How to Travel with Kids by Plane

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With all of the ridiculous articles and shares floating around the interwebs about families who preemptively hand out goody bags to other passengers on a plane lest the other adults not act like adults if their children might act like children, it’s no wonder that the idea of flying with small kids is enough to strike fear into the hearts of parents far and wide.  But I’m here to tell you that you can rest easy.  We have been flying since my oldest was 11 weeks old and, not only have we never had a terrible experience with other passengers, we’ve become pretty excellent at making the whole process pretty seamless.  Here’s the lowdown on how we travel:

Car Seats!

First off, buy yourself a lightweight car seat for travel.  Your baby should have his or her own seat for maximum safety and the car seat will also provide an excellent, familiar place to nap.

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Rolling through the airport in Austin, TX

Luggage checking or even gate checking a car seat can cause serious, invisible damage to the integrity of your seat and endanger your child in a crash.  If your baby is still in the infant car seat (by the way, my favorite is the Cybex Aton), read up on your manual before leaving so you know how to safely install it without the base.  You heard that right: you do NOT need the base for your infant car seat – leave that heavy sucker at home!  If your baby is out of the infant seat or your child is up to age 5, pick up an Evenflo Sureride DLX for under $100 and one of these travel backpacks so that you can haul this lightweight seat through the airport on your back.  You will look ridiculous, but your life will be easy.  (Besides, when we became parents, we started accepting we would not always look cool, yes?)  Alternatively, you can grab a GoGo Kidz to wheel your car seat (and baby if safely buckled in) through the airport.  I’ve used both setups and personally prefer the backpack, but ymmv.

 

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At the airport in Dublin

Strollers!

Next, choose a lightweight stroller that is suitable to your destination.  This means if you are going somewhere with cobblestone streets, poor sidewalks, or other rough terrain, do not bring your umbrella stroller.  For these destinations you will want air tires or air tire equivalents.  My very favorite stroller for tackling European streets is the Micralite Fastfold Super-lite.  It isn’t available in the US, but if you plan ahead and stalk Craigslist, chances are you’ll find one.  If you need a double, you can take one of the Micralites that is rebranded as the Joovy Toofold with the second seat. The Toofold is what I used on our most recent trip to Italy.

Checking out the residents at Tivoli Gardens, Copenhagen
Checking out the residents at Tivoli Gardens, Copenhagen

 

If your destination doesn’t need beefy tires, go with one of the smallest, lightest strollers on the market, the Mountain Buggy Nano.  This stroller fits into an overhead bin on the plane, is easy to carry up and down stairs at train stations without lifts, reclines well for comfy naps, has a decent canopy, and has a shockingly large basket.  This is what I took to Denmark, Sweden, and Germany with great success.

Another excellent travel option is the Babyzen YOYO.  This small, light weight stroller also folds compactly enough to carry on-board and store in the overhead bin (I really can’t stress how fantastic this is – especially on international flights where gate checked strollers do not reappear at connection gates or for arrivals where the jetway will be unbearably hot or cold while you’re waiting for your stroller to be carried up).  The YOYO is a sexy, nimble stroller that packs an excellent suspension, an adjustable recline and leg rest, and an ample basket into its 13lb self.  It is also compatible with car seat adapters.  The YOYO also functions just as nicely as an everyday stroller that won’t take up your whole trunk.

Entertainment!

Now that you have your gear and are on your way, you need to keep the little people entertained.  This is easier than you think.  If you have a young toddler, simple tasks work well.  Bring a pack of kleenex and show your baby how to shred them up.  This task alone is lots of fun!  Once the shredding is losing its luster, take the shreds and demonstrate stuffing them into a TP roll (easy to pack in your purse) or a flat tissue box.  You will be amazed by how much time can be spent packing and unpacking the roll or box.  And this game isn’t just fun for little ones!  My 6 year old still enjoys shredding tissue/paper towels/paper and packing them into something; she now calls this process making nests.

