Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Twin Birth Story: Mary Wellwood

If you'd like to contribute your own twin birth story, CLICK HERE to fill out the questionnaire!

Mary Wellwood 

Where do you currently live?  Maple Grove, 

How far along were you when you found out you were expecting twins
7 weeks

Any issues during your pregnancy? 
I am one lucky momma and had a very blessed issue-free pregnancy!

Memorable/funny moment when you were pregnant:  When I was about 27 weeks the boys were literally wrestling in my stomach and it looked so crazy from the outside. I told my husband to watch my tummy and after about 45 seconds he said, "I need to be recording this!" It's still my favorite video from my pregnancy!

Looking back, what is one thing you would tell your pregnant self? It's going to be HARD and you WILL be huge by the end... But you will also have TWO miracles that will be 110% worth all of the sleepless nights and discomfort.

How many weeks/days were you when your twins were born? 37 weeks

Baby A's Information:  
Theodore Williams

March 21, 2014 
10:44pm 6 lbs 4 oz  
20 in

Baby B's Information:  
Patrick Jeremiah

March 21, 2014 
10:50pm 7 lbs 1 0oz  
20 in

Are your twins identical? No

Did you have a c-section or natural delivery? The morning I turned 37 wks, I was excited about watching basketball ALL DAY LONG! March Madness is a BIG deal in my family so having 2 TVs set up to watch games all day long was like heaven for me. I was sore from the day before of being at the sports bar for several hours and sitting in their uncomfortable chairs so I decided to go pick up a yoga ball from my parents house to use as my chair for the day. I snapped a quick photo to send to my sister with our Bracket shirts we had made. Mine fit a bit snug. :) So my daughter, Claire, and I ran errands, picked up the ball and headed back home for the day, just in time for the first games of the day. For these 2 particular games, you should know that I dislike ANYTHING Nebraska Huskers (I'm a Creighton fan) and Duke basketball really drives me nuts too. Those 2 teams were both playing... And BAD! Add in my over the top emotions and yoga ball and you have a recipe for going into labor! 

My husband, Mark, came home from work early to watch the Creighton game with me and he walked in to my bouncing up and down on this ball, yelling at the TV and pretty worked up in excitement!! He quickly tweeted, "These basketball games are going to send my wife into labor". Hehe. I was having contractions here and there but nothing too strong for me and nothing consistent... So more basketball it was! Duke and Nebraska BOTH ended up losing within 5 minutes of each other and man oh man was I in a great mood. Up next was my beloved Creighton Bluejays! It was another emotional game and by 1/2 time I had started some pretty good contractions (253pm) so I decided to track them. When Claire woke up from her nap around 345 and I had been having a bit more, I decided to text my sister in law who is a L&D nurse at the hospital I go to and she happened to be working at day. I sent her a screenshot of my contraction times and she said, "Those are your contractions??! Why aren't you here yet?" I had told her they weren't very strong or consistent so I was waiting for that to happen. We chatted back and forth and she finally talked me into coming in just so she could check my progress. 

We left the house at 5:50pm and arrived by 6:25pm (after stopping to grab Claire dinner). I had mentioned to my sister that I was going to get checked and so I may have her come get Claire so we wouldn't have to keep her cooped up in a room, but at this point I still wasn't convinced I was actually in labor. After 10min, my sis in law told me I wasn't going anywhere; I was contracting every 3-4 minutes and I was 4.5cm dilated. So my sister came to get Claire and we were moved into our room. My hospital requires Epidurals for twins so they are prepared for anything (I had never done any meds before so this was new to me). After my epidural (7:45p), they broke Baby A's water and just let me labor. We sat around chatting, texting family and watching basketball... It was so low key that couldn't believe I was actually about to have our Twins! By 9:45, I was an 8, so they were getting Mark and I ready for the OR room where we would deliver. 

Mark and I held hands and said a short prayer... When they finally had us all set and ready to go, they told me to push and about 30seconds later, Theodore was here and Mark cut his cord. After breaking Baby Bs water and putting a monitor on his head, I was ready for him. 6 minutes after his brother, Patrick was born, and I got to cut his cord. After they were cleaned up, they put them both on my chest and life has never been the same!! I was so blessed with an amazing birth story for my little guys. I am thankful for this everyday.

