Months ago, we picked up a restaurant-style booster seat for Lefty. It’s wonderful! Nice and stable on the kitchen chair, two heights, very washable… only one problem: she outgrew it. Set on the lowest seat, we can’t push the chair up to the table without squashing her lovely little legs, and that makes learning to eat things like pudding and soup somewhat problematic. I think we can all agree that pudding and soup are vital parts of a small person’s training. Obviously, a solution was needed.
I looked at pillows. Too squashy, apt to get grimy (see: pudding and soup, above), and just too slidey to be safe, even with ties. This is my child who can trip on the bare floor. Slidey is not a good option.
I looked at other boosters, but we had the same problem: side rails or arms that prevent pulling up to the table.
Then, the new phone books arrived.
We don’t use a phone book. Need to find a number? That’s why God invented Google. And yet, we end up with new phone books every single year, dropped off by underpaid teenagers or migrant workers. They’re too fat to compost. (The phone books, not the migrant workers or teenagers.) They take up room on my shelf, and frankly, are not decorative enough to warrant that prime real estate.
I grew up in an area where the phone book was basically a nice quad-fold brochure. My Tall, Dark, and Slightly Neanderthal husband grew up in a city, where the “sit ’em on a phone book” method of child-boosting would actually accomplish something. This difference in background serves us well, and this week was no exception. While I saw the newly-delivered phone book as just one more mandatory drop-off at the recycling center, he saw it as a child booster seat, delivered free!
One dinner with the Yellow Pages under her little buns proved him right… and also demonstrated that some sort of water-proof cover would be a Really Good Idea.
Enter: Duct tape!
Duct tape is now made in all manner of exciting colors, so I was able to bind the phone book in my favorite: red.
I recommend a few “stabilizing” strips of tape as a base, to keep the mass of pages from shifting when sat upon. Then, I wrapped the book block over and over, lapping the tape edges, and alternating the orientation with each layer (including around the spine/cut edges.)
Ten minutes of taping up about four layers, and $3.37 later (one roll of duct tape), we have a small (somewhat warped; see: one dinner, need for water-proofing, above) booster that fits Lefty’s buns well, boosts her just high enough, and can be wiped off without a problem.
She seems pleased.
I rebel against the Child Plastics Industry! Bring on the soup, and the pudding!