Twin stroller w/toddler considerations

Discussion in 'General' started by bayoubaloo, Nov 12, 2012.

  1. bayoubaloo

    bayoubaloo Active Member

    Hi ladies!

    So I've been spending hours looking at web sites and reviews and videos and here's where I am so far. Any thoughts/opinions you have to share would be appreciated.

    Valco Baby Tri Mode Twin Ex Or Valco Baby Zee Two
    I like both of these quite a bit, cosmetically and functionally. Main Reason they are at the top of my list is that you can get a Joey toddler seat (an actual seat as opposed to a hitchhiker riding board) for a toddler to sit in without having to evict a baby twin from his seat and wear him so your toddler can sit down. The Tri Mode is all terrain, which is my preference; however, the Zee Two has an rear wheel adaptor kit that changes out those wheels for air-filled all terrain tires, and that might be adequate and then you have a smaller more lightweight stroller. Extreme chief drawback is that both models (and all Valco Baby models) can only accommodate one car seat. So I would probably have to end up getting the Baby Trend Snap and Go double for the first six months, if the convenience of keeping sleeping little ones in their car seat is a priority for me. I loved my frame stroller and lightweight car seat during the early months w DS.

    OK, so Valco Baby is the only option I know of with a good real third seat for toddlers. But, the good news is that apparently there's a product called a Vascal Buggy Board that can be attached to almost any stroller so that a toddler can ride on it. That opens up several options I thought I had to nix due to lack of any accommodation for a toddler. And those will follow. But first, here's my question for anyone with experience: Will a 2 1/2 year old actually stand and ride on a buggy board? Is this more for a 5-year-old? I'm guessing maybe a little and perhaps he'd get better at it by the time he was 3 or 3 1/2. But ... I don't know. If I rely on a stand-on option and he won't cooperate, what would I do? I'd have to have a seat available for him and carry one baby. Which would be manageable if I was using the seats, but if I were in double car seat or double bassinet mode, then that would be a problem. So arch, that concern is why I'm leaning to the Valco Baby options.

    If feedback indicates that toddlers generally like the stand-and-ride stroller accessory, these are my finalists for a twin stroller that can accommodate two car seats.

    The Bumbleride Indie Twin. Yes, it WILL accommodate two! Two Maxi Cosi Micos, that is, any other car seat ... just one. But that's doable for me. I have a single Bumbleride Indie and it has been a great stroller and could continue to be great for a couple more years. The cupholder is worthless, but easily replaced for a better option. My one and only wish regarding the Bumbleride is that it doesn't sit completely upright. It goes down flat and comes up most of the way, but there is a slight incline which my DS doesn't always appreciate. I have really liked the Bumbleride and when I found out Baby Gizmo rated the Indie Twin the best twin stroller overall, I was impressed and happy because I already own one carrycot and the snack pack and some other accessories and could use those with a Twin model. I thought the Bumbleride Indie Twin was NOT an option for lack of a buggy board accessory, but the Vascal product apparently does work just fine with it, even though I didn't see it listed on their site. I found confirmation that it does work on a customer service blog with Bumbleride.

    Another stroller I can't help considering even though I'm not sure that it is a SERIOUS consideration due to price (around $1625) is the Bugaboo Donkey. It just looks so cool and seems more compact and the car seats and bassinets are higher. Really looks cool. And it takes the buggy board so DS could stand. Anybody have experience with one of these? It actually probably wouldn't be as practical as the Bumbleride as I guess kids outgrow them quicker in terms of height. So hmmm. It's probably good for my wallet to know it's not perfect in every way.

    Another issue along the lines of toddler seat vs buggy board: Is it better to have actual bassinets or "carrycots" that you can take out and use as a moses basket in the house if the babies are sleeping OR is it preferable to have the built-in type or soft accessory like the Hush bassinet that doesn't take up a lot of room in the car and in the garage/closet when not in use? If I didn't already own one, I'd probably lean to built-in ones so that I didn't have the expense of multiple accessories, but ... then I imagine the sleeping baby and it would be nice to just transfer the whole thing indoors and maybe use as a safe baby container around the house. I did use the carrycot with dear son but the trunk of my SUV seemed crowded with the stroller, the carrycot, the pool bag and other items. With two carry cots and a larger stroller, it just seems a bit much. I might only end up using them when strolling from the house and not having to take the car. In which case, less motivation to stick with Bumbleride Indie and perhaps consider a different model. If not the pricey Bugaboo, then perhaps the Stroll-Air My Duo Stroller, which also allows for reversible seats, which the Bumbleride does not. And it comes with pretty much everything.

    I'd really like to test-drive these strollers. I'm not sure that I will be able to though. Valco Baby products are an hour away. I do have a Buy Buy Baby though not too far away and can try out some models there. OK, if you've read this whole post, you'll know I am becoming obsessive about having the perfect stroller for the upcoming twins/toddler stage of my life. Please help with your thoughts!
  2. megkc03

    megkc03 Well-Known Member TS Moderator old will ds be when the twins are born? Here's my

    My twins were 19 mths old when dd came along. I had a dbl stroller because of the boys obviously. If I used it six months longer, I'd be surprised. My boys ended up walking with me-from a young age. And they did great! I ended up trading in the dbl stroller for a single because I was just putting my daughter in it, leaving one seat open. And I generally went out alone with all three of them as dh works.