My kids have always had a lot of fun searching through the seatback magazines for pictures of babies, mommies, daddies, pets, etc.  It’s novel for them and a freebie in case you find yourself without an activity (or access to one during takeoff or landing).

Lots of people suggest bringing stickers for kids to play with.  Let me just warn you that removing 4,000 stickers from every nook and cranny of an airplane is not a job you want to be doing.  Instead, do like the Danish carrier SAS does and provide a cling sticker activity set.  With these, your kid can arrange and rearrange stickers to their heart’s content on big scenes and then take their set with them on your actual trip to provide further entertainment.

Another obvious activity is coloring.  But a collection of crayons that constantly roll off the tray table and disappear down the aisle is not a relaxing time.  Instead, bring a set of triangular crayons that refuse to roll away.  And rather than a coloring book, do a google image search for coloring pages in a variety of your kid’s favorite themes to print out.  This way, you will also have blank pages on the back of each image to get creative.  If you have a child age 3+, another great activity is to print out letter and number tracing pages, which are perfect for the bright colors of crayons.

Pretend play is another easy go-to on a plane with a set of mini figurines.  Your child’s little friends will have a wonderful time exploring the airplane, playing with one another, visiting the coloring pages, hiding in the kleenex, etc.  They’re also an easy thing to toss in your purse for peaceful meals out.

If you’ve exhausted your various distractions, it’s time to pull out the big guns: the phone or tablet loaded with movies, tv shows, and apps that don’t necessarily need sound to be fun.  Did you know that you can download Prime eligible movies and tv shows to watch offline?  This is the perfect option to keep media content costs down while keeping the novelty factor high (I reload our tablets with brand new stuff before any long travel day)!  Here are some of the apps that we’ve found to be particularly valuable over the years: Elmo ABC’s (not available for iphone, just ipad and totally worth the purchase price), Tozzle (puzzles that animate once completed – another app worth every penny), PlayHome, Color Dots by Ellie’s Games (this one is great for even very young toddlers), Toddler Alphabet Game and Toddler Counting both by iTot, Toca Tailor Fairy Tales by Toca Boca, Paint My Wings by Toca Boca, Hooked on Phones Learn to Read (an outstanding app for your new reader), Sprout’s Good Night Star, Kids Doodle by Bejoy Mobile, ZOOLA Animals by INBAL Tal, Sight Words by CFC s.r.o., Dogs*** / Wolf** / Cats** / Cat!! / Dogs** / Horse! / etc all by Namaste Power Store, My Zoo Animals by wonderkind GmbH, The Stories of Bertie by The Story Mouse, Animal Fun by Brian Pfeil, Millie Was Here by Megapops, Twinkle Little Star by Tiger Stripes LLC, and the classic favorite Angry Birds.

Between your little arsenal of activities, media/app content, naps/sleeping, meals, and staring out the window, your flight will go by in a flash! (and PS: remember to feed/nurse/give a pacifier to kids too young to yawn automatically during takeoff/landing to keep their ears from hurting)

Happy travels!

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What’s the Foonf? And Why You Need One

Clek Foonf

When I originally set out to buy a convertible car seat for my very tall baby (she was 98% for height at 6 months and rapidly outgrowing her infant seat), I knew very little about the height limits on car seats, how old the typical child is when they hit those limits (since height limits are often hit more quickly than the much-advertised weight limits), or about the insane safety benefits of “extended rear facing”.  The only thing on my radar was buying a seat with all of the available safety bells and whistles.  Thus, I happily bought a Britax Advocate and figured it would last me until I needed to move her into a high back booster (HBB).  Wrong!  When she was nearing 3, she was also nearing the top of her Advocate.  The easy solution would have been to flip her to forward facing, but I had since learned about the medical science advocating for children to be kept rear facing for as long as possible (4+ being ideal) and did not want to put a toddler lacking cervical ossification forward facing for the sake of saving the purchase price of a new car seat. Cue Search For A New Car Seat!

