Scooter Blog

The First Fall

One of Hannah’s most prized possessions is her Globber scooter. She has been smitten with it ever since the day it was sent for review last year.

We have put many, many kilometres on the scooter. Most of those were in the seated position. Hannah always wears her helmet (despite some desperate pleas from time to time), but we had so far managed to avoid any serious accidents… until now.
Read more “The First Fall”

Please follow and like us:
10 hour flight to Tokyo - luggage Travelling to Japan With a Toddler

Travelling to Japan With a Toddler – The 10…

 

The day had finally arrived. After a sleepless night, during which I spent 8 hours pondering my own sanity for deciding to embark on such a ludicrous adventure, it was finally time to do the last-minute packing and prepare ourselves to leave. It was time to face our 10 hour flight to Tokyo.

 

The drive to the airport was remarkably quick for a Sydney weekday afternoon. We had given ourselves plenty of time, but with no traffic and an extremely fast check-in and security screening process (we had been warned that this part could take hours!), we found ourselves sitting in the transit lounge with a couple of hours to spare.

We had been told to arrive at the lounge early, as priority boarding would allow us on to the plane first. Perhaps they didn’t mean quite this early…

 

Empty departure lounge, Sydney Airport
Hello? Is anyone here? Are you sure this is the right place?

 

Boarding Time

At 8:30 pm we boarded the flight, a full hour later then Hannah’s usual bedtime.

ANA’s priority boarding policy meant that we were some of the first people aboard. This gave the vastly sleep deprived little girl an opportunity to survey her surroundings. She took in the new setting with surprising grace, especially for someone whose unflappable sleep routine had been so wildly disrupted.

Sleep, What is That?

I was already convinced that Hannah had abandoned the concept of sleep. She had happily made friends with a three year old in the departure lounge. The two of them had been drawn together by some magical force of the universe and they had torn through the departure lounge like two inseparable whirlwinds. At least Hannah would be worn out and ready to sleep on the plane (I told myself in a warm and fuzzy state of delusion).

I could see the worried look on the faces of the other passengers as they began to file on to the plane. An old lady shot a look in Hannah’s direction, then thoroughly examined her ticket, just to make sure she did in fact have the awful luck of a seat across the aisle from an excited-looking toddler. The scan of her ticket revealed the terrible truth, and so she decided upon shooting intermittent, filthy glares in Hannah’s direction as she settled into her seat.

 

Take-off

As the plane began to taxi, we coaxed Hannah up onto her seat and strapped her in ready for take-off. She was fairly happy to comply, so it wasn’t a difficult task. We had been blessed with perhaps the best possible seats in economy – the bulkhead row. On top of that, the most wonderful man in all of ANA had organised for the whole row of three seats to be ours, even though we had only booked two seats (Hannah was supposed to travel on one of our laps).

It was extremely kind of the man to organise this for us, as he had told us that there were only six spare seats on the whole flight.

 

 

Room to spare in bulkhead row on 10 hour flight to Japan
Room to spare, with three seats in the bulkhead row

This, to me was even more valuable than an upgrade to Business Class would have been. Hannah had a whole seat to herself. I really can’t imagine how her travelling on our laps would have played out, although it now sits in the back of my mind that that scenario will likely play out on our return journey.

Hannah handled take-off well, and soon enough she was happily sitting in her seat and listening to Spotify through her Puro Sound Labs headphones. Of course, I was insanely jealous when I eventually got round to putting on my own el-cheapo headphones after the dinner service. As it turn out, I didn’t get much of an opportunity to use them anyway…

 

 

Puro Sound Labs Headphones
Puro Sound Labs headphones and Spotify. A match made in heaven!

 

 

Food

Hannah was served her own special “baby” dinner before the full meal service began. She immediately rejected the miscellaneous pureed vegetable that was placed in front of her, then set about proving how personally affronted she was by its very existence. This was not overly surprising as she had already eaten a full dinner and a mandarin (two days earlier we had been convinced that she disliked mandarin, now it is her favourite fruit).

