We put the Mifold Grab-and-Go Car Booster Seat to the test…

On holiday we take our own car seat, it is a full, high-back side-impact car seat designed for kids ages 4 to 11. The advantage is that it is with us wherever we go, with peace of mind as we know it is comfortable and safe. There are however times when this just isn’t practical (we are often negotiating our luggage with car seat stacked on top!) and so when I heard about the Mifold Grab-and-Go Car Seat I was intrigued to try it out. We were lucky enough to be sent one to review for use with Freddie who is 7…

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The Mifold is described as the ‘Grab-and-Go Booster seat, and it certainly lives up to its name. Its designers say that the Mifold “is the first real innovation in child car booster seats in over 50 years” – we have tested a few in our time, like the BubbleBum Inflatable Booster Seat with positivity and there are others on the market that claim to be good for travel like the Trunki BoostApak. So how does the Mifold stand up to the test?

When I first received the Mifold I instantly questioned its safety as it is soooo small! On opening it felt well made and I liked the bag it came with too. I took it along to school pickup to see what other parents thought and they unanimously had the same safety concerns, especially with all the new regulations surrounding child seats. I was intrigued to find out more.

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The Mifold is thin, compact and robust, maybe calling it a ‘booster seat’ isn’t quite the right term to use. A ‘booster seat’ is generally designed to lift a child, whether it be at a table for dinner, at a cinema or in the car to be in the correct line for a seatbelt fitting. The Mifold is designed to do the opposite – instead of lifting a child up it lowers the seat belt down to the correct shoulder height.

mifold-booster

Normal booster

 

mifold-without-booster

Mifold

It is 10X smaller than a regular car booster seat too and is ideal for travel as it can be easily popped into a bag or backpack. It is well made and sturdy, designed for kids from 4-12 years old. Our first outing was to Kew Gardens with friends, there were three children ages 5 and two 7 year olds to fit into the back. We usually have trouble squashing the car seats in with them a little wonky and probably not the safest positions! The Mifold fitted nicely between the two seats and it was easy to fit. The Mifold is a great choice for three in a row…

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Freddie wasn’t too impressed initially with the seat for comfort to sit on (he is occasionally a bit of a diva!)  but he did say the actual seat belt fitting was really comfortable and sat nicely on his shoulder. On our next trip we popped a small cushion and this made him happy. Since then we have ditched the cushion idea as it defeats the object of having a true ‘Grab-and-Go’ style seat and our fussy little prince is used to it now!

I can see the Mifold being a brilliant choice for a spare quick seat, for school runs, family holidays, travelling, great size for grand-parents cars, adhoc pick ups and a brilliant space saver for three in a row. It is so small and compact it would be great for hopping around in a taxi too.

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Freddie is 7 now and most of his friends have moved on from the high back seat, I know we shouldn’t give in to peer pressure but the Mifold means he can feel more grown up and we can avoid some awkward moments. I still like the full back seats with side panels and for extra long journeys we still have it in our car. However the Mifold is now in my little run-around car and I feel safe in the knowledge that the seat belt is at the right height. I think we will be tempted to ditch our large cumbersome child seat on future holidays too. I am converting 🙂

Safety was my only concern but it has been designed to conform to EU regulations and beyond US regulations and I do really like the seat belt positioning. I like the way it is held in position close to the shoulder and around the lap and not across the tummy area.

You can see from the image that the seatbelt are held in place neatly

You can see from the image that the seatbelts are held in place neatly

 

 

The Mifold has been well designed with a choice of funky colours. The seat pad has been designed by car industry experts and it is robust with a strong metal chassis made from aircraft aluminium. So it looks like it is a product to last.

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All in all we think the Mifold is easy to use, fully adjustable and totally portable and gets a big thumbs up from us. It is a fab choice for a travel booster style car seat for children old enough and even fits in  a handbag. For more information, you can visit the Mifold website here:

http://www.mifold.com

http://www.mifold.com/faq/

The Mifold is available from many retailers in the UK including John Lewis and Amazon @ £49.95 and the carry bag is around £15. The bag is a good idea if you want to attach it to the outside of a rucksack etc.

The Mifold is great alternative to a car booster seat and we think every family with kids should have one!

 

Babyzen Yoyo+ pushchair review – Baby’s very own stylish travel system is just a delight for travel and city fun.

The BabyZen Yoyo+ is a multi-award winning pushchair that ‘converts in a flash into hand luggage dimensions’. Ideal from birth it comes in a variety of colours and weighs between 6.2 and 6.6kg, depending on the version.


