Part 3 - I don't have a car but my stroller is boss (what else do you need?)

See Part 1 - I don't have a car but my stroller is boss (why)
See Part 2 - I don't have a car but my stroller is boss (which stroller?)

Despite the fact that sometimes it feels like we live in the great white north (see: winter of 2015) my family spends quite a bit of time outside.  Some of this time is spent on the playground, and some is spent getting to and from places.  We run errands, we go out to eat, we go to the children's museum, and sometimes we plain ole' take a walk as a family.  (Our favorite destination is what we refer to as "the far Starbucks", all of half of a mile away.)  As such, we spend a lot of time thinking about the right weather gear and other equipment we need to make ourselves comfortable on our journey.

So here is our advice for the kinds of things you might want to add to your stroller (whether you went with our recommendation for the actual stroller or not) to make it the kind of tricked out ride that meets all your needs (oh yeah and those of your kid... the kid matters here too... yeah).

Rain cover

Ok, so once again, for kids in the back - we live in a city with terrible weather (but the food is great, or something).  Sometimes you just have to walk on the wild side, even though the sky looks ominous, and go outside anyway because you've been in the house too long. Other times you need to go outside, even though it's actively raining because you have to go to work.  For those days you need a rain cover for your stroller.  We use  the Snap Stroller Raincover and Weather Shield (because we have a Valco Snap Stroller) but pretty much every stroller company makes these things and some even make universal ones (for those of you out there who have multiple strollers).

On the day these photos were taken, I got caught in a rain storm so bad that even though I had an umbrella and eventually tried to hide under an awning, I looked and felt like I had taken a shower.  Meanwhile, my baby stayed bone dry and sleeping undisturbed in his protected chariot (and I didn't even have the cover fully secured because that freaks me out).  Our cover is also generous enough that it covers the diaper bag we keep clipped to the back - sweet.  It resides, almost permanently in the stroller basket and sometimes even gets pulled out when its particularly windy. (Really, you should visit our city, the food is fantastic.)

Cup holder

I don't actually have anything funny to say about our Valco Baby Universal Cup Holder because I love it so much.  It's just too serious a business to be glib about. I enjoy nothing more in this world then setting out on a nice long walk with a baby napping in the stroller and an ice coffee resting delightfully in its designated place.  This cup holder in particular will attach to any stroller.  It self levels and takes literally almost any width cup.  Also, it has a particularly handy feature in that the brace for the cup holder stays attached to the stroller but the holder itself can be detached easily.  This is a very useful attribute when you're trying to squeeze into a narrow space and it's getting in the way (like say your daily bus trip to day care).

Car seat adapter

If you're ever going to drive with your baby, even if you don't own a car, you're going to want a car seat and some way to transport it.  To accomplish this you can either buy a car seat with wheels, a "travel system", or an adapter for your chosen stroller to click in the car seat. A travel system is when you buy a stroller and car seat from the same manufacturer, i.e. a "system", so no adapter is needed.  (An example would be buying the Britax B-Agile and B-Safe Travel System.) However, outside of buying a system, most strollers sell adapters for most of the common car seat brands.  Yes it adds to the price of the stroller but infant car seats are heavy and unwieldy.  You're not going to get very far just carrying the thing on your arm (again, the other option is to shell out even more money and buy a car seat with wheels).  When we used a traditional infant car seat we had the Chicco Keyfit 30 Infant Car Seat and so Valco Baby Snap Car Seat Adapter (Chicco) was the correct item for us. Obviously you should pick the adapter that matches your stroller/car seat combination.

Hooks

If you regularly grocery shop or run errands with your stroller on foot, you're going to want some hooks to hang from the handle bar to help you transport your stuff home. For this purpose we have Stroller Hooks.  This allows us to transport an entire shopping trip exclusively using our stroller.   As a side note, you my have seen people walking around using something called The Mommy Hook (stupid name).  We picked the hooks we did because the velcro attachment on them keeps them from sliding around the handle and also because they were cheaper.

Word of caution: always fill up the basket of your stroller first before adding heavy things to the handle, especially while your baby is still a baby and not a giant toddler.  One downside of having an ultra-light stroller is that it can tip if you're not using common sense.

Baby entertainment

Finally, we've come to something that's for the baby instead of the parent (though of course, a quiet and entertained baby is really very much for the parent). There are many options for things to attach to the stroller to keep your wee one happy once they're not just using it as a convenient napping location.  We've enjoyed using the Skip Hop Stroller Bar Activity Toy as well as attaching other toys to the stroller straps with pacifier clips.  But frankly there are many options for stroller toys out there.


       


This post is the third in a series of posts about carfree living. Other posts include thoughts on strollers for urban use, necessary accessories, and whatever else we think to blog about!
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