Any NICU time?  If yes, for what reason and how long?  No, and so blessed for this!

Did you have any complications after delivery? No

How long did you stay in the hospital? We had the boys Friday at 10:45 pm and we went home as a family Sunday at 1 pm!! Too fast if you ask me!

Did your twins stay with you or the hospital nursery at night? With us :)

What are three things you are so glad you had (or wish you would have had) at the hospital? 

1) My BrestFriend nursing pillow!! So Unbelieveably helpful!! Can't picture nursing 2 without this when they are so small. 2) Our own clothes for the boys. They ones we get at our hospital are just the side button shirts and that's no fun for photos... Or keeping them warm :) 3) This isn't really a "physical" thing, but I was very happy we had set out our wishes as far as visitors goes before we delivered. We knew with twins there are so many things that you need to be prepared for and there Double everything to think about! We have big family's and several friends that were all so anxious to meet the twins. We told everyone about a month before that immediate family would only be allowed and no kids (other than Claire). It was nice to have the extra time to rest while at the hospital and not having to juggle 2 babies and visitors for the time we were there.

Describe one of your favorite moments while you were at the hospital:  My favorite moment was when Claire came up to meet the boys! I had missed her so much and seeing her was so exciting! She didn't want to get off my lap (she didn't fit there for awhile). And She was so sweet and kept counting them! "One. two. Two brudders!!"

If you had one piece of advice you could give an expecting mom of twins, what would it be? Breathe. Pray. And buy a big comfy pillow!!! 😊

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Twin Birth Story: Aimee

If you'd like to contribute your own twin birth story, CLICK HERE to fill out the questionnaire!


Where do you currently live?  
Grand Forks, ND

How far along were you when you found out you were expecting twins
7 weeks

Any issues during your pregnancy? 
I had a great pregnancy and was able to carry my boys to (almost) full term. Around 36 weeks, I had bad leg swelling and was prescribed compression sox to wear until the swelling subsided. They were NOT fun to wear (or be seen wearing!) but they made me feel better in about 24 hours. I wore them until delivery!

Memorable/funny moment when you were pregnant:  My sister-in-law was expecting a baby around the same time. It was humorous to watch her small, petite, adorable bump grow and compare it to my LARGE bump!

Looking back, what is one thing you would tell your pregnant self? Take more pictures of yourself! I felt huge and immobile the last few weeks of pregnancy and DID NOT want to be photographed. My husband and I really wish we would have taken more photos….even if it was just to look back and laugh about!

How many weeks/days were you when your twins were born? 37 weeks, 5 days

Baby A's Information:  
Henry John

January 27, 2014
10:53 pm 6 lbs 9 oz 22 in

Baby B's Information:  
Huck Vincent

January 27, 2014
11:04 pm 7 lbs 4 oz 20.5 in

Are your twins identical? No

Did you have a c-section or natural delivery? I had a great and quick delivery. Both boys were delivered naturally (in about 45 minutes). I was admitted to the hospital around noon; I was induced and had an epidural.

Any NICU time?  If yes, for what reason and how long?  Huck was in the NICU for 5 days with a pneumothorax (partially collapsed lung). He had to be on oxygen for the first day and was given a few oxygen treatments until his lung healed on its own (day 4).
Since Huck was in the NICU, our boys weren't allowed to be together until they were 5 days old. We were not prepared for our boys to be separated after birth….it was difficult on everyone. Henry and I stayed at the hospital until Huck was discharged. We were so blessed to leave the hospital together as a family of 4!

Did you have any complications after delivery? 

How long did you stay in the hospital? 5 days

Did your twins stay with you or the hospital nursery at night? Huck was in the NICU, Henry flip-flopped between our room and the nursery.

What are three things you are so glad you had (or wish you would have had) at the hospital? 