For babies from birth Babyzen Yoyo+ comes with a flat carry cot with a 3-point harness and lies parent facing. Moving to 6 months using the same frame the fabrics are swapped and baby then faces the world. The backrest can be reclined to 145 degrees and has a 5-point harness.

The Babyzen Yoyo+ also has car seat adapters, a shopping basket and storage pouch and boasts an ultra-padded seat, 4-wheel suspension, canopies for solar protection and rain covers.

Could this be the best travel all-round pushchair on the market?

At the end of 2016 we were fortunate to be given a Babyzen Yoyo+ to review. We sent it off with the Hufford family to South Africa and here is how it faired…

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Reviewer: Bronwyn Hufford WITH baby Georgia #HolidayTotsandGeorgia

The Babyzen Yoyo+ is in my opinion, a really good quality product. After three weeks of travelling, three flights, different terrains – it is still like new and even withstood a red wine spill, with the wine just running off due to the coating.

We found it extremely easy to use. It does what it says on the box and after travelling with my normal pram/travel system – this was a godsend. It folds up small enough to fit in the overhead locker which was amazing as you knew the baggage handlers weren’t going to damage it and we could put our baby in it whilst still on board, making it a quick and easy exit.

The 5-point harness is easy to use even while Georgia slept. If you need to recline the seat, you just loosen the strap at the back, and you tighten it to bring the seat back up. It comes with most well-known brand car seat adapters which is great (we did not have an opportunity to use these). It is also machine washable which is great of anything associated with a baby!

As a compact pushchair, the Babyzen Yoyo+ is amazing. It is small, compact and easy to use. We loved it whilst out and about too, on and off planes and our family were extremely impressed with it.

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The fact that we could take it on board for us was amazing, as not only could we put Georgia in it before leaving the aircraft, but we also knew no one was going to damage it. It is so easy to push and is extremely light even with baby in it. Pushing her around the airport was simple and whilst away in South Africa she even joined us on a 4-hour shopping spree a few days before Christmas. The shops were chaotic but having the Yoyo meant she was easy to manoeuvre and she was more than happy to look out at the world for hours on end – which means it must be comfy too! We did use the parasol when out and about in the sun but it was a little fiddly and tricky as you had to keep moving/bending it whilst out walking.

I love how compact this pushchair is. It is easy to push and small! Just what you need when travelling. The canopy is large which is great in the sun and when baby is sleeping. The peephole is uncovered which was a bit of a pain in the sunshine, but not a major issue as ! just put a muslin over it.

Pros:

  • Compact (First stroller that is fully compliant with IATA guidelines for cabin baggage dimensions)
  • Easy to maneuver
  • Machine Washable
  • Stylish

Cons:

  • Hard to find anything bad to say really! Not really built for rougher terrain but that’s not really what is for! If you are looking for an all-terrain pushchair they also have the Zen
  • Uncovered peephole on canopy often left sun shine onto my baby’s face and head.

Rating:

Functionality / usability – 10/10 

Aesthetics and design –10/10

Value for money –  8/10 – At approx GBP370 this is a more expensive pushchair but I feel worth the money.

Quality – 10/10

Innovativeness – 10/10

The Babyzen Yoyo+ was developed in France by five forward thinking French men who thought that families needed a more stylish travel Pishchair on the market to choose from. They also have the all-terrain Zen and a good selection of accessories for both pushchairs: footmuff in a variety of colours to go with the style of stroller you choose, car seat adapters, Parasol, Magic Stroller Bag, Babyzen cup holder, Babyzen mosquito nets and Yoyo+ travel bag.

For more details and where to buy, visit their website http://www.babyzen.com/en/

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Cozyosko Multifunction Footmuff review – and your chance to win one too!

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The Cozyosko Multifunction Footmuff converts from a cosytoes pushchair/pram cover to play rug, car seat wrap, blanket, changing mat and even a pillow. It is suitable for any five-point harness buggy or seat and is generally sized for ages 0-3 years. It is machine washable, made of anti-pill polar fleece and is warm and cozy.  We asked our reviewer, mum Bronwyn to check it out with baby Georgia…

Quality

The product is of great quality and washes really well. It also dries quite quickly which is great because I would be lost without it on our walks.

Ease of use

The product is very easy to use, it fits in any 5-point harness pram and you just buckle the baby up, cover with Cozyosko and zip up the front. There is an extra pouch over the feet area which keeps Georgia extra warm.

