I saw an advert for SmarTrikes when Ethan and Theo were still quite small and initially considered purchasing them for their 1st birthday (last July) but as the boys were so prem their development was quite delayed so decided to wait. I did however try and research online how other twin parents found having 2 children on SmarTrikes at once – and found little information….
We decided to get the boys their SmarTrikes for Christmas and I have to say they are great, they boys LOVE them! But as a twin mummy I don’t think I would be able to take them out on my own using them. They go in every direction when I try and control both at once! This could just be my inability to stear in a straight line but the fact that Daddy can’t very well either makes me think this is not the case!
One reason I loved the concept of the SmarTrike is that as the boys get older and more independant we can remove the parental controls (gradually!) and they then become trikes that they can race about on!
Ethan left, Theo right!
So as long as we go out together on them it’s great! The perfect excuse for long family walks!
We thought that the boys needed eye protection from the sun and what is cooler than identical twin boys in sunglasses?! So we did our homework and determined that Baby Banz were the best around, we got the boys the Retro Black style which we thought looked awesome! Typically after making such a purchase we then didn’t see any sun for what felt like forever, but then there was a sunny day and we got to use them! In the photos for the sunglasses the children/toddlers and babies all look happy and content wearing their awesome glasses, in reality this is not the case, at least not for us anyhow…….. Our first attempt at getting them to wear them was horrific; they screamed and ripped them off and in hindsight, probably wrongly we put the glasses back in their cases and thought we would try again another day. This was a mistake as the next time we tried they had learnt that if they didn’t want to they didn’t have to, there were tantrums and crying all round! But after what felt like a life time they kept them on!! And how cool do they look?!
We still have to persuade them to wear them (and they are pretty quick at whipping them off) but they are great and we would recommend them!
Ethan and Theo like nothing more (besides perhaps Peppa Pig) than going out in the buggy for a walk, rain or shine
We are currently on our 3rd twin pram, we have purchased all of them 2nd hand and including accessories such as rain covers, cozy toes etc have paid between £60 and £80. Each pram has had its pros and cons as with everything in life!
Our 1st prams is the Mclaren twin stroller!
- Reclines nicely and easily for sleeping babies and toddlers.
- Lots of room under the pram in the basket, we used this mainly when the twins were younger and Theo was still on Oxygen and we used to fit our medium sized cylinder under the pram! There are also some great sized pockets behind each seat, these are velcro fastened so easily opened and closed.
- Simple to put up and collapse down, also folds down to quite a small size so easy to get in and out of the car boot!
- Although a twin buggy it is quite narrow so getting in and out of most doorways is done with ease!
- This pram has 12 wheels in total which can be tough to steer, I have mainly only noticed this when I have had to use this pram again after using one of the others!
- It is not great ‘off-road’; living in a rural area we go over fields etc now and then and it doesn’t cope brilliantly.
- I think as the boys have got bigger and are more toddler size they are a little squashed in this buggy.
Our 2nd buggy was the Jane power twin
- Being a tandem buggy we are as narrow as most single buggy designs making more places accessible.
- Nice size storage basket under the pram.
- Being only 3 wheels it was all terrain!
- The buggy has a hand brake which was very useful (as well as a foot brake).
- It also reclined quite easily.
- You can set the front wheel to either be free spinning or locked in one direction.
- We found that Theo did not like being in the back of the buggy and always being in the front meant that he got the most attention. With Ethan being quite shy anyway we felt that this might exaggerate this further.
- No storage pockets.
- We found that occasionally the free spinning front wheel when mounting and dismounting pavements could be a little unstable.
Our 3rd and current buggy is the Out ‘n’ about 360
- This is a side by side buggy.
- It is a 3 wheel all terrain buggy.
- Although a double buggy it is quite narrow still and fits through most doors.
- The seats are almost tub like rather than being flat – probably comfortable but we would prefer flat for posture!
- It only has 2 positions – sat up right or led flat.
- We have found this buggy the hardest of all 3 to get in and out of the boot.
In summary the Out ‘n’ About ticks the most boxes for us having the benefits of being a side by side but all terrain style. But I really like each of our buggies for different factors and I think the perfect buggy would be a hybrid of all 3!
All of the pros and cons listed for each buggy are only my own thoughts and experiences of using them and everyone’s needs in a buggy vary greatly. We for example did not want to use the Phil and Teds double style buggy where the rear passenger is lower down and we felt would not be able to see out easily. We even saw at a car boot sale one family didn’t bother with the concept of a buggy designed for two but had their other child in the storage basket under the pram! (I would not recommend this lol).
I hope you find my thoughts of interest, please feel free to comment your findings with buggies!
We love getting out and about as a family when we get the chance. We have joined the National Trust again recently as we have amazing properties such as Stourhead just down the road from us and walking around their beautiful lake is so relaxing. Being a very technology driven family it can be nice to get away from it all for an hour or so!
