Stroller and Car Safety ala Mom

My mom and dad gave me and my first husband a check for $60 when our first child was born, over 30 years ago. Its purpose was to buy a good stroller. Mom was a big believer in ‘walking the baby.’ That amount of money went a tad further than it does today, and we chose a nice collapsible, burgundy-colored stroller that bridged newborn snuggliness to toddler toughness. The first time mom and I took our brand new daughter for a walk, she taught me to walk next to the stroller when crossing the street, rather than push it in front of me. Walking next to the stroller kept it visible (and safer) to traffic that otherwise might not see it. 

This is the way I crossed any road for the remainder of the time I used strollers with my children. The first time my youngest daughter and I took a walk with my grandson, I passed on this important tidbit of wisdom to her. When I take my grandson on walks, I also walk next to his stroller when we cross the road. 
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When I was a small girl, mom had a VW Bug. Whenever she had to brake hard, she threw her right arm across me in my seat to keep me from flying through the windsheild, even though the car had seatbelts. This was likely a habit picked up from her own childhood experience, when cars weren’t so equipped. So, of course, despite having far, far safer vehicles when I had kids, I did the same thing when braking hard. Drove my first husband (rightfully) nuts! “Keep you hands on the steering wheel!” He’d exclaim. The other day daughter #2 called and asked if I remembered this less than safe habit of mine. She let me know that she had indeed kept her puppy from tumbling off the passenger seat on their way to work with the family ‘right arm fling’ when she’d had to exercise her brakes!   It’s an entertainment and delight to know this habit perpetuates in our family for 75+ years!
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These days it’s good to recall times when my mom was 100% spot on. I’ll be sharing more of those stories going forward.

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