What is it?

It is basically a blanket that you can use to keep your babies (up to 3 years old) snug in their pram whilst being securely fastened. It also opens up into a square play mat whilst out and about.

Feedback

 I received the Cozyosko just before the winter. After an amazing summer, the drop in temperature was a total shock to the system and as a new mum (Georgia was only 2-3 months old) I had no idea what to buy to keep her warm. This product was an absolute lifesaver when we went out for our walks. I didn’t feel I needed to layer her up which was great when we got to my local coffee shop as I didn’t need to undress her and pile on the layers again before we left. The Cozyosko is warm and a product I would highly recommend.

It is very easy to use and keeps my baby nice and warm in the horrible cold months. She falls asleep very quickly. We often use the term ‘Snug as a bug in a rug’

The designs are all very bright and colourful (which I love) but perhaps people may prefer subtle tone/design.

At approx GBP40 this is a mid-range footmuff. There are others out there that are cheaper but they don’t double as a play mat.

NB: We have found some cheaper on Amazon as the product is not readily available in the UK now – bargains to be had if you can find them!

Pros –   Washes Well

Doubles as a blanket and an all-in-one snow suit.

Cons –  None!

Cozyosko is an Australian company and the Cosey Toes Footmuff is their signature product winning Practical Parenting awards. The Cozyosko Multifunction Footmuff comes in a stunning array of colours and designs all of which are bright, fun and bold.

You can view more here:

http://www.cozyosko.com.au/products.asp?id=22

There are UK stockists offering varying prices including Amazon.

Or better still why not enter out competition to win one! Just pop over to our Holiday Tots competition page:

 

Totseat meets Paddington!

One of our favourite travel items has had a new makeover with one of our favourite bears.

 

Paddinton meets Totseat

Paddington Meets Totseat

Totseat creator, Rachel Jones, has had a love affair with Paddington Bear since childhood: this cute little bear arrived in Rachel’s life when she was just 8 years old and became a dependable companion.

Rachel's Old Friend Paddington

Rachel’s Old Friend Paddington

The merging of Rachel’s old and new love is a success, and the three new designs are fun and perfect for any Paddington Bear fan.

Totseat Paddington Ecru

Totseat Paddington Ecru

The Totseat is one of our must-have accessories when out and about with young children. It is a fabulous invention, not only for use in restaurants and cafes but also when visiting friends and relatives for lunch or dinner who do not have provisions for toddlers at the dinner table. We found ours indispensable.

The Totseat has come a long way, the first ever was made using a wedding dress! The new Paddington Bear design will be available from the end of November. There are three variations in colour, Duck Egg and Ecru and are ideal for toddlers from about 8 – 30 months.

Duck Egg Paddington Totseat

Duck Egg Paddington Totseat

Fully washable, squash able and they fit any style of chair!

For more information visit the Totseat website

The Holiday Tots Top Ten Toddler Travel Items for Summer 2014  

Here are our favourite toddler travel items for this summer. In no particular order…

  1. Snoozeshade

If you want protection from the sun and a nice dark environment to aid a longer sleep for lazy sunny days, the Snoozeshade is perfect., Brilliant for baby and toddler day naps when out and about.

Snooze Shade

Snooze Shade

  1. Konfidence – Neoprene Beach Boots

We tried these and love them! They are our must have item wherever we go, perfect for hot sand, pebbly beaches and general splashing and running fun in the hot or colder weather. Great also by the swimming pool as they stop slipping on the concrete or decking and also in the grass where little biting insects might lurk!

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  1. Bebe au Lait nursing cover

If you have babe in arms this cover is indispensable! I used this with my youngest (wish I had had one with the older kids too). It was a godsend in busy places, not only for the discreetness of it but also it stopped him being too nosey to feed and was great on the beach or out and about (as it provides a fabulous sun shade too).

If its good enough for Gwen...

If its good enough for Gwen…

  1. Tot Seat

So we were at lunch at a friend’s house, they didn’t have a high chair but it didn’t matter because we had our Tot Seat – it folds small and can be used on just about every design of chair. So even though all of the holiday properties on Holiday Tots have high chairs we still would recommend taking along a Tot Seat for those lovely lunches over-looking the sea or in quaint villages.

Tot Seat - for babies who lunch!

Tot Seat – for babies who lunch!