The boys LOVE animals and there was a new petting zoo type farm open up nearby, so I planned to take the boys along but due to the awful weather the opening launch had to be postponed until later in the week, which unfortunatly conincided with our relauch of Semi Precious Beads website so as Daddy couldn’t come with us my sister otherwise known as Auntie Pippa came with us. The weather for our day out at Little Lambs in Buckhorn Western was great and the boys loved it. They had their first ever go on a swing and met lots of different animals! We must have taken hundreds of photos! I don’t think that you can ever take to many photos
Ethan on the swing!
Theo with Auntie Pippa driving a tractor!
Ethan and Auntie Pippa!
Theo and Mummy!
My beautiful boys driving their tractors! (Theo left, Ethan right)
Auntie Pippa made a friend!
I love our days out as a family and Mark and I both working from home means that we can to some extent pick and choose our hours to fit our life! We have so many more days out planned!
After Theo was found to have some cardiac irregularities on his monitoring during his recent surgery he has had a 24 hour ECG carried out. I have to confess I was amazed that he kept the pads on but as usual he was a star!
We have now had confirmation that the ectopic heartbeat is benign!
Wow! Ethan and Theo have turned 1!
I had planned the most amazing birthday cake with Peppa Pig on for them and as time got nearer I realised that I had left it magnificently too late to make such a masterpiece…….. As you can imagine such a realisation signals the end of the world in Mummy terms and I can recall suggesting that people gauge how good a mother you are by the cake as I sobbed into a mixing bowl to make a sponge cake on the morning of their party.
I now feel in hindsight that the cake really didn’t matter, the boys had a lovely birthday even if the cake just had buttercream icing
There is always next year for the perfect cake!
The day that we had been dreading finally arrived. We had known for some time that Theo needed to have a hernia operation and although we were assured that it was a simple procedure we did not look forward to the prospect of one of our little babies being cut open
Although we are now under a team of pediatricians in Salisbury now since we have moved house they are unable to operate on Theo there so we were booked in at the Royal Devon and Exeter where they were born!
As Theo is still classed as having chronic lung disease where the op would normally be just day surgery the hospital preferred him to stay in overnight. With the boys being twins and us now living an hour and a half away we asked if it would be possible for us all to stay…. expecting of course that the response would be a no as their policy is one parent can stay. The hospital however said that this should not be a problem, much to our surprise
We arrived at the hospital and got Theo changed into his gown!
I took Theo through to the anesthetic room where he was quickly asleep and handed over to the experts. Meanwhile Ethan was making the most of the cot to himself! (below)
After the op our brave little bear looking at some of his toys.
Feeling a bit better so having some toast with his brother! Of course they acquired quite a fan club!
Mark and I had expected to be sleeping in chairs beside Theo and Ethan’s cot for the night and were grateful for that as they were kind enough to let us all stay. However we were given the whole of the day case ward!
The following day Theo seemed as if nothing has been done! Our brave little bear is amazing The anesthetist who was looking after Theo during the surgery noticed what she referred to as Ectopic heart beats on her monitoring equipment which she would have expected to see in an elderly patient rather than a baby so we had an ECG done before being discharged and have been referred for some more extensive tests back at Salisbury so we will wait and see what they find…….
Ethan has his first tooth! From my previous life as a dental nurse it is the LLA, after what seems like forever that both boys have been teething it is lovely to have something to show for it!!
Theo has almost finished his month of being completely O2 support free which is amazing, he is such a happy boy
The weaning is going well, it is certainly a messy business, little fingers manage to get their food everywhere! The boys love the different flavour combinations.
We have been going to the library at least once a week getting lots of exciting books to read which they is great, there are so many amazing childrens books to choose from so I don’t think we will be running out any time soon.
For Good Friday Mark and I took the boys to the New Forest Wildlife Park which was a lovely day out, the boys enjoyed a well earned nap for most of our visit but we took photos for them and I’m sure we will take them there again!
A photo of Daddy Bear trying to evict a deer from the pockets of our buggy, from the look of the deers waistline he is well trained at being fed snacks by visitors!
Today was my first Mothers Day as a Mummy! I got a lovely card and breakfast from my gorgeous boys (thank you Daddy bear)! But the best present of all is them!
I hope all other Mummies had a great day
Last week was manic, we had hospital appointments in Salisbury with our new consultant since moving house. He was pleased with the boys progress and has decided that Theo can have a months trial of oxygen at night only which is brilliant! He hates having the cannulas taped to his little face and already seems much happier! It means when we go out and about we still take a cylinder with us in case we need it but we don’t look like we belong on the set of Ghostbusters! Also we have the go ahead to start weaning both boys! We have stocked up on baby rice, Ella’s kitchen first tastes, rusks………. let the fun begin!
Our appointment at Exeter hospital was regarding Theo’s hernia, which they are planning on operating on in the next month – scary stuff, although the surgeon is happy to operate and feels that it is very safe.
Next week we are going to go to our local children’s centre and join some parent and baby groups which is quite exciting. So we are looking forward to meeting some other mummy’s, daddy’s and babies!