How to Pick a Stroller in 5 Steps

Does picking a stroller seem like a daunting and difficult task? Are you worried you are going to pick the wrong stroller and end up never using it?

Well in actuality, it doesn’t have to be a daunting and difficult task if you have the correct tools available. Although it will take a bit of time, with the correct steps to follow you will not have to worry about picking the wrong stroller.

In this article, we are going to be walking you through the 5 step process of how to a pick a stroller and provide you with the tools to do so.

Step 1: How/Where will you be using the stroller most?

The first step to picking out the best stroller is figuring out how and where you will be using the stroller most. This is the most important step in the process since everything else will be based on this decision. If you are able to pinpoint exactly how you will be using the stroller then the next step, choosing important features, will be much easier. Here are some examples of how the stroller may be used:

  • In the city on a daily basis, in place of a car.
  • Leisurely for walks or going to the park.
  • For Travel

Step 2: Which stroller features are most important to you?

Now that you have figured out how/where you will be using the stroller most, you can choose stroller features. This decision is based off of two things: 1. how the feature will affect the function of the stroller 2. specific features/enhancements that you want (ex: height-adjustable handlebar, reversible seat etc). Some features to think about are, safety, weight of the stroller, ease of fold, tires, storage, compatibility, enhancements and price.It is crucial to number the features in order of importance as well as write why each feature is important.

Step 3: Search for strollers that have those features

With your chart of important features in hand it is time to find strollers that have these features. The best way to do this is to skim through comparison charts and stroller reviews and make a list of the different strollers that match your list of features. Depending on how many features you have chosen it may or may not be hard to find strollers that have all of them since strollers aren’t perfect. Luckily, you have numbered the features in order of importance and wrote why each one is important. This is helpful because you can A. remember why you ordered it that way and switch it around as you see fit and B. look for strollers that have the top 3-5 most important features.

Step 4: Find out more details about the strollers

Now that you have a list of strollers that have either some or all of the important features it is time to narrow down the choices there are some really great resources to help with this:

  • Stroller reviews
  • Comparison charts
  • Amazon specifically the reviews from verified customers and the questions and answers that others have asked
  • YouTube videos
  • Trying out/seeing the stroller in real life, either by seeing if friends have any of the strollers you are looking into or by going to a brick and mortar store.

While going through these different resources write down what you like and don’t like about each stroller. I suggest creating an excel document (or Google sheet) to keep things all in one place and in order.

After going through all these different resources and reviewing your excel sheet you should be able to narrow down your list of strollers. By now you should have at most 3 strollers left to choose from all of which are probably very similar with only slight differences.

Step 5: Pick the best stroller

Here comes the hardest part, you have to pick which stroller you are going to buy! The best way to do this is to go through your excel sheet and really take note of which strollers have all/the most features you want plus the most extra things you like about it. As well, you can go through the different resources again to see if their was anything you missed before. If you are having a difficult time deciding between two strollers you can always buy both from Amazon try them out and return the one you don’t like.

Potty Training Techniques for Energetic Toddlers

Every parent I know looks forward to the day their child no longer “produces” sticky, sticky diapers. Most children will be ready to get into the to move onto “big pants” between 18 and 24 months. Of course, the process is not without its pitfalls. Find out the best way to potty train your child, as easily as possible.

Is your child ready? Here are a few, non-exhaustive signs that it may be time to potty train. If she/he:

  • Can say the words for urine, stool, toilet
  • Hates being soiled or wet
  • Seems fascinated by the potty (he likes to sit on it or curious/fascinated with bathrooms)

Ultimately, knowing whether your child’s ready comes down to guesswork. If it turns out he isn’t, you can simply try again after a few weeks or months. Don’t force readiness upon a child as it may cause anxiety.A question you need to ask yourself is: Are you ready?

Potty training takes time, it takes energy and you must have tons of patience. You will be doing a lot of laundries and going to the bathroom A LOT. Puddles will form on the floor at the worse possible times and you need to remember that you are training your child and so you can’t be angry. Again, are you ready? Is there something going on in your home that might make this an insurmountable task? If so, you can wait for a better time.

There is no ‘one way’ to teach potty train. Here are a few that we tried:

We went online and let our son select some big boy pants from Amazon. We told him he wasn’t going to wear a diaper anymore and that when the pants came, that’s what he’d wear. That way we had 2 days to continue to talk about it until the pants arrived in the mail. Then, when the mailman came, we had him collect the pants himself (with our help of course) and we made a big fuss about it and he put them. He enjoyed it for as long as he had no accidents. When he did, there was a meltdown and we had to deal with that. Also, make sure that you aren’t overly anxious as he might pick up on it. There is no single way to do this but there are a few that I highly recommend. Here is a course we used with our last born child and it kept us sane and my son seemed happy with the ride!

