Graco Evo Mini Stroller – Harlequin

We are very particular about our pushchairs in our house, we like them to be small, easy to push and put down (due to nannies and aunties having the girls too). We were lucky enough to get the Graco Evo Mini stroller to review, my sister who loved the old pushchair was a little skeptical about a new one, but when we got it out the box and put it together that was it. Love at first sight.

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From only £159 it was a great little pushchair for 0 to 3 years old. It was quick and easy to put together just attach the front wheel and hood and we were ready to go within a few minutes, although we did find the straps a little tricky to adjust but we got there in the end. The straps can be moved to three different heights as your child grows. They are also well padded for good comfort when they are asleep.

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It is very easy to push and can be done with one hand so there is a hand free for the all important morning take away coffee. it weighs around 6.2kg so it is easy to pick up once put down and lift into the car.

The wheel at the front it lockable as well as swivel,to suit the needs at the time and it has a good size basket underneath for the shopping which makes a nice change.  The 5 point safety harness is easy to get the little ones in and out of. The seat fully reclines using the drawstring system at the back of the seat, which gives a good sleeping position. The seat itself is well padded on both sides to give extra protection and a comfy ride.

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There is a rain cover included which is always a good thing in Britain as you can guarantee that rain is just round the corner. The rain fits well and keeps does its job. The hood itself also extends further than most do which gives extra protection or just a little more cover when they are sleeping.

It appears to be a smooth ride and when have no complaints so far. The handlebar is also padded, and with a push of the button and one twist the pushchair is down with only one hand. The pushchair comes in different colours to suit all tastes.

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Petite Star Zia_X 3 Wheeled Stroller.

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The Petite Star Zia_X really is the perfect stroller for anyone looking to buy a lightweight, small folding stroller. The Zia_X is suitable from birth onwards and comes complete with a raincover.

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The Zia_X is a 3 wheeled stroller, making it easy to maneuver and well as to get through small spaces. One of the really great things about this stroller was the suspension. Admittedly it did take some getting used to, we weren’t sure whether it was just flimsy and wouldn’t take the strain? However are worries were quickly put to rest, my sister took the girls to a local domestic fowl trust, which comes complete with rough terrain, the Zia_X took it with ease and Beboo was happily sat down bouncing away. The light suspension also makes really light to push.

The handles are soft grip and adjustable, so as well as being easy to push, its nice to hold and no sweaty hands!

As you can see, the stroller has a 5 point harness, which is easy to clip together, but not for Beboo to unclip and escape! The seat fully reclines, which makes it suitable from birth, as well as brilliant for nap time.

The shopping basket underneath is rather small, but as you can tell from the design, the Zia_X is designed for whizzing around, making it really the last thing you need.

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The frame is made from aluminium, making it a really lightweight, durable stroller.

As far as strollers go, the folding mechanism on the Zia_X is really simple. Simply Push the middle bar down, push the button on the right handle and pull backwards then push forward for it to collapse into itself. Its super quick and does not result in myself kicking and bashing trying to get it to fold down. The fact its quick also makes it great when you just want to throw the kids in the car and get home.

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As you can see from the above photos, the Zia_X fits quickly and nicely into the boot of the car, leaving space for shopping and my sticks. This also means it can stay in the car, meaning I don’t have to keep lugging it in and out.

The Footmuff and Travel bag can be purchased separately, in a variety of colours.

The Petite Star Zia_X retails at £118 and comes in a variety of colours.

Joovy Orangie Groove

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I am a huge Joovy fan, in-fact we have reviewed a Joovy in the past and they have become my favourite pushchair brand by far. This time round we have reviewed the Joovy orangie groove, a single lightweight stroller, that comes in an amazing choice of colours, check the out on the Joovy website. 

Lets start with the putting together. Basically,it comes almost complete bar putting the swivel wheels on, which simply click in place. After that its complete and ready to use. It also comes with a fitted rain cover and full instructions.

So the bottom on the pushchair, we have four swivel wheels, which I don’t think I have seen before on such a lightweight stroller. It makes pushing incredibly easy, it really does just glide, each front wheel has a break and the back has an easy to use foot break.  Next is the shopping basket on the bottom. The basket is huge and really easy to get to, no faffing or having to move the seat forward. Perfect for being out and about as well as wrangling a small child or two!

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Next is the seat itself. With a fully adjustable back recline, it can accommodate both the awake and sleepy kind of children, making it perfect for a day out and about. It has a great, adjustable 5 point harness, and the clip makes sure no little fingers will be caught, which for me is always a bonus. The front of the seat has a fully adjustable foot rest, again great for making the little one comfy and really simple to use, with just two clips underneath, either side. Next and a huge added bonus is the holders it has in each side. For me its a first and something Joovy is great for, adding the little things you never thought about buy know you need! The holders can be used for toys, for or drinks, meaning you can keep everything safe and in reaching distance for your little one. This for me was great as it means I don’t have to stop every five minutes, Beboo can get to everything she needs herself.

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Then comes the hood. Now I have to say, I never thought I would have so much to say on the hood. The hood itself has an added length, so it keeps them safe from the sun no matter what the situation and it also means she won’t get wet when mummy forgets the raincover! Also on the top of the hood is a little ‘peep hole’ so you can check on them anything, this also has a flap so you can cover it up in the sun etc. The handles on the Joovy Groove are robust and easy to hole, which just adds to the ease of use.

