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Advice

Should you Buy a Triple Stroller?

So you are going to have three young kids (or triplets!) and are wondering how you are going to get around. Should you buy a triple stroller? Do they even exist?

Triple Strollers

As scary as it might sound, there is such a thing as a triple stroller. In fact, you can even get a 6 seat stroller!  Unfortunately, the bigger the stroller gets, the more cumbersome they are. In fact, no triple stroller gets great reviews. They are going to be big and hard to push and it’s impossible to avoid that.

On the upside, however, if you do need a triple stroller, you do have some choices. You can even get a triple jogging stroller which is a side by side option. Generally, you are going to be looking at buying a tandem triple stroller with all the seats one behind each other like in the child craft sport stroller pictured below.

child craft

If one of your children is old enough to stand, you may want to consider the Joovy Big Caboose stand on triple stroller. This stroller has two seats with a board at the back for the third child. This ensures this stroller is a more compact triple option and works well if it suits your kids’ ages. It also takes two capsules so this is a good choice if you are having twins and already have an older toddler or preschooler.

Other options

If one of your children is an older toddler or preschooler, then you could consider a double stroller with a skateboard option. This is where you buy an attachment for the back of the stroller where the older child can stand or sit. It can work very well and saves a bulky (and expensive) triple option.

The downside is that this can make it more difficult to push and the child might be in your feet space.

Another option is to use a baby carrier and carry your youngest child. This has the downside that they are on you are all times, but it does mean you can get by with a double stroller.

I’d love to hear any other alternatives that you have come across…

Choosing an Umbrella Stroller that is Best for your Lifestyle

A new parent’s foray into must-have children equipment is at once intimidating and overwhelming. There’re a lot of options, a lot of features, and really a lot of different price tags.

Dollar figures range from $25 for a cheap umbrella stroller to upward of $800 for stylish high-end models. The real question is: “What really makes up that huge price difference?”

Umbrella Strollers

Baby Gizmo, which thoroughly tests and inspects baby strollers gives a breakdown. We found top-priced ones were generally manufactured using aeronautical-grade, lightweight aluminum, making them very sturdy, durable and much easier to lift out and in of vehicle trunks. Read more information on stroller safety by visiting http://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-living/infant-and-toddler-health/in-depth/stroller-safety/art-20043967

The seats featured much thicker, better-made cushioning (or comprised of higher quality materials), with better back support for the child and top-notch fabric. Furthermore, the ride was smoother. Designer strollers usually had oversized, swivel front wheels with shock absorbers. Swivel wheels made them easier to push as well.

High-end strollers can have any number of bells and whistles. For example, height-adjustable handlebars and an option to position baby facing back or forward, facing mom or whoever is pushing. Read more about pros and cons of a full featured stroller.

The site sets the benchmark at about $300 for a good quality standard model, however warns that the choice should not hang on price tag alone. An umbrella stroller is something parents will depend on for many things in many different situations. Parents will use it for quite a long time and use it frequently. Those are reasons enough to splurge for a model with best price/quality ratio.

On the other hand, higher price does not assure best quality. We found that even the high priced ones were subject to weakness, flawed design as well as breakage.

Always bear in mind that you will possibly need different types of strollers for different daily activities. There are three-wheel jogging umbrella strollers for much better maneuvering over uneven as well as grass pavements; all-terrain models for hiking; ultra-lightweight models for short trips with older kids; double models made for two (tandem or side by side) and travel systems which come with a snap-in stay-in vehicle base and seat.

Perhaps the smartest course of action is to talk to other more experienced moms and dads, read some consumer reviews and most importantly – test drive a couple of models.

Finally, put the word out that you’re looking. A lot of moms and dads would rather sell or hand-off a decent-quality umbrella stroller than have to store the big thing when the little one has long outgrown it.

Umbrellas vs. Lightweights and Top Brands Reviewed

Which umbrella stroller would be the best for your family and your lifestyle is only one of many choices that a new parent has to make.  There are a huge variety of types and styles of stroller for a parent to choose from to help make their lives easier.  There are various types of strollers that are designed as light weight and easy to use but some of these could be rickety and may not totally be safe for your child.  There are many decisions that need to be made to find the best choice.

What Type Will Work Best For You?

The double jogging stroller could work best for some mothers and fathers if they have more than one child.  This way there is only one stroller that would hold two children for their trip out to the park or to the local store.  Another important factor is how lightweight and easy to maneuver the stroller is.  How compact a stroller folds also holds a high place on the list of importance, because it may have to be used in traveling on a bus or airline or just may need to take up a small amount of space at home or in the family vehicle.

strollers

Things To Consider

  • How will you use your new stroller?
  • How old is your child that you will be pushing in it?
  • How much does your child weigh?
  • How comfortable is the stroller for your child?
  • Does the stroller fit into your budget?

