Archive for the 'Travel Gear' Category

Travelling With A Stroller – An Update

First we went back and forth as to whether to take a stroller with us or not. Ed was 2.75 when we left and in the end we decided that yes, we would take our old Maclaren with us and see how we go, prepared to ditch it if need be.

We travelled with the stroller from Singapore, through Malaysia and into Thailand and found that we really weren’t using it enough to justify the effort of lugging it from place to place. So we ditched it as I wrote about here.

I’m glad we ditched it when we did. Not having the stroller certainly made it easier to travel by bus up through central and northern Thailand and we really didn’t miss it. In fact we often commented, thank god we don’t have the stroller. We used the kinderpack carrier, we used tuk tuks, or we carried him on a hip or shoulders for short distances.

Now we’re in the UK and Europe there are a couple of key differences that make getting around without a stroller trickier:

1. It’s cold! We’re wearing layers and bulky jackets and while it is still possible to use the carrier it’s not always comfortable.

2. There are no tuk tuks! What?! You mean we have to walk all that way?!

We survived in London with the carrier and just carrying him but after a day in Glasgow where he refused to go in the carrier, but also refused to walk, I said that’s it! We’re buying a cheap stroller. And I did. And it is tiny and he looks huge in it but it does the job, he sleeps in it, and it’s very light and easy to carry when travelling. And everyone is happy.

Lack of tuk tuks in the UK means we bought a cheapie stroller. He seems to like it.

Stroller snooze.

Ditching the Stroller for Travel

stroller nap

Little Lillian napping in the stroller.

To take the stroller or not was a big question in my mind before we left on this trip. In the end we decided that yes, we would take it and we would ditch it if we decided we didn’t need it.

Stroller snooze

Baby Edward in the stroller.

Our stroller is the same one we’ve had since Lillian was born. We bought it second hand back then and although it was/is still perfectly functional six years and two babies/toddlers (plus whoever owned it before us!) was showing it’s wear.

street art

Strolling in Ipoh, Malaysia.

So after almost three months of travel we’ve ditched it. I’m glad we took it, it has been useful at times, but most of the time it was sitting unused or just another thing to lug around.

Places we used it:

Singapore – once walking around the city

Singapore Zoo – very useful with rain cover and Ed had a sleep.

Legoland Malaysia – also very useful and Ed napped in it.

Kuala Lumpur – in a shopping centre. Ed wouldn’t go in it.

Ipoh – walking around the town one morning. Lil was in it more than Ed.

And…that’s it really. So the stroller is useful for those big all day excursions to places like zoos and theme parks. But we don’t do many of them and those places often have strollers for hire.

nap time

Snoozing at Legoland.

We left the stroller behind in Sisaket. Our host family will pass it on to someone in the village who can use it. For now the kinderpack carrier is working well for us. Ed will sleep in it if he’s tired enough and it hasn’t been too hot to use it, which I was worried about. I am confident we will survive sans stroller!

Mad and Lil

Lil grabs her opportunity.

It was a little sad to say goodbye to the stroller that has held both my babies (I couldn’t find a photo of Lil in it any younger – she was always in a carrier!) but we haven’t missed it yet.

carrier nap

Napping in the kinderpack carrier.

 

List 22/52 – The Gadgets

Electronic do-dads we’ll be travelling with this trip:

1. Ultra-book laptop.

2. A digital camera.

3. Iphone 4s.

4. Ipod 4th gen. (Lil doesn’t know it yet but she’s getting this for her birthday just before we leave. It will have her games, music, audio books, e-books, movies and she can use it as her camera too.)

5. Kobo Glo e-reader.

6. 1TB external hard-drive.

Let’s hope we don’t get too tangled up with power cords.

must babyproof

Fully charged baby Lillian.

 

Travel Purchase – Kinderpack Toddler Carrier

Earlier today

While we’re umming and ahhing about whether to take the stroller or not one thing I have been sure of is that we will need some sort of carrier for Edward. He’ll be 2 and three quarters when we leave, turning 3 halfway though the trip. He likes to walk (or scoot, but we’re not taking the scooter!) but he doesn’t have much stamina.

As a baby, for both kids, we used a connecta carrier. This was great when they were little up to about 12 months or so but I never found it particularly comfortable for back carries. Here’s Lil in the Connecta at four months old in Scotland:

connecta carrier

And Ed at 12 months old in Queensland in the same carrier (I made a cover for it):

walking

Anyway, I’ve passed the Connecta on to a friend with a younger baby and was thinking I would get an Ergo for the trip as it looks more comfy for back carries. Then I read this post from Georgia of Documenting Delight comparing the Ergo with a Tula toddler carrier. Well, I had never heard of the Tula and had no idea there were even carriers out there specifically made for toddlers.

So I did a little research and found the Kinderpack toddler carrier. It looks quite similar to the Tula but ultimately I chose the Kinderpack because of the option to get one with a ‘koolnit’ panel in the back. This is a light mesh type material and is good for warmer climates. The heat and humidity of South East Asia has me a little concerned for comfort in a carrier so the koolnit feature won me over.

The carrier arrived last week and we’ve taken it on a few test runs. We’re calling it the piggyback carrier and Ed is pretty impressed with it so far. I’m not sure what Ed weighs at the moment, I think about 12-13kg. I wore him walking Lillian to school and back one morning and found it quite comfortable and Dave tried it out on the weekend. Here’s another look:

Test ride in our new toddler kinderpack. Hoping this works for our big trip. He liked it!

You can see the koolnit panel in this picture. It looks like the carrier is a bit dirty but that’s Ed’s t-shirt showing through the mesh bit. So let’s hope he likes being carried on the trip!

Travel Purchase – Turkish Towels

turkish towels

I’ve come across Turkish towels online quite a bit lately and thought they would be perfect to take travelling. We bought four from this ebay seller (red, black, aqua, blue) and they arrived super quickly. I’m really happy with them. They’re light and fold up really small and dry quickly. I washed them at the same time as some normal towels and these were dry way before the others. I can see us using them as a sarong, sheet, or wrap too. I think I’ll not be able to wait till we’re travelling and will take one to the beach next time!

(This post was not sponsored in any way. I just like the towels we bought.)

Travel Purchase – Fancy Money Belt

My awesome new travel belt from Alie Jane Travel Accessories and Design. Bartered for some of my crafty goods!

Technically more of a barter than a purchase, but I am now the proud owner of this groovy money belt. It comes from Alie Jane Travel Accessories and Design. I think it’s so much nicer than the standard beige, don’t you? I can’t wait to fill it with passports and money!

You can also find Alie Jane on Facebook.