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Mom Puts A Note On Her Car To Tell People Her 'Baby' Is Ok Alone Because He Has 'Snacks & A Drink' While She Runs To Target

Photo: Instagram
Bonnie Engle

What initially appeared to be an alarming confession from a mom ended up generating tons of positive reactions online.

Bonnie Engle is a mother of three and fitness coach who shares comedic parenting content on Instagram and knows how to get her viewers to find the fun in some parenting fails. 

Though 14% of parents surveyed in a 2014 study admitted they intentionally have left their infants, toddlers, and kindergarten children alone in a parked vehicle, it is — rightfully — considered a major no-no due to the many health and safety risks involved with leaving kids unattended.

While the issue is definitely no laughing matter, Engle's video shows just how ridiculous it is to try and justify putting a child in harm's way.

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She put a note on her car telling people her ‘baby’ is ok since he has ‘snacks and drinks.’

In a video she posted in March 2023, she records her car in a Target parking lot. The window is down, and a handwritten note is posted inside the car to ensure no passerby thinks her “child” is uncomfortable!

Before she shows her “child,” we get a chance to read the note.  “My baby is ok,” it reads. “He has his snacks and his drink!!! I’m in Target. Be back soon!!!”

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Before people get upset at her decision, she pans the camera revealing not one of her children but her husband, Andrew. He’s wearing a pouty face as he chows down on cheddar popcorn and sips a Starbucks coffee. The sun looks bright outside, so it’s good that she has the window down! They’re from Tampa, Florida, so the weather can get sizzling.

Fortunately, this “baby” can be left in the car without putting anyone in danger. And maybe it’s for the best since it appears he doesn’t want to go Target shopping with his wife. And she added a hilarious caption to the video. “Please no judgment; he is safe & well,” she wrote.

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People in the comments poked fun at the situation.

“It’s so much easier to leave them in the car,” one woman wrote—“them” implying a male partner.   

“He may need a potty break soon, but otherwise he’s good!” another joked.

However, the video scared some people before they realized it was just a joke. Bonnie took a few seconds before revealing her husband, making the video all a joke. But it sets up a potentially very serious situation if there is no punchline.

“I was about to get real[ly] angry,” another added. One person said their “heart dropped” before realizing the “baby” was an adult man.

And there’s good reason for that concern. Not all states have “hot car laws,” prohibiting parents from leaving children and pets unattended in parked cars. Fortunately, the Engles’ home state of Florida does. The law says that a parent or caretaker cannot leave a child under six years old in a car alone for longer than 15 minutes. Some states prohibit leaving a child in a car alone altogether.

Only 21 states have laws that specifically address children left unattended in vehicles. But it seems like the laws aren’t the end all be all. The previously mentioned 2014 study found that even though 7 in 10 parents have heard of children suffering heatstroke when left in a car alone, nearly 1 in 4 parents of a child three and under admit to having forgotten their child in a car.

Laws are important, but awareness can be even more helpful. It can be fun to poke light-hearted humor at leaving an adult man unattended, but it shouldn’t diminish the very real issue.

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Ethan Cotler is a writer living in Boston. His writing covers entertainment, news and human interest stories.