FOOD! I delivered very late at night and I was starving post delivery (they don’t let you eat all day). The kitchen was closed overnight. I had to take strong meds with crackers and a chocolate pudding (no joke)! By the time all of our visitors left in the middle of the night I realized they should have brought me something to eat. I made the choice to breastfeed – and I had a nursing specialist visit our room. She helped my husband and I learn how to use my pump and it was a lifesaver (since I exclusively pumped for over 10 months)! It was helpful to have my husband there because I was a little loopy and most likely wouldn’t have remembered how to work the thing anyway! If you are planning to nurse – bring your boppy pillow and coverup to the hospital. Depending on how long you are in the hospital – request your nurses! I called at the end of the night to request our favorite nurse was assigned to our room the next day. She knew our story and made us feel comfortable.

Describe one of your favorite moments while you were at the hospital:  I was terrified for delivery and the thought of being hospitalized was miserable for me to think about! With the advice from my OB, I decided not to read or prepare for delivery/birth at all….and it helped me. The labor process is uncomfortable and scary at times, but overall the staff and doctors take such good care of you. Our five day stay was great.

My favorite moment was FINALLY being able to hold my boys in the same room and leave the hospital as a family of 4.

If you had one piece of advice you could give an expecting mom of twins, what would it be? Take it one day at a time! Every day is a new and different - there isn't much you can prepare for.

Monday, September 28, 2015

Twin Birth Story: Crystal Duffy

If you'd like to contribute your own twin birth story, CLICK HERE to fill out the questionnaire!

Crystal Duffy

Where do you currently live?  
Houston, TX

How far along were you when you found out you were expecting twins
7 weeks

Any issues during your pregnancy? 
Yes! I had the most crazy high risk pregnancy my OB had seen in 30 years of practice.

23 weeks--diagnosed with Twin to Twin Transfusion Syndrome, baby A was in heart failure 23 weeks, 3 days-- had Laser Ablation surgery at Memorial Hermann hospital in Houston's med center 24 weeks--- septostomy as a result of the ablation 25 weeks-- diagnosed as mono-mono twins because one of the twins had ripped the inner twin membrane. Would be placed on hospital bedrest for the remainder of pregnancy. 26 weeks-- Went inpatient at Memorial Hermann Antepartum unit 30 weeks-- Babies were born, had a placental abruption at birth
Memorable/funny moment when you were pregnant: "What?! TWINS???" "Are you joking???"

Looking back, what is one thing you would tell your pregnant self? Well for me personally since my pregnancy was so scary and high risk I would tell my pregnant self that everything my husband and I went through is so worth it for our beautiful healthy baby girls.

How many weeks/days were you when your twins were born? 30 weeks, 4 days

Baby A's Information:  Katherine

June 19, 2014
12:53 pm
3 lbs, 2 oz

Baby B's Information:  

June 19, 2014 12:54 pm
3 lbs, 1 oz

Are your twins identical? yes

Did you have a c-section or natural delivery? On the evening of Wednesday June 18th I started to not feel well. I felt as if something wasn't right. I told my night nurse Kami that I wasn't feeling well, I felt like I couldn't breathe and like something was wrong. Kami assured me that my babies looked great on the fetal heart monitor and that I was having some uterine irritability but these were not your typical textbook contractions. After being in the hospital at this point over a month, nurses know their patients really well and she knew that I never complained about pain so that something was definitely up.

I told her to call my doctor, he told Kami to start me on an IV. I was barely able to sleep that night because I was so worried something was wrong. In the morning I was in a lot of pain and was no doubt having full blown contractions. They started me on magnesium to stop the contractions (and for brain protection). I kept thinking the whole time the magnesium was going to work and this was going to be another scare (one of many I had while inpatient). My doctor came in to check on me and I was a few cm dilated. The magnesium clearly wasn't working. "It's time, we are having some babies today." he said. I had never expected that Thursday, June 19th we would be having babies. I was only 30 weeks, 4 days. But I reminded myself I'm 30 weeks, 4 days!! When we got diagnosed with TTTS (Twin to Twin Transfusion Syndrome), I was only 23 weeks and reminded myself that we are a special case and have been preparing for this all along. I had strong faith that everything would be great! Well they prepped me for surgery and since I'd had a C-section with Abby this was not my first rodeo and I pretty much knew what to expect (spinal tap, anesthesia). Before I knew it they had started the surgery. Katherine (Baby A) came out first and I let out a huge cry of relief just to hear her crying (or screaming rather), phew I thought there is nothing wrong with her lungs thats for sure. Seconds later Lauren (Baby B) came out, both babies whisked away by the NICU team of nurses and doctors. It was so difficult and painful not to be able to see and hold my babies right away. It was after the babies were born that the OR vibe changed drastically. There was something wrong again I could sense it. Ed was asked to leave because I was bleeding out a lot. I heard them say, "We need to clear this area out for blood transfusion." WHAT was going on?? With Ed out of the room no one was by my side or telling me what was happening. I felt tugging and pulling and all sorts of bizarre sensations. It wasn't until it was all over that they told me what had happened. My placenta had abrupted. What did that mean exactly? Well my OB Dr. would come to explain to me and Ed that my placenta had literally deteriorated, completely detaching itself from the uterine wall. This is also something that is rare - it only happens in about 1% of pregnancies after 20 weeks gestation. It is one of the more common causes of maternal mortality or event resulting in a hysterectomy. The thought of that was absolutely terrifying. And of course throughout this whole journey I never ever thought my life would be in danger. I was always so worried about my babies' lives. We had the Lord protecting us that day, as well as people praying for us all over the world and an amazing team of nurses and doctors that worked tirelessly that day to save me and my babies' lives