The adult meals were then served. Hannah’s distain for her own meal was quickly replaced by a burning desire to consume the best bits of her mother’s meal as soon as it arrived. Within seconds Hannah had located a fork and was chowing down on the salmon. She then gave a few longing glances in the direction of my marinara, but I was far more selfish than Emma and I ate all of my meal myself.

 

The Hilarity of a Delirious, Sleep-Deprived Toddler

It must have been 11pm by the time dinner was done, and Hannah was well and truly past it. I don’t blame her at all, I too was feeling like I wished it would all be done with. We placed Hannah in her Grobag, put on her Sleep Spotify playlist and waited for the miracle of sleep.

I too put my headphones on and began perusing the choices of movies. I am so far out of touch with movies these days that I didn’t even recognise most of the “New Release” titles. There were a few Pirates of the Caribbean movies, although my great sense of patriotism means I had to veto the movie due to our national outrage over the star of the movie’s canine shenanigans (not really, I just didn’t want to watch it).

Finally I settled on a Fast and the Furious movie. I had no idea these were still being made! All I can tell you about the movie is that in the first 30 seconds, someone mentions “Ford parts”. That’s it. That’s all I saw of the entire movie. Why..?

 

BECAUSE MIRACLES DON’T HAPPEN.

Hannah was definitely ready for sleep, but a drawback of her military-like sleep routine at home is that she is not accustomed to falling asleep in strange conditions. Hannah likes a nice firm mattress in an enclosed cot. It is what she has had her whole life. She can sleep in a car seat at a stretch, but the thought of sleeping anywhere else is entirely foreign to her.

The sleep playlist had done its job, but the toddler now faced the daunting task of putting sleep into action. She tried so hard to settle in her chair, but it was no good. She quickly squirmed her way out of her seatbelt (that filled me with confidence in its ability as a safety device) and decided instead to try the floor.

That also was too uncomfortable, so she instead decided that playing until she physically passed out was the only option left. However, walking around in a sleep bag is hard work, and so she soon became frustrated and she had one or two falls.

 

 

Grobag in lap
The Grobag is a must-have for helping with sleep on the flight

Eventually, Hannah chose her seat as the best option. After a quick (15 minute) game of The Chair is a Slide (a clever game Hannah made up, in which one uses a Grobag and an aeroplane seat as a makeshift slide) Hannah settled down to sleep. Until she pooped. 15 minutes later.

Emma and I decided that changing a delirious toddler at a slightly turbulent 3000 metres in a tiny capsule of a toilet was a two-person job, so the three of us headed off towards the rear of the airline in search of the change table. Fortunately the change was completed quickly and without further incident, and soon enough we were back in our seats.

By this time Hannah had gone full zombie – her eyes were open but there was nobody home. We zipped her up tight and after a little tossing and turning, she was finally asleep.

Emma and I entered a zone of not-asleep-but-not-really-awake. It is the kind of resting state that leaves you feeling like crap and completely unrested. Occasionally I fully dozed.

At various points during the night, Hannah became restless. She was unable to roll over, so there was a lot of shuffling about as she tried to get comfortable again. I was sure she was going to fully wake up at one point, but thankfully she found a way to get comfortable and settle in for a few more hours sleep. In total, Hannah probably managed about five hours of sleep, which I think is pretty good for a toddler on an overnight flight.

 

Time to land

About an hour out from Tokyo, the flight crew turned up the lights to allow everyone to wake up before landing. Hannah was quick to stir from her slumber, and just as quick to set about ensuring that everyone else on the plane was also awake. Despite the excellent five hours of sleep, Hannah was still less rested than usual, and she was not happy about it. For the first time on the flight she kicked up a loud fuss.

This of course drew a few disapproving looks from the equally grumpy old lady from across the aisle, but I didn’t really care. The poor little bub had kept it together for most of the flight and it was now time to wake up anyway.

Hannah was pretty unhappy right up until the point when we landed. We had strapped her into her seat ready for landing, which she had tolerated fairly well; however, a flight attendant came over and insisted she sit in Emma’s lap for the decent.

I had to wonder whether that was the safest option as I watched Emma desperately try to keep hold of the active toddler who was now trying her best to squirm out of her mother’s arms. A hard landing surprised Hannah into silence, and it gave Emma a chance to fully test her ability to stop a toddler from flying out of her arms and into the wall in front of her. Emma passed the test well!

