I still consider myself "new" to Arizona. But having a baby somehow made it easier to make friends! Suddenly, there was something we immediately had in common, something to talk about, someone to share/compare ideas with, and the list could go on. I wanted to immerse myself in activities and events to meet and learn from other moms. I found the Arizona Mom's Network through Facebook, and it was there that I heard about National Mom's Night Out. I had to go. I'm so glad I did, it was at Mom's Night Out that I had the pleasure of meeting my next featured WAHM business: Brie Brie Blooms.
Heather, is a young, fun, and extremely creative mommy who makes (what I consider to be) a MUST-HAVE for Arizona summers. She created, makes, and sells the Car Seat Cooler Pad. Hmm, what is a car seat cooler pad? Well, it's just what you'd think it is. It's a fabric pad, that contains six 5x7 ice packs contained in velcro pockets. When you are out and about with your little one and the temperature starts creeping over 90 degrees, it gets rather warm and uncomfortable once that air shuts off. The car seat cooler pad goes in the car seat when you (and the baby) leave the car. The ice packs keep the seat and buckles cool, so when you come back and strap your baby in, no hot sweaty seat, and no blistering, burn-inducing metal buckles! Heather explains it all in her instructions that come with each one:
1. Keep cooler pad stashed in your freezer (yes, the whole thing fits!)
|I purposely didn't crop the picture so you could get a size idea for how little space this takes up!|
2. Carry it in an insulated lunch bag when you go out (I use one of those thermal bags from the grocery store)
|Nothing fancy, but fits perfectly!|
4. Return to a nice cool seat
5. Remove cooler pad from car seat and strap in your happy child!
**DO NOT SIT YOUR CHILD ON THE COOLER PAD**
These cooler pads are meant as "place holders" when your child is NOT in the seat. It is not safe to place your child on the cooler pad and strap them in.
Heather graciously provided a Car Seat Cooler Pad for me to review and I must say I was a little skeptical at first. B is a super sweater, in a carrier, his stroller, his car seat, at home, the kid just sweats. Whenever we're out and about, and the car starts to heat up, I dread putting him in his car seat. I start the car to try and cool it down knowing full well it's going to take a bit to reach to the back seat. Not to mention he's still rear-facing so I can't place a vent directly on his seat to cool it down any quicker, so when I actually put him in the car seat, it's inevitably still hot. This leads to a (naturally) cranky baby who's hot and uncomfortable. I tried a "home-made" remedy of freezing a milk jug full of water and then placing that in the car seat when we were at the beach (this was during a family vacation to Florida). Yup, came back, the car seat was cool all right, and SOAKING wet! Seems the condensation from the thawing milk jug leaked all over the seat. Cue a (naturally) cranky baby who's now hot, uncomfortable, and soaking wet on his bum and back. I've seen other car seat coolers for sale, but they were so expensive that I didn't want to spend the money on something I wasn't convinced would work. I also could never find them on sale. Anywhere. It was just a few weeks later that I met Heather, I'm convinced it was fate. :)
I followed the instructions to the letter. I froze the cooler pad, put it in my thermal bag and out the door we went. The first "test" was a play date at a pool. A couple solid hours baking in the sun. (The car, not B :))It would be the perfect test. I get out of the car, place the Car Seat Cooler Pad in the seat and cross my fingers. We came back a couple hours later, removed the pad, and wouldn't you know, NOT A DROP of condensation anywhere in the seat. Some of the ice-packs were still somewhat frozen! The seat itself was nice and cold, the metal, plastic and rubber on the buckles were equally cool! I put B in his carseat strapped him in and NOT A PEEP! I climbed int he front seat, started the car and the a/c and before we left the parking lot, he was asleep! I found myself actually feeling a little jealous of his carseat considering my seat was still quite toasty. Perhaps full-sized seat covers one day Heather? :) I've since tested this product for a full week. The results are continually the same. No wet seat, no cranky baby, no complaints! I've also been showing it off as much as I can and the reactions are generally the same. "What a great idea!", "I can't believe how thick the fabric is", "That makes so much sense!"
Now, I know all of you don't have the 100+ degree temps that we have, and wonder about the Car Seat Cooler Pad in the "off-summer" months. Well, problem solved. Simply use microwaveable heat packs in place of ice packs and you will be able to keep the seat nice and toasty! The fabric itself is stain resistant and machine washable, which in my opinion, is an absolute necessity with anything relating to children, and the Car Seat Cooler Pad comes in 4 different patterns! You can see the Car Seat Cooler Pads here to pick out your favorite one. If you're local, Heather will work with you to schedule a pick up time rather than paying for shipping! SCORE :)
Be sure to thank her on facebook for this great deal and check out her blog. She has tons of great DIY craft ideas as well!