Campaign promises

Since the 2008 presidential race seems to have already begun, I thought I’d start working on my platform, too. Yes, I know that I can’t run for president until I’m at least 35, which means I can’t even run until 2016, but I figure I’d better plan ahead and get ready now, because I still have to work the kinks out of Ane’s potty training and eventually I’ll have to train Tad, and then where will my exploratory committee be?

The genesis for this post was Matthew’s post last week about the Top 10 Tools For A New Dad. Check out #5 – legislation making it mandatory for all toy manufacturers to use the same size battery (I vote for AA) in electronic toys. This got me to thinking – what other things could be possibly changed to make American parents’ lives easier?

Here are just a few ideas:

Drive-thru post offices. Banks do it. Fast-food restaurants do it. Heck, even Starbucks does it! How has the federal government not done this yet? Think of what would be accomplished by a drive-thru window at your local post office! First, no screaming, uncontrollable children running around in the post office. They would be sitting in their car seats listening to Sesame Street or whatever while you order your stamps and get your package weighed. Second, it would divide up the line and guarantee that there would always be at least 2 people working at the same time. I have seen lines out the door at the post office and there only be one person at the counter. It frustrates everyone. Now, you would have to have all your forms and packages ready to go at the drive-thru, because you don’t want to hold up the line unnecessarily. But for all of us who have ever had to control small children in a crowded post office, doesn’t this just sound great?

Standardized children’s clothing sizes. This has annoyed me ever since Ane was born. For example, a 3-6 month size in OshKosh is smaller than a 3-6 size in Carter’s is larger than a 3-6 size in the Target brand is smaller than a 3-6 size in Gymboree… you get the idea. And most of the time the sizes aren’t even consistent within the same brand name (Carter’s, I’m talking to YOU). I would propose legislation that would take the average height/weight for babies and children and have the companies adjust their templates to fit the averages. So when you say that your baby is wearing a 6-9 month size, you mean it. You then don’t have to say, “Well, she’s wearing a 6-9 month in OshKosh, but she can still wear the 3-6 month ones in Carter’s, so I think she’s still a 3-6 month at Gymboree, but it depends on what you get…” Yes, clothes will fit differently depending on the cut and the fabric used, but come on. When you can’t even get uniformity within a brand name, it just drives the rest of us crazy trying to make sure the kid wears the clothes before they outgrow them.

Changing tables in men’s rooms. This is already beginning to occur, depending on which stores you go to. I would also propose more family restrooms (that would be kept squeaky clean, knowing that small children will be in there) so that fathers could take their small, potty-training daughters to the bathroom without being in the company of adult men doing their thing. Kudos to those places which already have those facilities (a big thank you to our local mall, which has two baby-changing tables with sinks in the bathroom waiting area, two family bathrooms equipped with small kid-sized toilets along with regular ones, a nursing room that can be locked, and a child seat with buckles in every women’s bathroom stall. It’s so easy to take the kids there!).

So, that’s the beginning of my parent-friendly platform. Anyone else have any ideas? When I am elected, I promise to give you the credit. 🙂 In the meantime, I’d better get the kids cleaned up so we can run some errands. Happy weekend, everyone!

3 Responses to “Campaign promises”

  1. Erin
    January 26th, 2007 22:01

    I am soooo with you on the drive thru post offices. I can’t even tell you how many times I’ve avoided the post office just because it wasn’t a drive through. I’d support that one!!

  2. Matthew
    January 26th, 2007 22:08

    I think drive throughs should be with just about everything. Grocery stores, convenience stores, shoe stores, etc.

    Can I be your running mate?

  3. Little Cousin's Mommy
    January 27th, 2007 06:30

    How about designated parking spaces for families. Your “sticker” would be all the car seats in the minivan and it would be partially on the honor system (like the expecting mother’s spaces at Babies ‘R’ Us). Yes, expecting moms deserve the ones they have because it can be complicated to get in and out. But it’s even more complicated with a wiggly toddler and a screaming newborn (Not to mention getting the diaper bags, stroller, etc.). Am I right?