 

Tokyo!

Finally, we had arrived! The journey was over and it had gone as well as could be expected. We had landed in Tokyo, ready to begin our Japan adventures!

 

Sign at Tokyo Airport
A sign at Tokyo Airport. Note the abundance of English writing

 

The process of clearing customs was fairly painless, although there was probably about another half hour of waiting in queues. Hannah handled that remarkably well too, she sat patiently in my arms and even insisted on being put town to stand patiently in the line at times. I could not be more proud of the way she handled herself.

Please follow and like us:
Memories Made Globber MyFREE 5-in-1 Scooter Blog

Memories Made

There’s something truly thrilling about seeing your child doing something for the first time. Especially when it’s something that you have felt they wanted to do for quite a while. It’s on those days when memories are made.

On Sunday we made some memories that will sit fondly in my mind for many years to come – Hannah had her first scooter ride!

We were thrilled when Globber offered to send Hannah a MyFREE 5-in-1 scooter for review, following my post about her attempts to commandeer other children’s rides at the local park. That scooter arrived on Friday and we had been eagerly awaiting the chance to give it a proper test run since. Saturday’s wild winds ruled out a cruise, but we did get a chance to head up to the shops and buy a helmet. That meant that by Sunday morning, we were well and truly ready to hit the track.

 

Arriving At The Park

Hannah was full of energy when we arrived at the park. She was obviously ready to get stuck in, because she didn’t want to even know about her snack. As soon as her feet hit the ground, she was off!… Straight past her shiny new scooter and to the swings.

Not the best start, I’ll have to concede. After all the coveting of scooters over the past few weeks, Hannah all of a sudden didn’t even want to know about hers. Kids, hey! Who can predict them?

 

Oh Yeah, The Scooter!

After a solid ten minutes of swings, Hannah was ready to get off and explore the rest of the park. It was then that she finally noticed the scooter, as if it had magically appeared before her very eyes. Quickly enough she was on board, but we still had to overcome the first hurdle – the helmet.

We had tried to introduce Hannah to her helmet over the past day, but without much success. I had tried placing it on her head (no thanks dad), placing in on my head (hilarious!) and handing it to her to examine. The plan at the park was to get her on the scooter, jam the helmet on her head and then take off at full speed before she figured out what I had done.

That didn’t go quite to plan, and we ended up settling on a compromise of gently balancing the helmet on Hannah’s head without the chin straps done up, while we slowly pushed her along. Baby steps were well-and-truly required, but we were off.

Hannah looked quite pleased with her new ride, and soon enough we were into the swing of things. We stopped a couple of times to begin adjusting the sizing on the helmet and to introduce Hannah to the idea of chin straps. She hopped on and hopped off the scooter a few times.

 

Scooter memories, helmet

 

Definitely Not a Shrinking Violet

It was while we were stopped one of these times that a father approached us with his two young girls.

“What’s that?” he asked, his gaze drawn to the spectacular hot-pink and black, and the unique design.

I told him a bit about it and showed him how it converts. He was pretty impressed and complained about his little girl (slightly older than Hannah) having too many accidents with her stand-up ride. He seemed particularly impressed by the seat and the ability to convert into a proper stand-up scooter. His two little girls seemed enthusiastic too – the littlest one nodding eagerly when he asked her if she wanted one, and the older sister enthusiastically declaring that she too needed a Globber (despite being well past the seated stage).

I took that interaction as pretty good endorsement and made a mental note to joke with my Globber contact that I’d already made him a sale. Perhaps I could earn a commission by handing out business cards at the local parks…

After the dad and his two daughters had moved on, I took a moment to look at the scooter in all its glory. It certainly stands out in a crowd!

 

The Globber MyFREE 5-in-1 stands out in a crowd

Faster Daddy

Soon we had the hang of things and we were ready to really test the scooter. We headed off on the path out of the park and across the railway bridge. Hannah had definitely grown comfortable on the scooter. She was now confident enough to experiment with her feet by dragging them along the ground or placing them on the wheel. I think she quite liked the feel of the wheel rubbing against her ankle, because she kept her foot there for some time (we have the filthy sock to prove it).

