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She's Big for Her Age

Tristan is wondering if any mama's out there are in her shoes.  Do you have a "big baby"?

My 4 month old daughter is very big for her age (18 lbs and 27 inches...a behemoth!) and we were wondering if anyone had recs for a carseat, since she will be outgrowing her Graco Snugride sooner than later (they go up to 22 lbs and a year).  Also, any other recommendations from other parents who had big babies might be interesting to hear: obstacles they faced with clothes and toys and feeding.

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My son had similar stats. He came out of me at 10 lbs 3 oz, and has stayed a big 'un for going on 11 years!

We had to switch our car seats at 4 months. We bought a convertible car seat and kept it rear-facing until he was one. He was 75% percentile for height and it worked fine for his legs. It will be tempting to turn her around to face front, but you really can't do it, from what I read, regardless of how much she weighs.

The only advice I can think of right now is to not let anyone tell you your child is fat - unless they are a pediatrician. My son has always been extremely healthy and active, but well meaning friends and relatives made comments at times that I found kind of disturbing - like not to feed him fats...when he was exclusively breastfed! Wierd stuff.

I too have a big baby, Jack is 28 weeks old and in the 95% for both weight and height. I have been researching convertible car seats and it sounds like the Britax Marathon is a good bet for bigger babies who will need room to grow. Another less expensive option that seems highly recommended is the Fisher Price Safe Voyage Deluxe. Hopefully some other mamas will share real life experience with these seats.

My son was 9lb 12oz and quickly outgrew his Graco carseat. I bought a Britax Decathalon and it seemed to fit him well, and at 3yrs old...he is still using it.

My daughters are not big - in fact my oldest has the opposite problem. She is so small she does not make the charts. I imagine just like us you will get many comments. Ignore them. I actually had people challenge whether or not she was as old as I say she is - they always thought she was younger and should not be walking, talking, etc. I got to the point that I would tell people she was a genius and leave it at that.

I highly recommend the Britax carseats. I have seen people buy less expensive ones and then have to replace them before the child was ready for a booster. I think they are one of the best seats on the market. Seagal's in Beaverton has a great selection and they will fit it to your car (and install it for you).

With that said, if you have a second car and you travel by plane a lot I would look into a different seat for the second car/plane. The Britax is really hard to fit on an airline seat and my partner has had the bruised hands to prove it. We have the Britax in the car the kids are in the most and the second car has the smaller plane appropriate seat.

We've used Britax Roundabouts for our three kids, including our 11 lb, 5 oz infant who continued growing big. We are turning her around this week (one year birthday!). I agree that Britax is a great way to go.

At 27", she may be too tall for the SnugRide already. Is there at least an inch between the top of her head and the top of the seat? If not, time to get a new seat, even if she hasn't hit the weight limit yet!

I also recommend the Britax seats. My four year old is still in his marathon and will be for quite some time as he's nowhere near the weight limit and still has another row of harness slots to go.

And I've got my one year old rear-facing in a britax decathlon with no plans to turn him forward facing anytime soon. If they're not complaining, and they haven't hit the rear-facing weight limit on their seat (30-33 lbs on most convertible seats), rear-facing is safest.

http://babyproducts.about.com/od/carseats/youtube/rear_facing.htm

The Cosco Scenera or Touriva make great light weight, inexpensive travel seats. They fit into airplane seats easily, and they run about $40-50. They're not as cushy as the Britax seats, but they're highly ranked as far as safety goes. That's what we use in my husband's car and take them out to use when we fly.

my son was almost 20 pounds and was 28 inches at 4 months....off the charts. by his 6 month check-up he was still off the charts for height, but slipped into the 95th percentile for weight. i don't remember when we changed his carseat, but we have 2 cosco alpha-omegas. we're overall happy with it, but it doesn't fit well in the center of our prius (unless we encroach on tall parents' leg room while driving).
people tell me he's fat or chubby or that he's going to be a linerbacker (and both of us hate football). who cares. don't let it bother you, just love your little bub. everyone has their opinion about everything (not just the height/weight of your baby) and some people feel the need to express their opinions unsolicitied. it hasn't bothered me so far, and i typically don't respond. i'm a little worried about what happens once he begins to understand, but hopefully people will not be so blunt. or perhaps my not-caring will cause him not to care either?
i was also a big baby and i was almost 6 feet in 6th grade. i always felt big too, and though i have a great mom, i think she perpetuated those feelings a little (she's tall too, has her own set of issues). i especially remember shopping trips, when i was told i was too big to wear this or that, or she'd make me get the next size up even though the one i had on fit just fine. she still does this if we shop together, even though i'm no longer growing! i'd advise that you let your daughter wear whatever she wants to wear, regardless of whether it looks too small to you. and don't constantly remind her of her size; when you do, paint it in a positive light.
i was always proud of my height despite being the tallest person in class. even with that pride, i still found it difficult to navigate through the world, until i joined a sport that valued my heighth and i became friends with other tall girls. when she's old enough, i highly recommend it!