The Foonf provides plenty of legroom even for extra tall kids to rear face until 4+
The Foonf provides plenty of legroom even for extra tall kids to rear face until 4+

Armed with my new information, I set out to learn about the seats that have both the tallest rear facing height limits and the latest safety innovations.  I first ordered a Diono seat, but it was a difficult install in my Prius and ate up nearly all of the front passenger legroom (even with its angle adjuster).  At the time, the Clek Foonf was the only other seat that would accommodate a very tall child rear facing until 4, so I ordered it and crossed my fingers.  I was not prepared for the love affair I would have with this seat!

When it arrived, I was shocked by its substantial weight (this is not a seat you’re going to be switching from car to car and you’re really only going to travel with it if you’re a masochist or very strong).  It’s not a scientific statement, but the heft of this seat makes you certain that it will do a great job of protecting your child in an accident.  I was also taken by its fabrics.  My daughter selected Snowberry, which is a vibrant pink with a faint purple undertone.  Like most of the Foonf options, this is one of Clek’s Crypton fabrics that resist stains and spills.  It is also a Green Guard Certified fabric. It also shockingly provides the most legroom for the front passengers of any seat I’ve used! The install was also very easy (I dare say the belt install is even easier than the LATCH rear-facing) and the forward-facing rigid LATCH could not be simpler. Add all of these points to the fact that it will allow for THREE car seats to be installed in the same row, and you can understand why this seat is a winner.

Fastforward to almost 4 years later and we now own THREE Foonfs! I still love this seat for its safety features, comfort for my kids, tall height limit (neither of my girls flipped to forward-facing until after age 4 and baby boy due this summer will follow in their footsteps), and even for its fun factor. My kids love the Foonf, too. The seat is a large investment, but I would happily shell out again for one (but I don’t have to due to the NINE year period before the seats expire – I’m just switching out fabrics). The Foonf is worth every penny!

If you simply can’t stomach the price of the Foonf or you want a seat that sits lower, Clek also makes the Fllo at a lower price point with very similar safety features. It is a wonderful option as well!

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LOVE! When Your Kid Needs a Boost: Kaboost

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The battle of the highchair options is long and arduous.  You have a little baby, finally select a chair, and think the war has been won.  But oh no, my friend, that is just the first time you get the privilege of buying a highchair you think will get you through early childhood.  Because after you realize that the first one is too big or too hard to clean, you’ll buy another.  And then your little darling will grow more and clearly be too big for the chair, but too little for a standard chair.  You’ll trudge back to the store at this point to look for a booster seat, probably cursing yourself for not springing for that fancy Tripp Trapp from the get-go (more on that in a later post).  But let me solve so very many of your future problems (or maybe it’s your current problem because your kid is now 2+) with one simple word: KABOOST.  (and by the way, I see Kaboost as a great option as soon as you trust your child to sit in a chair without being strapped in – for my kids that happened at about 18 months)41vRsGSsNEL

Kaboost is a product that is so ingenious, so revolutionary, and so simple that you will immediately mourn the fact that you didn’t come up with it and launch the company yourself.  It is a plastic gizmo that is somewhat reminiscent of a 4-limbed octopus or a cute little video game guy.  Depending on which side you face up, it will boost your pre-existing kitchen chair that matches your kitchen perfectly between 3.75″ and 4.5″ (the standard height options of traditional booster seats) and it will do so without screaming Hey look at this booster seat we have right here that matches nothing!  AND it allows you to adequately scoot your kid up to the table (thereby saving you so many laundry headaches because food will drop to the table rather than a lap).

To use it, you decide how much boost your kid needs (my tall 6 year old uses the shorter side while my very tall 3.5 year old is still quite happy with the taller side), place it under your chair and start parking the chair legs into each “arm”.  Fresh out of the box, the arms are a bit stiff, but you’ll get everything straightened out in no time flat and those strong springs are what hold the Kaboost firmly to your chair’s legs.

You’re probably wondering if the Kaboost fits round/square/squoval legs, and I’m happy to report that it fits all of them!  I know because I ordered Kaboosts for my kitchen table, my dining room table, and for my mother-in-law’s table.  If your chairs are black, you’re also probably wondering if you should go bold and order green or try to make the brown work.  I can assure you it is a very dark brown that plays equally as nicely with espresso as it does with black chair legs.