    Now I know you need a dbl stroller because you are having twins. Just think about how often your ds will need the toddler option with a stroller. By 2.5, all three of my kids were done with strollers.

    I know all kids aren't th same, etc, but just something to consider as well. And, you can even practice with your son before the babies arrive on how to behave when walking with mommy, etc.

    And congrats on the twins!
  3. j-squared

    j-squared Well-Known Member

    My son was 2 years 5 months old when our twins were born. We considered a stroller with a joey seat but decided against it. It was the right decision. Our oldest is really good about walking everywhere (and usually wants to walk). We used a Double Snap N Go for the first 6 months and DS1 just walked, or, on the rare occasion we thought he might not want to walk we just brought our lightweight single umbrella and each pushed a stroller (of course, only works with both parents around). But when one of us takes them alone, DS1 just walks (on rare occasions, I have carried a twin in my ergo and put DS in the stroller, but I like wearing a baby so not an issue for me).

    It looks like your son will be over 2.5 when your twins are born so you might not even want to get a joey seat or rider board. You could see how it goes when they get here. We thought about getting the rider board for a while too, but, again, it hasn't been necessary.

    ETA: We have trained DS1 to hold onto the side of the stroller while walking and he's really good about it. Our nanny also taught him how to stand and hold doors open so she can push the stroller through! I toddler/pre-schooler can be all kinds of helpful! LOL.

    I'd say DS1 is pretty much done with strollers. He just turned 3.
  4. Mom2VLS

    Mom2VLS Well-Known Member

    My 2.5 yo doesn't ride in strollers any more. She walks and holds the hand of the person pushing the stroller. I have the graco duoglider and have on occassion carried her while pushing that fully loaded if she was being tempermental. So I guess I'm not too much help but if she can walk she could probably handle the riding board too.
  5. 3under2!

    3under2! Well-Known Member

    My daughter was 17 months when the twins were born. I put one twin in the Moby and had her ride in the stroller till I trusted her to stay next to me and not run into the street. (Maybe 20 months? 21?) She's been walking for ages now, if she gets very tired I just prop her up on the handlebars of the stroller or she sits with her knees on the footrest of the stroller, and her arms on either side of one of the girls, leaning over. I have a city mini double, but if I could do it again I think I might have gotten a Britax B Agile double.
  6. jn18

    jn18 Member

    First, loved how thorough your thoughts were on each of the options. I'm in the same situation with a 30 mos old daughter and expecting id twin boys in the next few weeks.
    We first considered the valco because of of the joey seat option, but then reality is my daughter prefers walking over sitting most days and it may not get much use for the $$. Then we looked at the bumble ride (as we do have 2 maxi cosi car seats), but my husband kept pointing out that what if we have issues with the width of the side-by-side in some places, so we've narrowed it down pretty much to the city select double with has multiple configurations, takes our maxi cosies and has the option of the riding board--although cant see my daughter liking it much.
    If we're both out with the babies, we'll get an umbrella stroller in the case my daughter needs a rest, but likely will end up with babies in the stroller and toddler walking.

    I too LOVE the cool look of the buggaboo and eyed it the other day when another mama strolled by with it at the mall...but so hard to justify that hefty hefty amount and not sure if it will accommodate our car seats even.

    best of luck!
  7. bayoubaloo

    bayoubaloo Active Member

    Hi ladies!!

    Thank you for your responses. After a couple weeks mulling, I'm still up in the air between two: Valco baby tri mode twin ex with Joey toddler seat or stroll-air my duo with hop on board. Every time I read thru your responses, I'm reassured that my toddler WILL walk and I am perhaps too concerned about how he will do. Then 10 minutes after I've decided to just go with Stroll-air, I have doubts. What if he is willful and wants to run from me? What if he isn't happy about the twins and his behavior becomes defiant? I guess I will hold off a bit longer. Anyone else have thoughts on this or do you have either the Valco model or the My Duo? It looks like we'd have to drive to Lis Angeles to try out either one. And that may not help with main question, how will toddler act. By the way, I want a side- by-side, no a tandem in-line stroller as it looks like it wouldn't take a real long time before the back kid would start kicking the front kid. Also heard they are difficult to maneuver so I figure how much worse could a side-by-side be?

    Thx again for your responses!
  8. Danibell

    Danibell Well-Known Member TS Moderator

    My thoughts are going to be the same as the other ladies! ;) My toddler was 2.5 when my twins were born. By the time i was 4/5 months pregnant (so she was around 2 yrs old) we started practicing teaching her to walk everywhere. I stopped picking her up and carrying her, taught her to hold my hand, to walk beside holding onto the buggie....etc. So when the twins came, we were ready. By the time the twins were 3.5 months old I was grocery shopping with all 3 little ones by myself every week.

