Friday, December 27, 2013

Precious Cargo

What could be more important than ensuring that your children are as safe as possible when driving around town?

I have followed Super Car Sear Geek on Facebook for a while watching for tips, deals on car seats and interesting facts about car seat safety.  It became clear very quickly that Abbie (aka Super Car Sear Geek) knows her stuff and is truly passionate about what she does. Her Lehigh Valley Car Seat service offers FREE car seat checks to parents and caregivers in the region and has invaluable advice for families through her courses, checks and other available services. Recently partnering up with fellow CPST Erica McCabe the service has now expanded to provide car seat checks in the Pocono region also!

Personally, I thought I knew everything I needed to know (I bet you do too).  Abbie can teach even a seasoned parent some new tricks for keeping safe while driving ( I promise!).  Attending a class and scheduling a car seat check probably are not high on your to do list, they weren't high on mine either.  Keep reading and see why you might want to re-evaluate that to-do list, it will be worth your while!  I cannot say enough how much this class and car seat check boosted my confidence in my ability to secure my children in our vehicles.  It say sound "geeky" but the first time I drove with them in the back seat I thought to my self "I KNOW they are as safe as they can be" and I actually felt better and safer while driving them around.

Car Seat Class

I recently attended her "Crash Course: Car Seat Safety for Caregivers" at The Growing Place in Emmaus. Abbie presented her course in an interactive, engaging way, by asking questions quizzing us on our past knowledge and by letting us be the inspectors of the seats shown above.  She used videos that showed the severe impact that children endure during crashes.  These videos showed in real time how improperly restrained children sustain impact during a crash.

One of the most important items discussed which is extremely relevant during the cold winter months, is the fact that children are NOT to wear bulky winter coats while restrained in a car seat or boosters!  Abbie had creative suggestions for how to keep kids warm and safe during the chilly winter months.  This class is highly recommended to parents-to-be, current parents, child care providers, and grandparents and would make a great gift!

The Growing Place

I attended my course at The Growing Place in Emmaus. This local business offers a variety of services to parents, parents-to-be and caregivers.  Pre-natal massage, breastfeeding classes, birthing classes, doula services, car seat safety, baby sign language and more! This unique center hosts a variety of services that support families and mothers/mothers to be.  They also host a free mom's group for mothers and their children the 1st and 3rd Wednesday of each month.  Their home-like setting is comfortable and welcoming and is tucked just off of Main St. in Emmaus making it quite convenient. Stop in to see their location and meet their friendly staff or drop in to their mom's group and meet some new friends and playmates.

 Checking the Seats

Abbie and I met to check our current seats for proper installation and fit.  Her evaluation was so thorough, I was very impressed. She checked each child's weight and height and evaluated how they were sitting in their current seats.  She determined our older child was near to growing out of her seat, which hadn't occurred to me yet!  There are factors that go into determining a fit that Abbie knew and I did not. Her check was much more comprehensive than the check we received from the local police station and The Personalized Quick Reference Guide seat she left us with is a great reference tool to follow along with and monitor for when our children are ready for another switch.

Car Seat Concierge 

When purchasing car seats for our children the first 2 times we focused mainly on price, height and weight, looking for something that seemed to last a while and would meet our child's needs.  If you ever been to the car seat section at Buy Buy Baby or Babies R Us, you understand the veritable jungle that one encounters when shopping for a car seat, its a nightmare, how could you possibly pick the perfect seat at the best price to last a long as possible?!?! Abbie helps with this too, her car seat concierge service evaluates every variable that goes in to picking a seat and guides you to choose the best seat for your budget, child and car.
  • vehicle make/model
  • multiple vehicle usage
  • child's height/weight/age
  • rear facing or forward facing variables 
  • price point/affordability

 Her extensive experience with different seats, vehicles models and safety regulations will guide you in your purchase.  This service was AMAZING! She guided us in our purchase, helped find a great deal on the seat we needed after noticing that we were about to outgrow the current seat being used. She evaluated our needs for a seat and  made recommendations based our our children's specific needs.  I would never have been able to navigate the 1,000's of available seats with such ease had it not been for Abbie's advice. Our daughter was so excited by her new seat when it arrived, we regretted not wrapping it up for Christmas!

I highly recommend this service to anyone who is looking for a new seat for their child, it is 100% worth the cost, especially in that Abbie certainly knows where to find a great deal on seats, so your cost could easily be cancelled out by the savings you get on a great deal.