Why Are These Choices So Important?

One thing that many people seem to overlook, is the age of the child.  This is important, because if your child is an infant under the age of 3 months, they will have very little to no neck control.  If your child is under 6 months, then your child is at a critical stage of development and should not be sitting up for an extended period of time.  Many people do not think about all of this.  It is important that if you have an infant to select a stroller that will recline back so to support your infants head and back for its safety.

Another thing to consider is the proper size and height of your stroller for your ease of use.  If the stroller is too big and heavy with your child or children in it for your strength, how comfortable is it going to be for you to use.  If the handles on the stroller sit too low and you have to bend over to push it, how long of a walk are you going to be able to take with your child.  When making a choice on selecting your stroller, not only are there decisions to be made for the benefit of your child but also for either mom or dad that will be using the stroller the most.  Be sure to consider all of your options when selecting your new umbrella stroller by considering your lifestyle.

Read more about selecting a stroller.

How I Manage to get Enough Sleep with a Newborn

Being a mum to a newborn means getting less sleep, sad but true. And breastfeeding, for all its positives means being the only one who can feed baby. So when our beautiful daughter came into the world I had to learn to adapt, and fast.

The only way I managed to get enough sleep to function was to make sleep a priority. Until our daughter fell into a better sleep routine – which enabled me to get some sort of decent sleep at night – I slept whenever she did. If she went down for a nap, so did I.

At first this was a little hard. Finally, some baby free time! There was so much I wanted to do, let alone the things I had to do, that I just couldn’t waste the opportunity. But I learned I had to, so except for simple things like shower or eat meals I tried to get as much rest during the day as possible.

This meant housework fell by the wayside. Unless it just had to be done I didn’t do it. I managed to pull this off by accepting every offer of help or a cooked meal that came my way. Sure, it wasn’t nice to get other people to wash my dishes or do some laundry, and it wasn’t as exciting as helping with the baby directly, but I found people were keen to help me through the early days and this was the best way they could.

And there was quite a few times my husband and I “cheated” and used paid help.  Sometimes we paid for a cleaner to come around and give the place a really good clean. A couple of other times it was simply getting someone to do all the laundry. It wasn’t always cheap but it made such a difference to our stress and comfort levels, knowing the work wasn’t piling up for one of us, that it was money well spent.

Of course I wouldn’t have been able to do it without my husband, who simply was amazing. He picked up for my “slack” and kept things going in addition to his full time job. Once the baby and I were in bed he’d clean and wash up or cook meals in advance. He was very keen to make sure there was as much healthy, home cooked, food as possible. If there’s a key to prioritising sleep then a constant support person is surely it. I couldn’t have coped so well without him.

So go easy on yourself and do what you can to get through that first big adjustment period.

Buying a Double Stroller

A stroller can become every parent’s best friend. For those who have twins or are expecting a second child, or already have two children close in age, a double stroller can be a God-send, allowing you to move and handle both kids at the same time with a single contraption. Here are a few things to consider when buying a double stroller:

Side-by-side or tandem?

First, decide what would work best for your family, a side-by-side or tandem stroller. Both have their advantages and disadvantages and weighing your options most often boils down to how your family would be using your double stroller.

A side-by-side stroller has the seats beside each other, allowing both kids the same view and allows fully reclining seats for naps. It is wider than a tandem stroller but allows both children (especially if they are the same age, like twins) easier access to their seats.

A tandem stroller has a seat in front of the other making it only as wide as a single stroller. Its narrow frame makes it easier to maneuver and navigate. Many tandem strollers also have customizable features that accommodate baby carriers, making them a popular choice for families with a toddler and an infant. An example is the Baby Jogger City Select.

Your children’s size and age

When choosing a double stroller, make sure it will be able to carry both your children in comfort and safety. A double stroller’s maximum weight capacity should be a primary consideration in the decision making process as it determines how much and how long you get to use your stroller. Go for brands with higher weight ratings to get the most use of your stroller as your children grow.

Consider stroller dimensions

For any baby accessory, strollers most especially, size and weight matters. What’s the point of having a stroller you won’t use because it’s too heavy or too inconvenient to move around? Double strollers are generally bigger and heavier than single strollers for obvious reasons, but it doesn’t mean they should be cumbersome. Choose a double stroller that is lightweight and compact. Many double strollers nowadays are ergonomically designed to be as light and narrow as possible without sacrificing comfort and safety.

Function and durability

Find a double stroller that best suits your family’s unique needs and conditions. Check each feature and assess whether it is something that you need or not. Look for double strollers that allow you to customize and personalize with add-on accessories to truly allow you to maximize its use according to your family’s unique specifications.

