A ripe-melon-like “Thud”!

It all started in May 2009 when Roan, my very active 7 month old son, started to crawl.  Not slowly and cautiously like other children but with incredible speed and with absolutely no sense of danger.  Had we still been living in Scotland I may not have been so anxious as my house there had carpets but no we now live in Germany and as the norm our apartment had stone tiles throughout the whole living area.  A child of that age has very weak muscle control and their centre of gravity is in their head (an adults is in their bottom). So when Babies fall their head hits the floor first. BANG!  Horrendous pictures of Roan smashing his head off the floor flashed through my mind and wanting my child to learn with confidence and explore his new surroundings without me fretting behind him or having social services visit me, I started my search for some kind of head protection he could wear around the house.  I had no idea what I was going to look for as I had never come across any examples of head protection for Babies.  Therefore, it was a complete coincidence that the very same week The Apprentice was being aired on TV and the contestants tasks were being filmed at the Baby Show in London.  Low and behold the winning task was in association with The Thudguard Baby Safety Helmet.  There it was, the answer to my worries.  I had found the very thing I was looking for.  I immediately ordered the helmet online from the UK and it was full steam ahead for our little express train.

Check out the cute Mickey Mouse ears

I loved the helmet so much that I called the inventor Kelly Forsyth-Gibson to tell her how much I loved it and the difference it had made to Roan´s development.  Roan was standing up and starting to walk at 9 months with great confidence and without my help.  It was from this conversation that Kelly asked if I would be interested in selling it in Germany.  The helmet is sold in over 40 countries worldwide but there was no distributor or retailers in Germany.  What an opportunity.   So in June 2009 easytoddler was born selling the Thudguard Helmet.  Over 2 years later I decided to turn my small pastime into a full-time career, increased my product catalogue and I am about to relaunch under a new name with a new website along with many more lovely Baby & Toddler Products from around the world.  I can still hardly believe that one phone call to compliment someone on a brilliant invention has led me to where I am now.  The acceptance of the helmet in Germany has been a lengthy process but in time and with more focus and publicity on the research being carried out on the long term effects of head injuries in Babies I know that the Helmet will be as successful here as it is in all the other countries.

Lesley is doing the Ultimate Blog Challenge throughout the month of January.  I would love your support and to hear from you so please send me all your comments on my posts.

Travel Tips for Car Journeys with Children

It can sometimes be daunting and very stressful when travelling with small children.  I know this from first hand experience.  We used to live in Stuttgart and had to travel over 900km 2-3 times a year up to the North of Germany where we have a holiday house.  Thankfully we now live a lot closer and only have a 2 hour car journey in which to keep our son entertained.  It was the experience from these long journeys that made me choose some of the products that I sell on easytoddler.  Here are my top 10 travel tips for car journeys.

1. Keep first aid kit, wet wipes, sick bags, change of clothes, toilet roll and liquid antibacterial soap together in an easily accessible place in the car so they are readily available in case of car sickness, spillages, accidents.  We found the Potette 2 in 1 Travel Potty a must for unplanned toilet stops and it also adapts into a hygenic toilet seat when using public toilets.

2. Have a rubbish bag handy in the car as well as some large sealable sandwich bags which can be used for storing snacks, small toys and crayons.

3. When driving at night try simulating sleeptime by changing the children into their pyjamas, pillow, slippers and blanket.  The 5 in 1 BundleBean can be used as a sleeping bag for your child without having to unstrap them from their seat. You can then either read them a bedtime story or put on an audio tape to settle them down for the night.

4. Keep a torch handy for older children to read or play in the backseat of the car!

5. Children can still get sunburnt in the backseat of the car so remember to apply suncream as well using a sunblind to keep the sun out of their eyes.

6. Pack a cooler bag or lunch box full of healthy snacks as services can be expensive with a limited choice of healthy food.

7. Plan your stops so the kids can have a run around every couple of hours and bring a ball so everyone can have a kick about or game of catch.  If possible try and leave a few hours free for relaxing at the end of the day!

8. Ensure your child has easy access to water during long journeys particularly in hot countries.

9. Have a bag of small toys and treats individually wrapped up and let the children have a lucky dip as either prizes, good behavior treats or simply as a form of distraction, some ideas could be… window stickers, window crayons, scribbling pads.

10. The snack n play tray can be attached to the carseat and gives the kids an area to put their toys on, eat  from, and be used to do activities on.

BundleBean 5-in1 Waterproof Fleece Foot-Muff

Some product reviews on Baby and Toddler Products are easy to write and this is one of them.  When BundleBean offered to send me a sample of their 5-in-1 Waterproof Fleece Foot-Muff (Fußsack) I got very excited at the opportunity of reviewing a brand new product not yet available to the German market.

Firstly, a wee bit of background information on the story behind BundleBean.  The designer is  a mother of two who came up with the ingenious idea on how she could combat the amount of expensive kit needed by parents when venturing out and about with their little one.  BundleBean is a blanket which coverts into a foot-muff that fits on to all buggies, bike seats, rear facing car seats and also cleverly converts into a front style baby carrier.  It also opens out flat for use as a travel picnic rug or play mat.  It really is a one stop solution.  I liked using it as a foot-muff (Fußsack) for Roan´s bike seat when we cycled to Kindegarten. Particularly last week when the weather turned colder.  My husband was unfortunately away so I couldn´t get any pictures of Roan and I using it.  But promise to post some soon.

BundleBean is so versatile that it can be used from Baby to Toddler and from the Winter through to the Summer months.  All this in just one Blanket!

Everything has been thought of.  When using it as a baby carrier there is a pouch pocket to keep your hands cosy and to keep things in.  A waterproof nylon shell to keep your little one dry and  backed with fleece to keep them warm.  It comes in 3 different colours; pink, blue and black and when you´re not using the BundleBean it rolls up to a nice neat easy to carry bundle.  I am delighted to say that I liked it so much that I decided to add it to my product list and you can now buy the BundleBean here in Germany for the first time from easytoddler.  Another great idea from a clever mum.

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