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Another great thing on the reverse of the stroller is the cup holders and a handy pocket. Meaning I have somewhere to put my drink too (I am always trying to juggle a costa and a stroller and I never win!) The pocket means I can keep my wallet and phone handy and safe at all times. I really loved this about the stroller, and it really does show why Joovy is a unique brand, always coming up with ways to help and solve issues when out and about.

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When it comes to putting the Joovy Groove down, its simple. Press the lever on the side the pull up the handle on the back and push forward. Its an umbrella folding stroller, meaning its small and easy to store. It also has a hand clip on the side(indicated in the photo below), so when you fold the stroller you can make sure it will not fall apart or trap any little hands.

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For me, the Groove has been a god send. We still use the purpleness caboose we review a few months back, however on the days we just have Beboo or Pops wants to walk, its perfect. As well as being so ‘Orangie’ which really suits our personality and does not look the same as every other stroller, it also means I can pick hubby out when we are out. It has been both easy to use and supportive for me having mobility issues, the frame is strong and perfect for the days I need that extra help.

The Joovy Orangie Groove retails at £133 which is a fab price for what you get. Plus, it will more than last your child. As well as this review I am also lucky enough to be able to offer you the chance to win one, in your choice of colour (again, check out the Joovy site)

The competition is open to the UK and Continental Europe only. Thank you.

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The Maxi-Cosi Loola

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For the past few weeks we have been putting the Maxi-Cosi Loola through its paces, something I know Beboo was more than happy to do.

Having never used the Maxi-cosi brand before, I really had no idea what to expect, however this trusted brand did not let us down, in-fact quite the opposite.

Putting it together was the first part and I won’t lie, the instructions were confusing to say the least, I felt the pictures alone were not enough and perhaps some words may help. That said the assembly was simple in as far as ‘putting it together’ goes, with only two or three pieces, it was just the where to clip part we got a little confused on.

The Maxi-Cosi Loola also comes with a simple detachable raincover.

The Loola is a really smart folding pushchair, which is great with its strength and quality.

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The idea behind the Loola is that is can be forward and rear facing, means its grows with your child, without being unbearably bulky like some all in ones.

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To get the Loola to unlock and open there are some clips on the side, simply pull then push on bar at the bottom and you are up, there is also a second clip for taking the Loola down, which has the same principle. (see above)

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The first thing I noticed about the Loola was the handle, its not like any I have seen as you can move the placement up and down, some I never thought of before, however using pushchairs for support, its soon become something that has really helped. For times when need to lean on it or getting up and down awkward steps/pavements it has been a godsend. So by simply pressing the round grey button at the side, you can move the position of the handle.

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The Loola has a really great, large spacious shopping basket underneath, which unlike some is really accessible, making all the necessities  (biscuits) within easy reach. Also, it has some really cool little plastic bits on the side, which hold the shopping bags with ease.

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The hood, its something I have never really thought about on a pushchair before. Not only was it easy to attach, with a simple zip (making it easy to remove) but it also has an extendable, un-zippable part, making more sun protection and great for those emergencies when mummy may have forgotten the rain cover!

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I’ll be honest, I loved this feature!

The first outing with the Loola was in a local town, loads of shops etc, so it was the perfect place to test its shopping capabilities. I have to say I was really surprised with how heavy the Loola was, I was really not expecting that, it did give me some worry as to how easy it would be to push. However once you got going you really could not feel the weight at all and even though the Loola does not have the double spinning wheels, it really is very easy to push and manoeuver. Maxi-Cosi have done really well making a heavy pushchair incredibly easy to push.

With a 5 point harness and reclinable seat, Beboo was well away. She was safe yet AND comfortable. The Loola also has a really cool flexible bar that can go across the seat, giving little hands something to hold on to.

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We have tested the Loola everywhere possible recently, even the hairdressers, where Beboo sat happily and comfortably for a while, which is no easy thing I can tell you! Even at the baby show it did a great job. Something I have found with other large pushchairs was the recline on them was not really easy to use and I feel they always go back too far and with a bump. However when Beboo has fallen asleep in the Loola, with one pull on the leaver on the back, we can slowly and QUIETLY recline her to a comfy position without waking her up, this feature, really could be my favourite 😛

The real test of course is at Nanny’s house, in the middle of the countryside. This put the Loola to the test. I was expecting it to be really bumpy and a fairly uncomfortable ride, which it normally is over the muddy gravel paths, but the suspension on the Loola did a great job, with Beboo comfortable and only slightly bobbing along, she was fully supported and able to see everything. It was always a worry when the girls were little, that some pushchairs don’t take that kind of terrain very well and you end up worrying about the amount of bobbing they are doing, but I would be more than happy to use the Loola with this kind of terrain with a newborn, all the time knowing they are fully supported.

 As Beboo is older, the parent facing side of things is not something she really wants, I think looking at mummy when we are out as well would not be her favourite idea, however it is something I wanted when she was a newborn and its something the Loola offers with ease.

Simply press the grey buttons each side where the main seat clips in, remove and turn! It really is as easy as that, even a man can do it……

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Overall, the Maxi-cosi Loola did great. The ease of use pushing wise, the moveable handle and the nifty hood all make for a really fabulous pushchair, one we will use for a long time to come. Which is another bonus, for £300 you have a pushchair that will last you many MANY years and it also looks great too. The only down side is the weight, but it really does not affect the performance.

If you are looking for a great looking, long lasting (birth to 3.5 years)and affordable pushchair then the Maxi-Cosi Loola is the perfect choice.