Nichol H. | Jamestown, NY; Sat., Jul. 18, 2009

This needs action! As the mom of 2 children and one who needed to be in an ambulance at birth to be transported to a helicopter, I never knew about this until now. I couldn’t imagine what would happen if my child were in that ambulance and it crashed.

Yasmine O. | Dearborn, MI; Sat., Jul. 18, 2009

I’m very surprised to learn that there is no law that requires a child to be strapped/ restrained SAFELY in an ambulance. Look at that number “5,000 AMBULANCE and fire vehicle crashes/year” how many of those involved in crashes are possibly transporting children to the hospital?!

I hope a change is made very soon!

Joanne S. | New City, NY; Sat., Jul. 18, 2009

About time that action is being taken on this. This deficiency has been neglected for too long. Kudos to you for getting the ball rolling.

Leslie M. | Suwanee, GA; Fri., Jul. 17, 2009

Are children a Commodity that just don’t matter?? Children are our heart and soul! They do matter! We need Child safety restraint devices that meet all national safety standards in ER Transport Vehicles!

Raising a Family

I am the mother of two amazing children, one boy – 10 years old and one girl – 6 years old. My son is autistic and my daughter isn’t. Needless to say, life around our house is challenging.

My son received his diagnosis at age five. We were literally on a roller coaster of doctor visits and evaluations before he received his diagnosis. We knew he was autistic, but hearing the words from the doctor was still hard to take. We survived. My son is wonderful and Lessick - Raising a family photowe do everything we can to help him.

Before getting pregnant with my daughter, my husband thought long and hard about having another child. Our biggest concerns were whether or not we would be able to give our son the attention he needed and what would happen if our second child ended up being autistic. We knew that there was a good chance that we would end up with two children on the spectrum, even though we did not have an official diagnosis at that time. In the end, we decided that no matter what, we would love both of our children and do whatever we had to do in order to make it work.

Our daughter was born, and we had no problems. Our son took to her immediately. He loved this bundle of noise the moment he set eyes on her. As they both grew a little older, our daughter has shifted between being little sister to big sister. Constantly going back and forth between the two, she has developed a special relationship with her brother. No one interacts with my son the way she does. She demands his attention and gets it. They laugh and play together in a way that makes me envious. My son does not interact with other children. He simply stands or sits on the sidelines and watches.

It’s amazing how accepting my daughter is of her brother’s differences. We have had to be careful about her copying him, though. Little sisters love to copy their older siblings. She is no exception. We take each occurrence as it happens, letting her know what is appropriate and what isn’t. We explain why and she struggles with her acceptance of it. When she was younger, the hardest instance of this was communication. My son is nonverbal and used to communicate solely with gestures and sounds. My daughter wanted to do the same and we had to constantly tell her to use her words. It was hard for her to understand why she had to when her brother did not.

We have overcome a lot in the last six years. At the heart of it, what has made us able to handle everything, is our love. My husband and I love each other and we love our children. We balance our time with each other and with the two of them. We have made sure we have plenty of family time and plenty of one on one time with each of our children. There is no rule book for raising a family that has a child with autism. All you have to go on is instinct and love. If you have those two things working for you, you can take on anything.

Quick Change Crib

It was 2am and my husband and I had finally fallen asleep, when our slumber was shattered by the cries of our 3 month old daughter. It was my turn to get up. I found that the little one had done it again – she needed to be changed AND so did her crib sheet. Of course it wasn’t her fault, but it was 2am and the crib sheet needed changing again? A necessary evil, I supposed. A baby needs a clean bed and you have to do what you have to do. But, the thought was overwhelming!Crib2, no background

Why? Because it is not an easy task. I, like most people, had the crib set up with bumpers and toys so the baby can be safe and stimulated. In addition, crib mattresses are now required by US regulations to fit very snugly in the frame – again for safety reasons. While safe, it presents quite a problem when you go to change the sheet. You can’t fit your fingers between the sheet and the crib frame to get enough leverage to pull the sheet off and put a new one on. You literally have to pull the entire mattress out and stand it up in the crib to change the sheet. Of course, you can’t do that with the bumpers and the toys on. Aaarggghhh! All this, of course, at 2 am with a baby screaming!

