strollers, prams, buggys

This post is based on my experiences with the strollers that I have used and also on my lifestyle. There are many other strollers out there that I have not tried before so I may have missed out on newer versions of strollers. However, I do feel that choice of strollers will eventually boil down to weight and how you intend to use it, and of course the price. We owned a:

Peg Perego P3 Pliko Compact (8.5kg);
Jeep Wrangler All Weather Umbrella Stroller (4.3kg);
Silver Cross Reflex Pushchair (8.5kg);
Summer Infant 3D Lite (5.45kg);
City Select (12.7kg)

With 2 upcoming baby fairs, you are thinking about getting a stroller but not sure what you should get. Well..I’m no expert on strollers but after ‘collecting’ some strollers and decluttering, here are some views of what you should consider when you are getting one:

1) Your mode of transport: Car / Public Transport (Bus, MRT) / Cab

Depending on your mode of transport, you may wish to consider the following:

Summer Infant 3D Lite

Weight:
Weight of strollers can range from 4kg to 12kg. This is probably one of the major considerations depending on your mode of transport. If you travel by public transport (bus, MRT), you wouldn’t want to be lugging a stroller that is too heavy. Obviously, the lighter the stroller, you will be giving up another aspect of the stroller such as the size of the basket, counterbalance, flexibility to recline and canopy cover.

Jeep Wrangler All Weather Umbrella Stroller

Ease of folding: One hand-fold
Umbrella strollers are usually the easiest to fold. With the Silver Cross Reflex, Summer Infant 3D and Jeep stroller, it was so easy to fold. Just kick a latch and fold it downwards. Unfolding it was just as easy as releasing a catch and unfolding. There are other one hand fold strollers like Combi strollers as well. So important when you are rushing for the bus, or travelling solo with two kids.

Peg Perego P3 Pliko Compact

Standing: Can it stand folded?
With the Peg Perego, we found that having the stroller stand on its own after it was folded was a major bonus. We didn’t have to hold on to it after it was folded. Of course wheels can be locked to prevent some strollers from rolling all over in the bus, but it still meant that you would still need to hold on to it. We did learn that technically speaking umbrella strollers could still stand on its own but it also meant that you would have to ‘balance’ it on its handles (upside down) to make it stand.

2) Long term investment: 1 stroller for multiple kids!

Baby Jogger City Select

If transport is not an issue, the number of kids I can squeeze on it would be my next priority. We were sold on the Peg Perego on the basis that there is a toddler bar on the back of the stroller. The counterbalance for the Peg Perego was impressive. The salesman had stood on the toddler bar without the stroller tipping over! Sold! It is our first stroller and we are still using it for 3 kids (2 kids on stroller, 1 kid in baby carrier). Obviously the downside is that if seated kiddo in the stroller wants to nap, the one on the bar will have to walk. So it really depends on the napping situation. Otherwise, really good ROI without having to buy a double stroller.

Alternatively, you can consider a stroller like the City Select. I love that it can be configured to multiple seating arrangements. Bassinet for the baby, seat for the 3yo and a glider board for the 5yo. Total weight: around 40kg. OMG. Definitely gives me a good workout. But hey, it also meants I don’t have to carry anyone. Haha. Downside: you won’t be able get on a bus. Even fitting it into a cab is going to be tricky with a bassinet and a seat. Basically it is the type of stroller you wouldn’t even think of folding once you are out of the house.

Obviously there are other options of double strollers like the Maclaren side by side, Contours and Joovy tandem strollers which are definitely way cheaper than a City Select. But I guess I really liked the idea of having the glider board as an option to include a 3rd kid.

Silver Cross Reflex Pushchair

3) Going shopping? : Counterbalance & access to basket

I only learnt about it when I spotted a friend’s Maclaren stroller. It was a nice sturdy umbrella stroller. But if the bags behind weighed heavier than the weight on the seat (empty or occupied), the stroller will tip over. And I did learn that the hard way with the Jeep stroller especially. While umbrella strollers are lean, the downside is not being able to hang much stuff on the back of it. Which means don’t happily pile on the shopping whilst kiddo is in it and then take kiddo off the stroller! I really enjoyed the Peg Perego cos of the good counterbalance. I really didn’t have to worry about tipping strollers.

