Kale and His New Car Seat

Back in the days of early pregnancy (sigh, how things were different then) I bought a stroller / car seat / combo thing of which I have railed about how I dislike it. Well, the car seat has expired and Mr Long and Lean has almost grown out of it anyway, so Ross and I planned our Sunday to include a shopping trip to buy a new car seat.

Like most of my purchases these days, I spent some time online before going to a store researching different car seats. For those that don’t know, there are many different kinds of car seats for various stages of childhood and there are extremely good laws about child safety in cars. Infant car seats are sort of “stage 1” and can come in infant only, or an infant / child type of seat. Here is more info about car seats, from Transport Canada. Our previous car seat was an infant only car seat, and Mr Giraffe Legs here has already reached the end of it. So I went searching for a new car seat, and decided to go for a “convertible” style of car seat that can be rear facing for his infant days, and then forward facing up to 47 lbs.

There are many many brands out there, and an equal number of reviews, and it really depends on a few factors such as what physical shape your baby is as that will determine how comfy it is, and how much space you have in your car, and also money.

Money. Well, that’s a big one. I’ve said it before that opening a baby store is a license to print money, because there is nothing like playing on an expectant parent’s fears about child safety to make them shell out. Seriously. Brutal.

I kept reading how unbelievably great the “Britax” brand of car seat was, but with a $350 price tag, is it really the best one? Or just an expensive one with good PR? I also read up on the Evenflo Triumph Convertible ($150), and the TrueFit Convertible ($200), as well as the Eddie Bauer 3 in 1($190).

Anyway, so Ross and I decided to make our way to Babies R Us, the Mecca of Baby, and decided we wanted to take these demo models down off the shelf, try strapping Kale in, and see how sturdy they were. Good reviews on the internet doesn’t necessarily make the best one for us. So, Sunday we hopped in the car and headed off and walked into Babies R Us (note to self: never go shopping at Babies R Us on a Sunday afternoon AGAIN – sheesh!). No sooner had we walked in there, that Ross, who was carrying our precious little boy, felt his hand get wet.

And by wet, I actually mean “covered in poop that had leaked out of his cloth diaper and through his pants”.

Yeah. Good times.

Because we were only supposed to be out for about an hour, I hadn’t bothered with the diaper bag. I know, I know, that was stupid. But I like to travel light and every day Kale and I go for 90 minute long walks and I never bring the diaper bag. I just kinda figured.

So Ross says to me “Just grab the first car seat you see, if it sucks we will return it and if it works then we will keep it.” So, we came home with the Evenflo Triumph Convertible because there is no point buying the most expensive one if the cheapest one works just as well. It’s not about the money, but why spend if we don’t have to?

Last night we went out for a quick drive after installing the car seat (which was easy enough) and although Kale squawked as he always does, it seemed just fine. I’ll be writing a Product Review in a few weeks after we’ve had a chance to try it out in a few different circumstances, but so far, so good.

And… lesson learned: Keep emergency stash of diaper and clothing change in the car. Then when I elect not to bring the diaper bag, its not the end of the world.

13 years ago


  1. That’s a good piece of advice. I never, ever, ever carry a diaper bag, partially because of ECing, and partially because I’ve never had to learn that lesson the hard way. 😉

  2. Also, the spare clothes should be at LEAST 2 sizes too big. Otherwise, next month when you need them, they will be ridiculously too small. 🙂

  3. The main reason Britax seats are so great is that many have a high harness weight limit (up to 80 lbs for something like the Britax Frontier) and they test their seats for Side Impact Protection (most seats are just tested to see how the child is protected in a back or front-end collision). And yes, they have good PR, too, but there is something of a reason behind the good PR. They are also built like tanks, and a lot of parents like that.

    This doesn’t mean that not having a Britax is going to be a problem – The Sunshine Kids Radian 80 is a fantastic seat with a harness limit of 80 lbs and the True Fit you mentioned is fantastic with a limit of 65 lbs. Plus both are smaller seats and so fit better in cars. Britax seats are ginormous and some parents dislike them simply based on their massive size.

    I’d just say pick the seat with the highest harness weight limit you can afford since keeping kids in a harness longer keeps them safer.

  4. I’ve been wanting to get Moira a new car seat forever but haven’t gotten up the courage to go to Babies R Screaming and test them out. I really hate her car seat though – I don’t think it is comfortable at all. Luckily we don’t have to drive much but with winter coming… I’ve read about how great the Britax are too but have been suspicious of the crazy price tag.

  5. I’m curious to see how you find the Triumph. We have it, Colin’s now in it, and I hate it. Hate. We have E in the Radian and it’s fabulous, but I don’t know how much I’d love it in the rear-facing position. (sidenote: I was sure it’s only rated to 65 lbs in Canada?)
    Also – got the planner, thanks! It’s gorgeous! Sadly, I’m now contemplating gifting it to my new SIL for Christmas, so I might be snagging one of the green ones from you for myself… I’ll email you. 🙂

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