Yep, Britax Marathon. We put our first huge baby in there when she outgrew the Graco infant seat. She has always loved her Marathon. She isn't huge anymore at 3 years, just a little above average and her friends are quickly gaining on her. My family has HUGE babies that start to average out when they are 2-3 and we're actually small people in the long run. We'll probably put our 9 week old in a Marathon in the next month as she is also outgrowing her infant carrier quickly. It is hard to get a lot of comments about "are you sure she needs to nurse again, she doesn't look like she could be hungry?" Oh well, at least we know they are healthy and we get to develop strong muscles (and sore backs). Right now people never believe me that my baby is as young as she is since at 9 weeks she's wearing 9 month clothes. As for obstacles, my girls haven't been as tall as they've been wide so capri pants are my best friend. They always fit like regular pants. No difference with toys that I've noticed. As for feeding, our hardest part was that our first daughter was extremely interested in real food at 4 months and it was really, really hard to wait until the suggested 6 months. Good luck!

Nothing new to contribute, I guess. My 4 month old is 16 1/2 pounds and 27 1/2 inches. I second the poster who said your daughter may be already out of the Graco Snugride. Mine says don't use beyond 26 inches. So I just bought my son a Fisher-Price Safe Voyage. We have the Britax Marathon for our (also tall) daughter, but I didn't see the need to spend $250 twice.
Also second that the Britax is miserable on airplanes.

Both of our girls moved out of their infant seats at the 4 month mark. I second the recommendation for the Britax Marathon, that is what both kids used. We just moved our 4 year old into a booster because she was getting too tall for that seat.

My daughter was 20lbs and 30inches at 6 mos. We also got the Britax Marathon carseat for her and just waited till she was 1year to turn it around. My advice to you is not to assume your daughter is going to keep getting bigger at the same rate. My daughter evened out for quite awhile and was only 23lbs 31 inches at her 1year birthday. I ended up getting rid of things a little early and buying things I thought she'd be big enough for too soon. As for other people's comments, ignore them! Everybody grows at their own rate.

My kids were big babies and my response to the "oh, he/she is so big!" has always been "I know, aren't chubby babies just delicious?" as I show off their plump legs.

Clothes are such a big expense when a little one is growing that quickly. It was tragic to see how fast she grew out of things that people had handknit.

If I had it to do over there are a few things I would have invested in earlier. I probably would have bought more hanna andersson clothes, and fewer at Target - not because they aren't pretty and stylish, but they do seem designed for slim hips. Hanna clothes seem to last longer because they can fit a big size range, especially their "zippers". They also sell a "grow with me" onesie that has an extra row of snaps. Resale shops were the best for buying Hannas, but I never found those onesies there. I also never tried those little onsies extenders they sell at places like One Step Ahead, but they might have worked, too.
I also had good luck with Old Navy, especially pants. My neighbor, whose girls were all almost as giant as mine, swore by gymboree. I agree with the poster who talked about capri-length pants - You can buy those in a much larger size than your child's age, and the length and width will be just right for her.
At this age, dresses are a good bet, too - they can just turn into tops as they get too short. But dresses kind of get in the way once they start crawling.

We use cloth diapers, but disposables for travel, and some days, it just seemed easier to wrestle pants on over a disposable. When she was growing the fastest during her first year, I just kept a big box in the nursery to hold the size she was growing out of, to keep things organized.

If you like to carry your babe, you'll be pretty happy when she can sit up, and you can start using a back carrier like the Ergo. As she gets older, she'll also get easier to carry in your arms, because she'll support more of her own weight.

