- cats are not likely to be a risk to your baby. I had all sorts of worries about my 2 but since LO arrived they've actually taken very little notice of the baby at all. The one or 2 times they tried to jump into the cot they got roundly told off and never tried it again. You can get a cat net if you are really worried
- I would think that an adult cat (assuming one of them could be separated easily) would be a better prospect than a kitten as kittens are still a bit silly up to about a year old. Also you'll have a better idea of an older cat's temperament (you will want a pretty placid cat that won't freak out being chased or having its tail grabbed by a toddler).
The litter training shouldn't be an issue- most 6 week old kittens know what to do if you give them a tray and put them in it after every feed or sleep (when kittens are programmed to toilet). Consider a covered tray mainly so it's harder for your crawling baby to get into it (horrible but true)
Remember to keep any cat wormed monthly (some of the prescription flea spottons do this) to minimise any risk of roundworms.
we have an xplory and it is FANTASTIC. Our 3 month old has been in the babybag (carrycot) so far and it's so good to be able to just take off the unit and set it on the floor like a moses basket when visiting friends, or on the picnic blanket! something you can't do with a soft cot like on the bugaboo chameleon/gecko or the phil+teds.
We use the bus in London a lot and it fits down the aisle (unlike some buses with the quinny buzz) and it's footprint really isn't that big- it fits in almost the same space as a fully-laden Maclaren
The shopping bag is huge, if a bit fiddly to access (you do have to bend down to it) and it probably isn't ideal if you have a smartcar as it is big when collapsed (we don't have a car so not a problem for us)
It's a dream to push and you can manouevre around sainsburys local with one hand. My husband recently pushed a friend's little one in their Maclaren and remarked on how much more work the Maclaren was.
it is expensive at RRP but we got the stroller chassis and babybag for £499 at a Baby Show special offer so if you've got the time to order it and wait it can be reasonably affordable as well.
just be prepared for people to comment on it whenever you go out!
TBH, use the nappy lady website and see their recommendations, also try the questionnaire on kittykins (and any other website you find) and you'll soon get an idea of the types and brands of nappies that fit your needs. They'll also have advice on how many to get and wraps, liners etc. I like the shaped nappies rather than pocket and in this style you probably couldn't go wrong with cotton or bamboo (especially if you have a tumble dryer). Motherease One Size are pretty ubiquitous and deservedly so. I like my Baby Beehinds. I bought mainly birth-to-potty (bamboo BBH's) so they'll last the distance plus a few size one (little baby) nappies so they weren't quite so bulky, these are better for carrying in the changing bag as they're smaller! These are cotton-hemp, I bought them to be more quick drying than the bamboo, which they are, being thinner
Good luck with your choice to use reusables. Once you take the plunge, it will be so easy you wondered why it all seemed so hard
I wouldn't rule out the shaped nappies at all, I find them so easy to use. It would have to be a pretty stupid or stubborn childminder that couldn't come to terms with using motherease or other shaped type nappies: you could give them an instruction sheet if they really needed it!!! I think resistance is more in the mind because they are really no harder to use than disposables- and if you just get a bag of used nappies back at the end of the day they don't even have to worry about the "hard" bit of washing!!
What really annoys me is the nurseries that provide disposable nappies as part of your nursery fee- and refuse to discount if you don't want to use their crappy disposables!
Also I'm not sure if anyone so far has mentioned The Nappy Lady- if you want to see and trial some different nappies they have local reps who could come to your house; there's another company (sorry, can't remember the same- try google) that does "Nappuccino" mornings that similarly give you a selection to look at.
Please don't give up on reusables, they really are worth it!
just wanted to encourage you to go for reusables. the environmental savings are enormous (for a really comprehensive comparison check the womens environmental network. There are a lot of places where you'll hear that there's no difference since you have to wash reusables, but when you take into account all the resources used to make nappies that you either chuck into landfill after a few hours (or minutes with my one!) or alternatively use again and again, the reusables win hands down)
Plus they look cute, feel soft and lovely (rather than scratchy paper) and really aren't that much more hassle, especially if you go for shaped nappies - putting them on is the same as using a disposable (BTW I forgot to mention liners: these minimise the poop in the pail - you line the nappy with the liner and depending on your skill at placement, it catches most if not all the poop which you can then flush).
I admit we still use naturebabycare disposables occasionally- mainly when we go out for the day as the reusables are quite bulky to carry around in the changing bag, but at home it's baby beehinds all the way, and my husband loves them.
BTW, we didn't like prefold/ pocket types: looked like more hassle to us. Most of the shaped B2P nappies can be "boosted" with extra fabric strips for greater absorbency when you need it: the BBs come with these (one large, one small)
One last thing: because the baby can actually sense wetness on real nappies, they often can be potty trained earlier than if using disposables