Other downside to umbrella strollers is the accessibility to the basket at the bottom. I’m sorry to say the accessibility for my umbrella strollers SUCKED big time. The kids and I go out a lot, so this means we abuse the strollers a fair bit. Heading out with 2 kids means diaper bag plus carrier plus what-nots. Diaper bag hangs off the handlebars, everything else goes into the basket. Good enough, IF the seat is never in recline position. Once the seat is in recline, you can pretty much forget about putting anything bulky inside the basket.

For a single stroller, I love my Peg Perego basket. *smooch smooch smooch* Nuff said. Hahaha.

4) Pushing it with one hand: Yes, handlebars make a difference!

It took the last stroller to my ‘collection’ to realise the difference it made to have a U-shaped handlebar, compared to having two handlebars to push. It is so-so much easier to navigate single-handedly with a U-shaped handlebar! Obviously there are some physics involved which I do not know how to explain. Trying a stroller empty, versus a 15kg weight inside will make a world of a difference.

Conclusion:

I head out with the kids alot and well, counterbalance is the last thing I want to worry about when I am out with them. Weight was not an issue to me as I lived close enough to a train station so if I couldn’t fold and lift it up the bus, I could always walk to the train station. Space, and usability was definitely a priority. Best if I could use it for up to 3 kids, but alas..let’s not abuse a single stroller lah.

For me, the Peg Perego best fits my lifestyle with 2 kids. Usually I’ll piggyback one kid and lift the stroller up the bus whilst holding the hand of the other kid. At 8.5kg, it is manageable. On ground, older kid goes on toddler bar, younger kid goes on the seat. The basket is big enough for me to easily toss stuff inside, regardless of whether the seat is reclined or not. Unfortunately, manoeuvring it single-handedly is a pain but I don’t do it that often. It is of a decent size, a little bulky but doesn’t take up too much space in the boot of a sedan.

The Jeep is good for really short trips to the shops or market. The type with no anticipated naps as it doesn’t recline.

The Summer Infant 3D was our travelling stroller. It was lightweight enough to carry around easily, didn’t take up much space in the car boot and could still recline almost fully to allow for naps. Counterbalance was obviously crap but as long as a kid was seated inside it, we could hang our shopping haul! hehe.

Silver Cross Reflex is a bonus. We loved that it is an umbrella stroller that could allow for reverse facing and still fold neatly (ooo I really miss that plush baby nest!)

The City Select is our go-to stroller if the kids and I head out to town or go out for long hours at the zoo. Everyone gets to be on it, it is easy to manoeuvre and still has decent enough storage in the basket (depending on how you arrange the seats). But it takes up A LOT of space in the boot. Surprisingly tho, we managed to fit a City Select (with bassinet only) plus a City Select mini in the back of a Toyota Prius. Well, not in the way I liked it but it fits. So there you go.

Hope this provides you with some insights on how to choose your stroller!

Category: Daily

年头

I had been procrastinating the last week of the holidays. A couple of long weekends, it was nice to have Donald home. The boys spent a few days staying over at my parents’ place, so it was just us and Sarah. It was really nice.

We finally got down to doing some chores, namely sorting out the kids’ clothes and prepping the stuff for school. Labelling the uniforms and school bags. Packing away clothes that the kids could no longer fit in. Setting up the play yard cos Sarah was trying to flip and I could not risk having her roll off the sofa if I stepped away.

Quentin starts school this year. He was excited to put on his uniform, and to see his name on it.

‘this, didi’s one! Didi go school!’  Aye, didi go school.

Now, 2 weeks into school, Sarah and I are still working out a routine. We can’t decide which is better, her waking earlier or later. Ahh..we’ll figure this out soon.

Now she is down for a nap and I just finished folding 4 loads of laundry. I had previously thought that I could get a fair bit of work done during the 3 hours, if she chooses to nap, but alas, now that school has started, it means more chores to catch up on.