Any NICU time?  If yes, for what reason and how long?  Yes, My girls were in the NICU for 38 days because they were born at 30 weeks due to a placental abruption--a result of the laser ablation surgery for TTTS.

Did you have any complications after delivery? Yes, at birth I lost a ton of blood. Then afterwards I didn't bleed at all after my c-section. Then about 2 weeks post surgery I had a placental sub-involution---where I had my scab fall off and a lot of blood came out all at once.
I also had a fever a few days after the surgery so I had to stay a few extra days for antibiotics.
How long did you stay in the hospital? 7 days

Did your twins stay with you or the hospital nursery at night? NICU

What are three things you are so glad you had (or wish you would have had) at the hospital? 

1. Comfy soft blanket 2. Lots of junk food and snacks---in particular Tiffs Treats--cookie basket from a friend 3. My husband and lots of family and friends around

Describe one of your favorite moments while you were at the hospital:  When my daughters were born they were pretty much whisked to the NICU right away. They were very fragile at birth weighing only 3 lbs, so we couldn't hold them right away. It wasn't until almost a week later that my husband and I were able to hold them. The Kangaroo hold skin-to-skin when we he
Blogger: Twin Talk Blog - Create postld the girls for the first time was one of the most incredible experiences of my life.

If you had one piece of advice you could give an expecting mom of twins, what would it be? No matter what happens always remain strong in your faith that the good Lord will deliver your babies into your arms.

Crystal's Blog: The Duffy Diary

Friday, September 25, 2015

Twin Birth Story: Jen Thompson

If you'd like to contribute your own twin birth story, CLICK HERE to fill out the questionnaire!

Jen Thompson 

Where do you currently live?  
Dallas, TX

How far along were you when you found out you were expecting twins
7 weeks

Any issues during your pregnancy? 
I was placed on hospital bedrest at 32 weeks because my water had broken. They immediately gave me a steroid shot to help with the babies' lungs in case I went in to labor. I never actually did go in to labor though, which was a HUGE answer to prayer. The doctors guessed that I had a high tear in one of the sacs that must have just healed itself, because the leaking stopped, and I was able to go home at 35 weeks. Hospital bedrest was no fun (Umm hi we did not have the girls room done, so I had to "design" it from my bed via FACETIME while my besties put the room together), but God used this time to quiet my worried heart, and show me that He was in control.

Memorable/funny moment when you were pregnant: My most memorable moment occurred on a night that my husband and I had gone out with some friends to our favorite Mexican restaurant. A great little custard shop was right down the street, so we all walked down there for dessert after dinner was over. I was 32 weeks along, and feeling super uncomfortable, but I just chalked it up to normal pregnancy woes. As we were leaving, I headed to the restroom for like the 87th time, and then met up with everyone out in front of the custard shop. We took a few steps towards the car and I stopped dead in my tracks. Why? Because my water broke. in public. on the sidewalk. in front of our friends. I was mortified and terrified-- we were not ready for these babies yet!! After what seemed like the fastest trip to the hospital ever, my doctor confirmed what we all pretty much knew. My water had broken, and I was put on hospital bedrest in hopes that we could prolong their delivery for a little while.

