Are we there yet?


 At what age does the car seat become uncool? Hannah has decided that at 9 months, she is now too cool to sit in her car seat. I have much respect for the car seat, I know the dangers of having an unrestrained child in the car, and I have a strict policy on both kids being buckled tightly, before takeoff. However, it’s easier to enforce this policy with Liam, who is open to bribery and corruption, and the promise of a sweetie and Barney on the radio for the WHOLE journey, not only five minutes, usually gets him to sit in his seat for the duration. Hannah, however, is far more difficult to tame. No amount of activity, entertainment, sugary treats or funny faces can appease her. It takes her about ten minutes to enjoy the new scenery, to play with the car toys, turn the window handle a few times, bang on the door panel, throw things at Liam, and play peek-a-boo with the driver via the rear view mirror before boredom sets in. At this point, she realises that she is confined to this seat by means of a three point security buckle and cannot make use of her brand new ability to crawl.. the horror on her face as this realisation sinks in, would almost be amusing it if wasn’t followed by much whining, which then escalates to moaning, which results in screaming.

All this means I have once again been relegated to the back seat. On my left, I have Missy kicking up a fuss, demanding to be taken out of her seat. On my right, I have Mister, enquiring as to when he can get that sweetie I promised, and all this while trying to be a backseat driver. Eventually I crack and take Hannah out of her seat and place her on my lap, but woah nelly, she takes this as her cue to behave like a circus animal. She throws herself around the back seat, squealing in delight. She goes straight for big brother, ruffles his hair, slaps his cheeks, gives him some love and then fiddles with his car seat, as if trying to free him too, she grabs her dad’s ears from behind the driver’s seat and she creates an overall furore that leaves mum, dad and baby brother all flustered and shouting ARE WE THERE YET?

While most babies are lulled to sleep on a car journey, my tigress knows it means GO TA-TA and can’t wait to get going, some relief from being cooped up all day indoors with her nanny I guess. So I suppose I’ll be stuck playing referee in the back seat for a few more months yet. I should just relax and learn to enjoy being chauffeur driven, after all it’s how the Royals do it. Except their animals have separate cages.

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