Creating a Safe Play Area for Your Baby

Every baby has, more or less, the same requirements while growing up, and one such that most parents ignore is independence. Now, I know what you’re thinking, nobody envisages a baby to be independent – that phase doesn’t come till late teenage, right? Wrong. It may seem hard to believe, but it is important for babies to have their “own space”.

Play ground designs require a fair bit of imagination, but safety should never be compromised and should be of foremost concern. The best bet would be to invest in commercial playground equipment. So, to keep a baby happy (and safe) we have to start thinking like one. Use common sense to dictate the guidelines for your baby’s play ground.

1. The play area should be located in an area of the house where you can supervise your child easily.

2. Play ground should, ideally, be away from the stairs. But in case if it has to be near one, a gate should be installed at the top and bottom of the stairs to prevent any accidents. To avoid your child climbing banisters, you can buy and install a transparent, durable, and shatterproof plastic shield.

3. Utilizing natural light is incredibly important. Play areas should be sunny and bright. But despite this fact, play areas shouldn’t be near windows. And especially away from the cords on blinds.

4. Babies are curious little devils, and their curiosity might get the better of them when around electric outlets. Best to keep them covered with socket covers.

5. Children, while still learning and getting accustomed to their surroundings, frequently put foreign objects into their mouths. These not-so-delightful habits could be possible sources of infection, so to avoid this play ground and outdoor playground equipment need to be clean and hygienic.

6. And since toddlers topple every now and then, when trying to walk, you have to make sure that the surface they fall on is smooth and soft. Padding or using foam padding is a sure way of ensuring this.

7. Age limits on children’s toys are there for a reason and shouldn’t be disregarded. Toys with small parts can be choking hazards and so can toys with moving parts that could be dislodged.

Tips to Help You Buy a Good Umbrella Stroller

As far as convenience goes, umbrella strollers are a lot better than those full-size strollers are. Therefore, these strollers are an ideal choice for you if you often go out with your kids. When buying one, you may want to consider the advantages and disadvantages of this product. Aside from this, you may also want to take into account the features, wheel locks, restrain system, canopy and the footrest of the stroller.

First of all, there is no doubt that umbrella strollers are lightweight, small and easy to carry around. Since this type of product can be folded up, you don’t need a lot of space in your room or car. You can also carry this product with just one hand. Like any other product, umbrella strollers have their pros and cons.

The Advantages

As said earlier, umbrella strollers don’t weigh much. Most of the products weigh around 7 kg. Aside from this, you can use or fold the product with one hand, which means that the product can be folded pretty quickly. Moreover, the size of the product makes it easier for you to move the product through small spaces, such as aisles in big shopping malls.

The Disadvantages

Since these strollers are small, toddlers and big babies may not find these products very comfortable. Aside from this, the simple design of the product doesn’t let you adjust the position of the seating. So, if you have a young kid who can’t sit up without support, umbrella strollers may not be a good option.

Usually, if you have a baby who is younger than 6 months, you may not want to put him in the stroller. Aside from this, you don’t have more than one seat position, your kid won’t be able to fall asleep in the reclining position. Moreover, the product doesn’t have a wheel suspension.

How to choose an Umbrella Stroller

As far as choosing a good umbrella stroller is concerned, you may want to take into account some factors. Although all of the products have the necessary features, you will find that different brands have different set of features. You may want to take into account the size, age, stroller’s features as well as the reputation of the brands.

Age and Size of the baby

As said before, placing a baby who is under 6 months of age should not be placed in the baby stroller. If you have a newborn baby, you may want to look at other options prior to putting money in good umbrella strollers. Also, keep in mind that these strollers feature a limit of maximum weight. As a matter of fact, some big strollers can carry a kid that weighs up to 40 kg. On the other hand, small units have a weight limit of around 24 kg.

Stroller Features

Almost every stroller comes with a hammock-shaped seat for kids to sit in; however, some models have different features. So, when buying a unit, you may want to take into account the features, such as the canopy, the footrest, the wheel, and the restrain system.

What Are the Different Types of Baby Monitors?

Baby monitors are a great investment to give that extra reassurance that a baby is safe while sleeping at night. There are many different baby monitors on the market. They can vary between those intended to monitor breathing, while others are more effective at detecting cries and other sounds.