Looking back, what is one thing you would tell your pregnant self? Not to worry so much, and REST, REST, REST!

How many weeks/days were you when your twins were born? 37 weeks, 1 day

Baby A's Information:  
Catherine "Cate" Lavinia

July 19, 2013
6:43 am
5 lbs 4 oz
18 1/4 in

Baby B's Information:  
Reese Louise

July 19, 2013
6:51 am
5 lbs 15 oz 
19 3/4 in

Are your twins identical? Fraternal

Did you have a c-section or natural delivery? I was able to deliver the girls vaginally. They were both head down for the entire pregnancy, and my doctor was willing to let me try. I pushed for an hour in our room, and then was wheeled into the OR for the actual delivery, in case they needed to do an emergency c-section.

Any NICU time?  If yes, for what reason and how long?  No.

Did you have any complications after delivery? I struggled with post-partum depression after the girls were born. I knew that a lot of women dealt with baby blues, but after two weeks of anxiety, non-stop crying, and not wanting to be around the babies because they stressed me out, I knew that it was time to talk to my doctor. She was so great (seriously wonderful) and prescribed a low-dose antidepressant. I took it for about six months, and it made a world of difference.

How long did you stay in the hospital? 3 nights

Did your twins stay with you or the hospital nursery at night? Nursery, but they brought them back for me to feed them every 3 hours.

What are three things you are so glad you had (or wish you would have had) at the hospital? 

1. Yoga pants and soft comfy tops. WAY better than the hospital gown ;) 2. My phone- for listening to music, snapping pics of my precious girls, and keeping in touch with friends/family. 3. A suite. We spent one night in a regular room, but then upgraded to a suite the second night. It was nice in so many ways, but mostly for all of the extra room we had to entertain visitors.

Describe one of your favorite moments while you were at the hospital:  My very favorite moment was a quiet moment between me and the girls. They had just brought me back to my room after delivery, and my husband had gone down to get us breakfast (um hello-- had not eaten in like 18 hours!!). One of the nurses wheeled the girls in, and I got my first really good look at them. They were all snuggled together, cooing a little, and I couldn't take my eyes off of them. This sweet moment, alone with my girls, was a day we had prayed many years for. They were really here, and they were finally ours. I will never forget it.

If you had one piece of advice you could give an expecting mom of twins, what would it be? 
If someone offers help-- take them up on it! :) During the first few months, we had friends and family bring us meals, mow our lawn, do our laundry, & watch our babes. It definitely made life a little easier, in what was such a crazy, crazy time :)

Thursday, September 24, 2015

Fall Fashion for B/G Twins

In March it was all about spring fashion for B/G, B/B, and G/G twins.  Now that fall is (practically) here, I  thought it'd be fun to do it again.  As always, there are a few rules: Each B/G twin mom had to choose a different store and absolutely every piece had to come from that store.  Head to toe.  Moms don't have a lot of time to shop at several stores or spend hours scouring the internet, so my hope is we could show you some great coordinated looks that require one quick stop or only one shipping fee (because, let's be honest, shipping fees are THE WORST).

Here we go!

Name: Elizabeth
Store: Janie and Jack
Twins: Caroline and Will,  2 years
Favorite Stores: Janie and Jack, Target, Gymboree, Gap, TJMaxx
Typically when it comes to dressing the twins, I stick with the classics. I love outfitting Caroline in girly dresses, tights, and always pair it with a matching headband or bow. Will usually sports a long sleeve polo or button down with a sweater and some corduroy pants. I don't always shop with the intention of finding coordinated outfits, I usually just buy what I love for each kid and then figure out the coordination later. If I am specifically looking for coordinated outfits, I love shopping at Janie and Jack and Gymboree because they do the work for you! They always have matching boy/girl collections. How easy does that make it? I also love scouring TJMaxx and Marshalls for great deals. Some of the twins cutest fall outfits have come from the sale racks!
Girl: Headband | Dress | Tights | Shoes
Boy: Top | Sweater | Pants | Shoes