Budget

Perhaps the most important consideration in buying a double stroller is its cost. Choose a double stroller that gives you the best value for your money. Many higher priced strollers do not live up to quality expectations given their cost. And many affordable double strollers offer a lot more value than their expensive counterparts.

Also ensure that any stroller you choose meets the minimum safety requirements.

At the end of the day, choose a double stroller that would work for you and your family. Not all families are the same, with different needs and preferences. A double stroller that works for one family may not necessarily work for you. So know your needs and how you plan to use your stroller. After all, it could be one of the best parenting investments you ever make.

If you want to read more, check out this great guide to choosing a double stroller.

Why I love Baby Wearing

Although I am obviously a stroller girl at heart, my friend asked to share her thoughts on baby wearing…

My son has always been a screamer. The only way he would calm down was if I picked him up and rocked him and carried him around. Our first two weeks at home were a nightmare with neither of us getting ANY sleep or quiet time. This is how I discovered the wrap and fell in love with baby wearing. I started with a wrap and have since learned to add a ring sling, a pouch and an ergo to my baby-wearing repertoire. Learning to wear my baby literally saved my sanity, for this reason alone I would recommend it. I have since added to this reason though and would like to share some of them today…

Be hands-free

Baby wearing allows you to be hands free from baby, enabling you to do other necessary things like picking up after your husband’s mess, or doing the laundry, washing the dishes, etc. While it’s true that moms should get a time-off from household duties especially when just having a baby, the reality is that this rarely happens or lasts for long. Wearing a baby let’s you get on with everyday life without the strain on your arms and back from carrying the little one. Wearing a baby in a sling, wrap or pouch keeps him safe and snuggled on your bosoms. I found my baby slept very well when I was wearing him even while I did my routine cleaning. The rhythm of my movement was comforting for my colicky boy.

Be more in tune with baby

I found I became more aware of subtle changes in my baby’s breathing and burps and gurgling sound as I began to wear him often. I learned how certain movements or a sound he made meant a particular thing. As we grew into our baby wearing routine I realized I was more aware of his needs because of the constant proximity and the opportunity to always be within my sight. The bawling episodes slowly began to disappear as we got into a wearing rhythm.

Breastfeed on the go

It took me quite a while to figure it out and be able to do it with my wrap, sling and pouch, but with help from countless YouTube videos and a lot of practice, we finally got the hang of breastfeeding while baby wearing. And once I learned how to do it right, it felt as if it was the most natural thing to breastfeed even if we weren’t seated or in bed. I realized this must have been how our Neanderthal ancestors did it, breastfeeding while foraging or finding shelter. It made a lot of sense to me.

Baby wearing has not only made doing the daily chores of everyday parenting life easy, it has also helped a lot in making my baby feel more secure and confident, perhaps because he is always close to my heart, literally. It has made me a better parent in the way I am better able to understand and respond to his cues. If you haven’t tried baby wearing, it is something that I strongly recommend you learn and do.

Interested in getting a baby wrap? I like to buy mine here. I warn you though, once you start baby wearing, it is very addictive!

You can also read about getting enough sleep with a newborn.

A Lightweight or a Full Featured Stroller?

One of the biggest decisions to make when buying a stroller is whether it is more important to you to have a lightweight or a full featured stroller. Unfortunately, it is difficult to have both although there are a few options that fall somewhere in between. The problem is that features take up space and weight and mean that you end up with a much heavier stroller.

Advantages of a lightweight stroller

If you are someone who is out and about a lot then a lightweight stroller can be invaluable. They are so much easier to get in and out of car trunks, navigate around small spaces, such as shops and cafes and are generally easier to set up and fold back up again. Many have a one hand fold that you can do while holding baby along with a carry strap so you can easily lift it back into the trunk of the car as well.

If you plan on traveling with your stroller then a lightweight one is essential. They are far easier to transport on planes and in cars or public transportation. Lightweight strollers can usually be wheeled all the way to the plane so don’t need to be checked in at the usual spot.

Advantages of a full featured stroller

Full featured strollers have lots of extras that can make life easier. This can include lots of storage room for transporting all the accessories that babies need as well as making shopping easier. Cup holders for both parent and baby are a popular accessory as is a snack tray. Other features include recline for baby to sleep, good sun canopies, all terrain tires, ability to jog or add a second seat to the stroller.

Of course, not all strollers have all of these features and some lightweight strollers also feature some of these items.

Which should you chose?

