We are Oli and Sarah, mummy and daddy to a boisterous young man called Joshua who will be three in January and a five week old baby girl called Matilda. Together we live to the north of Cambridge which has been home for the past five years after moving out of London. We both still work in London however, where Sarah is a lawyer and I work for a mobile tech company. We are excited to be product testers and hope our reviews will be helpful to others as we have used the ‘Living With' reviews to guide our own product choices!
Our UPPAbaby Cruz has finally arrived!! I had three boxes, two of which were rather large waiting for me on my return from work.
Box two was the carry cot, all packaged up in a dust cover which again was supplied with mosquito net, rain cover and instruction booklet.
And the smallest box was the PiggyBack board with adapters to fit both the Cruz and instruction booklet.
The boxes were all very neatly packed and I was quite pleasantly surprised at how easy assembly was with no need for tools, everything just clips into place. Within 10 minutes or so all packaging was out of the way and I was able to play around and try the seat unit and carry cot on the chassis.
We also attached the PiggyBack board.
And tried our car seat on the supplied adapters:
The first thing I should mention is how much we both love the colour. The fact that the entire seat/carry cot are not the same colour means that the strong purple is not too overwhelming. Overall the look is very smart and certainly feels like a premium product.
So first impressions are that the UPPAbaby Cruz is a great looking,
quality feeling mode of transport for our little one. We very much look forward
to putting it through its paces over the coming weeks.
We opted to use the carry cot as Matilda was sleepy, and she soon rocked off into a deep sleep snuggled up in her snow suit and blanket on the comfy foam mattress supplied with the carry cot. We had a very peaceful walk, even over the potholes on the path down to the river with the suspension doing a fine job. The sun was low in the sky and at times rather bright, so we put the sun shade to good use, which with the extension almost completely closes out any chance for the sun to disturb a sleeping tot (this really is a great feature and one I will describe more fully in a later post).
Josh split his time between the buggy board and his new scooter (Christmas present) and was a big fan of being able to see in to keep an eye on his sleeping sister.
The one small frustration we did have, was that despite having a huge basket, access to it is incredibly tight with the carry cot in place. We were just about able to squeeze a couple of spare clothes through the gap between the pushchair frame and the carry cot base, but had to remove the cot to stow Josh's scooter (in a folded position), and the change bag.
On our return home our wet wipes came in handy to give the pushchair a quick spruce up to remove the worst of the mud from the wheels and a few splashes from the basket. The wheels do not have deep tread so were very easy to clean, and in no time the pushchair was in an acceptable state to be brought inside and stowed away until our next adventure.
January the 28th 2017
Weekends for us are spent rushing here, there and everywhere. Saturdays start with Rugby Tots followed by swimming which I am sure is a familiar routine for many, but it does require us to cart excessive amounts of stuff that a 3 year old and baby may require. This is where we have discovered a major strength of the Uppababy Cruz. The basket is HUGE!!
As mentioned previously, with the carry cot on access is not great as it sits quite low with the only option to access the basket being removal of the carry cot. With the car seat however access is easy, and there is more than enough space for swim bag,
change bag and anything else that counts as an essential – for us this might be toys,
teddies, scooters or worse!
The car seat clips on easily, but you do need to remember to have the adapters with
you! Removal is a two handed job, but this hasn't concerned us thus far.
We are also making good use of the buggyboard. Josh is not a fan of being rushed, and getting from the car park to the swimming pool after inevitably running late from Rugby Tots does often require a brisk walk, something that previously ran a very real risk of causing a toddler style meltdown. With the buggyboard however, Josh is able to jump on and we can walk at ‘adult' pace which is a real time saver.
We've been hit by the flu!!
As a household we are feeling very sorry for ourselves at the moment. We have each had a bout of the nasty bug that seems to be doing the rounds so aren't really heading out a huge amount, so I am afraid that there won't be any substantial review this week.
We did manage to make a mad dash around Tesco to pick up some essentials, with the enormous basket of the Cruz allowing us to use it as a trolley and make good use of the self-checkout for a speedy getaway!
Hopefully we will be on the mend soon, and I will be able to bring you up to speed on our adventures next week.
February the 11th 2017
So with Josh spending the day at nursery, Sarah decided to take Tilly on a girls shopping trip into Cambridge. Dodging the raindrops (and tourists!) the Cruz was smooth and easy to manoeuvre around the city pavements and between the rails in shops. The only discernible downside to the small, solid wheels were the various cobbled areas within the city centre which left Tilly slightly shaken (but not stirred!). In fact, the vibration from the cobblestones seemed to lull her to sleep, although it didn't last long and the moment Sarah stopped in the hope of a nice peaceful coffee two little eyes opened with Tilly then shouting for her own mid-morning milk!
