Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Strollin, Strollin, Strollin...

...Keep them babies rollin. Rawhide!

I've had this post planned for a while now, and a couple of lovely ladies mentioned it just one day early, yesterday. :) When I found out I was having Grace one of the first things I thought of was that we would have to get a double stroller. Walking is such a huge part of our lives, and there is no way we could live without this piece of baby gear. But there were several designs to choose from, and how in the world would we be able to pick?? And seriously...baby gear prices can be absolutely ridiculous. You pay for the name, that's for sure.

I have absolutely no problems buying something with a generic name, but I am super big on reading reviews and weighing heavily on the pros and cons before committing to something. I knew that someone else would be able to benefit from all of my research someday, and since so many of you are expecting baby #2 this year, that day is today!

When it comes to picking out the perfect stroller, it really depends on your lifestyle and the types of activities that you're going to be engaging in the most. If you spend a lot of time at the mall I would recommend a different stroller than I would if you spend most of your time walking around your neighborhood. But we'll get into that in a minute. :)

First, let me just say that we have two different styles of double strollers, because one was given to us before we purchased the main one we have now. I like them both for very different reasons, but I definitely prefer one over the other for OUR lifestyle. We take very long walks nearly every single evening, and there are certain features that we absolutely have to have.

Our criteria:
* Comfort is #1. Our kids will be in this thing for two hours every night.
* Ruggedness. We don't always stay on nicely paved streets and sidewalks. We're often rolling through grass and walking on rock paths, so our stroller needs to push easily through different terrain.
*Cup holders. This sounds like a no-brainer, but one of our strollers doesn't have adult cup holders, and that simply doesn't do. 

There ended up being a lot more features that we would have to consider which we didn't even realize when we started our search. In the end we chose this one:

InStep Safari Swivel Wheel Double Jogging Stroller...in Red. :) From Walmart.

I love the reflectors on the side! We're often out well past dusk!

What I LOVE about this stroller: I love that it's a side by side stroller so that (eventually) the girls will be able to interact more when we're on our walks every evening. I love that each seat adjusts independently, so that one side can be reclined more than the other. This really comes in handy when one baby falls asleep while the other wants to be up looking around. I like that each seat has it's own individual sun visor. I love that each child has their own cup holder and that the trays open up for ease of getting babies in and out. I love the single wheel in the front, which allows us to turn on a dime. The nice, big tires make this a much more rugged stroller to get us through any type of terrain. The adult cup holders are niiice. And of course, I big fat LOVE the price at $159.98. Most strollers with all of the features I just listed cost much, MUCH more.

I don't love the bar that sits right in front of the storage space, which makes storing some things beneath the stroller difficult. We have to shimmy our diaper bag through the side, which is annoying. That's the one and only complaint I have about the stroller. Oh, that and the fact that the instruction manual is WRONG. When you air up your tires make sure your pressure is between 22-25 psi...NOT 35 psi like the instructions say. We already blew a tire. Yikes! However, we called InStep's customer service and they were good about getting us a new wheel and tire in the mail right away. Seems that this is a common problem (durr...change the instructions, people!) So learn from us and don't put too much air in your tires. :)

Unfortunately, our exact model is out of stock. BUT...you can get the exact same stroller in a different color for LESS than we paid for ours! (And I like the color better gosh darn it!) If you're reading this and you're looking for a double stroller...get this one!!! There are other *slightly* different styles and colors by the same brand on Walmart's website, but that one is the best value. (If you'd like a built in mp3 player, they have those! You just have to pay extra for it, haha.)

That is, get this one if you like long walks like us. Or if you're zoo or amusement park people, because these strollers do well OUTSIDE. Jogging stroller or not, the side by sides are easier to push up hills and to tilt back to get up and down curbs, since the weight is more evenly distributed.

If you are more inside people, I recommend the single-file stroller, like the one you see my girls in at the top of the page. Single file strollers are much, much easier to get in and out of doorways! And we all know how close some stores put their merchandise racks. Having a side-by-side could be a real pain in the rear if you're trying to shop til you drop.

Another huge point is that the single file strollers tend to be much lighter than the side-by-side jogging strollers. They also fold up easier and take up less space. So if you're constantly taking your stroller with you in the car, the single file is definitely better. It's much more convenient for getting in and out of the trunk. If you're a "go, go, go!" type of person, a single file stroller might be a better option for you. We were given a single-file stroller, and we're pretty much reserving it for trips to the mall. :)

If you have any questions, or if I was unclear, let me know! I typed this very quickly and tried to shove in as much information as possible. At the end of the day, just know that our double side by side stroller is AMAZING (I could push it with one finger and two kids inside!) and I highly recommend it. Happy strollin'!


Cassie said...

PERFECT! My kind of stroller. Our 4 mile hike we take just about every night told me, THIS is the one. YAY! Thanks for doing all the dirty work for us!

Kim said...

Cute!!! I wish I could have a stroller like that! Landon hates riding in the actual stroller seat, so we got the sit and stand double stroller. Hopefully that will make him feel more like a "big boy" in the stroller and won't want out 5 minutes after we put him in!

Adrien said...

No problem! :)

Yeah, Kim, that's exactly why I wanted to emphasize that it's all about your particular situation, because strollers are definitely not "one size fits all!" That sounds like the perfect solution for Landon. :)

Ashley Nicholson said...

My cousin has 16 month old triplets and had the single-file stroller for them when they were very small.....but after a trip to Branson and all the hills at Silver Dollar City last summer, she knew she had to get a side by side for all three. Unfortunately, I think she had to do a special order for all the things they wanted.....because let's face it....4 kids needs lots of room for lots of stuff! (She also has a five year old). I have yet to see the new stroller, but I am hoping that maybe I can get to Red Bud sometime this summer and talk her into going for a walk because her kids are just so darn cute! If you have multiple stroller riders at one time, I would recommend the side-be-side because, like Adrien said, it helps to distribute the weight to help save your back on hills!

I know I don't have kids, but I have lots of experience with kids, so please don't think that I am ignorant or anything when I try to help out with advice! :)

Sarah said...

YES!!!! I just looked at the blue one last night. And the price?! It's ahhmazing!! I read all the reviews and the bar was really the only complaint.

I read somewhere there is a universal adapter for a carseat...did yours come with??

Sarah said...

Ahhh, nevermind. I just ordered it. JUST IN CASE this blog post makes it unavailable haha. Thanks Adrien :D

Anonymous said...

Oh my that isn't a expensive stroller, FANTASTIC.
And I love the color!

Adrien said...

Haha, not a bad idea, Sarah. :) Not that I think this blog would be the cause of a sell-out, but literally two days after we bought ours the red was long gone. You'll love it!! Just don't forget about the tires...I was devastated when I walked outside and saw our blown tire. Luckily customer service was great about it.

Adrien said...

Oh, and I don't *think* ours came with a universal adapter, but don't quote me. Eric put it together, so he would know. Either way, I have read reviews of several people saying they put their infant right in it. It reclines really far back, and has a regular harness. :) We've always put Grace straight in, and she's still in a pumpkin seat.

Sarah said...

I love the red one!! Now... you might know the answer to this. There is a carseat I want that says it is 'out of stock' does that mean it will be back in stock eventually??

I'm nervous about just putting a new newborn in a stroller. The sidewalks in town are HORRIBLE!! Maybe I'll get lucky and the pumpkin seat will just fit perfectly. ha!

Adrien said...

I honestly have no idea about how they restock. I wish I knew! But yes, I agree about the sidewalks! I forgot to ask Eric about the adapter, but I'll try to let you know for sure.


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