Friday, November 14, 2008

Beetle and a baby-carrier

Despite my previous post's wonderings about the implications of genetic testing, I am still also concerned with the more pressing matter of getting around town with Henry in the Beetle. I love looking in my rearview mirror and seeing Henry's reflection in his own little backseat mirror. He seems to like looking around, out the back window, and he still loves to snooze while I'm driving.

The only problem is actually getting him into the car. As of 4 months of being a parent, I maintain that it's doable to have a Beetle and a baby--but I now realize that bench-presses really should have been and important part of my pre-baby planning!

So, I have a Peg Perego 2007 Primo Viaggo car seat (in "revi black"--white dots on a black background. Henry LOVES looking at the dots!). There's room for the car seat in the back of my 2003 New Beetle--it's just hoisting it back there that is the challenge with the 2-door Beetle (OK, it's a hatchback, so techincally it's 3 doors. But you know what I mean.)

I just surmised a probably unscientific weight for the carseat. (weighed myself, then held the carseat and weighed us both, found the difference. Makes sense, right?) I determined that the carseat, by itself, weighs 10.4 pounds.

Henry now weighs about 15 pounds (using the same method). No wonder my back's sore! That's 25 pounds of baby + baby-protection I'm manuevering past the folded front seat and into the back!

Sometimes, I opt to crawl into the backseat and place or retrieve Henry from the carseat, instead of taking the whole thing out. I think that will be my new preferred method...unless he's sleeping. Then I will hoist him, carseat and all, until my muscles completely give out, rather than wake him up!

So, it's very possible to travel with the baby and the carseat in the back of the Beetle. But I am starting to see (or feel, I should say) the intrigue of the less stylish but easily accessible minivan (or a lighter-weight car seat)!

Not that I'm trading in the Beetle any time soon, or opting for a lighter carseat, either. (Although it would have been nice if this seat could have been stylish, safe, AND lightweight. I guess I'll settle for safe and stylish, though.) Besides, Henry clearly appreciates the mod look of it, and for now, that's worth some heavy lifting. We'll see if my back agrees with my aesthetics.


Anonymous said...

Love your writing. I too am Kate Abbott, but I live in Cape Town South Africa.
Have a wonderful day and perhaps if bored you might want to visit my blog 'Coffee with Kate'
Kind thoughts,
Kate Abbott

Rebecca Chastain said...

You'll be the buffest mom around in no time!

(And I love the other person's comment here! LOL)

VM said...

Hi! I stumbled upon your blog on Google and I could absolutely relate!!! I have a 5 month old, use 2007 Peg Perego gear and drive a 2003 New Beetle (convertible though which means a lot less space!). I love my son but I love my bug too so I can't bear parting with it for a roomier mom-mobile. LOL!

I tried traveling with the baby in the Viaggio car seat and the Pliko P3 stroller on the front seat (only place where it fit). The stroller kept on hitting my head each time I turned! On the bright side though, the carrier was easier to pull out since I had a better angle there compared to our 4-door Civic (pulling sideways).

I'm looking forward to reading your blog!

TikiBird said...

Hi, VM! I'm glad you found me, and that we seem to be living parallel Beetle + Baby lives! I'm impressed you were able to get the stroller in the front seat at all--I simply can't figure out how to do it right.

I'm very intrigued with your convertible. Do you drive with the top down? Does it make it easier to get the stuff in and out?

VM said...

I haven't put the top down when with the baby. It's been raining here in the Bay Area most of the time. I have put the top up and down though before to load and unload shopping stuff (I was able to fit an exersaucer smart steps and huge dollhouse - both still in boxes - at the back seat) and it was very convenient!

Regarding the stroller, my husband figured out that if he pushes the adjustable handles of the Pliko P3 all the way down, he can manage to get the whole stroller on top of the passenger seat. Do you have an idea whether an Aria would fit in the trunk or at least behind the driver seat (without crushing the driver's legs)?

TikiBird said...

VM, it's amazing how much the Beetle can hold, and your putting the top down makes it even better! I need to upload a photo of my friends cramming a bassinet, fully assembled, in the back of the Beetle for me!

Anyway, as for the stroller issues, I only have a Pliko P3, so I don't have experience with an Aria and I'm not sure how much bigger it is. But, I can tell you that my P3 fits behind me in the backseat when I'm driving! It just wedges in and touches the (rounded) ceiling, but it's in there. It goes next to the carseat, which I have behind the passenger seat (since I can't fit the Primo Viaggio seat behind me when I need to drive).

I don't know if that helps at all, but it's fun to think that someone else out there is going through the same thing!