Laundry has gone up 3-folds and I am a wee bit worried about how the washing machine is taking it. haha. Not that we max out the load. I’ve got tiny clothes, small people clothes and adult clothes. I can’t believe it actually took me 30 mins to fold all the clothes. In my mind as I fold, I am also thinking if I should pack my maternity clothes away, sort out Sarah’s clothes (she is in between sizes) and there are random clothes from the boys that they have outgrown.

You know..those kind of clothes where it is 2 sizes smaller but still fit them? Yeah, those kind of clothes. I had nicely sorted the others into their sizes but now that they are sealed up..these random clothes have no home to go. So they sit in a pile in the wardrobe. Urggh. Eyesore.

I don’t know about you. But some of the furniture in our home don’t..get to be used as furniture. They have other purposes. Like our dining table, aka the rubbish table. Why rubbish, you ask? It is a table for books, bags, change mat, letters, stuff that we don’t put away. So..overtime stuff gets piled up till we (I) get a little annoyed at it and declutter it. I do actually get comments from Oliver like ‘wah, mummy! Why the table is so empty??’ Yup..it is THAT bad.

piles of stuff. And yes that is stock at the back.

And the feymus laundry chair/sofa. The one where pile up clean laundry till it gets to the point where you run out of undies and have to dig into the pile to find one. Then you reluctantly fold it cos it was getting out of hand.

emptied laundry chair with clean laundry still to be hanged

Or the floor..gone are the days I mop every night. Now I can totally understand how my fellow SAHM can mop..err every few weeks. Hahahaha. Don’t judge. What you don’t see..you don’t have to wipe YET. But dammit, I got glossy floors so I have to mop more frequently. If you are looking to do reno, DO NOT, I repeat, DO NOT get glossy floor tiles. FML.

Yesterday, we threw out half of our sofa cos..something broke inside and popped out of the other side. YAY! Okay, I have been wanting to get rid of the sofa cos the synthetic leather peeled..till it looks damn gross and it was ‘saggy’. The boys also have been treating it like a trampoline. Urgh. But I figured..okay, let’s keep it around until Sarah grows a little older then we’ll replace it. So I was damn happy that it broke!

Sarah’s side: the huuuge play yard

Hahaha. I had seen a post on The Loving Mum’s blog on creating space and I really liked the idea! I wanted to get the Nolmyra chairs for our living room too but Donald vetoed it. Baah. We ended keeping the chaise lounge side of the sofa cos it was still in an okay condition. Still, it freed up a lot of space in the living room. So now, the boys are on one side and Sarah’s on the other side.

Boys’ side of the living room

I swear..no matter how practical we thought we were in our renovations and furniture purchases, we still underestimated the amount of space we will need and the amount of toys and stuff that the kids will amass..and are still amassing. *mutters* too much Lego.

And when there are too much toys..one simply gets more Ikea Trofast drawers to store them. Hahaha. #declutteringfail I kid. But I definitely need to declutter more. Especially with Oliver going to Primary 1 in two years’ time. I am determined to provide the conducive space for school. I do feel bad about hogging one room and the dining room for business…Need to clear at least the dining room and then I reckon we are good.

We would have a normal home. Yeah, normal.

Alrighty, new year. New goals and better time management! Here’s to all of us. *toasts* Stay sane!

Category: Daily

Oliver @ 4 years 11 months

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30th Dec 2016

Hey you.

I counted the number of years and months you were into this year. For a moment, I got a little confused and thought that you were 3 years old. That’s not right. He is 4 this year. I thought to myself. You are going to turn 5 next year.

Gosh. You are going to turn 5 next year. You are going to K1 next year.

Earlier this evening, you came out of your bedroom to drink a cup of water. You had forgotten to bring your water bottle home from school. I rinsed another water bottle, filled it and handed it over to you.

‘Oh, it’s wet.’ And then you proceeded to take a piece of tissue and cleaned it thoroughly.