 

5. Skip Hop Zoo Trolley Case

We love this trolley, it’s friendly and spacious, and ideal for overnight stays or for the plane or car. It is essentially a pull along trolley but has clever detachable shoulder straps so adults can carry hands-free. The front zip pocket is ideal for smaller more accessible items like snacks or fav books. It is 46cm high x 32cm wide x 16 cm deep. There are fun animal designs: we have the monkey as it goes with Freddie’s lunch box… The Skip Hop Trolley is so cool the little ones might actually want to pull them themselves, I know our little man never lets his go! You can buy them from Kidstravel2 or other reputable retailers

SH_ZooLuggage_PocketDetail_lo_ (1)6. First Aid Kit

I can’t make my mind up on this one so you have two choices!

Boots Pharmaceuticals St John Ambulance Travel First Aid Kit

Brilliant kit at a good price and you get your Boots points. Lots of goodies inside for basic accidents, cuts, grazes stings etc. A bit big for your handbag but good for the glove compartment or suitcase.

Boots Pharmaceuticals & St John Ambulance Travel First Aid Kit

Or

Baby Aid

A lovely compact kit so small it can fit in your nappy bag or handbag. Included are the basics for cuts and grazes and burns and there are some Brave Little Star Stickers too! When I received mine to review (which will follow) I fell in love with its cuteness!

Baby Aid

Baby Aid

The Boots family travel first aid kit is probably best value for money at £11.99 but the BabyAidis just so sweet and compact (15cm x10cmx5cm) and the bag is good quality. It is priced at £16.00 – would be a fab present. Don’t forget to add your sachets of Calpol, you never know when you might need them…

7. Carddies

This is a brilliant and simple idea. Carddies are little card people to colour in and play. There are lots of sets to choose from. They are really good quality, made in the UK, and each set contains: card people, a card scene (all artwork drawn by hand), high quality colouring pencils and plastic stands for the little people and animals all housed in a neat little box. We use them regularly and you can read our review here https://theholidaytotsblog.co.uk/2014/03/27/carddies-knight-set-an-excellent-childrens-travel-toy-promoting-imaginative-play/

Carddies on the farm

Carddies on the farm

They cost £8.99 per pack visit their website for stockists http://www.carddies.com

8. Music CD

A trip would not be complete without a little music, there are lots of children’s music CDs on the market we recently received a copy of Little Big Songs, a nice CD for young children and worth a listen, the songs are catchy and easy to relate to (review to follow) but still our firm favourite is ‘Singable Songs for the Very Young by Rafi’.We have listened to this on our travels (and at home) for the last four years and love it. The great thing about it is not only that the children enjoy it but it is one of those children’s CD’s that is easy on the ear to adults and we all sing-along….

Rafi songs for the very young

9. Stickytape and sticker books

Stickers, stickers and more stickers, they come in many shapes, sizes and books. We always take some along with us wherever we go but our real favourite is sticky tape, white masking tape is the best! We draw on it, stick to paper, toys, bags, books, cards, aeroplane seats and even each other. The fun never stops!

masking tape10. Note book and pen

Our little boy loves his note book and pen. It really is just a basic note book and biro. When we go out for dinner he doodles and now as he is getting older the doodles and writing are getting more legible! He’s on his third note book and it’s great to look back at the older ones. We play drawing guessing games too, the fun is endless and he has always thought he is important with his own biro!

 

 

We hope you get some inspiration from our Top 10 Travel items for toddlers – if you have anything you would like to share feel free to contact us, we would love to hear from you!

Konfidence – Neoprene Beach Boots review – oh how we love them!!!

We travel a lot and love exploring and being outdoors. When Konfidence sent me their Neoprene Beach Boots I was sooooo excited! Freddie is pretty tough but he moans about his feet a lot when bare footed so we couldn’t wait to try them out!

Konfidence Beach toddler shoe

Konfidence Beach toddler shoe

Our first outing with them was really a massive hit, far beyond my wildest imagination! We went camping for two nights on the Lulworth Estate in Dorset and it rained most of the time, who’d have thought that these fab Konfidence boots would have been so useful!

When we arrived it was raining: setting up the tent meant that we all got wet feet and Freddie’s trainers seemed to attract so much water they didn’t dry until we returned home.

wet trainers

On our first outing we visited Weymouth, Freddie wore his wellies and went too far out to sea, which meant, yes you guessed it, wet wellies!

lulworth wellies

Our second outing was a 20 minute walk from the camp site to Durdle Door beach, the only shoes I had left for Freddie were the Konfidence Beach Boots (mummy failure – or was it?). These proved to be so fantastic that he wore them to the beach and kept them on while playing in the field when we returned to camp.