Go ahead and order a Kaboost (or three, like I did) today and solve your highchair needs past the baby-baby stage.  I think you’ll be ridiculously happy, just like I am!

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My Cot – Because Barf Happens

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Having just gone through seemingly endless amount of sickness with my family, I was reminded of one of my favorite things: the Regalo My Cot Portable Toddler Bed.  This awesome little cot folds up into a cylindrical bag to store tidily away in a closet until you need it, then easily expands to its full size with just a tug.

Now, you can certainly use this bed for a night away at grandma’s, but where it really makes a difference in your life is when your kid has a tummy bug.  Putting a sick kid back into their bedroom and praying they don’t lose their barf bucket or can make it all the way back to the bathroom when disaster next strikes… that’s stressful for everyone involved (and your carpeting… and their bed).  Instead, you can grab this little bed, set it up in the bathroom, throw down a few layers of towels for just in case, and have your little in close proximity to the toilet until they’re feeling better.

I started using the bed this way a few years ago after my oldest tried to insist she sleep on the bathroom floor, and she now reminds me every time her tummy feels funny that I should probably go put her little bed in the hall bathroom, just in case.  (She’s 6 now, and still fits on it just fine)81s1T-o76uL._SL1500_

We’ve also used the bed for an impromptu overnight and recommend pairing it with a small egg crate foam for additional comfort.  The twin size is obviously large for it, but I just fold it in half, plop it on the cot, then throw a blanket over that in lieu of a bottom sheet.  You could of course cut it to size, but I’m lazy.

Grab one of these cots for less than $25 in pink or blue and prepare for the icky times.

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The Best Thing You’ve Never Heard Of: NoseFrida

nosefrida

Every time someone I know gets pregnant for the first time, they ask me, “What is an absolute must-have that isn’t on all of the lists?”.  My mind could spin through endless wonderful items, but my first answer is always easy and immediate: the NoseFrida.

What the heck is the NoseFrida?  To put it simply, it’s a booger sucker.  I know, I know.  What has life done to me that I can actually be excited about a booger sucker?  Don’t you worry, friends! After having a baby, you’ll be right here with me, rejoicing in the gift that this booger sucker is for all babies…

Because when that teeny, tiny nose of your little human gets stuffed up for the first time, you’ll be desperate to clear it.  And if you reach for that stupid blue bulb aspirator the hospital sent you home with, you will soon find out how ineffective it is.  You’ll also find out just how strong and evasive a tiny baby who does not want you swooping in for another nostril sucking can be.  The potential bacteria-factory ickiness brewing in that bulb you can’t open up and properly clean out is a whole other Oprah!

Never fear though, because the NoseFrida is here to save the day.  Instead of being limited to the far-too-quick and far-too-weak suction of a bulb, the NoseFrida is powered by your lungs.  Thus, the suction can be as strong and as long as your lungs can manage.  (If you’re thinking you can stop right here because you would never get that close to boogers, brace yourself because parenting will put you much closer to a lot of gross things and boogers are near the bottom of the list – so just keep reading)    The NoseFrida also does not enter the tip of the nostril like the bulb and thus isn’t as distressing to the baby – and is also easier to perform sneak attacks with when necessary.  The design of the NoseFrida also allows you to completely take it apart for a proper cleaning (and the filter that stands between your air and the collection chamber is disposable).

I’ve had a NoseFrida since my oldest’s first cold and have never looked back.  I even pack it when traveling just in case someone gets a cold.  It’s efficacy and cleanliness just can’t be beat and it makes my kids feel so much better.  That makes it invaluable in my book!  Go ahead and grab one for your house (get the one with additional filters so you’re never without and add a can of saline nasal mist while you’re at it) and you’ll have everything you need to battle stuffed up little noses.