Name: Betsy Wijas
Store: H&M
Twins: Henry & Hope, 3 years
Favorite Stores: H&M, Gap, and Gymboree
I have always been into shopping and fashion so they had no choice but to be little fashionistas too.  I do a lot of sewing too so they wear a lot of mommy made outfits.  Henry has two styles: preppy and hipster.  He is usually wearing khaki a button up, and tie or skinny jeans, a graphic tee, and fedora.  Hope is all over the map as she has become quite opinionated about her wardrobe.  She loves to mix up frilly girly dresses with funky tights and boots, and she can never have enough accessories.  When they were little I loved when I could find them matching clothes, but now I’m just excited when their outfits coordinate once in a while.  They are wearing outfits I made for them in this picture.
Girl: Scarf | Dress | Jacket | Tights | Boots
Boy: Hat | Jacket | Top | Pants | Boots

Name: Rachel London
Store: Kelly's Kids
Twins: Olivia and Cole, 22 months
Favorite Stores:, Gap, Kelly's Kids, Polo Ralph Lauren and Old Navy
Olivia & Cole have the most different personalities possible! They will turn two October 14 and its definitely bitter sweet. I don't like dressing them in things other kids will be wearing so I mix and match outfits. I'm pretty Southern so I tend to dress my kids that way...sometimes we like to sass it up and go a bit different, but that's pretty rare. I really like smocked clothing and that's what they tend to wear the majority of the time. If something can be monogrammed, then you better believe I will monogram it. :) 
Boy: Top | Pants | Belt | Shoes

Name: Ashley Rimini
Store: Gap
Twins: Madeline & Mason, 2.5 years 
Favorite Stores: Gap, Old Navy, and H&M
You can follow our crazy, fun, full life at We shop a lot at Gap, Old Navy, and H&M for the kids. You can't beat the prices, sales, and trendy styles for toddlers. Here is my boy/girl twin fall look. I am loving all the cute, preppy style out this season. And have filled their closets full for the fall of floral tops and leggings, and preppy long sleeve baseball tees. However, I also like to switch it up and thought I'd share with you a little more of a toddler hipster/biker look. Is that a thing?! Is now ;) I'm loving the floral dressed mixed with the black biker boots and moto jacket. And who doesn't love a little boy in high tops and distressed denim? 

Girl: Hat | Jacket | Dress | Boots
Boy: Top | Vest | Jeans | Shoes

(The last B/G twin mom wasn't able to complete her look so I did one too! :)
Name: Meredith Haynes
Store: Zara
Twins: Jude & Sloane, almost 3
Favorite Stores: Peek, Nordstrom, Gap, Zara
I don't have a certain style I stick to when dressing my kids, but I love when they're wearing something unique and fun!  I know this sounds silly, but my daughter sports a pixie haircut so I love when I find outfits that show off her unique 'do (and make it obvious she's a girl).  I typically choose graphic tees or anything with a fun print for Jude the dude.  Every time he wears a cardigan I'm in love.  If the outfit makes me smile before I even put them in it, I know I have a winner.

Girl: Headband | Coat | Dress | Boots
Boy: Top | Cardigan | Jeans | Shoes

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Car Seat Safety 101


Did you know September is Child Safety Month?! Even better, did you know that last week was Child Passenger Safety Week?! Sure was! This really got us thinking about how complicated it can be to figure out car seats and child safety. So  we took this opportunity to cover some tips and tricks to help simplify Car Seat Safety 101.

First, let’s talk statistics…


WOW… These statistics are astonishing. As mamas, we all realize the risks that come with transporting our little ones. And the majority of us spend A LOT of time in the car, for one reason or another.  This makes it even more important for us to make sure our children are properly restrained in the correct type of car seat so that they have the maximum amount of protection.  

It’s important to note the importance of placing your children in rear-facing as long as possible (most commonly up to age 3, but also beyond.) It’s a bit of a misunderstanding between mamas that once your kiddo meets the weight requirement noted by their car seat’s manufacturer it’s safe to turn them forward facing. There’s plenty of great information out there on the topic, research has shown that no matter their weight, or the manufacturer’s guidelines your child CAN and SHOULD remain rear-facing for as long as possible while the child can still sit comfortably.  

Purchasing Tips….

