Wow I thought it had only been a month since my last blog but oh my … 3 months have whizzed by. I am certain that the clock suddenly speeds up once you have children, and then again when you run your own business. I have a fear of losing track of my 30’s in a blur and worry that when I look back in years to come it will be like watching a film stuck on fast forward with scenes of endless running, whizzing and darting with no time to stop and marvel at how quickly the family are growing and life is passing by. I am at times envious of those that choose to take life as it comes and at a sedentary pace rather than facing it head on with risk taking and challenges, but envious only for a moment, before I remind myself that I am actually at my happiest when I am flying around in a flurry of activity, running from children to chores from family to business from hobbies to brainwaves and new ventures… Watch this space !!! My life is far from dull so my New Year’s resolution for 2013 will be to set aside a little more time for reflection before I leap head first into the next chapter. Sorry I digress, but it has just occurred to me that the speed in which time goes by is exacerbated by my running The Baby Loft in that I am often taking bookings for car seats, cots and prams up to 6 months in advance so whilst Easter is featuring heavily for me at the moment everyone else has yet to put their Christmas hat on. So to step back a little, if you do have any visitors coming to stay this festive season then keep us in mind and make it home from home for them by hiring baby equipment for their visit. It makes a lot of sense and comes highly recommended by past Baby Loft customers. I will endeavor to blog again before the year 2012 all but disappears XX
What an exciting couple of weeks. I personally have really enjoyed the Olympics albeit from the vantage point of my own living room on catch up TV. Due to the demands of the Baby Loft and the additional tourists visiting London we didn’t get to attend any actual Olympic events but our equipment certainly did helping us to get into the spirit and partake in the Olympic mania that has swept the country. As you can imagine during the Games a vast amount of our deliveries have been into central London which if I am honest I was dreading and had convinced myself would need be a nightmare and worthy of a gold medal if we managed to get through them all without being snapped in a games lane and receiving a hefty fine, but alas my fears were unfounded as driving in the city the last 3 weeks has been bliss, rush hour ? where for art thou rush hour” ? We have easily transported buggies, cots, car seats,highchairs and play equipment in record times achieving our own personal bests (clever). The roads have been super quiet, the Olympic lanes clearly marked and London has looked fabulous. I cannot remember seeing it so clean & organised before and no roadworks. Yippee…. If only it could stay this way.
My family have also had their share of Olympic involvement. My little girl Olivia made it into the local papers when she got to hold an actual torch when it came to visit her Nursery, and my dad has spent the last 2 years working on the Olympic village & park. My sister had a gold medal in her hands yesterday when she got to meet the fabulous Laura Trott.
All in all a great time had by all, a busy time for the business and a great showcase for our country. Now bring on the Paralympics… whoop whoop !!
So after starting The Baby Loft two years ago I finally decided that it was high time for a well deserved family holiday. After spending the last two years back & forth meeting families at the airport and not actually leaving the country myself it was definitely our time. So I booked a week away for us in Italy in the Tuscan hills. Not one to make life easy for myself I decided it would be good to also use the experience to again validate the Baby Equipment hire concept, so I decided to take my own buggy & car seat for Olivia. Ohhhh Myyyyyyy never again !!!
Travelling with little ones is a NIGHTMARE. Gone are the days when you stroll leisurely around duty free killing time.
Before even leaving Stansted my husband & I were hauled off by customs officials to be searched and questioned as our buggy has tested positive to having a trace of explosives !!!! I KID YOU NOT…. Apparently this is quite common with buggies as they are wheeled over all types of terrain etc but the stress induced by this did not make for a pleasant start to our travels. Added to this the fact that you have to go to a separate baggage belt for the car seat & remember to leave the buggy at the foot of the aeroplane in the hope that a steward will remember to “toss it literally (glad it was a Maclaren & not one of my iCandy or Phil & Teds)“ it into the baggage hold. Then upon landing locate everything from various places around the unfamiliar airport then try to balance baby, suitcases, car seats, buggys on a wonky wheeled trolley whilst trying to find a nice english speaking person to direct you to your hire car so you can get away from all of the madness. And I only have the one child……..
I have a renewed admiration for the families that travel with numerous children and mothers that travel alone with their little ones I SALUTE YOU !!
Never again will I travel with my own baby equipment I will hire, hire, hire. I am often told by my customers that my business is a fabulous idea and totally necessary, now I know it 100% for myself.
By the way, the holiday was fabulous just can’t wait until next year, now who can I hire from ????
So after mulitple failed attempts to sit down and start blogging I have finally managed to grab an hour and just get on with it. So where to begin… well I have promised myself that I will endeavour to write a new blog each week, the content of which even I am interested to see. It will basically involve how my life and life at the Baby Loft is evolving & unfolding. You see I currently have two babies in my life, both are roughly the same age there is Olivia my little girl who is almost 3 years old and there is The Baby Loft, my baby equipment hire business which is a tad younger at 2.5 years old. Both of which enhance & enrich my life in different ways of which I will share with you as we go along.
So a little Baby Loft background for you, I started the business whilst on maternity leave with Olivia. She was such a good baby, ate when she was supposed to, slept when she was supposed to that dare I say it I was bored. I would literally save up outings and distribute them to different days of the week so I had a purpose to fill my days alongside my perfectly behaved little baby. I.e food shopping on a Monday, the bank on a Tuesday, baby massage on a Wednesday you get the picture. Luckily I have a hubby who won’t listen to my whinging for too long, to him everything is black & white, so his answer to my boredom was to “do something about it …. think of something that will fill your time and get your brain going again.” I told him about an idea that had been brewing since I had had Olivia concerning Baby equipment rental. He was sold and between the two of us every evening for the next 6 months was spent building & growing the Baby Loft idea.Needless to say my days swung from not having enough to keep me busy to absolute overload, you forget that a newborn that sleeps most of the time is only a fleeting guest and my baby girl quickly became a hive of activity. But hey if I am not busy I am not happy.
So here we are today with an amazing toddler who brightens up my world (more about my lil lady in another blog) two online Baby Equipment hire services called The Baby Loft and Rentabuggy which is a newly acquired business of the same concept that I want to play about with but again we can save that for a later blog.
So back to the businesses. Whats it all about – well in a nutshell we hire out baby equipment and the types of customer that use our service are :-
- Tourists visiting from overseas (saves the stress of carting all of your own equipment and paying the excess baggage fees to boot).
- Grandparents & relations for when family comes to visit (saves having to buy and store equipment that only gets used but a couple of times a year)
- New mums just wanting to “road test” a piece of equipment before committing to buying it.
- Hotels, Nurseries & Event planners (venues often lack highchairs & equipment to accommodate young babies)
- Relocation companies – we can offer baby & nursery packages on short or long term rental
- Production companies – ever wondered where the baby equipment in shown on TV comes from