Age: 6+ months
A comfy, upright baby seat with the best view in the house. Think comfort. Think fun. Think contemporary. All in one great seat! The supportive, upright baby seat with soft fabric and a wide, sturdy base lets baby see and interact with the world around them. Perfect for playtime, two linkable toys invite baby to sit up and explore, encouraging reaching, grasping and development of motor skills.
- Upright seat for sitting & playing
- Soft, supportive seat pad
- Wide & sturdy base
- Helps keep baby entertained at home or on the go
- Seat compactly folds and has a carry handle for portability & storage
- Removable & machine washable seat pad
- Reaching & grasping for toys helps give motor skills a boost
- Comes with two linkable toys – clacker keys and a flower teether
Why This Sh!t Worked For Us (Mostly):
NOTE: Janet Landsbury, author of Elevating Child Care: A Guide to Respectful Parenting, discourages sitting infants up prematurely (even for quick photo shoots) in order to enable natural gross motor development. I don’t have the educational background or professional expertise to rebut Landsbury’s argument in “Chapter 9: Sitting Babies Up,” but Sydney’s temperament prevented us from propping or positioning her in a confined space regardless. I did try to apply Landsbury’s diverse advice in various aspects of childrearing when it aligned with our lifestyle, and I believed it prudent to agree that devices, like this chair, are not intended for early-infant or extended use.
However, we loved this chair! Sydney tolerated its upright position far more than the reclined bouncers and swings that we tried (she was often trying to prop up on her elbows whenever she was in reclined devices and would inevitably become fussy from discomfort).
While several distributors, including Babies “R” Us, mark this product for ages 6 months and older, several of my mom friends were plopping their infants into this crafty device as early as 3 and 4 months. Although we wanted to encourage Sydney to see and interact with the world, we didn’t start using this seat until Sydney was able to sit up on her own at around five months old.
The wide, sturdy base and soft pad offer support as babies explore their surroundings, while the two linkable toys promote the development of motor skills in a fun, engaging way; however, we were careful not to use it as a means to plant her in a stationary position for long periods of time and prioritized tummy time over convenience.
Regardless, it did add so much function to our home when I needed the use of both of my hands. She seemed to enjoy being able to observe the goings-on at our level — whether we were conversing with friends, typing on a laptop or bustling about the kitchen. The two linkable toys (included) — while simple –entertained our baby more than I initially anticipated. And when she bored of those, I was able to buy a little more time by presenting a teether or other small toy.
Even though it’s a floor seat, we used it on a variety of stable and secure surfaces throughout our apartment, including the center of our bed, the middle of our kitchen countertop, or firmly positioned in the widest part of our sectional couch (facing away from the television; the AAP* discourages screen media other than video-chats for children younger than 18 months as excessive use is linked to lower psychological ability). These surfaces may or may not be against the manufacturer’s recommendations, so you should use your own discretion when determining safe placement around your home or elsewhere.
We did allow Sydney to snack in the chair, and after her first sweet potato finger painting project, I assumed the silver platter design would be forever discolored, but the durable yet soft seat pad wipes remarkably clean with just water and can be removed entirely for a sudsy machine wash. We found it to be much simpler to remove and reattach than the seat pad in the Graco Bumper Jumper, but given the doorway jumper’s more active design, I appreciated its tighter, secure fit. Several versions of this seat with a tray do exist. Side Note: Remove the linkable toys before feeding to avoid having to dig out the inevitable gunk smashed into the crevices within the rings.
This seat still gave us the brief hands-free moments that we craved.
“With baby by your side,” the manufacturer boasts, “you’ll have a few moments to catch up on chores and email, and to bask in the awesomeness of baby and this seat!”
New Parent Tip: Tummy time–placing a baby on his or her stomach while awake and supervised–can help babies develop strong head, neck and shoulder muscles and promote certain motor skills. It can also prevent the back of a baby’s head from becoming flat (positional plagiocephaly). According to Elliott Cortez, Ph.D., there is no such thing as too much tummy time; if they’re awake, they should be on their tummy. Sounds easy enough, but it can be difficult to routinely execute when your grub-like newborn lacks the awareness and strength to immediately assume a comfortable position on his or her belly. When your newborn cries at 100 (on a scale of 1 to 10) in response to everything from hunger to fatigue and minor discomforts to legitimate pain, tummy time can become an exhausting experience for both parent and baby since it can often seem like no amount of positive encouragement and toy rattling will distract from the excruciating wails. While muscling through an appropriate amount of tummy time each day with Sydney, the Fisher Price Sit-Me-Up Floor Seat was a welcome reprieve until she began to regularly enjoy the tummy view of the world around her.
[BONUS TIP] Tummy Time: It can be accrued not just on the floor, but also with your baby in your arms in a variety of positions, including simply holding your baby to your chest while you’re slightly reclined. Elliott suggests placing your baby high on your shoulder; your baby’s inability to comfortably lean his or her head against you will encourage them to lift from the neck and push up with the arms. More information about tummy time can be found here.
*More about the American Academy of Pediatrics’ stance on screen time is available on their website.