 

 

The ground had been a rough asphalt and Hannah had handled that quite well, even though it was a fairly bumpy ride. At some point in the walk we hit a long stretch of smooth tarmac and that gave us the chance to gain some speed.

Hannah’s reaction was terrifying – she gave a hearty laugh of appreciation and leaned forward, as if egging me on to go faster. My mind skipped forward 16 years. I had visions of Hannah’s full speed ahead approach being applied to the piloting of an automobile, and I gave a little silent prayer to whatever deity may have been listening that self-driving cars would very much be a thing by then.

Hannah clearly had a need for speed and her new favourite toy was a means of achieving that. The smile that spread across her face from ear to ear was really all that I needed to egg me on. Every time I pushed that little bit faster, Hannah let her delight be known with a gleeful sound.

 

Making memories on the Globber scooter - faster daddy

Enough of the Helmet

After the glorious patch of smooth tarmac, we once again found ourselves bumping along some rougher terrain. Again, this didn’t bother Hannah and the scooter coped just fine. Much to my surprise, it even glided over the small sticks and other debris that had been blown over the path by the wild winds of the past few days. I put that down to the large front wheels, and probably the way that the scooter is pushed from behind in the sitting configuration.

Then, all of a sudden, we stopped.

Hannah took her hands off the handlebars and reached up to her head. She began to wrestle with the helmet and make some frustrated sounds. I stopped immediately. Hannah continued to wrestle with her helmet, so I took it off.

Then came the battle of the wills.

Hannah was determined to keep scooting, now that she was free of the helmet. I, on the other hand, insisted that she wear it if she wanted to ride.

1 1/2 year old children are not renowned for logical thought processes or the ability to mount counter arguments. Hannah is no exception to that, so she opted for expressing her extreme displeasure with the situation at the top of her voice.

 

Explaining the Situation

I carried Hannah for a while as we walked the return journey to the car. All the while she squirmed and wriggled, desperate to get back on her hot-pink steed. Even through her loud wails I did my best to explain the situation to her. I told her that she had to wear the helmet if she wanted to ride her scooter.

A couple of times we stopped walking and I gave Hannah the opportunity to scoot, but each time she resisted the attempt to reattach the helmet. It occurred to me that the helmet strap may have agitated the eczema under her chin, but there wasn’t a whole lot that I could do about it.

Eventually Hannah wriggled her way down from my arms and she walked along behind Emma, who pushed the scooter in front of her. Every now and then, Hannah pointed at the scooter and loudly protested our helmet rule.

We stopped again. The decent distance that Hannah had covered by walking had helped her to calm down a bit. I got down to her level, looked her straight in the eyes and asked again, “will you wear the helmet?”

A single, large nod was Hannah’s response. I placed the helmet on her head and she clambered aboard. Hannah had understood – if she wants to ride, she must wear a helmet.

 

Just Like Mum

We carried on our journey to the car and all seemed well… Until Hannah decided she wanted to get off… While the scooter was moving. Emma brought the scooter to a halt before Hannah had the chance to do herself any serious damage.

Hannah came round behind her scooter and reached up on to her tippy-toes. She could just reach the handle. It took us a moment to realise what she wanted – to use the handlebars to push the scooter herself.

Sure enough, once I lowered the handlebars to their shortest position, Hannah happily pushed the scooter all the way back to the car.

 

Globber scooter in the park pushed by toddler

 

The Verdict?

An excellent first time on the scooter, memories made! Even with the helmet issues, it was obvious that Hannah was made for scooting, and that the Globber scooter was made for Hannah. I’m very confident that it was the first of many, many rides and I love the way that the Globber scooter will grow and adapt to Hannah’s needs as her ability-level changes.

 

Disclosure – Globber provided Blog Of Dad with this scooter free of charge, for the purpose of review. The views expressed in this post are entirely my own views. They are based on my experiences with the Globber MyFREE 5-in-1 scooter. For further information, please visit my disclosure page.

 

DIY Daddy
Please follow and like us:
error: Content is protected !!