Hi, I'm 13 weeks pregnant with my first and due mid April. I'm very short (5ft1') and have back issues so am quite weak in that area so I'm looking for a light weight combination of car seat / pushchair. Should we get a system that will do the job or a car seat that stays in the car and a seperate pushchair? Any advice would be helpful. Thanx
There's a pushchair topic on mumsnet - you'd be better reposting there as a lot of people are very knowledgeable on the subject and will advise you on the best thing to get.
I'd say if you have back problems you don't want to be lugging a heavy car seat around, so maybe best to leave it in the car and get a separate pushchair. Something like a Baby Jogger City Mini folds up nice and small and always seems to get good reviews.
Definitely look at the lightweight but decent travel system combos,BabyJogger/Bugaboo Bee/Maclaren Xlr or Techno. It is useful to be able to keep them in the car seat and attach it to a buggy/carry them in to the house etc but car seats are bloody heavy to carry about. Plus it's a short time that you can carry them about in them unless you have a very light baby.
I'm a 5 ft weakling and found the iCandy Cherry great. It's much lighter than many competitors and I like the fact that it can face forward or towards me. I certainly didn't keep DD in the car seat all the time when she was tiny, but as someone else said it's very useful to be able to transfer th in the car seat when you've just got th off to sleep!
Another vote for the iCandy cherry, I'm also small and find it really easy to manoeuvre. Has a really good size shopping basket too, which I find so useful. It seems to be one of the lightest travel systems around, which is one of the reasons we chose it, as you've also got to think of the weight of the child on top! (obvious I know, but not something you really think about when wheeling about empty pushchairs in the shops!)
If you're UK based, get into a large John Lewis (or similar store) and explain what the issues are and what you want from a travel system. Most JL stores with a nursery section have a 'baby john' (weighted doll) that you can borrow and push about in the prams etc. to get a better feel for it.
The whole carseat clipping on to travel systems thing: If you're planning on doing any prolongued walking with baby, it's not recommended to use a car seat for this, for baby's sake (it's advice that's meant to be given when you're being sold a system). I kinda feel the same about the prams that cushion baby a lot too, they look snuggly, but it restricts their movements and I don't like that - but I wasn't given the same advice, just a "very sensible to link the two concepts, but there is no specific advice about it". If you're just nipping out to the shops, fine, but anything over 90mins and baby should be out of the car seat for a decent (1/2h) break for a proper kick about. So, I'd say you def. need a separate carseat anyway.
I ended up opting for the iCandy Peach as I wanted the ability to adapt to have 2 children on there if needed, wanted one that went from pram to buggy, I'm 5ft3 and the handle did for me and a fairly tall DH, but the cherry looks great, is lighter (and comes in a better colour range!) I'm now awaiting delivery (of iCandy and baby) and every time I bump into a person pusing an iCandy I ask them if they have any regrets. All have said no, they're 100% happy, some even ditched others and switched to an iCandy...
It might also be worth speaking to your MW and referring for physio to support your back during pg and post-birth, if you haven't already.