So when Mamas and Papas got in touch and asked me if I’d like to take their new Armadillo Flip XT out for a spin, of course I said yes! So with the boys in tow, we set off to Devon to put it to the ultimate off-road test. Here’s how I got on….
So me, James and the kids made it down to Devon and when I said ‘made it’ I don’t exaggerate! Travelling by train from London with 3x changes, a baby, a boy, a bump, a buggy, a car seat, a highchair (yes, really) and ALL our luggage was a MISSION. But anyhow, we are here now and off to embrace the beautiful countryside… shame it’s absolutely tipping it down outside… and I didn’t pack wellies! Eeek!
We are meeting up with my long-time buddy Hannah this morning, and her husband and two children. We have known each other since we started secondary school, a whole 18 years ago! We are also both pregnant with number three, AT THE SAME TIME! So exciting! Hannah lives on Dartmoor so of course her and her fam are kitted out properly. Mine less so. I did not have enough arms to cart full wet weather gear for all on the mammoth train mission and in the interest of travelling light (lols) we only came with the pair of shoes we had on our feet. The plan is to hike up to Haytor – is our Armadillo up to the job?? Is our footwear?? Will we even survive?! We shall see…
We have made it to Haytor! It wasn’t easy but the Armadillo Flip XT passed the ultimate off-road test. We have battled potholes, boulders and bog land in the pouring rain, and uphill all the way! It’s so cold I can no longer feel my fingers – or toes! In fact my beautiful red suede boots were no match for the weather and are now water logged. What an error in footwear choice. Arlo Bear is fast asleep despite the rocky ride – that’s testament to the comfort of the Armadillo Flip XT if ever there was one! He is properly passed out *checks for pulse*.
Oisin is having a great time looking for letterboxes in the old quarry – he has found 9.5 he proudly tells me! .5 because one letterbox was in fact missing the box element and only a lid remained. I have not joined him on his hunt because there is a stile to get over and as good as the Armadillo is – it doesn’t levitate sadly. Letterboxing is really good fun for kids. If you don’t know what it is let me try and explain… it’s kind of like a treasure hunt but the ‘treasure’ is a box with a stamp in it. You can collect the stamps in a book but you have to put the box back for someone else to find. There is an orienteering element if you do it properly but on Dartmoor there’s loads for kids to find without being proficient in the use of a compass.
We are headed back downhill now (PHEW) to Ullacombe Farm Cafe! Can’t wait for a hot chocolate and maybe a cream tea or a hot soup, or both. I’m pregnant so anything goes, right? 😉 As much as I love the great outdoors and fresh air (and I really do), I’m not totally loving that my boots are waterlogged and I’ve lost all feeling in my extremities. Fingers crossed for an open fire…
AHHHH warmth!!! And there’s a woodburner so we can dry our stuff! We do look like a strange crew. Picture this: My friend’s family all fine but mine… Oisin slipped and obviously wasn’t wearing waterproof trousers so his jeans are soaked and caked in mud meaning he’s now sat in his pants (!!) in the cafe with a blanket wrapped round him like a sarong (!!) and I’ve got no shoes or socks on as they’re drying! We are getting some very funny looks. We look like the bunch of ill-prepared urbanites that we probably are.
Food has arrived! Obviously I over-ordered. Arlo Bear has what looks like an adult-sized portion of macaroni cheese (his new fave), Osh has gone for ham, egg, chips and peas and I’ve got a giant jacket potato stuffed with tuna mayo. Honesty I eat far too many JPs. They are my main pregnancy craving. Last time round I was eating one a day, almost every day, this time I’m trying to limit my intake. We also have a cream tea to share, obvs. When in Devon, hey??
Now we’re off to catch up with some other old friends of mine and we’re going to the beach!! Mental maybe but it’s stopped raining and I so miss living near the sea. It’s one of my favourite bits about going home.
This is Shaldon, not too far from where I grew up. We can’t really go play on the beach today but at least we can walk alongside and breathe in the sea air. The sand is red here – isn’t it amazing how sand comes in all different colours?!
Check out these cute beach huts! You can actually stay in them and on the other side the doors open right on to the beach. Not really big enough for a boisterous noisy family like my own but perfect for a child-free getaway… babymoon maybe? Hope you’re reading J.. wink wink.
Home time now and I am ready to put my feet up with a good strong cuppa!! So good being back in Devon – truly good for the soul being in the countryside. The Armadillo Flip XT has been awesome – it’s been off-roading, it’s been fully reclined for Arlo’s nap, it’s been parent-facing and forward-facing (it’s so easy to swap around). Plus when you collapse it down, it collapses as one and the fabric folds inwards so even if the wheels are super muddy (as they are) the actual fabric of the pram remains clean. With lots of other buggies you end up getting muck all over the pram seat. So yep, thumbs up from me for the Armadillo Flip XT! Now I just hope my boots scrub up… SPOILER: They don’t.
Sound like your kind of pushchair? Find out more about the Armadillo Flip XT.