MEET THE ARMADILLO FAMILY: GREGORY STANTON
Nothing puts a pushchair through its paces like a demanding tot and a busy family. That’s why we’re working with real families to show just how useful our pushchairs really are.
We approached Greg Stanton, better known to his Instagram followers as @london_dad – because not only did he understand the demands of parenting, but he has a unique way of capturing those intimate moments.
We let him have a play around with our Armadillo pushchair, but we also grabbed him for a quick chat to find out a little more about him and his family!
Hi Greg! To kick off, tell us a little bit about you and your family.
Right, where do I start? Firstly, my wonderful wife Alice who runs a content marketing and social media company as well as the amazing Avocado Magazine. Etta is our 19m old little monster, conceptualized in Tokyo, made in Singapore and born in England. Then there is myself, I’m a recruiter and part time assistant to Alice on all of her endeavours as well as the man behind the lens for @london_dad on Instagram and newbie blogger for The London Dad. And we mustn’t forget Cat the Dog who we named pre-Etta without thinking of the repercussions, now it’s causing allsorts of confusion – let’s just say Spot The Dog is not on our reading list!
Haha! That sounds very confusing, indeed! How did you feel when you and Alice first found out you were having a baby?
Part of me was terrified and part of me was completely overjoyed. I thought making the decision to try and have a baby was the daunting part but that doesn’t even compare to finding out you are having a baby. As a father you worry about raising a gentleman not a boy and as a father to a little girl you have so many thoughts and worries about being a rock for your little girl.
How would you describe Etta’s personality?
Etta is 50% girly girl that loves everything pink, fluffy and cute. 25% tomboy that loves puddles, climbing and dinosaurs and the other 25% is all puppy. Cat (the dog) is her best friend so occasionally we have to politely apologise when she growls at random people on the street, we have just about stopped her sleeping in the dog’s bed which is a tiny parent victory. Ultimately, I see her as the kindest, sweetest, most loving little girl and she can do no wrong in my eyes.
Spoken like a true dad! How do you spend time as a family?
Two things are really important in our family life, first up is walking and being outside together without the distraction of any screens. And second, we love, love, love food. We love eating out together and have some amazing local places that are so good to us when we go in with Etta. We also love to chill in cafés and watch the world go by, anywhere near a horse stables is a hit with Etta, she presses her face up against the window and waves at each pony (otherwise known as clip-clop) going out for a ride.
And how do you like to spend five minutes of ‘me time’? That’s when you manage it.
3 little words, Bath Book Wine.
What is the one life lesson you want to hand down to Etta?
Life happens. You have to smile through the tough times, of which there are many. If it hurts or you’re sad you can have a cry, but you have to find a way to laugh it off and get on with life. Reading that back it sounds like a really harsh lesson but as an example, when Etta falls down, she has a little cry but the best way to fix it is always to have a cuddle, pull a funny face or play tickle monster and remind her that everything is ok.
That’s a lovely way of looking at things. Now, they always say ‘mum knows best’ but as a dad, what’s the best piece of advice your mum has given you?
That’s a hard one, my mum is the most amazing person. She loves being a mum, she cooks every meal from scratch, she was always there when I got home from school, she baked cakes and went without so that we could have what we wanted and needed. I think looking back as a parent I appreciate all of that so much more now. The best advice that I have from my mum is how to be an amazing parent; if I could do half the job of caring for Etta as she has done for me then I would be very proud.
Finally; you mentioned you like getting out and about with Etta, where are the best places to go near you?
We live in Wimbledon, which is a brilliant place to have a family; the perfect mix of city and country.
We are all about the food we can eat with our hands. We were soooo happy when Franco Manca opened in Wimbledon and we are there at least once a week. Etta eats her pizza holding the crust and loves chasing the point of the pizza until she can get it in her mouth.
Our favourite days outdoors are somewhere without roads, a long, long walk across the back of Wimbledon common and getting lost in the overgrown fields and trails. Etta loves the nature and runs after any animals she can find.
For a rainy day indoors we would probably jump on the tube to Soho and just hang out shopping together. Etta is a little shoe obsessed like Alice and I. We can lose hours walking around the shops with her before heading to Hamleys and Selfridges to hit up the toy section and eat some amazing food.
Thanks for your time Greg!