Stroller Review: Joovy Too Qool

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Once you find out you are having a second child the search for a new stroller begins, but this time you are looking for one that can accommodate both kids. I spent weeks researching the perfect stroller for my first kid, but realized when I was about to have my second child, that our beloved single stroller, can not be re-configured to accommodate two seated kids. We pretty much had to start the whole stroller research process over again, but with only a few days of research involved, because I was tired and pregnant, chasing around a toddler. 

My oldest child is fully capable of walking and can easily walk longer distances, but as a NYC city kid he can not walk all day, and the pace is quite slow when he is walking. So, if I need to get anywhere fast or on time, a double stroller is necessary.

Joovy Double Stroller

When it came to strolling with two children I found that the Joovy Too Qool was a perfect match for my growing family’s needs. The Too Qool is a luxury double stroller with the culmination of first class engineering and upscale design, totally something new and fresh out there on the streets. I have walked miles and miles, through all four NYC seasons with the Joovy Too Qool and it still pushes like new.

Joovy Too Qool

Double Stroller Checklist: Joovy Too Qool

  1. Is the price point under $700? No, the Too Qool is priced at $799 but that includes both seats. Its single stroller sibling the Joovy Qool is priced at $549. They are both priced comparable to other luxury strollers on the market.
  2. Can it be folded with the seats attached? The Too Qool can only be folded with the front seat attached, and if you want the most compact fold, both seats would need to be removed.
  3. Does it have a cup holder? This stroller does not come with a cup holder but a cup holder can be purchased for $14. The Joovy Qool and Too Qool Cup Holder easily attaches and detaches from the stroller and these strollers can accommodate up to 2 cup holders.
  4. Are the tires solid or need air? The Too Qool tires are solid, the sealed bearing wheels, ensures that your children will have a smooth and comfortable ride. 
  5. Can it accommodate two seated riders? Yes, the Joovy Too Qool can have two seated ridders, plus an additional third ridder using the ride-on board for $99 if needed. Plus if you remove the rear seat the Too Qool converts into a perfect single stroller.
  6. Is the seat forward and rear facing? Yes, the front seat can be configured facing front or back. Where the rear seat can only face forward, or be completely removed if not being used.Double Stroller Joovy
  7. Is the storage space large enough to hold a bag of groceries? Yes, the undercarriage on the Joovy Too Qool is roomy it can hold up to one bag of groceries. With the second child seated, you might need to maneuver the bag a bit in the space under the second seat, and you can only access it from the front but it is totally doable.
  8. Can I fold it with one hand? No, you need to pull up on each side of the handle bar to collapse the Too Qool. Plus if you want the most compact closure you will have to remove both seats from the carriage.
  9. Can I push it with one hand? Yes, it is an easy one handed push and has superior maneuverability for a double stroller. Besides the weight of pushing two kids, the Joovy Too Qool pushes like a single stroller and is not heavy to push at all!
  10. Can it be used from birth with additional attachments? Yes, the front seat can be replaced with an infant carseat adapter (sold separately) offering use from birth to 55 pounds per seat.

Too Qool double straller

Bonus Question: Is it easy enough for my tall husband to push? Yes, and he does not kick the rear seat when pushing the Too Qool.
Room for improvement: The five point harness straps on the front seat are a bit tricky to put on my squirmy baby, and the closure is not as compact as I would like it with the front seat attached.

Overall the Joovy Too Qool is a great double stroller for everyday use especially with a growing family, and a family who has an older child who needs a place to sit when they get tired after a long day out and about.

Let me know if you have any additional questions about the Joovy Too Qool stroller and I will try my best to answer them for you.

I was provided with a Joovy Too Qool stroller for review purposes, but all opinions expressed here are my own.

Childhood board games made out of chocolate

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Some of my happiest childhood memories revolve around playing board games with my friends and family. All the way through high school, we spent most Friday nights, at a family friends game night. Now that my son is four he is able to play some games all the way to the end, follow directions, and even sometimes win (without help from me). This past summer he was so excited when he beat his mema at Candy Land for the first time. He then insisted on playing it over-and-over again.
Candy Land board gameKnowing board games hold fond memories for people of all ages, Gamesformotion (known for their tailor-made games) has now released some classic childhood board games made out of chocolate. Yes, you read that right, chocolate. Totally any kids childhood dream come true. Games within the release include Scrabble and Battleship for adults to Candy Land, Guess Who?, and Monopoly for the family.
Gamesformotion chocolate gamesWe cracked open the Candy Land chocolate game tonight and my son was over the moon excited when I told him the pieces were edible. Even the baby knew something was different because of the lovely sweet chocolate smell coming from the pieces.
Chocolate Candy LandAll of the chocolate games have the same essential features as their famous counterparts, except that their cards and letter tiles have been replaced with the finest Belgian milk chocolate encased within printed wrappers. Rules for all of the games have been slightly modified by Gamesformotion to ensure they’re always fun and easy to play. Now the best part about winning the game is my son got to sample his winnings.
Chocolate game piece GamesformotionTheir classic chocolate game selections are currently being distributed throughout the US and are hitting the stores just in time for the holiday seasons. All games will be available for purchase beginning November 2014 at mass retail stores such as Target, CVS, Kmart, Amazon.com, Bed Bath & Beyond and select smaller distributors with retail prices starting at only $9.99.

I was provided with samples from Gamesformotion for review purposes, as always all opinions expressed here are my own.