Interested in scheduling a free car set check? You can contact Abbie by phone or e-mail or through her facebook page. Like her page on facebook to follow along for great tips and tricks!

Abbie Patterson
(484) 544-3664

Want to find a class to attend?
The next available car sear course is January 18 at Ju-Ju Monkey register here
March 2 The Growing Place will also be hosting a class! Contact Abbie to register. 

What people are saying ... See reviews and raves about Abbie's services here


Thanks for visiting and please be sure to stop by for more Lehigh Valley family resources, activities and fun for kids!

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Thursday, December 5, 2013

Holiday Activities for kids in the Lehigh Valley

Holiday Activities for Kids in the Lehigh Valley has your kid friendly guide to holiday fun in the Lehigh Valley! 

Looking for a great place to see the big guy with your kids this year? We have a great list of places where you can get you child's photo with Santa! Even find a breakfast with Santa event that you'd love!

Lehigh Valley Christmas Tree Farms 
Use our blog archive to link to our "We're Going on A Tree Hunt" Post and read about out visit to Beck Yule Farm this season to find our tree. Check out our full list of Lehigh Valley Christmas Tree Farms and find a great place to have your own little tree hunting adventure. 

The Nutcracker, Christkindlmarkt? Christmas Village? Lights in the Parkway? These awesome local events are memorable and have become family traditions for many Lehigh Valley residents. Find a complete list of local events, activities and more here!

Thank YOU!

We at Lehigh Valley Find & Go Seek want to thank you for supporting our website and appreciate you joining us in our first year of operation and look forward to you staying with us as we jump into our 2nd year of bringing the best of family friendly fun to Lehigh Valley families. 

Sunday, December 1, 2013

"Tree Hunting" at Beck Yule Farm

 Click here for a list of Lehigh Valley Tree Farms
 Some Tree Choppin' Tips
  • Wear boots, or shoes you are OK with getting muddy.
  • Bring a blanket to lay down on when you cut the tree, keeps mud and sap off of your coat.
  • Grab a saw! (they're usually available at the farm)
  • We visited Beck's Yule Farm this year, but we have a great list of Lehigh Valley Tree Farms here so find one that will work for you! Beck's is located just north of Schnecksville, close to a number of areas.
  • Allow for about an hour and 1/2 (2 of you are very picky) to arrive, cut, bundle and pay for your tree.
  • Be sure to ask for your tree to be drilled if you have a Tree Stand that requires a pin.
  • Grab a cart if available, and sometimes measuring sticks are available, so you can make sure you get the right size tree (it can be hard to judge when amoungst 1,000's of them what size is right)

Our yearly "Griswold-esque" tree hunting was chiiillllllyyyy this year! In fact my kids implemented a boycott due to the cold.  They hung out in the car with Mimi while the brave ones and made the hike up the hill to cut the tree. The little ones made a brief appearance when everything was just about done.

Though we have always had excellent luck at Hill Farms in Lehighton and they have an amazing gift shop and wreath shop, which we love warming up in each year. We visited Beck Yule Farm this year forgoing our usual trek to Lehighton's due the lack of time and a desire to stay closer to home.

Tree carts are available at Beck Yule Farm! There is a significant incline you need to climb on the walk to cut your tree, Various species are spaced up along the hill, so depending on what type you are looking for you may have a bit of a walk.  We got a Frasier Fur which was about half way up the hill.

Beautiful views at Beck Yule Farm
There is a snack stand at the farm that offers warm foods near the little shed you pay at. Christmas cookies and other treats and warm drinks are available. 

When we visited (Saturday) Santa was at the farm, taking pictures with kids and handing our candy canes. My daughter wouldn't get within 20 feet of him but may of the kids were visiting with him while waiting for their trees to be bundled up. I thought this addition was a nice distraction for the kids.  Though with no indoor escape from the cold Beck Yule Farm lacks a little in the "extras" some of the other local farms offer.  

It's a beaut' Clark! It was BUSY when we went, with only 3 weekends between Thanksgiving and Christmas this year time is limited for getting trees. We had to wait more about 20 minutes in line to have the tree drilled, shaken and bundled before we were able to strap it up to the roof.  We felt that overall the size of the trees at Beck's were smaller than what we were used to cutting (most were under 9 or 10 feet). They may have had a section of taller trees, but we didn't see it.

We would LOVE to hear about your tree cutting adventures, where you go and if you'd recommend it. Comment below and let us know!