Make sure you check the weight range on any of the baby gear that you own, like swings or jumpers. Our girl pushed past the weight limit on a lot of key equipment - like her pack-n-play - early on, so we can't use those to keep her contained. Indoors we use a crib when necessary, and outdoors we use a kind of a pen called a superyard xt.

She outgrew her infant tub really early, well before she could sit up on her own. We solved that by having one of us take a bath with her until she was very good at sitting up.

We bought the Britax Marathon for safety, but she also seems so much more comfortable in it than she ever was in the bucket.

I'm sure there are more things I'm forgetting!


So nice to know there are so many other "big" babies out there. Maybe they need to think about updating the charts since so many of our babies are off them. My daughter has always been the the 95th percentile for ht and wt and is 31lbs and 37" at 2yrs. My little guy was 21lbs and 28 1/2" at his 4mo appt 2wks ago. I think he's trying to catch up to his big sister as fast as possible. Thank goodness it's summertime and we can get away with just wearing onesies. I thought I had enough clothes to last us a year. He's wearing 12mo clothes now but even those are getting snug. Once it's time to start wearing clothes again I'll be going with things I know run big like the Children's Place, and Hanna Anderssen if I can find it used. My 2yo daughter is still wearing some her 18mo sizes from both even though we'll be buying 4T's for her when we do our fall shopping.
As far as carseats go, I can't remember which one I have except that it's a convertible with a booster that goes up to 100 lbs. My daughter was using but she's now in the one from Grandma's house so that her brother would have something he fit into.

For those of you looking to buy Hanna clothes do not forget the outlet in Lake Oswego. I have found a lot of great deals there and often buy ahead. Last year I got five pairs of shorts at less than $5 each in November for example. Antother time I got white ribbed onies for $1 each.

There have been times when grandma has given the kids clothes and by the time they seem to fit right they are half price at the outlet store. I have learned that you can return items to the Pearl store and then use the credit at the outlet.

I have two tall kids who had to move out of the Graco at 4 months (mine only goes to 26 inches). We have Britax Marathons for both and have been very happy with them. They're a little spendy but worth the money since they're so safe and pretty easy to install with or without the LATCH system. They are pretty heavy if you plan on traveling a lot but you can buy wheels for them so you can use them as a stroller or like rolling luggage.

Both kids are now tall and thin so my problem may be a little different but it's still pretty hard to find clothes for them because things tend to be short and too wide. My son started out high on the weight and height charts but he's since about dropped off the weight chart and is still over 90 in height. They are all so different. As long as she's happy and healthy and eating good foods don't worry about size. My advice would be make sure you have a supportive pediatrician who will work with your child's size and not against it.

Have fun and enjoy your beautiful baby!

Another great place to find inexpensive Hannah clothes is the resale shop, Zanzibar, by the Hollywood library. They often have HA clothes still with the tags on at a fraction of the retail price. In fact, they have lots of good clothes in general. And I highly recommend buying ahead with HA. They'll always fit them eventually.

Also, don't let people pull your babe up by one of her arms as she gets a little bit older and ready to toddle. My friend had a very large baby and she accidentally dislocated one of her child's shoulders that way. Not a pleasant trip to the ER, I would think. The biggest danger might be from other people who overestimate the baby's strength and skills. My babe's swim teacher once pulled her up by one arm when she was sitting on the pool deck (I was in the pool next to her). This was before she could even crawl, but some kids are already walking at that age, and I suppose the teacher thought she could.
As a side note, she crawled late and will be walking late, and our pediatrician says that's normal for a big child.

Agree with the Britax. We had a Graco Snugride initially, then a Britax. When he was 3, he grew out of that - usually they work until the kids are booster-ready. Then had to buy a Britax Husky. They are enormous!! They're the only carseat on the market if you have a larger child who you don't want in a simple booster yet. Britax is really terrific.

Does anyone have experiences good/bad with the Fisher Price Safe Voyage Deluxe Convertible Car Seat? (Compared to the Britax Marathon). I'm a Britax fan but would like to save some money. I hear that Britax actually makes this carseat through Fisher Price and it's a much better price. Thanks.

I'm finding discussion very late but am glad to read it! My daughter is 4.5 months old and over the 95% for height. It's good to know I'm not the only one looking for a new car seat already and constantly struggling with clothing.

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