February 17, 2006

Give Me Some Of Your Tote A Tots

tote_a_tot.gifI'm sure you know the boilerplate deal by now: for the first nine months, the man is off the hook while the woman hauls the baby around. In exchange for this--and for pushing the kid out or having her bikini line slashed open--the man agrees to carry the carseats through the airports for life. [Like tips for the doorman at Christmas, the push present is still technically optional--just highly recommended, especially in neighborhoods with a lot of doormen.]

So it should be no surprise that a solution for easing the airport carseat burden would be invented by a dad. Thus, the Tote A Tot, a dad-invented harness that binds your carseat to your wheelie luggage, enabling you to wheelie them both around with ease--and with or without the kid inside [inside the carseat, not the suitcase, right? just checking.]

There are other, similar products out there, of course: the GoGoKidz wheelie cart, for example, which turns the car seat itself into a wheelie-d device. But given the different permutations of suitcases, bags, strollers, and car seats that people travel with, the Tote A Tot offers a welcome option.

Personally, as the last person on earth who doesn't have a wheelie suitcase--save your email, I know I'm a freak, but it's a matter of principle by now, like never seeing Phantom--I will have no need for a Tote A Tot. Also, we usually check every single piece of luggage we can and travel only with kid-related carry-ons, but that's just us. If you operate out of wheelies, and your suitcase handle can handle it, here, have a Tote A Tot. 25 bucks.

Tote A Tot is available for $24.95 at Tote A Tot HQ, and soon it'll be in thousands of stores around the world. [toteatot.com]


As a non-wheeled suitcase holdout, you've got to listen to This American Life episode 298 (Act 2).

Here is how I managed traveling alone with the kiddo. The kid rides in the stroller, huge diaper bag with everything imaginable inside is stuffed into the underseat basket. My stuff is either over my shoulder or over the stroller handle. The canopy of the stroller is fully extended and the car seat is placed face up bearing weight on the canopy and a bit on the stroller handle. This is why we went with the full size stroller. All vestiges of coolness definitely gone. I kind of think we give off more of a " Grapes of Wrath" vibe, but it does get the job done. Kid could even nap with this set up.

[lemme tell ya story 'bout a man named Jay... -ed.]

Best thing we ever bought was the Prince Lionheart "stroller connectors" - so two umbrella strollers are hooked together making one to push - kid goes on one side, other side is either for another kid or a pile of junk...easy to disassemble and get on the DisneyWorld bus! Of course if we're not all together watching Dumbo fly around, we can split up, with one stroller (Ladies) hitting the princess costume shop, and the other (Gents) hitting 'make your own robot' world.

[Britney, TomKat, and Disney Princess = the DT axis of evil. -ed.]

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