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Baby Must-Haves: High Chairs

This is one topic the moms in our survey had especially strong opinions about  -- and for good reason: As one respondent says, your child will be in their high chair at least three times a day, so it's best not to skimp on quality. Beyond that, you'll want to make sure the seating you choose has the right bells and whistles for you both. The Fisher-Price Space Saver High Chair ([DOLLAR]50, featured below) is an excellent option if space is an issue.

[TOUT_IMAGE "/0707_baby_mustHave_seat_200.jpg" "150" "200" "FP high chair" "left"]

Several features to consider when shopping for a high chair:

* Ability to recline A chair that can be tilted back in one or more positions can make it a great place to keep a young baby who's not yet eating but may be able to hold her own bottle: She can snack on that or take a nap in the kitchen while you cook. A chair that's labeled "from birth to 45 pounds" (or so) will last you for quite some time  -- at least until your child refuses to sit in it any longer.

* Height adjustability You can raise or lower the chair to the perfect height for spoon feeding, or to the same level as everyone else at the table.

* Wheels In our survey, high chairs with wheels got yays  -- and those that didn't got nays. It's easy to see why: Wheels let you move the chair from spot to spot. Look for wheels or casters that swivel, and make sure they have a locking mechanism.

* Simplicity If you want a high chair that's, well, just a high chair, check out the ultra-plain [BOLD {Antilop by IKEA

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* Washable seat pad A vinyl one can be cleaned easily with a disinfecting wipe; be sure you can get between the pad and the actual seat of the chair as well  -- bits of food like to get trapped under there.

* Appearance You can find more and more chairs in solid colors and simple, sophisticated designs that may look more like they belong in the dining room than in the nursery.

[ITALIC {"I spread out an old plastic shower curtain under my baby's high chair to catch all the dollops of food that would otherwise land on the floor."}]

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