Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Stroller Recommendation


Hooray! One of my dear friends is pregnant, and I am over-the-moon excited for her. Honestly, I didn't even feel a twinge of sadness about the fact that she is pregnant and I'm not. It's definitely because some time has passed since my miscarriage, but it's also because I'm in such a good place right now. Another Purposeful Conception class just ended, and I've had such a good time connecting with kindreds and generating next steps for myself. As I've already mentioned recently (but want to mention again because I'm so proud of myself!), I've lost four pounds via Weight Watchers and have been running three days a week (and walking a fourth). I've been doing a good yoga stretch before bed each night, and I have a list of things to take care of before we try to conceive again. 

My dear friend asked me some logistical questions (she's a fellow planner), and I wanted to answer them here in case they are helpful to anyone else:

Would you recommend the Bob? And did you have a secondary stroller at all or just get by with the one?

Matt's parents immediately offered to buy us a high-quality stroller as a Happy Baby gift, so we requested the stroller that had been recommend to us over and over: The BOB Revolution. They also got us the bar that helps it hold an infant car seat before the child turns six months, the rain cover, and the canvass console that can hold cups, keys, etc. (I know; they are extremely generous!)

We decided not to get another stroller because a) we lived in a 1,000 square-foot bungalow and didn't want to store it 2) didn't want to be overwhelmed with "stuff." I read Kristina's post about strollers and figured that the BOB would be sufficient. I also thought that if we needed another stroller, it would probably be one of those cheapy umbrella ones. I figured that if we needed one down the line, it would be easy to order it via Amazon and get it in two days (P.S. If you buy a lot of baby products on Amazon, you can qualify for free Prime through Amazon Mom). 

I have loved, loved, loved the BOB and have not regretted having only one stroller. I mainly use the stroller for walks on gravel trails, so the BOB has been perfect. It's comfortable for Henry, it has great shocks, the handle bar falls at the perfect height for me, etc. I have also used it other places, such as at the Farmers' Market. 

However, I have to confess that Matt and I are not big shoppers. If we liked to go antique shopping every weekend or spent a lot of time at the mall, then we might need a smaller, more maneuverable stroller. For us, we mainly used the Moby Wrap and the Ergo carrier in those environments (including the grocery store until Henry was big enough to sit in the cart). Now if we go somewhere like that, we let Henry walk. So for us, a second stroller was never necessary. 

I definitely suggest that you go through your day-to-day life and normal weekend activities and think about when you might want to use a stroller. Each family has to figure out what works for them. I usually tried to err on the side of less and then add more if necessary.

I actually think the newborn stage goes by really fast and that we should not just build our baby registries with only that stage in mind. As a general tip, I recommend requesting registry stuff to get you through the first year of life (or at least until Christmas, if you celebrate it). Some big ticket items I recommend for the first year are the BOB stroller, Tripp Trapp high chair, wooden walker wagon, weaning table and chair, and floor bed crib mattress. At Henry's one year mark, we asked for the Learning Tower.

But take or leave my advice! Only you and your family can know what will work for you. Matt and I used a folded towel on the bathroom counter as a "changing table" for Henry (still do), and we never had a swing or even a rocker/glider in the nursery. Have the courage to forge your own path!

Wishing you the very best!



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10 comments:

Kelsey said...

Sara, it sounds like you're in a great place and I'm so happy for you, and proud of you for achieving a healthy routine and meeting your healthy weight goal. And love this recommendation; I'm glad to know that one stroller can be enough.

Allison E said...

Hey Sara!
Great post...as always! Just wanted to share that there's a much cheaper wooden walker from ikea (http://www.ikea.com/us/en/catalog/products/40060836/) at $20! Not sure if it's the same quality/weight as the one you have listed, but just wanted to make you and your readers aware of it.

We had originally ordered a murphy-bed type changing table that would have been mounted to the wall in the bathroom. Definitely a splurge at almost $400 but I really wanted to be able to change Marc in the bathroom (like you guys!) Unfortunately, when it came, it was just too big and bulky so we had to send it back. I was bummed because I really didn't want to change him in his room, but we didn't have as good counter space in his bathroom as you did (sink is right in the middle and there's not enough counter space on either side for even a towel to change him). BUT we did come up with a solution! I bought a changing pad and just keep it behind the bathroom door when not in use. When I need to change Marc's diaper, I just push the faucet to the side, plop the changing pad over the sink, and voila! Changing station is ready. It's worked really well for us and was MUCH more economical at $30 vs $379!

