Having the right "gear" is where having a good stroller fits in.
If someone were to ask me what is the single most critical piece of equipment we have owned in the first five years of our children's lives, without a doubt, absolutely positively unequivocally, I would respond our strollers.
But not just any strollers.
Our BOB strollers.
BOB stands for Beast Of Burden. And the first time I saw these rugged strollers, I knew that they could withstand the test of time. I knew that they could withstand our always-on-the-go lifestyle.
Almost five years later, they have exceeded my high expectations. These strollers have been used almost every single day for the past four and a half years, and although the foam handlebar wrap shows slight signs of wear, the frames are just as strong now as when we bought them new. Their durability and awesome construction continues to amaze me.
Currently in our BOB stroller fleet, we have two duallies and a single. We own the Duallie Sport Utility and the Sport Utility Single. On loan from our neighbor, is the Duallie Revolution so that Charlie and I can push all four children in two double strollers when we go on training runs for our marathon.
As much as I love our Sport Utility models, if the Revolution would have been available in 2004, we would have opted for that model over the Sport Utility. Having used both models, I prefer the option of a front swivel wheel and the recessed rear wheels that allow you to fit through a standard doorway, without removing the tires. Unfortunately, those two features are not present on the Sport Utility model, however, I still believe that our strollers, sans these improvements, are among the best on the market.
For both of our strollers, we purchased a handlebar console that is affixed to the back handlebar with velcro straps and has two cup holders and a small zippered pocket. In our opinion, this is a critical piece of equipment with the stroller, because there is otherwise, no convenient place to store water bottles, or secure place to hold your keys or your cell phone. And although we never owned one, both stroller models come with an after market Infant Car Seat Adapter that can be purchased separately and allows you to snap your infant carseat in to the stroller.
There are so many strollers on the market. There are so many choices to make. But there are very few strollers that can hold your child from the time they are a tiny newborn infant in a baby carrier, up until they weigh 70 pounds. There are very few strollers that are so durable that they will last the entire time your child needs a stroller - and then - can be turned around and used by other families, just as reliably.
What I love about these strollers, other than their extreme durability, rip-stop fabric, ample storage room, rear shock suspension, five-point harness, reclining seat, excellent sun coverage, ease of folding, and extreme durability, is their extreme durability. These strollers have carted our children and gear from coast-to-coast 10 times.
And were instrumental in transporting children and gear during our three week, seven-thousand-zig-zagged-continental adventure.
Infact, we reduced what we could bring in our vehicle on the Mother-of-All Roadtrips, solely so we would have adequate space to fit at least one of our BOB strollers.
These strollers have held our tiny newborn babies.
And have allowed my husband and I to get out for walks every single day for the past four and a half years. And counting.
These strollers helped me get in shape following the birth of our triplets.
And again, following the birth of our singleton.
Heck. I could write poetry about my love of the BOB strollers.
BOB, Oh BOB, Oh how I love thee...
My love is so great, like the sun and the sea.
Your strong and sturdy design helped teach our babies to cruise ...
And served as a stable cot for a weary child's snooze.
They held our toddlers secure when we had outside work to do...
And kept kiddos perched high in public restrooms so they couldn't touch things that are ... ew!
They've gone fishing...
And been pushed in many a road race ...
When seats are reclined, they well support a baby's drowsy face.
They've been snacked in ...
And shopped in...
And walked in galore...
They've been pushed all around the grounds at Asheville's mighty Biltmore.
They've been to duck ponds...
And held children of all sizes ...
They've been on the Pacific and Atlantic and witnessed magnificent sun rises.
They've been through National Cemeteries ...
Tolerated canceled flights and a shutdown airport at Dallas Fort Worth...
And seen aircraft carriers in San Diego's harbor take up a gargantuan berth.
They've served as our sag wagon...
Been to the zoo with Deana's boys Zach and Zane ...
And was rapidly pushed out of the wild when a squirrel drove our children insane.
We love our BOB strollers we love them you see...
We love them so much we now have three.
When I first started my effort at fundraising for The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, I reached out to several companies to inquire on the potential of them offering sponsorship. One of the first companies that I reached out to, was none other than BOB.
