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How to Prep Your Car for Bringing Home a Newborn

Being an expectant parent is so exciting. For nine months, you may find yourself doing tons of research and feeling overwhelmed by all of the to-do's. The impending added responsibility of caring for a tiny human who is fully reliant on you will also start to sink in over time.

One of the important things to take care of and consider before baby arrives, it to prep your vehicle for baby's first car ride- the trip home from the hospital. The hospital will not let you leave without a properly installed infant car seat, so be sure to do your research, have the set installed ahead of time, and checked by a professional before the big day arrives.

Selecting a car seat can be a daunting task. There are so many different brands and designs available today. Though price may play a big part in the decision you make toward the purchase of a car seat, don't let that over-rule safety. Keeping your baby safe should be of utmost importance. Make sure that the car seat is easy to carry, can be adjusted to your baby's needs, and fits securely in the back seat of your vehicle. If you are unsure of how to properly install the seat, your local fire department should be able to check it for you, and help, if need be.

Other things to take care of before baby's first car ride...

Clean the car- inside and out. Take some time to give your car a thorough cleaning. It may be quite a while before you have the energy or the time to do this for several weeks after you bring home your precious bundle of joy, so take the time to give your car a little TLC. Along with washing the exterior, vacuum out the interior. Shake out and clean the floor mats, wipe down the dash, and re-stock needed items such as tissues, wipes, spare change, and make sure you have a working car charger for your phone. Clear out all unnecessary items and clutter, and remove trash.

Make a baby bin. Now is a good time to make a baby bin to keep in the car at all times. Babies are unpredictable, and you never know when they'll need a diaper change, etc. Keep a canvas bin or tote in the car with items like a portable changing mat, wipes, diapers, a change of clothes for baby, a toy to hold their attention, clean extra pacifier, diaper disposal bags, and bottled water (for those uh-oh moments). It's also a good idea to make sure you have a clean extra blanket in the car, in case you need to bundle baby while you're out of the house.

Make sure you have room for gear. Not every parent totes around baby gear from the very beginning, but it's a good idea to make sure that items like a stroller will fit into the trunk of your car. If you're more into baby wearing, keep a spare baby carrier in the car, as well.

Mom will probably want to ride along home in the back seat with baby, and may feel more comfortable riding in the back with baby for the first few weeks. Having a new baby takes some getting used to, but before no time, it will seem like this is the way it has always been, and you won't be able to imagine life any other way.

This post brought to you by Chuck Patterson Dodge.

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