This is, of course, a personal decision. You need to weight up how often you might use the extra features versus how important a lightweight option is for your situation. If you want it all, you could look into lightweight options that also have many features, such as a Maclaren stroller. You will usually add more weight for one of these options, but they are still relatively lightweight.

 

 

Buying the Best Stroller for you

There are so many options when it comes to buying a stroller – all the choices can be overwhelming!  What can you do to make a choice?  Well other than read this site, I thought you might like some other ideas…

Check out stroller buying guides online

There are some great sites online to help you choose a stroller. I recently came across The Stroller Site which has some very helpful reviews, comparison charts and buying guides.

It breaks up the strollers into categories, such as umbrella strollers, double strollers and jogging strollers, explains each category and gives some suggestions as to what you should consider when buying a stroller. It also has stroller reviews, but I think you should keep reading those here instead 🙂 I especially found the category on the best double jogging stroller to be helpful, as I was trying to work out the differences between two different strollers that I hope to review on here soon.

There are also some great helpful videos on some of the big parenting sites, such as parents.com or check out the great video in our sidebar.

Go to a baby shop and play with some strollers

Looking at videos and buying guides online is a great starting point, but nothing beats actually touching and pushing around the strollers you are considering. There are many baby shops around with huge stroller selections and it is definitely worth having a look in one, even if you end up buying online (which is often cheaper).

While you are looking at them, ensure you put some actual weight in the stroller. Pushing around an empty stroller is not the same experience as pushing around one with a screaming toddler. It may be hard to replicate the screaming part, but it is easy enough to add some weight.

Talk to other moms

Other moms are a great resource when it comes to picking a stroller. Chat to ones that you know or other moms at work and playgroup. It can also be beneficial to chat to other moms online, especially if you don’t come into contact with many moms in day to day life. Check to see exactly why they like their stroller and how they use it. Also remember that everyone’s needs are different, so just because a stroller is perfect for your best friend, it doesn’t mean it will be for you. It is a good starting point though.

 

Hopefully these tips will get you started on the path to finding your perfect stroller. You can also check out our advice for buying a double stroller or why we like Maclaren strollers.

maclaren stroller

Why Maclaren Strollers are Popular

From celebrity moms to soccer moms, it would seem Maclaren Strollers have become synonymous with baby strollers. For many first time parents, choosing a stroller can be one of the most difficult decisions to make. A lot of things need to be considered when choosing the right stroller for your family’s needs: budget, durability, convenience, features etc. Often, a stroller is the single most thought about investment in every new parent’s must-have list. So, why all the fuss over Maclarens? Here’s why:

They’re lightweight and compact

Maclaren strollers are famed for being so lightweight they’re referred to as umbrella strollers. Designed by former British aeronautical engineer Owen Maclaren, these strollers are easy to carry without sacrificing comfort and safety. Despite being so light, Maclaren strollers are built for durability, taking the wear and tear expected of any good quality child accessory. Light weight strollers are popular for their convenience and their practicality, perhaps the most important consideration when investing in your baby’s first ride. The compact design of Maclaren strollers means not only easier transport but easier storage as well when they’re not in use.

They’re easy to use

The Maclaren’s trademark single-hand fold is also a big attraction for parents. It eliminates having to figure out how to fold or unfold your gadget, providing convenience and ease of use for on the go parents. Complicated twists and clicks and steps just to use, store or transport a stroller are a huge turn-off. After all, who has time to figure out how to get your stroller in the car when faced with screaming and grumpy kids.

They’re stylish

Maclaren strollers are so stylish they are a favorite of celebrity moms. Their trendy designs add a dash of sass and accent for the style conscious modern parent. A range of accessories can also be bought separately, allowing parents to customize and even personalize their strollers to their needs. A few celebrity designers have already lent their name to a Maclaren stroller line, adding more style points to this already fashionable brand.

There’s one for every budget

Maclaren offers a range of stroller models to cover every need and every budget. From the simple basic umbrella models to twin strollers and buggies, prices vary from the reasonably priced editions to the pricier designer models preferred by celebrities. While even the most affordable Maclaren can still be pricier than other competitors, they more than make up for it in terms of product quality and durability.

They’re covered by a warranty

Unlike other stroller brands with very limited warranty, all Maclaren strollers are covered with a basic warranty that covers manufacturing and material defects, extending up to 1 year for some of its models. Parents also have the option of registering their Maclaren with the company to automatically avail of the Sovereign Lifetime Warranty. For as long as you use your stroller according to its specified purpose and within the parameters of normal use, a warranty has you covered.

Maclaren has earned a reputation for top quality strollers designed to keep up with the growing and changing needs of the modern family. Their commitment to product excellence has rightfully earned them the approval of many satisfied users, making them one of the most popular and well-loved stroller brands in the world to date.