First haircut at Doodle Doo’s NYC

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If you are ready to get your baby’s first haircut a place like Doodle Doo’s in NYC is a perfect place to take your kid. Doodle Doo’s is part kids hair salon, part toy store, nestled on a quaint block in the West Village of Manhattan. They have the cutest chairs for the kids to sit on when getting their haircut, from a classic car to a wooden boat and my absolute favorite, a yellow taxi cab. Each haircutting station has a TV where your child can choose their favorite DVD character to watch, the TV’s help to keep the kids distracted and their head still and facing forward.

If it is your baby’s first haircut, the stylist will make sure to save some wispy locks, for a memory book. They also fill out a sweet certificate with your child’s name and date of service, so this special milestone day will never be forgotten.

baby's first haircut

lilStrange did awesome for her first haircut, at first she was a bit shy and not really sure what was going on. The TV was not very successful in distracting her, so they gave her a Sesame Street peek-a-boo book to play with. Lets just say she loved the book and warmed up to all of the attention the stylists were giving her.

Doodle Doo's NYClilStrange did not have a ton of hair to start with, but at 16 months old, her back hair was filling in at a much faster rate then her front hair, causing a not so cute straggly mullet. The main goal for her first haircut was to clean the back up, making a sweet even bob. Hopefully over the next few months the fronts thickness will catch up with the back and she can start wearing cute little pigtails.

Haircut in a boatIn the end her smile says it all, and she had a successful first haircut. Plus check out the cute wooden boat she got to sit in for her first salon service. She also picked out a cute toy car from the toy store section of Doodle Doo’s to bring home as an additional memory to her lock of hair and certificate. First haircuts at Doodle Doo’s start at $35.

Halloween 2014

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My Strange Family had a very busy Halloween season this year. We went to Citibabes Halloween Spooktacular party, a Halloween cooking class at Freshmade NYC, H’s Preschool costume party, a big top halloween at the NY Kids Club and then trick-or-treating in our neighborhood. H declared Halloween as being the best holiday ever.

Here are some photo from our busy Halloween week in NYC.

Halloween 2014 Halloween Cooking

Halloween NY Kids Club

Halloween preschool

NY Kids Club Halloween

trick-or-treating NYC

Trick-or-treat

Kazaz! New iPad app from American Story Channel

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Kazaz! is a new iPad app, Launched by American Story Channel. The app features a world of interactive, animated original stories that will challenge and ignite a child’s curiosity. Kazaz! is easy enough to navigate through, so a child as young as 3 can explore on their own. The digital stories combine sight, sound and touch to help maximize every child’s learning experience. Plus the stories are challenging enough to hold an older child’s attention for more than 10 min.

Kazaz! Entry Screen after downloading it (72)

I enjoyed reading along The Magic of Kazaz with my son because the original story prompted questions about feelings and friendships, similar to what he is currently experiencing in preschool “Maybe having a friend would be nice after all” “try smiling more”. So my sitting with him allowed me to immediately answer him, and continue the learning and conversations beyond the app.

Kazaz app

Once you have completed reading a story from beginning to end, magic gems will appear for your child to explore the story more, almost like an eye spy type game. My son also enjoyed watching the Hubble Space Telescope looking deep, movie at the end of the story, he is so fascinated with everything from space and the solar system right now.

Planet Kazaz and Travelogue Strip for story information and selection (72)

The Kazaz! app is free to download for iPad, is ideal for children ages 3 to 8 and comes with 3 stories at launch:

  • The Magic of Kazaz: Reveals the history of how Kazaz! became a magical planet. This story will always be free.
  • I Am the Music Man: Sing along with the Music Man in this hand-clapping, toe-tapping rendition of a classic children’s melody. Cost additional $1.99.
  • The Story of Wooding: The tale of an adventurous young swan who sets off on an exciting journey. Cost additional $2.99.

Kazaz! on the App Store from Kazaz! on Vimeo.

This is only the beginning for Kazaz! and its parent company, American Story Channel. Future plans include additional stories, more sophisticated gamification experiences, availability in 11 languages, 3D figures in real gold and silver, and a children’s animated TV series, among other exciting developments.

What is your kids current favorite iPad app?

As always all opinions expressed here are my own

Kate Spade and Jack Spade for GapKids

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GapKids is starting off the holiday season right, with their new designer collaboration, Kate Spade + Jack Spade for Gap. GapKids has already had successful past collaborations with Stella McCartney and Diane von Furstenberg (twice). So, if you were a fan of the past lines, this new designer kid collection from husband and wife team Kate Spade and Jack Spade is sure to please, plus the boys get to get in on the fun this time around.

My favorite Kate Spade for GapKids is this bow print dress and these gift bow ballet flats. My favorite Jack Spade for GapKids is this googly eyes oxford shirt and this super soft hotdog scarf.

Here are some sneak peek photos to get you excited for shopping.

GapKids designer Jack Spade Hotdog tie Kate Spade bow flats Kate Spade for Gap Kate Spade Gap

The Kate Spade and Jack Spade for GapKids collection will be available in select stores and online from October 30th through November 14th. The price point for Kate Spade for GapKids is higher than the original GapKids line of clothing but it is not unattainable, and perfect for a special holiday item, that will be sure to turn heads, even in NYC.

What is your must have item from this new designer collaboration for Gap?

Happy Shopping!