Here is an overview of the different types:

Sound monitor – this type of monitor is designed to broadcast any noises the baby makes. It relies on a radio transmitter to pass the baby cries, or other sounds to the receiver which is kept close to the parents. This makes it really easy to respond to any noise when the baby wakes.

Video monitor – this is an improvement on the standalone sound monitor and gives the option to clearly see the baby on a small screen while the baby sleeps. If the baby does make a noise it is possible to check the display to see if there is a proper need to visit the nursery, or the baby was simply making noises in their sleep.

Smart phone app – these are one of the latest options to monitor a baby’s sleep. They are built to detect noise and will send an alert to the phone if the baby wakes. Plus, there are also apps that can be combined with a video camera to give the visual aspect.

Breathing monitor – most of the baby monitors built to detect breathing include a special mat that is positioned under the baby, and has the ability to recognize the breaths. Alternatively, other monitors of this type are clip-on and designed to detect the movement of the stomach with each breath.

What are the benefits?

There are several benefits that come from using the baby monitors, including:

The parents or babysitter is given greater flexibility to monitor the baby, and can even do this when quite a distance from the nursery.

In certain situations when a baby is ill, it may be necessary to monitor the breathing, and this is much easier when a special mat or alarm is in place. This also applies to babies suffering from sleep apnea.

In addition to the benefits, there are also a few downsides. A common criticism is that parents start to get more anxious when constantly checking a monitor. This is certain to cause stress if the breathing monitor keeps emitting the false alarms. Also, this can mean parents lose sleep and likely to be more tired in the mornings.

Baby Shower Ideas for Twins!

It’s a double shower!

You are pregnant! Congratulations! Now it’s time to head to your doctor’s office and get a first look at your baby. Nothing is quite as exciting as that first ultrasound. But guess what? You’re in for a surprise. It turns out that the bouncing bundle of joy you are so eager to meet actually has a companion. You are going to have twins! It is far too early to tell the genders yet, but the excitement you feel is contagious as you spread the news to your family that not only will there be an addition to the family, but, in fact there will be two!

Planning a baby shower is always an adventure, but when you’re planning for two there are a few extra things to keep in mind.

One Theme? Or Two?

Baby showers for singleton children typically have a single theme, be it animals, or Disney or Dr Seuss. But when you’re having two, why not double up on the theme? After all, there are two little beans to think of. Most commonly used is the idea of “Two Peas in a Pod,” because those two little sweet peas will be snuggled up so closely in Mommy’s tummy. But if you are a fan of children’s literature, how about “Thing 1 & Thing 2” the lovable characters from Dr. Seuss’s Cat in the Hat? Another cute idea might be “The Perfect Pair.” Go wild. Make the theme your own. The key is to emphasize that this is a double party, whether you know the genders of your babies. If you do not know, and plan not to find out, the genders, be sure to keep the theme neutral. As a general rule, color scheme will provide guests with a good idea of whether your babies will be boys or girls.

The Table Sets the Mood

The greatest expenses incurred while having a baby are the big ticket items, like carseats, clothes, cribs, formula (if the mother is not planning breastfeeding), and diapers. Having two immediately doubles the expense. A great way to help out a mom -to-be of twins is to create attractive but functional table centerpieces for the party. Ever seen a diaper cake? It may sound bizarre but if you find the right way to do it, a diaper cake can not only be an incredibly interesting and attractive centerpiece, but it will be a conversation starter and most importantly it will help the new family cut back on one of the greatest baby expenses!

Other great table decoration ideas include things like small bottles of baby shampoos and soaps, baby lotions, diaper cream or baby powder. These may not sound glamorous but they can be dispersed amidst ribbons and other festive flairs to create a beautiful but functional display.

If you know they mommy-to-be doesn’t intend to breastfeed, get as many bottles of formula as possible and make a standing pyramid, reminiscent of champagne fountains at more formal affairs.

It’s All in the Decor

Remember, whether boy or girl (or a surprise) the theme is multiples Make sure the decorations match that theme Maintain the chosen color scheme but when decorating with balloon, for example, always bundle two together; two balloons tied to each chair, two streamers across the doorway, maybe even a double party hat on each plate. Yes, be silly and creative. Most showers include some sort of fun games, let the games double up as well. Whichever games or prizes you choose, make sure they match the theme both in color and number. If you can make the decorations serve as baby-related needs mommy-to-be might have, even better. Don’t forget she will get stuck with all the decorations after the party is over. Decorate with baby blankets, rattles, cute twin themed clothes. You name it. Whatever mommy might need, see if you can bring it to the decor.

