In March of this year we welcomed our first grandee little “Miss M” and no doubt like other new grandparents we feel our world has changed for ever. Not a day goes by that I don’t think about her and scroll through my photos to adore her all over again.
I had quite forgotten how small a newborn is, especially without the big cloth nappy covered bottom and the tightly wrapped bunny rug parcel that we did in our day and gave us something substantial to hold onto. Miss M’s bottom fit in just one hand and I felt I was at risk of tossing her over my shoulder in the early days, but 4 months have gone now and she fits more comfortably and solidly in my arms.
With Miss M living a little away from us, our visits are less frequent than I would like, but when we do catch up the changes blow me away. Already we have smiles and laughter and pure delight when she’s in the bath and that look of surprise on her face when she rolls over is just beautiful.
Our family foot print has grown in the most wonderful way and I look forward immensely to watching her grow, offering her total love and support along the way.
I can’t wait for our next visit Miss M, it’s time for Gran to have a kiss and a cuddle.
I’m so confused! There’s just so many to choose from! It’s so overwhelming!
We’ve all been there haven’t we? Trust me though it doesn’t have to be this way. Over the last decade of working in this industry I try to approach this conundrum in a very practical way.
1. In my humble opinion the most important feature of a pram is the wheels.
In the country, needs are a little different to the city. The bigger the wheel the more ability we have to cope with uneven terrain and unmade roads. Even bumps and cracks in the sidewalk will cause great problems to a pram with a small wheel. Be aware that air filled wheels can puncture easily with prickles. Solid wheels are fantastic and will never let you down.
2. The next most important feature is sun protection.
The sun is so hot these days and we need to protect the little ones every moment they are outdoors. Look for a deep hood on the pram to offer as much protection from the sun as possible yet provide some air flow to keep your little one comfortable.
3. How many children do I want to seat?
It’s my belief that children up to the age of 4 will need to be seated in some way. Of course if you’re doing a 10 minute trip to the corner store they will walk on their own but if you are going for a day out they will get puffed and need a rest. So if another child comes along during this time you will need an option to seat 2 children.
4. Do I want a travel system where the baby capsule will sit on the frame of my pram?
The ability to move a sleeping child from pram to car and car to pram is super convenient. However, you need to be mindful that not every car capsule is compatible with every pram.
Once you’ve weighed up all the above you will have eliminated many, many prams on the market and be left with just a few to consider.
If you happen to like the look of the pram then that will be a bonus, because the practicality of using your pram every day for the next several years just shouldn’t be ignored.
Many, many parents comment to me that their baby is growing so quickly it must be time for them to move out of their car capsule. When I look in the capsule I often see a very young face with big eyes staring back at me and with shoulders clearly well below the exit marker printed on the interior of the appliance. I question the parents a little more as to why they feel this is the case and they mention to me about how long the child’s legs are and that they are touching the back of the car seat. Whilst this is a fair and reasonable observation of their growing child it does not indicate that a child has outgrown their particular capsule.
Capsules are designed to provide superior head and neck side impact protection as well as body side impact protection and offer the most safety features possible for a young one. The exit marker, or dotted line, on the inside of the capsule indicates when it is time for a child to move to another car restraint. The length of the torso is the indicative measure for growing out of a child restraint not the length of the leg. It is perfectly safe for a child’s legs to be bent or frog legged out to the side to accommodate their growing length. At this young age the highest focus is on protecting the head and the neck.
I quite understand that people will be keen to move baby out of a capsule in the hotter weather to allow for more air flow and comfort but be confident that your very young child is safest when travelling in a capsule facing the rear of the car for as long as possible.
We’ve got 3 sons and the only thing better than having 3 sons would be 4 sons!
Yet people felt compelled to offer their consolations when our 3rd beautiful boy came along.
“I bet you were hoping for a girl”, “Will you go back and try again?” these were the questions I was asked and after many of these comments I must admit I got a little angry. We had just brought into the world a gorgeous blue eyed baby boy and I was sad to think that this was any less spectacular than if he had been a girl.
I’m sure I’m not the only single gender family to have experienced this. I come from a family of 3 girls and my husband comes from a family of 3 boys. This is normal for us. We know nothing else. But it seemed a socially acceptable subject for comment; our inability to have a mixed gender family. Why, I can’t imagine, it’s so very common!
I always believed that you get what you’re supposed to have and clearly I was supposed to have boys and what a thorough delight it is. I wouldn’t change it for the world!
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