With absolutely no hesitation, I told them straight up, that I would like to have them donate a brand new Duallie Revolution stroller that I could raffle off on my blog. If that wasn't feasible, I would settle for a Single Revolution.
When several days passed and I heard no response, I began to realize that my expectations might be a little high. When I started to hear back from every other company that I contacted with their regrets that they don't accept unsolicited requests for support, I doubted that I would ever hear anything from BOB. But then. Out of the blue, I received an e-mail.
BOB would be happy to sponsor me!!!
By offering a BOB Diaper Bag!!!
So, uh ... it's not a $570.00 Duallie Revolution.
Nor is it a $390.00 Single Revolution.
BUT, it is a $65.00 Diaper Bag that comes in a wide assortment of colors!!
The BOB Stroller Diaper Bag has zippered pockets, a key clip, a fleece lined pouch for your sun glasses, a cell phone pocket and easy to reach diaper pockets are great for whatever you have to bring with for a long run or just a walk around the park. It also comes with a 31" x 12" changing pad, shoulder strap and removable waterproof pouch with insulated bottle pocket. It comes in several different colors that match any jogging stroller in the BOB line, and works the same with either the Single or Duallie strollers.
Although I didn't think it was possible to love BOB any more than I do, seeing as they are the only company that are willing to offer something of monetary value for our fundraising efforts, that makes them uber-awesome in my book.
Tonight, I received an e-mail from Deana's husband, Jack. If you haven't been following Deana's story on CaringBridge, this past month has been extremely challenging. After Deana was told that the treatment she was receiving in California was not working, she was told that she might only have a few weeks left to live and needed to consider contacting Hospice.
Instead, Deana and Jack flew to Houston, Texas where Deana has been undergoing treatment at MD Anderson's Cancer Center. After several days when it appeared that her first round of treatment looked promising, Deana was released to recover in her hotel room. The first day out of the hospital, she collapsed. She was rushed back to the hospital where she was diagnosed with sepsis and later, pneumonia. Over the next few days, her health deteriorated. She was ultimately hooked up to a ventilator and was placed in to a medically-induced coma.
But Deana is amazing. And her family support structure is amazing. And the doctors and nurses at MD Anderson are amazing. And people around the world are praying for her. And over the past two weeks, Deana has made a comeback that is nothing short of a miracle. She is breathing room air, eating food, talking to friends, having video conferences with her children and has befriended over 120 people on Facebook.
Tonight, Jack sent out an e-mail that said Deana's bone marrow biopsy came back completely negative of any Burkitt's lymphoma cells.
THAT. IS. AMAZING.
Deana still requires treatment and will be starting another round of chemotherapy soon. But if not for the emerging research and development of cancer treatment - like the treatment Deana is receiving at MD Anderson - Deana would not here at this very moment in time. But she IS here, and she IS fighting hard and from all signs of it ... she IS winning.
Please consider that when you are debating whether or not you need yet another bag. Which is crazy because of course you need another bag!! And whether you have a BOB stroller or not, this diaper bag is very cool and would work well even if you don't need to tote around diapers. Personally, I could see using it to carry around my knitting supplies.
So, for a $5.00 donation to either Charlie, Margaret or my Team-In-Training website, you could be entered to win one of these bags, in your choice of color. AND? You will help get us one step closer to a cure.
OH MY GOSH!!!
I just checked Maggie's website to set up a link and she is now well over $5,000.00!!
So, please donate to either me or Charlie and please add in "BOB" next to your name.
That Margaret. She's smoking us both!
*********Please let me know if you'd be interested in entering for a chance to win a BOB stroller. And if so, a Single or Duallie? I'm thinking that I might use the first "payout" from my Amazon Store to buy a stroller that I'll put up as a giveaway. But seeing as my commission for the month of March is only $32.00, that contest might not happen for another year.
Oh, did I mention that if you follow the link to Amazon though my store - I get commission on any purchases that you make? Do you need a new big screen television? How about some socks??
(This is going to be the last time I ever write a blog post this long. Has anyone even made it this far??)