Clek Oobr Review and Giveaway

Have we met? Hello, I’m Allison and I’m a car seat freak.

I am a firm believer in keeping children harnessed safely in 5-point car seats as long as possible. Ok, to be totally honest, I would still have my 19 year old in a 5-point harness if I could. I love researching new car seats.

I told you I was a freak.

Me + Car Seats = Happy

But….there comes a time when a kiddo outgrows all available 5-point harness seats. (Except special needs seats – which I hope to review later this year) The thought of moving Faith into a booster seat strikes fear into my heart. She is not the most….ummmm….easy-going kid. If she doesn’t like something, she does not like it. It may be something simple (color) or complex (it feels wrong). Autism kiddos are very set in what they like and don’t like and may not always be able to tell you what is wrong. Faith is also very prone to meltdowns. If something in her world is “off”, the meltdowns begin rapidly. If a booster seat is itchy or hard or ????, she would not sit in it.

Here is where Mommy Rambles and Clek teamed up to take a Special Needs look at the Oobr.

Meet the Clek Oobr!

I’ve looked at booster seats. Lots of booster seat. Let me tell you, this? This is a Booster Seat!

Let me step back a moment. Faith is very, very resistant to change. Any change. If we turn the wrong way going to the store, she freaks. If Kraft changes the image on the box of it’s Mac & Cheese, she freaks. (Thanks for that one Kraft.) Changing her car seat, especially with the amount of time we spend in the car, is huge. I approached it very slowly. For a couple days, I had the Clek Oobr website pulled up when she walked by.  http://www.clekinc.com/oobr/  This is also where you can find all the tech blah-dee-blah about this seat. I’m not going to go over them here because this is a feel review. Plus I’m not a tech person, but y’all knew that. I care about if something works or not. And the coffee. I’m all about the coffee. 😉

I casually clicked on the available colors.

We talked about the colors. Wasn’t the green pretty, like grass. The blue reminded us of Daddy’s jeans. Oh look at the monkey, she was wearing sunglasses just like Faith does! The pink Paul Frank seemed to hold her attention the longest, so that’s the one we chose. While waiting for her seat to arrive, I made sure to talk about the “pink sunglasses monkey” seat and we looked at the picture several more times. My hope was to slowly make this car seat familiar to her so it was not new when it arrived. It worked. When the big day arrived and her seat was delivered, she was very ho-hum about it. And ho-hum is GOOD!

My very first impression of the Oobr was “Oh how cute!”. Since that is what really matters, right? Just kidding. Kinda. :)

This seat feels very substantial yet light. How’d you do that Clek? The fabric is not plush, it has a soft canvas feel. The padding is firm with just the right amount of give. This is a very supportive seat. The back reclines slightly and the headrest raises. The armrest are soft touch plastic. There is even a cup holder!

Instillation was a snap. Literally. The Clek Oobr has rigid latch. What the crud is that you ask? Imagine little arms sticking out from the back of this seat that grab the LATCH anchors in your car. Then you slide the seat in. Done. The Oobr is now in position. No tipping, no sliding around on the seat, no flying booster if it’s empty. Nice.

On Faith’s first ride, she climbed into the seat with very little difficulty. The head rest was very easy to adjust and did not make any “yucky” noises when raised or lowered. The arm rests, while soft, were not “icky, sitcky” feeling. The seat belt guides were very clearly marked and easy for us to insert the belt and buckle up without Faith feeling like we were smooshing her.

All of Faith’s previous seats had velvety covers. When she was settled in this seat she began scooting her tush around. She informed us that the Oobr was “slippery”. She spent quite a bit of that first ride adjusting herself over and over within the seat. The velvety fabric of the previous seats had some grab to it and I think may have helped hold her in position. The ability to adjust herself was a new feeling. At first I thought this might be a liability, but later, when she switched back to a velvety seat, she complained that she couldn’t “schootch” to get comfy.

The only drawbacks I can find to using this seat are not a drawback with the seat at all, but issues with Faith. Faith has a bit of a belly. The seatbelt slides over her belly and then tends to ride a bit high on her shoulder/neck area. This in not a seat problem and is an issue we have run into with every single belt-positioning booster we have tried. She also has some hearing loss. Since the headrest does such an awesome job of wrapping around the head, I think it blocked some of her hearing. She cranes her neck forward to hear music, her DS or iPod. This puts her out of position for maximum safety. (Are you listening Clek? Perhaps some small speakers in the wings, that could plug into an external device could help encourage proper head placement? Maybe an option?)

The Clek Oobr is, without a doubt, the best booster seat I have tried. The comfort , according to Faith, is outstanding. She LOVES the Oobr.

So now I have you wanting a Clek Oobr, right? Why wouldn’t you. This is an AMAZING booster seat. Guess what? One of my lucky readers will get one! Are you ready? Retail value of $274.99 – $324.99!

Mandatory Entry

Hop on over to Clek and then come back here and tell me what color  you would chose in a comment below. (One entry per person) (Excluding Saddle, which is a limited edition only available from select retailers)

Extra Entries

“Like” Mommy Rambles on Facebook then leave me a separate comment below telling me you did so. (one extra entry per person)

“Like” Clek on Facebook then leave me a separate comment below telling me you did so. (one extra entry per person)

“Share” this giveaway on either Facebook or Twitter up to twice a day using the buttons below. Then leave me a comment below telling me that you did. (2 entries per person possible per day)

Approximate retail value is up to $324.99.  Open to US residences only. Mommy Rambles was given a Clek Oobr to test and review by the amazingly wonderful people at Clek. Thank you!

This giveaway ends at 11:59pm EST on October 7th, 2011. I will use Random.org to chose a winner from all comments. Winner will be posted on October 8th. Winner will then have 48 hours to contact me or a new winner will be drawn.

My John Hancock