I watched you do it meticulously on your own accord. Again, I realised that you had grown up before my very eyes . I must have missed the memo that said that I would feel this sense of wonder and love for my child as I watch them grow.

You have the funniest sense of logic. Oh Oliver, the things that you say. I’ve compiled them into #shitolliesez. That same sense of logic that drives me batshits as you use it against me. Not in a bad way, but in a cheeky, teasing kinda way.

You gave me a lot of firsts, and I have wonderful memories of these firsts, well not all wonderful memories, some bad but a good kinda bad. Cos we came out of it even better, didn’t we?

And I wonder, what kind of mom am I to you? What do you see through your eyes?

I have friends who tell me I do a wonderful job with you and your siblings. But I wonder if it is enough for you. Every decision that your dad and I take are meticulously thought out, with your temperament and emotions in mind. Saying ‘he’s just a child, he won’t remember it’ doesn’t cut it. Cos we know you remember so much.

on an average day, you are a pretty awesome son and older brother. on a good day, you blow me away with what you are willing to do and what you can do, how you would lie next to your baby sister and sing her song so that she wouldn’t fuss, and I could continue my chores. On a bad day, you bully the crap outta your younger brother, snub us and pretty much say no to everything. But mostly you got good days.

That sense of wonder in your eyes as we head out, the four of us on our little adventures. These days, you carry your own backpack, filled with essentials that I can grab from easily, so I travel lighter. You share my burden. I watch as you wander ahead of me, reading out signs to me, and asking where we should be heading towards. You enter the lift, hold the door for me and peep to make sure that we are all in before you press the button for the door to close.

Today, you asked if you and Quentin could head to the toys section whilst I went to grab some undies for him. I agreed and asked that the two of you stayed close to each other. When I went to look for you, you were holding Quentin’s hands and walking around, telling him what he should press on the toy.

And today, I wondered what did I do to deserve a kid like you.

[cont’d on 8th January 2017] 

Today ended a little differently, with you in tears at bedtime. I had just put your sister to bed and I heard Daddy yelling at you, with you bursting into tears shortly. I opened the door to your room, and you came over to me, burying your face into me, hugging my leg, sobbing away.

We had a chat, mostly me asking you questions about what happened after Daddy gave me the low down. You had told me to ask Daddy what happened. Daddy said you smacked Quentin, and then hit him. Daddy had been waiting for an apology from you, but when you didn’t and still repeatedly hit him, he got angry.

I then talked to you about how hitting is not a good behaviour and I explained again about how you would feel if someone hit you, and how the other would fee if you hit them. Then you finally agreed to apologise to Daddy and Quentin. After you said sorry to Daddy, you cried. And you asked that I put you to bed and pat you to sleep.

When I did, I teared as I stroked your hair. I wondered what went through your head. And I told you this:

Oliver, the hardest word to say is sorry, because it would mean admitting that you are wrong. But you were brave to say it. Mummy and Daddy may get angry at you but it doesn’t mean we don’t love you, okay? 

You nodded, snuggled up to the side I was at and closed your eyes.

I teared cos I remembered asking you if you felt that mummy and daddy didn’t love you, and you nodded then. I wondered if you felt that way tonight. Now that our attention was split 3-ways, with brother and sister. I have been struggling with this, for the past couple of days. More so after you decided that you didn’t want to stay over at your grandma’s last night. You woke up at 7am this morning and you sorted yourself out till your grandma picked you up at 8.30am. Daddy got up in time to dress you and you went to church without breakfast. Fortunately, your grandma had a couple of slices of bread with her and you ate along the way.

I felt and still feel like the worst parent. Sleep always ends up winning, between waking up earlier to prepare breakfast for you and snoozing. But let’s try this year, I’ll try to be a better mom, and wake up when you are awake.

Like all other times, let’s try again this year. You and I. There’ll be a few changes, but I hope they will be for the better. Both you and I are growing a little older, and hopefully for the wiser. Bear with me, my little man. Okay?

Loving you is always a given. Never doubt nor question that.

Loving you to Jupiter & back,
me.

 

Category: Kids | Tags: ,