17 September 2013

Hack broken restaurant high chairs by carrying your own quick release buckle

Kerry's got a great tip for those of you who bring your older babies and toddlers to restaurants:

In luggage or outdoor gear stores (or the camping section of some big box stores), you can buy a black nylon strap with a quick release buckle (the kind of buckle where you have to squeeze the two tabs to release it). You can get them in various lengths for a few bucks.

At Amazon: Liberty Mountain Quick Release Strap (affiliate link)
At Amazon: Liberty Mountain Quick Release Strap (affiliate link)

Pick one up and stash it in your diaper bag. Get the longest one they have.

When you’re in a restaurant and the high chair has a broken strap or buckle, rather than sending it back or leaving kiddo unsecured, just use your own. I wrap each end around a back leg of the chair once, then route them up and over his lap, snap them together and, voila! Secure kid.

Works on shopping baskets too, though they’re usually easier to swap out.

Quick release straps are good for all sorts of things:

  • keeping sleeping bags rolled up
  • strapping together a pile of beach or pool towels
  • attaching stuff to rolling luggage

Anyone else have a good use for a quick release strap? Something we haven't thought of? (Don't be shy...what's obvious to one person is a forehead-smacker to another.)

In a pinch you could just tie your kid to a regular chair using your jacket. This isn't a recommendation as it's clearly not as secure, but it worked for me in a moment of desperation. -- Asha

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I bought something like this so I could feed my kid in a chair even when there were no high chairs. I used it for both, so it was so worth it!

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