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The Bugaboo Bee – It’s True Love

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Oh, Bugaboo Bee, how do I love thee? Let me count the ways…

I have a confession: I have a stroller problem. I don’t want to tell you how many different strollers I’ve owned over the past 6 years, but suffice it to say that I presently have 6 (and that’s after I’ve sold several recently). Yes, I’m a strolleraholic! So without further ado, let me tell you about my absolute favorite for the past 5 years: the Bugaboo Bee.

After owning countless strollers, I realized that my biggest complaint with all of them was their size and weight. No matter how wonderful their other features might be, the heft of most strollers became a big bummer on a daily basis. I didn’t like lugging them in and out of my car (or how much of my trunk they took up). I didn’t like running into doorframes or display racks with the edges of the tires. I really didn’t like not fitting down some store aisles or not being able to easily maneuver around displays. Don’t even get me started on trying to fit in changing rooms at stores!  I needed a narrower, lighter stroller, STAT.

tog-662px-bgb-bee3-totalAfter several failed attempts with other, less expensive brands, I finally closed my eyes and hit buy on the Bee. It arrived in all of its European-designed funky glory, and I wondered how I was going to deal with a stroller that didn’t look entirely traditional. But as soon as I popped it together and had my daughter climb in, all my doubts evaporated. She immediately decreed, “Mommy, I wuv dis -troller!”.  And the push! My goodness, the push! The Bee g-l-i-d-e-s! Everything about the Bee immediately exceeded my expectations and made me a believer in the Bugaboo brand.

In addition to all of this, the Bee is solidly built, parent-faces (a must for me with babies and young toddlers), and is also exceptional for tall kids.  The seat pan is extendable (to continue providing leg and thigh support) and the seat back is also extendable!  Both of my kids have been near the 99th percentile for height as infants and toddlers, so these features were invaluable.  In fact, my oldest is now almost 6 (and has slowed down to the 50th percentile), but she still fits nicely in the Bee with the seat fully extended in both directions.  Amazing.

I’ve owned many iterations of the Bee over the past 5 years now: the “original” Bee Minus (as it’s become to be known), the Bee Plus (or Bee +), the black framed Bee Plus, and the Bee3.  I’ve gotten adventurous and made my own custom canopies, tried out the baby cocoon when I had my 2nd child, added the Bugaboo rider board, imported a Twoo Seat to attach to the board so my oldest could grab a seat if she tired of standing… I.just.love.this.stroller.

If you are in the market for your first stroller, spare yourself the all too common mistake of buying “too much” stroller and just buy the Bee straight away.  If the price scares you off, buy a used one off of Craigslist.  Even an old Bee Minus (identifiable by its solid white wheels, “wings” on the sides of the seat, and the extra large canopy) in good condition will be a far better stroller than most and should run you between $75 and $150 depending on your area.

The Bee Plus (white spoke wheels, a non-extendable canopy, 3-piece harness buckle) on the silver aluminum frame should run from $200-$350 depending on your area (assume $50 extra for the black frame).  You can always update a Bee Plus with the Bee3’s basket (it’s slightly larger), seat (fabric is different and the harness straps are 5 pieces), and extendable breezy canopy (it zippers open to reveal an extra panel) should you feel the need for any of these parts.

bgb-bee3-bassinet-662pxThere is also now a bassinet/carrycot for the Bee available as an additional piece.  Between you and me, I think the cocoon is more than sufficient for use with a newborn (it’s easier to cart around AND easier on your wallet).  But, if your heart is really set on having the full pram look for your newborn, you can certainly splash out for the beautiful bassinet!

If you’ve been going round and round, wondering if those high end strollers are really worth the price, I’m here to tell you YES.  Absolutely.  I’d rather have an old Bee than nearly any other brand new stroller.  It’s just that much better.  Happy strolling!

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The Fisher Price Rock & Play – Because You Need a SHOWER

Fisher Price RockNPlay

Do you have a baby?  Are you shopping for a friend?  Then you need a Rock & Play.  It really is that simple.