These days, it’s pretty hard to come across a car seat that doesn’t have a 5-point harness. But just to review, a 5-point harness includes…

  • 2 leg straps
  • 2 shoulder straps
  • 1 crotch strap

Something SO many families DON’T think to do is to try the car seat/s in your car before you buy them. Although most car seats are similar in dimension, there are a few that may impede on the driver or passengers ability to adjust their seat back. This can be a problem for both the driver and your kiddo’s safety.

The next thing that’s important to know, is to steer clear of second hand or used car seats. There are SO many factors to consider when it comes to car seat safety. Buying second hand or even borrowing from a friend can pose many risks including…

  • Manufacturer expiration
  • Missing parts
  • Missing product manual
  • And even a missing model number and manufacture date label. Again both essential to staying on top of recalls, and car seat expirations.

Lastly, always take into consideration your child’s specific size and weight measurements when choosing and installing a car seat.

Infant vs. Convertible…

There are two basic options when it comes to car seats for your kiddos. Either infant, or convertible

INFANT CAR SEATS – Infant car seats are usually seen as a better option to accommodate newborns. Most newer models are designed to accommodate and protect children up to 35 lbs. The super functional and nice thing about infant seats is they are portable, can be used as infant carriers, rockers, or a safe place to set an infant in or out of a vehicle.

CONVERTIBLE CAR SEATS- Convertible car seats can comfortably fit a child both rear-facing and forward-facing. The fantastic thing about convertible car seats, especially those that can accommodate newborns, is that they grow with your child and can be used over a period of several years. Because of this, many see convertible car seats as a better value.

It’s important to note that Consumer Reports recommends infant seats as a first step because of their heightened security and better fit.

Usage Tips…

Always, always make sure to read the manufacturer’s instruction manual before installing or harnessing a child in the seat. Some basic tips are as follows…


  • At a minimum, car seats should be rear-facing until your child turns 2 years old.
  • Keep your kiddo rear-facing as long as possible, as it provides better back and neck support in the event of an accident.  
  • When rear-facing seats, make sure the car seat is installed at the correct recline angle. Most car seats have built-in angle indicators or adjustors that help with this step.
  • Every car seat needs to be installed using either the lower anchors or the seat belt to secure it in place. If you choose to use a seat belt to install your car seat, pay close attention to how to lock your seat belt in the vehicle owner’s manual.
  • A car seat is BEST placed in the middle of the back seat of your car.
  • Harness straps should lie flat, not twisted, and be placed through the slot that is at or below your child’s shoulders.
  • Make sure the chest clip is at the same level as the baby’s armpits.
  • The car seat must ALWAYS be secured tightly in the vehicle. It should not move side-to-side or front-to-back more than 1 inch when pulled at the belt path.


  • Children should remain rear-facing up until 2 years of age, and may remain rear-facing beyond this time.
  • Sometimes, children can outgrow the rear-facing size requirements before they turn 2, in this case, we encourage you to continue to go rear-facing until it impedes their comfort.  
  • Once a child is no longer comfortable rear-facing, and has met the forward-facing minimum height and weight requirements, it’s considered appropriate to make the switch,
  • For forward-facing seats that have a tether strap, connect it to the tether anchor and tighten. This step is very important as it limits forward head movement in a crash.
  • Harness straps should lie flat, not twisted, and be placed through the slot that is at or above your child’s shoulders.
  • It’s encouraged to continue to forward-face a child in a convertible car seat until they’ve outgrown its maximum forward-facing height and weight limits.


  • If a child has outgrown the maximum forward-facing height and weight requirements for their convertible seat, it’s recommended they should use a booster seat along with the car’s seat belt up until 12 years of age.
  • Children under 13 should remain seated in the back seat due to the dangers that the front seat airbag presents in the event of a collision.



If you’re still feeling nervous about installing your child’s car seat solo, you can find a Car Seat Safety Technician near you who will properly install and teach you how to install your car seat. Many of these technicians reside in fire stations or police stations around the country. In this case you will always want to call ahead of time to ensure someone certified is available.

To find a Car Seat Inspection Station near you visit

We encourage all families to become familiar with the following resources to help you keep your kiddos safe and sound...

Safe travels, mamas…


Maggie Price MA, CLC | Founder of