How to Choose a Baby Shower Gift

The problem of how to choose a baby shower gift does not have to be a difficult decision. Buying your gift can be easy and enjoyable.

Today many websites or stores make it quickly available for the new Mom or for you the person in need of a gift to find the store’s registry. Mom’s can fill out the check list and others can choose from this list. This is wonderful for all of those items that baby needs and Moms would like others to help her supply for the baby. Isn’t that what baby showers are all about?

But this is your best friend, your granddaughter, or someone special having a baby and a check list item will never do. The Internet provides so many ideas but which is right for the baby and will they fit your budget? Look to unique items, ones that will last a lifetime. Handmade items, such as baby quilts are perfect baby shower gifts because they can be both durable and adorable. These memorable unique handmade baby quilts will be treasured gifts for the mother-to-be and will be treasured keepsakes for years to come. They are great for baby bedding, coordinating crib bedding in the baby nursery, on the floor or playpen, or for the Mother on the go in the car or stroller. Use these handmade quilts for children to enjoy during nap time, playtime or just time to cuddle with their favorite book during story time.

Since you might want to choose a baby shower gift that is special and you plan to go the extra mile, let that gift be one that can be remembered long after the baby is born. If you know the sex of the baby, you are a step ahead. If you know you are looking for a shower gift for a baby boy blue of course is popular and add in the familiar ideas of trucks, trains or blocks. Shades of pinks pastels are perfect for girls gifts with dolls and princesses, as a rule. The baby’s room theme is also an option in looking for items for baby shower gifts.

Think of what the baby uses every day like bottles, pacifiers, toys or baby quilts. Once you have decided, get an item in modern, or elegant designs. Look for unique collections to purchase. These items can be customized or monogrammed to make them a special baby gift.

How to choose a baby shower gift should not be difficult and be sure to wrap your gift in colorful and attractive wrapping for the new Mother-to-be.

How To Make Handmade Baby Quilts Affordable

How can you give a handmade baby quilt for a baby shower gift and still make it affordable?

When you’re going to a baby shower for someone special in your life, you want to choose the perfect present to convey your affection and admiration, but you have to keep your budget in mind. Those two desires sometimes seem like they will never mesh. You’ve rejected the cliche outfits that will soon be outgrown and the nursery paraphernalia that has as much sentimental value as a diaper pack.

What’s thrumming your heartstrings are those handmade baby quilts for sale on-line. And who can blame you? Each one has a different design that is irresistibly cute. Here is a gift that will comfort the newborn from his very first day in the crib to his playpen adventures and later to his playtimes on the floors of homes he visits.

Since talented quilters have translated their ideas into adorable homemade gifts for girls and boys, you have the ability to select one that will have personal meaning for the family. You’ve seen the baby quilts with little sailboats that would please your friends who have a boat, and you’ve loved the cars and trains motif that is perfect for the family that loves to travel, or the one whose dad is in transportation.

As you check out these quilts to buy, you’re impressed that the fine soft flannels and sturdy construction techniques used by quilters create unusual gifts that can withstand the rumble-tumble of babyhood and will survive as precious keepsakes that babies who come later can enjoy.

Now you realize that each has been thoughtfully designed and lovingly handcrafted for years of use and pleasure cannot be had for a bargain basement price. These are not like some pile of mass-produced quilts with the same design, dubious fabrication quality and no personal connection to the new baby’s family. When you buy unique crafts, you’re buying from the person who usually spends weeks making sure each one is sturdily made and marvelous to see.

So how can you make sure that a favorite mom-to-be and her family will get to own this most precious and practical of baby gifts without putting a pain in your pocketbook? The secret is sharing the cost.

Grandma might propose that her other daughters get together with her on a special gift. Or the aunts could chip in together for a collective presentation. If the expectant mom is a co-worker, the baby quilt could come from several members of the crew.

Anyone can find a modest, ho-hum budget-friendly gift, but its duration in use and memory is almost sure to be limited. You want to express how you feel about the newborn and her family in a more meaningful, lasting way. By making the baby shower gift a group gift with others who feel as you do, you can afford to provide a spectacular present that will be a joy to the baby and her family for years to come.

Catering The Baby Shower

Baby showers have long been a staple in many families. The women gather to bestow gifts on the expectant mother and ooh and ah over little bibs and stuffed animals. Today, the gender reveal party is gaining traction where the family (boys and girls together for this one) gathers and the gender of the impending arrival is shown to all. Will the balloons, confetti, smoke, streamers, etc. be blue or pink? What will baby be?

