Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Westfield Donny Parent Rooms are grouse

Friday. Raining. Cold. Two boys under 3. Not a lot of cash til payday.

Where or where do we go? Shamelessly I pack the boys into the car and head to a large shopping centre in Doncaster. It’s free (unless tempted), large and spacious for running up and down ramps, and the parent’s room is a godsend.

Now, as a disclaimer, I have only ever used the one near the Drum eating space (which in itself is nicely designed, being a large circle Lucas can run away, only to end up where he started. Also fabulous window wall beside tables where little boys can count red trucks going by to their heart's content) so I’m not sure on the other ones. But the room near here is fabulous.

Has all you need for feeding, taking little people to little loos, changing smaller people’s

smalls and an excellent ‘enclave’ for roaming siblings if you are breastfeeding a bub. It is this feature that I reckon makes this parent’s room the best.

I’m not breastfeeding, but on this particular day the niggling cough I had been keeping at bay turned into a hot-&-cold flushes head cold.

Lucas decided to be insistent about the running up and down of ramps while I concentrated on not passing out or letting the pram with 1 year old Robbie roll away alongside him. Ifind an extra cache 0f strength, scoop up the boy under an arm and roll/run to the hallowed ground.

Robbie roams about in a lovely enclosed carpeted space, Lucas is fixated by the ball/maze activity board and I collapse into a deep comfy armchair usually reserved for feeders but luckily for me, today all 3 booths were free and I could fade in and out of consciousness without fearing I looked like a junkie mum.

Rest assured, after a quick 5 min lie-down, the lunch I had scoffed down 20 min before started to do it’s work (heavy-duty cough syrup also had it’s place) and I was right as rain before the next pooey bum entered for changing.

So, if you are needing good shopping with decent support/facilities, this is a good place to start. I recall trying to breastfeed a one-month old Lucas on my first ever shopping expedition on my own, I reckon it was a 2 seat sofa situated on a parent highway, with everyone getting a gawk on the way by – not great when you are still figuring things out.

For this reason I reckon this parent room design is fantastic, the enclosed area has 3 feeding booths which ensure privacy while older brothers and sisters can be free and within easy reach. Great job Westfield – and retail designers take note – we need more!

Have you found any great Parents Rooms? What made them so good?

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