Although Sarah had packed it away before remembering to snap a photo, she did make use of the carry cot's rain cover. The cover is stowed neatly in one of the three pockets in the back of the Cruz's basket, for easy access. Once in place it is a nice, tailored fit with a good design allowing great visibility of the baby and ventilation for the baby. We haven't had cause to use the supplied mosquito net yet, nor will we as I suspect Tilly will have outgrown the carry cot before summer finally arrives! It is also a good fit though and would provide excellent protection from insects if required.
February the 18th 2017Josh is a huge fan of books, so each Wednesday, Sarah, Josh and Tilly make a pilgrimage to the local library for Story Time. It's a fab get together for a small group of toddlers for stories to be read, and to have access to the vast choice of kiddie books on offer. It also seems to be a perfect nap time for Tilly who is quite at home in the carry cot allowing us to position her in the buggy park (which is next to the kid's book section if she does stir). It is also a great spot for people to admire the Cruz and we have had several complimentary comments made about the colourway and black chassis.
The only downside of the carry cot that we have found is that when she's awake she wants to see what's going on around her, and that is tricky as the view from inside is quite restricted, so she tends to try and strain her neck to see over. This is no fault of the carry cot, rather an indication of how nosey Tilly is! It is probably also a sign that it may be time to progress on to trying out the seat unit for her. Technically she is a little small for this so we have invested in the UPPAbaby Infant Snug Seat so will update you on how we get on with this in a later post.
February the 25th 2017
As suggested in our earlier post, we have decided to move Tilly up to the seat unit. She is really still a little small, and looks totally lost if just sat in the seat. UPPAbaby to the rescue however, as we have purchased the SnugSeat insert. The SnugSeat is made up of two parts - the seat unit itself, and a wedge that sits underneath.
It was all very easy to attach, and once in place looks like it will really cocoon its precious cargo, supporting their head sufficiently. (NOTE: UPPAbaby state that the toddler seat should be used in full recline position with insert, and that it is suitable for use from 6 months).
As it's still pretty nippy out, we have also added our foot muff which is not UPPAbaby, but by a company called Betty Bramble. It was used a few times for our son and although the colours clash a little it is too nice not to reuse!
We haven't had a trip out yet, but when we do, I will be sure to get some pictures.
March the 4th 2017
The sun was out for a brief part of the weekend so we made the most of it and went for a walk to the park. It was our first opportunity to test out the snug seat with Tilly on board so we all wrapped up warm and headed out. The first thing I noticed is that with the SnugSeat and wedge in place, Tilly kind of sits on top of the seat rather than in it, so a recline is definitely required as they would otherwise be held in place predominantly by the straps. We found that the mid setting on the world facing gave Tilly the option to watch the world go by, but also ensure that she was safe and secure. We also had to extend the straps quite considerably, but this process is very easy on the Cruz.
With the sun out we also got to make good use of the very deep sun hood and even deeper extension. Tilly really is kept well out of the sun which for now protects her eyes, but in summer will be invaluable to keep her hidden form the risk of sunburn.
On the way home we decided to make us of the parent facing mode - an easy change with the simple to operate buttons either side of the seat unit allowing you to simply lift the seat unit off, turn it and return it to the chassis. This gave Josh a chance to see his sister as he had decided the buggy board would be used for walk home. The one thing to note however that use of the buggy board with the seat unit is not quite as easy as with the carry cot or car seat. With the seat unit world facing it was almost impossible for Josh to stand comfortably, and parent facing we had to fold the foot rest of the seat unit out of the way to allow him to stand. The problems we faced were obviously exaggerated by the fact that the seat was reclined, but it is certainly something to be aware of.
We are off skiing next weekend, and will most likely be relying on baby carriers and in buggies loaned by our ski operator in resort, but we will report on our next adventures on our return.
March the 25th 2017
Rain, rain, go away, come again another day!!
A rather windy and rainy day welcomed us on arrival at Wimpole Hall Farm. This didn't put Josh off though, who made an instant beeline for the pedal tractors, it did however necessitate that we put the rain cover on the Cruz to help keep Tilly dry and toasty!
The rain cover is easy to fit with elasticated sections keeping the whole thing in place. The fit is good and follows the contours of the hood and seat unit well. The one thing I love is the fact that there is a panel that can be rolled up to allow direct access and a better view to baby in parent facing mode.
We are still using the cozy toes as the weather has not yet warmed up enough, and ours is a little long for the rain cover so pokes pout of the bottom. This is not a particular issue but did mean that the rain running off the upper parts of the buggy ran over the bottom of the cozy toes so it did need drying out when we got home. UPPAbaby do their own cozy toes which I suspect is a little shorter and fits better but it may be worth a try in store if you are buying the whole set up to be sure.
Overall the fit of the Cruz rain cover is very good and provides adequate ventilation, visibility and access. The same is true of the cover for the carry cot.