In our new international series of pram stories, our resident journalists are connecting and covering prams stories from across the globe.
The first story is about the Yusifova family, Farida, 30, a commercial specialist and Najit, 31, a dentist. They married in 2011 and welcomed their son, Mustafa in 2014. The family live in the cosmopolitan and ethnically diverse city of Baku, Azerbaijan.
Farida has spoken about moments from her life in Baku, from finding her ideal pram and high chair for her young son to balancing work and family, happy family moments and trying not to lose their baby to Baku's intense winds.
Interesting Statistic: 51-100% of Middle Eastern online shoppers find cross-border shopping more convenient due to lack of access to items locally. (Go-Gulf)
Tell me about your experience shopping online?
Since my baby was born, almost everything was purchased from the Internet. For over a month I researched and read many reviews about lightweight strollers and high chairs. Then I found Prams.net, which only took 2-3 hours to choose and order what I had spent over a month searching for. Taking into account I was ordering from Azerbaijan, we received our items on time and without damage.
Baku's is known as the "City of the Winds", ever a moment when you feared the intense winds would fly off with your baby?
I’ve had hard times with our previous stroller. Once we went to visit our grandma who lives 5 minutes away but the wind was so strong, I was unsure if we’d get there and as I struggled to keep hold of the stroller to stop it flying away with Mustafa. I was so afraid in that moment! I pushed the brakes and hugged the stroller until someone helped me move it to a less windy place.
That’s really scary! Are you concerned about the safety of your new pram?
I have no concerns, my main priority was finding a lightweight stroller strong enough to withstand the wind. As lightweight strollers look like toys, but the one I chose was totally different to others I’d seen. Our Maclaren XT is the perfect balance between being light and resilient to handle any terrain.
How did you meet Mustafa’s dad?
I was his patient. We met at his dental practice on my 25th birthday, then decided to keep in contact and eventually got married.
What qualities do you like about Mustafa’s dad and vice versa?
Hahaaa, He’s trustworthy, he never comes home late and loves spending time with us. He would say I'm very caring.
That's very sweet, how did your family and friends respond to the pram?
All my friends and family loved it, even they were asking where we got it and recently my cousin ordered a pram from Prams.net.
Farida is a beautiful name, is it of Persian origin?
Thanks, yes my name is Persian, my grandma named me after her, one of our family traditions is naming grandchildren after our parents.
What inspired naming your son Mustafa?
Our family has Turkish heritage. We named him after Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, the first President of Turkey.
Ah I see, why the first Turkish President?
He was a patriot, he did his best for his nation, country. That's why he is called Ataturk which is translated as a Father of the Turks. So I would like my son to be like him. A patriot, leader and a very good person. As you know name plays a big role in our life.
That’s true, your name becomes like a self-fulfilling prophecy, how do you travel?
My husband drives me to and from work. The pram fits very compactly into the car boot leaving extra space. After my son was born, I don't use public transport.
It that due to convenience, are there issues with Baku's public transport?
They are not comfortable with strollers and always crowded.
Happy family memories with the pram?
We enjoy going for walks, the best place to go is Baku Boulevard during spring, the weather is clean and fresh and not as crowded as summer. There’s lots of space for Mustafa to run, walk and of course fall over.
How do you balance work and family life?
At night and on weekends, we go out to have fun as a family. As our baby goes to kindergarten whilst we work full-time during the weekdays, Mustafa misses us and we feel guilty, so we want to make the most of all our free time with him. These memories are very happy and I always try to record them.
Is the pram durable in different seasons?
The pram is very durable, especially during spring and summer, as we try to be outside all day.
How does Mustafa respond to the pram?
My boy is so active, as soon as he started to walk, it's hard to make him sit for more than 2-5 minutes. But as soon as he sits in the pram, he falls asleep easily because it is very soft and comfortable.
What are the best features of the pram?
The new stroller is good in all four seasons. Especially when it's windy and cold, we can still take Mustafa for a walk. The canopy protects him from sun and wind, more over the rain cover and foot-muff are included. As soon as we received our pram, we went out and posted this on Instagram.
Great photo! Mustafa looks so cute!
How do you feel about the Peg Perego Tata Mia High Chair you purchased?
I found my dream high chair! I was looking for something special, to tell the truth I didn't know what, just something no one else had or knew about.
Haha, what are the best features?
The wheels! They make life so much easier for parents, allowing easy mobility. The seat cover is soft and easy to clean, it folds easily and is compact. Whilst eating my boy loves to sit in it and watch his cartoons. When I adjust the chair to its lowest level, he can get it by himself.
Does Mustafa's dad feel the same way?
He loves the pram and the high chair as much as I do. What was described was received! They are easy to use, light and my boy feels safe in them. We were surprised and happy!
Is there anything special that you're looking for?
Prams.net has everything parents need!
Lastly, a favourite family activity?
Our favourites are reading colourful books with animals. Mustafa loves playing with his ball and hot wheels cars. At home we all love playing hide and seek or running after him and trying to catch him.
That’s really sweet! I’d like to say a big thank you for taking part in this interview for Prams.net! I'm sure your son will grow up to be a very good, patriotic leader one day! I wish you and your family all the best.
Thank you so much! It was a pleasure for me to answer your questions!!!
I'm glad, it was a pleasure for me too!
References: Online Shopping Trends Middle East, Statistics and Trends, Go-Gulf, http://www.go-gulf.com/blog/online-shopping-trends-middle-east/