Once you’ve had a baby boy or baby girl, it’s in your nature to keep them safe. Everyday things suddenly look a lot more dangerous when there’s a tiny, helpless person in your arms, but you sometimes don’t have a choice if you want to get things done. Trying to drive a car with a baby or toddler in the passenger seat can feel terrifying, and I’m sure others feel the same way, which is why I have teamed up with Go Green Leasing to put together a guide on how to make your car baby-friendly.
Keep the sun away
You’ve probably seen those stick-on window shades with Disney or Pixar characters on them before. It gives them something to look at, but it also blocks out UV rays that can cause sunburn – which is especially dangerous on a baby’s weak skin. It also keeps out some of the sunlight to keep the car cool, which might help put them to sleep on long drives.
Remember that sunblock is important, too. It makes sense to slap some on when you’re at the beach or going for a walk, but car windows can make light stronger – and the last thing your toddler would want is super-bright sunlight all over their body.
Have some entertainment
Babies and toddlers can become restless quite quickly, however, there’s not a lot you can do to entertain your child in the car, but there’s definitely things you can bring – tablets and their USB chargers, or a portable DVD player to attach between the front seats.
If they prefer music, bring some headphones or their favourite CDs.
Something to eat
Giving your baby or toddler something to chew on can keep them calm quite a while longer, but make sure they aren’t snacking too much! Once they’re old enough, a drink holder might be a good idea, to stop them spilling things too easily.
Food makes crumbs, though, and crumbs can be a lot of bother to themselves. A blanket or seat cover, anything that can catch crumbs and dropped snacks, lets you clean old food out of your car before your child gets another chance to eat the leftovers.
Babies have a habit of throwing food if they don’t want to eat it, so watch out for that. Even if you have a mat down, make sure you think: what would do the least damage if it was thrown around your car?
Toys and games
There’s a lot of toys meant to be used in the car, as well as travel games that are just easier to carry in general. Get some hanging toys or something that’ll click to a baby car seat, it’ll give them some extra entertainment but won’t have to stay in the car 24/7.
If you can’t find something handy, it’s not too hard to rig up your own – some thick string hanging from the seat and a plain Lego baseplate can give your toddlers something to play with. If they’ve got a favourite toy, consider tying it to their seatbelt somehow so they won’t drop it or throw it into the front seats.
Hands-Free Mobile Calls
Hearing your voice will always calm down your baby, but another voice coming through a speakerphone filter could do just the opposite. Mobile earpieces aren’t just for businessmen and being able to take important calls without frightening your child is important for not only your happiness but your safety.
It should seem obvious to a lot of people, but car seats are important. It’s surprising how many different types there are and finding out you’re using the wrong one can be quite shocking – especially if you’ve used it for months!
If you can’t find a car seat or booster seat fitting specialist, make sure you do your research. What works for one toddler might not work for another and getting the wrong type can be more dangerous to your son or daughter than not having one at all.
*This is a collaborative post*