    I really just couldn't see the expense of a stroller with 3 seats, by the time my kids hit 3 yrs old they have no interest in being in the stroller anymore. If your toddler seems to be the willful sort, a harness for them is a much cheaper option. Keeps them safe but allows them a bit more mobility when you are walking.

    I think you are going to find yourself fighting to put your toddler into the stroller all the time, and because you'll have spent so much extra money on that third seat, you aren't going to want to let it go to waste ;)

    Just my opinion :D
  9. bayoubaloo

    bayoubaloo Active Member

    Hi ladies!

    I don't know if anyone is looking at this thread any longer, but wanted to update that I have decided against the Valco Baby stroller with Joey seat as you can't use the Joey seat if you are using the car seat adaptors. My game plan is to have really light car seats (the small Graco Snugrides for babies 4-22 pounds) and use them for convenience in getting the babies in and out of cars while sleeping. I hope to do this for 6 months, maybe a little less, ... have to see how things go. So up until then the Joey seat wouldn't be any good to me if I had the spot for it occupied by car seat adaptors. And after 6 months, Ryan will be over 3 and I truly hope he will be well enough trained by then to walk along, hop on board or whatever.

    So I will possibly get the Stroll-Air My Duo as the big splurge item for the twins. I'm getting a bunch of other gear off Craig's list, but I just really like that stroller! And, I very much like the harness idea for Ryan, just in case he were to run or something in a parking lot.

    I've started trying to train him to walk along and obey when I need him to leave a playground for example, but... it's not going so great. It's fine if he wants to go. If he doesn't, he lays down on his back. I'm still able to pick him up right now and carry him or put him in a stroller ... but in another month, I'm not sure I will want to risk lifting him. I'm scared of pre-term labor.

    Hope to make some training progress!
  10. AKilburn

    AKilburn Well-Known Member

    Sounds like a great plan! And yeah don't do anything to put yourself into PTL! How are you doing with the pregnancy? ? Craigslist and consignment shops are great for a lot of the things you need for the twins!
  11. bayoubaloo

    bayoubaloo Active Member

    Hi Alex,

    So nice to hear from you! How are things with your little babies? Are they eating and sleeping well? Were you able to get them on a schedule?

    This pregnancy is so tough. I've almost made it thru another week -- 25 on Friday -- and that's just how I have to handle it. One week at a time. At least they're potentially viable now. I had two good days Monday and Tuesday with cooperative child, good night's sleep, only mild reflux. Today isn't so great. I think I'm catching a cold! Dang. I really don't want that to end up wearing on me. I hope it doesn't interfere with my sleep at night. I JUST started feeling symptoms, and drat! I am out of Zicam and Vitamin C. May hit pharmacy tonight. ANd Ryan was a monster this morning and then wouldn't nap this afternoon, so it's just a long day. BUt, on the upside, still doing better with handling the reflux and I attribute that to resuming snack meals, drinking more water and taking that calcium/magnesium/zinc supplement.

    I have the 3-hour glucose test next Thursday. Looking forward to passing it! I feel confident I don't have gestational diabetes and if that day would come and go, I would just about be into the third trimester. Pretty close, and the closer I can get to even 30 weeks, the better. It is scary. My hubby is worried I'll be put on bed rest, and that would be an awful nuisance what with Ryan ... certainly will cost us a lot financially to handle bed rest. So I am being as careful as I can be. But life goes on and taking care of a 2-year-old is less than restful. ;-)

    Underneath the cold, fatigue, reflux and stress, I remain overjoyed that I will get to have these babies. Nothing better happen to them!!
  12. AKilburn

    AKilburn Well-Known Member

    The babies are doing great, growing every day! They're pretty much sleeping through the night, we're going through a little bit of a sleep regression with Adalynn right now but I just move her from the crib to the swing and she's fine. They've been on a schedule since we brought them home, they've always been very patterned babies, its kind of funny. They don't like it when you upset that schefule eithet, lol.

    I was on modified bed rest at 24 weeks but that was bc of irritable uterus and slight funneling and my doc wanted to be proactive and just have me rest. There are plenty of ladies on hete that never went on bedrest and were fine. I ccan imagine its tough with a toddler to keep up with. If you have to go on bedrest is there family that can come in and help you? I remember a few of the gals here recommending getting a sitter to come in and help for a few hours, I did that when I was younger and would watch the kids while the mom got some rest. It's hard to keep your strength up, I took extra vitamin c and zinc to keep my immune system up.

    Good luck oon your glucose test! I joked with my doc when I passed mine that it was a good thing bc the babies likes carrot cake, key lime pie, and chocolate milk shakes WAY too much for me to have to give them up! Lol.
  13. grmaryp4

    grmaryp4 New Member

    Well, when it comes to high grade strollers, Graco is the best brand that produces a wide range of comfortable strollers, you can search Graco strollers on Amazon, and read users' reviews to get the right one.
  14. aussiemom

    aussiemom Administrator Staff Member TS Moderator

    You can also read more about twin strollers here.
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