Freddie's feet kept warm...

Freddie’s feet kept warm…

They are robust with extra thick soles and fabulous toe protection they have a stretchy ankle opening and so perfect for little feet pulling on and off. It didn’t matter that his feet were wet as they kept warm and he didn’t moan once!

Freddie could even run on the large pebbles!

Freddie could even run on the large pebbles!

All in all these little boots are winners in my book, they are not only excellent for the beach – pebbles for comfort, and sand for heat – but also perfect for exploring and playing when camping as we found out!

These boots will go with us wherever we travel – Thank you Konfidence!

Konfidence text on these great little toddler beach boots…

tech-boots

Based on a windsurfing boot design, our funky beach boots offer full protection for toes, heels and soles of the feet in a robust moulded rubber with extra thick soles. The stretchy neoprene fabric with glue and blind-stitched sealed seam construction (the same seam technology used on high-end adult wetsuits ) provides perfectly flat, seamless interior for maximum comfort and warmth and means there’s no need for fiddly ties or toggles, they simply slip on and they’ll be ready to go exploring!

For more details visit their website directly – we think they are a bargain at £11.99 and they come up large so will last at least two years for Freddie.

www.Konfidence.co.uk

 

Yumbox review – the re-invention of the lunchbox? Your chance to win one too!

THIS COMPETITION IS NOW CLOSED

 

Pomme Green Yumbox Closed

When I found out about the Yumbox I was very excited. Freddie loves his houmous and various dips but we always have a problem with how to transport them. Generally we end up with lots of pots to wash up at the end of the day! So Yumbox promised to be the solution, so how did it fair?…

What’s the story of Yumbox?

Yumbox was the idea of two US mums hell bent on developing healthy eating habits (Maia Neumann and Daniele Devitt). UK mum Sarah Kerr found Yumbox in the US and now has launched distribution in the UK.

Cracker and ham rolls copy

What is Yumbox?

Yumbox is more than just a lunch/snack box: it is designed to guide you in providing a healthy and hassle free lunch. Each of its five sections are ½ a cup size providing the ideal space for key food groups: Fruit, vegetable, grains, protein and dairy. There is also a small well, ideal for a treat or dip.

Pomme Green Yumbox Open with Tray

It is lightweight and has a leak-proof single lid.

What we thought…

On first inspection Yumbox is solid and well made, it looks good too! It is easy to open and close, so ideal for little fingers (probably 3+ but I would have used it for my children when they were younger too and opened and closed it myself – not that it is hard to open just to reduce spillage!)

Each section is well proportioned and has a picture to guide you should you run out of ideas!

Yumbox Removable Illustrated Tray

We tested it out for a week and it faired really well…

Travel

Fabulous little snack/lunch box for the car, Freddie felt quite important with it and we didn’t have lots of pots lying around at the end of the day!

fred eating

Days out

We visited the Herts County Show and I had no problem popping the Yumbox into my bag, it is light and quite small.

At the allotment

We spend a few hours at a time at the allotment but Freddie always loves a little snack. We usually have to buy things that are individually wrapped or go with lots of different pots. Yumbox is excellent not only because of its size but the fact that there is no waste! Great for the environment too as I just top it up with bits from the fridge!

allotment yumbox

Skatepark

We joined a few friends at the indoor Skatepark – there was a special scooter session for three hours for young children and Freddie loved it! I took Yumbox as his snack box and I have never seen a product cause so much interest from every single mum. They all loved it and can’t wait to get their hands on one!

Cleaning

Yumbox is dishwasher safe, which is fab. I only have one very small niggle about the Yumbox and it is to do with cleaning. The underside of the inner tray has crevices that are hard to get dry and clean but that doesn’t deter from what a fabulous re-invention of the lunch box this is. (it’s better than washing up lots of pots and throwing away lots of bags!) I think we will be using our Yumbox for a very long time to come… This is always how it looks before the dishwasher empty! (this day the Yumbox was actually upside down for most of the day and you can see the Houmous went onto the lid but didn’t leak – fabulous!!!

yumbox empty

Competition

Win a Yumbox

We are delighted to have a fabulous green Yumbox available in our Holiday Tots competition  to enter and if you can’t wait…

Yumbox is now available in the UK priced at £24.95 from http://www.yumbox-uk.co.uk/shop/ in two colours with more coming soon…

pink-green-collage-logo

I was sent a complementary Yumbox to review and my review is my honest opinion