Gear + Gadgets

Pop-up playpen


Special to The Miami Herald

Talk about instant gratification. The journeyBee Travel Crib metamorphoses from a nearly flat 32-inch-diameter half-disc into a 60-inch-long by 41-inch-wide by 24-inch-high lightweight crib/playpen with the release of a strap (clear the immediate area of kids before you unleash this thing). A built-in nylon framework pops up and out into a big open playard form. Lay in the included one-inch-thick mattress and fleece sheet, both of which fasten to the crib bottom with via Velcro tabs, then plunk the little one in. Mesh side panels let you see what junior is up to. (An inch-thick mattress isn’t much cushioning, but do not substitute your own, as this could be a safety hazard for the child. Nor would I recommend leaving a child unattended). Getting the journeyBee back into flat-disk mode for storage may take some practice with hands-knees coordination, but the manual shows step-by-step drawings. The playard is only for children less than 35 inches tall, and should not be used once junior can climb out of it. Weighs 11.5 pounds, including the mattress, fleece sheet, and included carry bag with shoulder strap. Comes in several colors and patterns.

ParentLab journeyBee Travel Crib is $149 at

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