Tuesday, September 20th, 2005
Review: Fisher-Price Healthy Care Booster Seat
When we went shopping for a highchair, a looming issue was our parents. They live hours away and carting a highchair in our car was not an option. The portability of Fisher-Price’s Healthy Care Booster Seat caught my attention, and when I looked at its other features, I knew a highchair was simply unnecessary.
The feeding chair secures to a regular dinner chair â€“ one strap around the chair’s back, one strap around the bottom. In other words, this seat fits into our home and is not another extra piece of baby furniture like a highchair.
A three point harness holds Little Miss into the feeding chair, in addition to a blue tray that snaps over her legs. A white removable feeding tray with a molded drink holder snaps on top. The white tray fits in our dishwasher, though we usually do a quick sink wash.
For transport, the seat collapses and/or folds together. A green cover snaps to the white feeding tray so that its surface remains clean. One of the chair straps doubles as a shoulder carrying handle.
The chair’s portability has been very helpful, whether taking the seat 300 miles to Grandma’s house or 5 miles to a playdate. In theory, we could even take it to restaurants. The seat has three height adjustments which helps it adapt to varying table heights. That’s another cool point. Little Miss eats at table height, right next to us.
Cleaning the feeding chair is easy because it’s entirely plastic with no nooks or crannies (except where the straps enter the chair â€“ that is a minor clean-up if you serve mashed potatoes and your kid likes to hide food under her butt like Little Miss does).
When Miss entered her "drops food because she can" phase, our cloth dinner chair gained a few stains. So, we ran out and bought a plastic seat cover. Boy, forget that idea. When Miss began walking she delighted in bending, pulling and otherwise contorting the seat cover.
One day, while I was re-securing the cover with massive amounts of duct tape, a solution struck me. The next Saturday I bought a solid wood chair for $2 at a garage sale which doesn’t stain and is easy to clean. Of course, shortly after I bought the wood chair, Miss switched from dropping to tossing her food, thus sparing the chair of direct hits.
At 15 months of age, Miss has discovered that she can remove the white tray and throw it on the ground. It’s not a problem to forego using the white tray and just sink wash the larger blue tray, but we’ve instead decided to begin transitioning her to table eating. How? Use no trays and just scoot her up to the table with a plastic place mat. Don’t get me wrong. Feedings are still a mess, but we have hard floors. God help anyone who dines over carpet.
When Miss grows a bit more, we’ll collapse the seat’s back to create a pure booster seat. This is simply the only toddler feeding chair we’ll ever need.
See Fisher Price’s product page, and click the "Try Me" button for a Flash demo.
Update: Tod at thDad.com has a five star review of the feeding chair.