Friends in facebook are aware of my search for a new stroller.
See, getting a new baby and considering the fact that I'd be taking care of 2 babies without help made me suggest to the one for us to have a new stroller that could fit 2 of them at one go. I know I've seen mommies who babywear the younger one on them while the much older toddler sits in the stroller but in terms of practicality, I would much prefer both babies to sit on a stroller rather than me having to lug a baby around while tending to another.
Mannn... stroller hunting is not easy here in our country... especially if you're looking for a duo stroller. First of all, there isn't much choice out there in the market compared to those you see abroad... I mean, we went to so many online stores in the UK and US and you'll find so many good brands that are affordably priced.
Over here, the only ones with a duo carrier is from Mothercare and Phils & Teds, while you have those twins stroller from MacLaren and Chicco. I shall not touch those on local brands or other China brands that are cheap and flimsy because I believe in quality and safety after a horrifying experience with my first born when he was 7-8 months old. Note: made in China and China brands are two different points, okay.
Anyways, as usual, once we have something on our minds, we would go ahead with the proper research online and then calling up a few places, and we then went on our hunt to get it over and done with.
*image credit to Kiddicare.comThis was what I wanted - the Graco Quattro Duo. it has individual trays for each passenger but most importantly, it could fit little jj's baby carrier for when the baby is still very small. however, this stroller is unavailable in our country and my enquiries to littlewhiz.com and Babies'R'Us provided me with a negative response :(
First up, right after little jj's class in Kizsports, we went over to all the baby shops in 1Utama. We found a twin stroller in Chicco which was around RM1,300 after discount. It was perfect for newborn to 4 years old kids so it was perfect for both little jj and a newborn, and the handling was pretty good so it was quite alright. The only thing I didn't like was, it was pretty tough to fold and the weight was pretty hefty. I mean... get this - I go out buy my groceries and all, then I would need to get the stuff into the car, get one baby into her car seat and another toddler into her car seat, and they would then have to wait before mommy could start the engine while mommy fold the stroller (kick here kick there for it to fold). By the time I am done, I foresee my babies crying out, feeling the heat from the car park, etc. The price was very reasonable though, and I said to the one that Chicco would be our last choice.
*image credit to Chicco
pretty, affordably priced but heavy and doesn't fold easily.
Another outlet in 1Utama that I always liked to drop by every now and then, is Mom's Care, nearby MPH. They have a huge variety of baby stuff in many good brands. Over there, we discovered the twin MacLaren. The price was slightly more than Chicco but within our budget, the handling was so easy, the material was of a better and more comfortable quality and it was much lighter than the first one we saw. However, despite it having all these positive qualities, I still didn't like how it folded and we were still contemplating on 2 things:
1. the twin stroller will make it tough for me to maneuver in many areas because majority of shops do not have alleys large enough to accommodate a twin stroller; and
2. we were still considering getting a new stroller for little jj so that the baby can use her current Graco travel system.
Both points each have their own positive outcome - the first point would make it easier for me to handle both kids at one time while the latter, would eliminate wastage as the current stroller can still be used especially that Graco is a good brand (and still in very good condition) plus the fact that when little jj grows up, we would only be using one stroller VS an empty space in the twin stroller. And, the latter would allow either one of us to take the babies separately either to the changing room or wherever else when need be.
Of course, I would still like to discover my options fully before getting one. So, off we went to Mothercare in Bangsar Shopping Center. For those of you who are not aware, BSC has the largest Mothercare outlet and I went crazy at their ELC area after the renovations at BSC was completed. I think so far, it must be the best baby outlet in this country.
There, in Mothercare BSC, I finally got to see Phils & Teds, which suits my requirements perfectly but with a deep hole in the pocket. Strange though, that we would just grab a designer handbag of a higher price without much guilt but would think long and hard for a stroller that cost RM3k plus ;P
*image credit to Kiddicare
gorgeous, comes in many colours but quite expensive here and complicated to fold.
The Phils & Teds duo strollers were absolutely gorgeous! They have huge tires which makes handling so efficient and they are absolutely light in weight. The folding was a little too complicated though, even for the sales assistant, and we didn't bother to consider it. I mean, if a trained sales assistant finds it hard to fold it, let alone a busy mommy who has her hands full.
So, Phils & Teds were definitely off the list despite it having all the points I need. Damn... it was so perfect...
We also discovered a Mothercare duo stroller which I already saw on their website. It is only slightly more than RM1k and has all the requirements I need too, except that it is much longer than P&T. The handling was pretty easy as well. It has its individual trays and cup holders and collapses very easily... just one turn of the handle and it folds down instantly. One step and boom. Perfect. There is no need to kick one lever and kick another lever and pull this and pull that and put them together (like that song, 'Hokey Pokey'). The only downside, is its weight after it is folded. I cannot possibly lug it into the boot of our car. It is waay too heavy. *urrgghhh*
the photo doesn't do justice. personally, the design was ok, collapses like a charm but heavy.
Therefore, we then decided to stick to our 2nd option - for little jj to get a new stroller.
We were worried that she wouldn't like a new stroller because she's such a routine toddler. She likes familiarity and may not welcome something new.
I saw a single stroller from Combi which looked perfect... it 'spoke' to me and I fell in love instantly. It was damn light and just pretty for little jj. However, with one more stroller in our car boot, we know that we have to get one that folds like an umbrella to save space. The one even mentioned of one that he saw, that folds like a golf bag and he could carry it on his shoulder.
So, adding another hour to our stroller hunting in Mothercare BSC, we discovered one from MacLaren. It was only RM600+ and could fold like an umbrella, exactly like what the one mentioned. The only thing was, it doesn't have a front tray, which many parents say one of the reasons for their much older toddler's disinterest in sitting on strollers... without a tray, I know little jj would not have that 'security' of being locked in, especially where she uses the tray as a table for her to put both feet up at times hehe. And, she could rest her favourite books on the tray.
But as life has it, one cannot have it all, right? We let her try out the MacLaren, she hated it at first but as soon as the one strapped her nicely, she actually let daddy push her around the shop.
So, we asked for a nice raspberry colour which they have one, asked them to take it out of the box and everything else, put her inside and walah.... the princess fell asleep. Soundly.
So yes, we found the 'perfect' stroller. And despite moi wanting a stroller that can fit both babies, I guess this choice is more practical. However, I may not be able to go out that freely without being accompanied by another adult... I mean, I can't possibly push two strollers, right... so................ there goes my freedom. But what is life without those small sacrifices, right?
And there goes our adventure :)