neighborhoods nationwide.  More information is available at www.askingsaveskids.org.

The ASK Campaign is a collaboration between the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence and the American Academy of Pediatrics, which has promoted the ASK message to its 62,000 members across the country.  The ASK Campaign has successfully inspired 19 million households to ASK if there are guns where their children play. Parents and individuals are encouraged to visit askingsaveskids.org and Pledge to ASK.