Of course if you have a party you have to have some sort of food for the guests. Yes, you can make it a potluck where everyone in attendance brings a dish or two, or you as host can do it all alone, making little blue cupcakes or icing little pink cookies. Or, you can save all the fuss for someone else and have your next baby shower or gender reveal party catered by professionals.

Catering for any party means that you can relax and have fun rather than spend weeks preparing and the whole party worrying that the food is okay. You won’t have to go grocery shopping and spend tons of money on the food, as you can pick and choose from preexisting menus for each budget and party theme.

Most catering companies know exactly what to offer for each party type and many have tried and true foods that everyone will love. Best of all, they come to you, whether the party is at your house, at the expectant parent’s house or at a venue. Food can be delivered cold and then you heat it up or it can be delivered ready to eat, the choice is yours.

Want a sit down dinner? A buffet? A dessert party? A chocolate party? Don’t worry, a caterer will have you covered and you will likely be shocked at how it compares in price to going it alone. Best of all, with the food out of the way, you are free to actually enjoy the party and will be stress free, unless of course you are stressed about the gender of the new arrival! All kidding aside, a baby shower or gender reveal party is all about being happy for the soon to be parents and coming together to shower the new arrival with baby items and advice. It’s a great opportunity to get together with friends and relatives and really, who needs the extra work and stress of doing the food? Not you!

Baby Boomers – How Far We Have Come!

Were you born between 1946 and 1964? Then, like my husband and I, you are one of the nearly 75 million Americans in the Baby Boomer Generation. Think of all the changes you have seen!

You were born just after the end of World War II, saw the Korean War begin and end and were there when the Vietnam War was waging. You were born during the term of one of these US presidents: Harry Truman, Dwight Eisenhower (remember “I Like Ike), John F. Kennedy (“Camelot”) or Lyndon Johnson (“Great Society”). You could buy a brand new car for just $1,400 and gas for that car cost 21 cents a gallon and milk was 70 cents a gallon. You could even buy a new home for $12,500 – with that amount, you can barely rent a house for a year now!

Those were the days when families were larger and lived in closer proximity to each other. Grandparents were nearby. Aunts and Uncles were close. Family holiday dinners would often include a large table crammed with food and people. When you went on a family picnic to the lake, you didn’t worry about locking your home when you left or locking your car when you were at the lake. Kids were allowed to go off and play without their parents worrying about them.

But the world has changed since then. Some changes have been good and some not so good. Back in the “good old days” we had to wash clothes using a wringer washer and hang them out on the line to dry. Now we have washers and dryers that are electronic and can do the washing and drying on their own. Can we buy a house for $12,500 now? Not hardly – we can’t even buy a good lot to put a house on for that amount of money. The average house price in the US is now $300,000! A new car costs around $30,000 and gasoline is nearly $2.50 a gallon. Good and bad, we have seen many changes.

What about entertainment back then? Back in the beginning of our Boomer generation, hardly anyone had a TV. Sitting around listening to the radio was a common evening occupation. When you got your first TV, you needed “rabbit ears” or an antenna to bring in a local station. Now, watching TV means watching a cable channel or even playing a game with your Xbox or PlayStation. Phones used to be large black monsters that sat on a hall table or hung from a wall. You shared your phone line with others – this is why it was called a “party line”. Now phones are pocket-sized, work from a satellite tower and act like a computer. Come to think of it, computers, which were non-existent in the “personal computer” form at the beginning of the boomer generation, are in the homes of most Americans today. All of these changes have led to Americans getting instantaneous information about activities around the world. Are these changes better or not? Sometimes we tend to think we are on “information overload”. I think the first time I saw so much information about just one subject was when President Kennedy was assassinated. If you are a Boomer, you probably remember exactly where you were and what you were doing on that date. I was in grade school, reading aloud from our Bible History book when the Nun who was the cook in the convent, came in and told our Nun what had happened. We all got down on our knees and prayed. Come to think of it, even prayer has disappeared from our schools in the name of “Political Correctness”.

The world of instantaneous information has brought with it information that gives us chances to think about, as well as fear for our safety. Random attacks occur around the world and we begin to wonder if we are safe anywhere. Our kids are killed in schools. People are killed in shopping malls. There are random shooting in almost every community. Entire families are devastated by these losses. We worry about our families and how we can protect them.