This is a critical decision point in a parent’s life…. brave the task of spending the next 10 minutes cursing and fumbling or take an easier, if more dangerous, route. It is at this time when moms and dads are simply exhausted that they may make a poor decision. Research shows that many parents put a blanket or towel over the soiled sheets; others take their baby back into the bed with them. Both of these options are not ideal – a baby needs to sleep in a clean environment and sleeping with your baby in the same bed can be dangerous (e.g., suffocation). In fact, according to the Consumer Product Safety Commission, more than 60 children younger than two years suffocate each year after being placed to sleep in adult beds.

So, after struggling through one more 2am change,and trying hard to fight off the strong desire to just let my daughter sleep in my bed, I set out to create a crib that would make it easy for parents to choose the cleanest, safest option when it came time to change those sheets. I knew that the Juvenile Products Manufacturing Association (JPMA) consistently states that parents should follow the “A, B, C’s” for infants: “A”lone (no loose blankets or stuffed animals), on their “B”ack (sleeping position) and in a “C”rib (not in parents’ bed). With this in mind, I began the long journey of research with parents, understanding regulations and safety standards, designing and re-designing and patenting my invention. The result? The Quick Change Crib!

The Quick Change Crib has a patented “door” cleverly hidden into the headboard that opens so that parents can slide the mattress out horizontally, change the sheet, and slide it back in without ever having to remove toys, mobiles or bumpers; it literally can be done in 30 seconds. So now we have clean, healthy, safe baby…and definitely more well-rested mom and dad. Think of the extra time you save as more quality time with your baby.

The Quick Change Crib is certified safe by JPMA and and we participate in random quarterly testing through an independent laboratory that tests against CPSCA and ASTM standards. We have also won numerous awards for innovation and design (Whirlpool Mother of Invention Grand Prize Winner, NAPPA- National Parenting Publications Awards, Outstanding Product 2007 by iParenting Media Awards, etc.) and have been written about in leading magazines and journals.

The support for our crib has been undeniable…from Moms and Dads, the press, as well as from recent research. A 2009 study of unmet needs in cribs found that:

  • 82% of parents believe that ease of use is a very important feature of a child’s crib, compared to 33% believing that design is very important and 17% who believe color is important;
  • 97% of experienced moms and Dads find ease of use of the crib especially important;
  • 72% of parents agree that changing the crib sheet is more frustrating than they expected.
  • Nearly 60% of parents report that changing the crib sheet or lifting the mattress is “extremely difficult” or “very frustrating,” compared with 7 percent for changing a diaper.

This whole journey has been simply unbelievable. My parents always used to tell me “wait until you have kids!” whenever I questioned something they said or did, so I expected that my perspective on things might change, but I never expected being a mom would catapult me into a whole new business! I am, and have been for the last 15 years, a principal partner with a boutique management consulting company, but turning my crib idea into reality has been been like a lifetime of learning squashed into a few short years. I have my kids to thank for that (oh, yeah, and my parents, my husband, my business partner and a whole lot of other supportive people!). Thank you for the opportunity to share my story and I can’t wait to read yours!


JPMA Safety tips for selecting your first crib:

  • This first “home” should be cheerful and secure. Each year, approximately 50 babies suffocate or strangle when they become trapped between broken crib parts or in cribs with older, unsafe designs. Many older cribs, including the one that was used for you or your younger children, do not meet all current safety standards. Even if you are on a tight budget, you should not purchase an old crib at a garage sale or accept a hand-me-down that does not meet the following guidelines
  • Infants should ALWAYS sleep in a crib, which meets current Federal and ASTM standards.
  • The crib mattress should fit snugly with no more than two fingers width, one-inch, between the edge of the mattress and the crib side. Otherwise, the baby can get trapped between the mattress and the side of the crib.
  • No pillow-like bumpers.
  • Look for the JPMA Certification Seal.