Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Review: Yum Yum Kids

I was invited to review these products, but my opinions about them are 100% mine -- it's a risk companies make when they ask for my opinion -- my opinion's what they'll get. 
- Angela Noelle of Striking KeysYou can read about the free Nutrionist advice service this site alos offers, here.

News on the bubba-front;
(mush = avocado, in this case)
Armed with free, solicited advice, I browsed Yum Yum Kids' online store for more support of a different variety.

I found plenty of objects of desire;
(For those who also follow dear Stella, and saw her recent DIY play kitchen -- with all its trappings -- you'll spy a Polka Dot Tea Set very similar to the greatly-sought-after-one she shared.)

In spite of being a little too giddy, initially -- viewing all of the options -- I was able to settle on some great products to review (again, with My Nutrionist's help);
Review, we did;

It's funny how much having one specialised product changed my attitude.  I make almost all of my babies' "mush" food, but I didn't have an intricate system when it came to storing it.  I've used ice cube trays before, and casually frozen a little here and there...but now that I have these I feel like my efforts have been elevated to an art form.  It helps that Phase 1 foods are easy.  Now I am constantly cycling homemade foods through the fridge and freezer, and I feel pretty chuffed about it.  There's something about having a removable little container of stuff I've made that I can heat on demand, washing it with its lid attached (big appeal for me -- I don't like having lots of parts floating around), and doing it all again -- it did make things easier, for me.  I'm only sorry I didn't have these tubs when I had Esky -- they've proven a real catalyst for me taking homemade foods more seriously.  As parents, it's hard to do it all -- sew our kids clothes from paisley curtains and crochet their winter-wear and or feed them entirely from a home garden and use cloth nappies, etceteraaaaa, but we can pick to do some of these things, and I now pick making our own baby food as one of mine.

Esky is crazy about the Cheeky Chopsticks;
Here she is making them smooch.  Because that's what cheeky chopsticks do.
I've always been a fan of divided plates, and this one is sturdier than many I've handled in stores.  Esky requests it routinely.  Here she is with spaghetti with and without sauce (she always requests this, but eats both).  She's also using her new cutlery, which is her preference now -- it's a smart intermediary step between her "baby cutlery" and the family stuff.
More positives:
  • The Thermos is easy to wash.
  • The Yum Yum Kids' site is easy to use and its search tool is superior to those in many other online stores I've encountered -- keywords render actual results.  In fact, if you know what something's called, you can skip browsing around for it and go straight to the search box, confident it'll spit out what you're after -- a big plus, in my book.
  • The club and newsletter you're enticed to join upon visiting the site is actually relevant -- there are legitimate discounts and offers exclusive to joining.  I'm always a little bugged by sites that build subscription into your first order, or tantalise you with some deal to sign up -- and later you find all you get is junk about sales offered on a very small portion of merchandise (often making their priciest products more reasonable).  YYK offers storewide discounts (credit upon sign-up), and a cash discount voucher with your first order's delivery.  
  • I don't just dig YYK's stuff when I get it for free-to-review -- the marketing incentives did their work on me -- I've already ordered more goods since (read: paid to have products).
  • You can pay by direct credit (not just credit/debit card).  I really like when sites offer this option.
A few neg's:
  • I let Kate know it'd be nice if you could add items to your cart and keep on shopping without being taken to the cart after each selection.  Kate is already onto this.  She takes notes well.
  • The Foogo Thermos is brilliant -- but it doesn't keep very small volumes of food warm for long (i.e. first weeks of eating for Ivy -- a tablespoon or two per meal).  I'm excited to take warm lunches / cool treats for both girls over the years in these though!
  • YYK stocks premium products, and the prices reflect this...which unfortunately means it falls outside of many families' weekly budget.  I am confident, however, that some items, once purchased, would pay for themselves quickly.
Some things I'd love to see in the future:
  • Engraved/stamped baby spoons?  I think these make darling baby shower gifts and beautiful keepsakes for children when they move out of home.
  • A "Fun Lunch" section?  I'm a fan of sectioned lunch boxes, and seeing images of ways other parents have made package-free, finger-food lunches appealling (especially the ones that look like they could be made them quickly still!)  Maybe kiwis could submit photos and share ideas -- bringing another interactive element to the site?
  • ...and in the same vein, I'd love to see the range of cookie cutters grow -- since these are great for cutting so much  more than dough!
  • Silly straws?  I know these have been part of what makes green smoothies fun, in our home.
You can win some products to test for yourself over at Striking Keys -- hop on over to enter;

Like something you've seen?  Order before Christmas, and My Nutrionist will give you 15% off of any of the items I've reviewed (The Freezer Tubs, all Thermos Food Jars, Cheeky Chopsticks, all Skip Hop Zoo Divided Plates, and Grippables Cutlery), PLUS 15% off that loverrrrrly tea set or a cardboard play oven!  -- simply enter the coupon "SKREADER" before checking out.


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