This ingenious invention provides you with a safe, confined area to place your little bundle of joy for sleeping during the day, the night, or just while you take a shower.  Its inclined angle is a godsend for babies with reflux (and babies who like to look around), its rocking (although the range is small) provides just enough motion to lull a baby back to sleep, and its portability (it collapses into a flat package) allows you to cart it from room to room (or from your house to grandma’s).

The Rock & Play hit the market after my first was already too old for it, but after seeing a friend with one, I swore that my 2nd baby would absolutely have one.  Let me tell you, it did not disappoint.  The public at large should send Fisher Price personal thank you notes as the Rock & Play is THE reason I showered regularly while my 2nd was still new.

The Mama LOVES the Rock & Play and the rest of society is really glad I showered!

Showering as a new mom

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Choosing a Breast Pump – The Ameda Purely Yours

Ameda Purely Yours

I think that picking a pump was one of the most stressful decisions to make because I felt like there was so much riding on making the right choice. I wanted to breastfeed so badly; I wanted to stack the deck in my favor by having everything I might need.

After blisters, blocked ducts, and an emergency trip to a lactation consultant (best decision ever) when a blocked duct made it so that I couldn’t put my arm down… breastfeeding finally got a little easier.  8 months later, I’m a pro (it does get easier!!!). Looking back, I’m so glad I researched the heck out of pumps because my pump ended up saving this over-producer from a constant battle with blocked ducts!

As I looked in to pumps, I couldn’t get over the price of the Medelas or the fact that they’re single-user (unless a pro model) because they aren’t made with a simple and inexpensive membrane that would reliably prevent milk from ever entering the motor unit… Well, don’t get me started on the rip-off factor, the sheer waste of throwing all these perfectly good pumps into our landfills, or the idea that scores of women are feeding their babies milk pumped with what could be a contaminated, moldy motor (google that if you’re brave and over the morning sickness stage).  Anyhow, I crossed Medela off my list.  I looked into the Avent Isis, but the sticker was also very high.

I read a snippet somewhere about the Ameda Purely Yours, so I started doing research.
It has

  • a membrane, making it safe for multiple users
  • two horns for simultaneous pumping
  • separate adjustments for speed and suction
  • BPA-free components
  • can be used hands-free with a simple pumping bandeau
  • and the price was about half the Medela!

Even better, I found my Ameda on Craigslist for a song.  I was instantly impressed by its quietness and small size.  Once I started using it, I found it to be quick at expressing and really comfortable to use.

What more can you ask for? Well, my previously-loved pump started making what seemed like a funny sound.  I called up Ameda to see if there was anything I was doing wrong.  Instead, the rep I spoke with suggested we just replace the unit to save me the hassle of investigating it on top of taking care of my new baby.  I read her the serial number and we discovered it was an oooold unit.  Well outside of warranty.  But because Ameda is awesome, they stood behind their product and the lovely rep arranged to ship me a replacement unit anyway!  I can’t say enough about the pump, but the company is even better than their product!  A rare thing today.

If you’re in the market for a pump, the Ameda is a FANTASTIC choice.  There’s no need to drop a small fortune on a pump in order to get a quality product.  And if you have questions or need encouragement with breastfeeding, feel free to contact me. I have.been.there.  :)

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The UPPABaby Vista is a Winner

UppaBaby Vista Colors

There are approximately eleventy-thousand stroller options out there.  Umbrella, Snap N Go, travel systems, luxury…

I became obsessed with strollers as this purchase would mark my official First Large Baby Investment and hitting that milestone meant I really was having a baby.  I looked at every stroller going by, I did internet research, and I finally started chasing down people pushing strollers I was considering in order to grill them on their strollers and to see if they were happy with their purchases.

I finally decided that my needs were as follows:

  • Relatively light (but not so light as to compromise durability)
  • Turns easily and can be steered with one hand
  • Does not require a PhD in structural engineering in order to fold
  • Can grow with me as I hope to have another baby before this one graduates from the stroller
  • Has a nice pattern that doesn’t scream boy or girl so that I can keep it should the next baby be a boy

Points 1, 2, and 4 eliminated travel systems for me, the Snap N Go was too bare bones and did not meet Point 4.