I did splurge on a glider, though, and have been delighted about that decision - we went with one from Babies R Us. It wasn't my ideal color - it's ivory, where I wanted to find one that was red or grey. I also wanted one that looked like a regular armchair (where you don't see the wood). However, these are pretty expensive and with the gliding ottoman, can run $800-$1000 for the ones in the colors I really wanted! Too, too much. When I made the decision to go with the ivory one, I was able to get the glider and ottoman for $450 (with my 10% coupon!), have it ready in less than a week (vs. 6-8 weeks for other brands), and it is SUPER comfortable. I just keep a blanked over the ottoman so that it doesn't get dingy...

Alright - need to finish preparations for Hurricane Isaac...

Jules said...

Hi Sara!

I've been curious about the Tripp Trapp high chair. When did you start using this with Henry, and did you also have the baby set, pad, or tray? We are already sold on the Bob with the carseat adapter, but hadn't put a high chair yet on our registry.

Hope all is well!

Catfish said...

Hi, Sara! Glad things are going so well for you.

We had an umbrella stroller for my nephew when he got big enough and we loved it. We used it for most day-to-day things (shopping, as you mentioned, is easiest with a smaller stroller). An umbrella is super-easy to fold and fits anywhere, and there are lots of them available at thrift stores or garage sales.

Sara E. Cotner said...

Wow! So many dear friends commented on this post. Hello to you all!

Allison! How is new motherhood treating you? I can't believe I got to chat with you right before your birth!

I love the look of the IKEA wagon; you just have to be careful because it is very light and easy to tip over. The purpose of the wagon (in the Montessori world) is to provide a very stable base upon which the tottering child can pull up and use for support with early walking. You could probably make the IKEA one fit this purpose by weighing it down with something. It really is beautiful.

Hi, Jules! How is your pregnancy going? I think we started using the Tripp Trapp at about 6 months. I think that's when Henry was stable enough to sit up with a little support. We started using it as early as possible. We didn't buy the baby set because some of the reviews made it seem difficult to get the child into and out of. Plus, we didn't want to spend the extra money for something we wouldn't use for very long. We never had a problem just using the harness it came with. We also didn't buy the tray. Montessori recommends always pulling the high chair directly to the table, so the child can join the family. When Henry isn't at the table with us, he's at his weaning table (for snacks and breakfast). One of us usually sits down there with him if he's eating but we're not.

I can see how the tray would be extremely useful if you're trying to cook with a mobile baby. You could bring them in the kitchen, strap them in, and feed them snacks. We never do this with Henry because we try not to restrict his movement unless we have to. We also try not to feed him snacks right before dinner (we're trying to teach him patience). But I will say it would be much easier to just use a high chair with a tray and feed him snacks!

Autumn Witt Boyd said...

I also agree to buy less on the front end and figure out what you'll really need in those first few weeks and months. Talk to your friends with babies, most have barely-used toys, bouncers, swings, etc. they would be thrilled for you to borrow for a few months.

My two cents on the stroller question: if you drive a lot of places you then walk around and take the baby with you, it may be helpful to have a lightweight stroller you can snap the carseat into -- we got the Snap 'N Go, which is inexpensive, easy to fold, and doesn't take up much space. We actually just leave it in the trunk of the car and there's still room for groceries, etc. Our "walking the neighborhood" stroller (the double Baby Jogger City Mini) is wonderful but big and heavy, and not as easy to maneuver in and out of a car.

I have twins so my experience is of course twin-specific (ie, not very easy to take both babies in a carrier, although I do use it some if I've just got one). Good luck!

Carrie said...

I love my single Bob Revolution and recently purchased the duallie Revolution so I can jog when I have both kids home by myself. Both the hubs and I have used it many times--love it!

Andrea said...

Hi Sara,
This is totally unrelated to the main point of your post, but what is the "great yoga stretch" you're doing before bed? Is it a specific sequence? I'd love to start doing some simple yoga before bed.
Thanks!

Anonymous said...

I almost got a wagon for my daughter when she started cruising, but am glad that I didn't spend the $ and space on one (we have a very small apartment). When she was in the needing-something-to-stand-and-push phase she pushed the laundry basket (with a few books in it to give it some weight). Worked perfectly, since there is a good amount of resistance. She now no longer needs the support, but still loves to push stuff, so I got her a little stroller ($20 for a pretty decent metal one, and it folds). She loves it. Just another option for those looking to not buy another big baby thing!

Anonymous said...

Definately love the bob for jogging. Otherwise, we aren't big fans of leaving our babies in their carseat and actually are skipping the infant car seat this time. We opted for a diono that last 8 years from 5 lbs-120 lbs., is extremely thin and can fit across a seat. While car seats are the safest mode of traveling in a vehicle for an infant, extended period in them can actually reduce their oxygen levels by compressing their chest. We have an ergo to use while shopping, but encourage our children to walk reasonable distances once they are able. Of course we love our tripp trapps also! Lastly, umbrella strollers can be convenient, but lack proper support of children's spines, especially infants. Use your judgement, I see so many little babies them and extended periods probably aren't best.

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