Infant Seat vs. Convertible Seat?

I’ve been debating whether or not to try and acquire a new infant carseat for Anthony. We had one with Gregory, but it happened to be in the Corolla when Jesse was hit back in July. Instead of buying a new infant carseat to replace the old one, we used the insurance money to buy G a nice Britax that will last him until he’s ready for a booster seat.

The Chicco 30 is very highly rated for safety, so it was at the top of my list. Only...it's $160...

We still have our Combi Coccorro, which I received at my St. Seraphim’s shower. The problem with this carseat (we found in those first few days after the accident) is that it can flip backward far enough that the baby is almost upside down! Scary problem to have, to be sure. At that time in my life, I was way too overwhelmed (moving across the country, packing the apartment, fighting the car insurance battle, finding out I was pregnant, the usual stuff) to deal with the problem, hence, we let Geico reimburse us for a new carseat and didn’t think twice.

our Combi

Since then, however, I’ve done a lot more research and realized that we were installing the carseat wrong. Apparently, threading the shoulder strap back around the back through the intended clips keeps the carseat nice and snug. I found a couple tutorials on Youtube, and today, Jesse tried installing it in our Rav 4 with complete success.

The advantages to using the Combi over an infant seat? Well, there’s the obvious– we already own it, saving us at least $160. That’s a big plus. Secondly, it’s ranked highly for safety. Thirdly, in our smallish (in comparison to a SUV) backseat, there was no way we were going to be able to fit 2 carseats AND a third person comfortably…unless the carseat was pretty compact. We take my little sister Janelle many places after school, so this would’ve been a drag, to be sure. The Combi, however, is known for how compact it is, seeing as it is Japanese and made for economy cars. In fact, their “claim to fame” is that you can fit 3 of them in the back of a small Toyota or Honda! After installing it next to G’s big Britax, Jesse informed me that there was still room to comfortably carry a 3rd passenger. WIN!

But there are still some things that I loved about having an infant seat for Gregory. For the record: I am a huge proponent of baby-wearing. I plan on using a single stroller for quite some time, pushing G in the seat and “wearing” Anthony in a sling or wrap. I plan on wearing Anthony during the day while I do chores, play with G, etc. I plan on wearing him at church, in the grocery store, you name it.

In my experience with G, baby-wearing made shopping trips so easy and relaxing for the both of us– babies like being close to their mommas, what can I say! Happy baby=quiet baby=happy momma! G never had any colic or reflux, which is in part due to his constitution, but I wonder how much of it had to do with how much I wore him. Researchers claim that the absence of reflux and colic are two of the huge benefits to baby-wearing, so it could be…one of the ways that I established a nap schedule with G was to wear him for about half an hour. He got so sleepy (99% of the time) that putting him down for a nap was a piece of cake.

But there were times as we were out and about when I just wanted/needed to set him down, and the infant seat was perfect for that. For instance, when Jesse and I went out to eat, it was nice to be able to set him in the carrier and rock him to sleep. There were also times, as he got older, when wearing G (especially in church!) was too much stimulation and kept him from napping. It was very helpful to be able to go somewhere darker, put the shade over his face, and rock him to sleep. Also, a portable bed for nights out with family would be nice.

So, I’ve tried to come up with a way that I can have a portable baby seat on hand in the car for these types of situations. So far, this is the best one I’ve seen:

It rocks or stays still

It folds flat for travel! This would be a great feature so that it wouldn't take up much room stored in our trunk

It even turns into a toddler chair! Gregory would LOVE having something like this. Whenever one of the carseats is sitting in our living room, he uses it as a chair and reads from it!

I don’t know, is there something better out there? Anybody? I’ve also considered the Fisher-Price Rock N Play Sleeper. Opinions?

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5 thoughts on “Infant Seat vs. Convertible Seat?

  1. oh goodness, I struggled with this too since we don’t have a detachable car seat…thankfully we just don’t eat out much, ever so the only two times we did, I just carried her in my bjorn (thanks!) at the table and she slept even though I kept spilling food on her head…

    When we had to take her to class though, or to other houses, etc., I found the bjorn bouncer to be really helpful. It folds flat and was super easy to set up and put by my foot so I could bounce her to sleep (perfect for writing papers!!!). Wouldn’t work so well for food places….but its been easy enough to throw in the car and have when we want her to nap or stay entertained while we are out and stationary. And takes up as much floor space as the other two options you have linked above. It IS expensive (yay for baby showers…) but you can also get it nice and organic, since I know you like that. 😉

    http://www.amazon.com/BABYBJ%C3%96RN-Babysitter-Balance-Organic-Walnut/dp/B002Q0Y8V4/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1329863866&sr=8-3

  2. Kelly, I like the portable baby seat. The other one looks as if it could tip over, and it does not look that comfy for the baby. And, the best part is that Geoffrey could sit and rock. I know Hank would want to do that!

  3. Pam, that’s okay, I know what you meant!

    Chelsea, I’m only having one shower this time around, and I’m not sure I could justify spending that much! If you’re not using yours for a while, I could rent it? 🙂 She’s getting close to a year, no? G started climbing out of his bouncy seats around 10-ish months (scary, to be sure).

  4. haha, yeah she still loves her bouncy and we’ve been taking it to bible study to bounce her to sleep rather than lugging a pack n’ play. All my coworkers bought it for me, which was perfect. I am worried about when she’ll start climbing out of things but so far no crawling or anything like that yet. I’m definitely enjoying her stationary nature as long as I can! 😉 Maybe you’ll have craigslist luck?

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