As I ticked options off my list, I started looking at the “luxury” lines.  They really met my criteria – although they also made my inner cheapskate die a little.  I eliminated the Orbit for its non-traditional looks and proprietary (and expensive) car seats.  The Stokke Xplory was too futuristic for my baby dreams.  The Bugaboo Bee didn’t have a carrycot (at the time).

I was down to the Bugaboo Cameleon and the Uppababy Vista.  Two things really sold me on the Vista over the Cameleon: being able to fold the frame up with the seat attached and the price point.  Also, every person I spoke to that had a Vista RAVED about how great it is.

I proudly hauled home my new Vista and regaled my husband with stories of its greatness.  He was only marginally sold and not entirely convinced that we really needed all of this.  But oh boy was I happy and I knew it would just be a matter of time before he loved it too.

Fast forward to having my daughter and proudly pushing all 6 adorable pounds of her around the block in the bassinet attachment (it was exactly like the image I had in my head).  My husband joined us for a walk and, half way down the block, stopped to proclaim “This is the most awesome stroller of all time!  No really, this thing is great.”  Aha!  Convert!  I knew he’d see the light.

The Vista is everything I expected it to be and I can confidently recommend it now that I’ve used all three attachments with it.  My only complaint about the stroller is how much room the frame takes up in my trunk.  I have a Prius and it takes up virtually the entire footprint of the trunk (it’s too wide to stash it on its side).  That being said, this is not reason enough to tarnish its image in my eyes – a smaller stroller just wouldn’t get the job done in the same way.

Also, if you have to fly with your Vista, the travel bag is really the only way to go.  The double stroller gate check bags only fit the frame if you also remove the wheels – which is a real pain when you gate check.  Order the travel bag when you can find it – it tends to go on back order often!

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The Arm’s Reach Co-Sleeper – Because You Need SLEEP

Arm's Reach Cosleeper

The great debate: will the baby sleep in the nursery or in the master bedroom?  This always seems to be a lively topic of discussion, with everyone having a different opinion of the pros and cons of each decision.  Every first time mom has her vision of how things will play out when she comes home from the hospital.  But the fact of the matter is, all of your plans go out the window when you return from the hospital as a very tired and sore lady.  No matter how Type A you are, you end up going with “what works”.

What works for us is the Arm’s Reach Co-Sleeper.  This genius bassinet has one side that drops down, so when you park it next to your bed, you have easy access to the baby.  This is SO much more convenient than getting your exhausted and sore self up to walk even two feet to a normal bassinet to get your baby up/soothe her/make sure she’s still really in there.  If you have a baby that nurses every hour for the first 6 weeks of her life (like mine), this convenience is the only thing that keeps you from completely losing your mind.

It’s also wonderful:

  • when you need to just flop a hand down next to them for soothing
  • for parking that pacifier that refuses to stay put right back in their mouth before a Stage 4 Melt Down occurs
  • checking to ensure the blanket is still on when it’s a cold night

I love my co-sleeper so much that I not only own the Angelica from the “Little Palace Collection”, I also own an Original in cream.

The Angelica is beautiful and made my Mommy Heart go pitter-pat when I first saw it and envisioned bringing my little girl home to it.  It is also solidly constructed of high quality metal framing and well-finished fabric.  The Angelica is the same size as the Mini, so it will only hold your baby up to 23lbs.  It also does not break down easily – this is a design to leave at home.

 

The Original is not as fabulously girly, but it is much larger, it can convert to a playpen, and can be folded down into its travel bag for transport.  It’s a bit heavy, but the ability to take my co-sleeper with me when I travel means that I don’t care how small or light a play yard option might be.  My baby doesn’t wake up fewer times at night just because I’m traveling, so my need to have her next to me at bed level doesn’t diminish either.  It was a bit tricky to break down the first few times, but after a few dry runs I was a champion at getting the Original up and down in no time flat.

Do yourself a favor and get an Arm’s Reach Co-sleeper.  You will love it just like I do!

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