Mama just read an article that said that Mama needs to change her schedule. No more staying up late at night plugging away at the computer. It’s not good for your sleep and you are less likely to make mistakes if you just wake-up earlier. There is definitely some truth to that as Mama has found herself in the midst of a sentence and then all of a sudden nodding off with the lights on, computer on and nothing but a half done post to show for it. However, it seems that at night after the kiddos go to bed is when it’s the most calm and there is actually time to do something. No more running off to fold laundry because you heard the buzzer, no more watching the clock so that you can go shuttle the kids to and from school or to their various activities, no dishes to be done…because really, it will all be there later. All of it. So in other words, get some sleep and take the time to work when you’re at your best — Mama likes the thinking on that…especially since there will soon be another little person to take care of that will have her own demands and schedule. Hang in there with Mama as we all get the groove of the changing times…because Mama may not always be on time but I’ll definitely BE THERE!
So this week is what they call International Babywearing week. While Mama doesn’t really consider your baby to be an accessory, they certainly can be. Yes, you can wear them from birth to…oh, my…the preschool years perhaps. Although once the kids could walk Mama all but gave-up on wearing any sort of baby, simply because they are HEAVY little things and well, Mama needs to build up those muscles. However, Mama does have friends that wear their children (sometimes two at once — one in the front and one in the back) and it doesn’t bother them a bit. They love it and are advocates for babywearing (which simply means holding or carrying your child(ren) in a cloth carrier) and it is actually a skill. Have you ever seen some of those carriers that you have to wrap and wrap around you and tie in knots and all sorts of different places?! It MOST definitely is a skill and in fact you can even get a certification in babywearing to teach others the skill and educate other moms about it.
If you think about it, our ancestors have been babywearing for generations and generations so it’s a natural part of being a Mama and caring and nurturing for your young. However, some baby carriers have gotten a bad rap — most recently slings for causing suffocation. Rest assured, if used properly slings are certainly safe and are a great carrier for the newborn baby. Mama is actually in the market for a new carrier since Baby #3 is going to make an appearance soon…hmmm…so many choices on how to wear her FASHIONABLY and SAFELY…which one to choose?!
Mama knows so many parents that are choosing the ERGOBaby Carrier these days because it can be used from the infant stage as a front carrier up to 90 lbs. as a back carrier. It has an ergonomically correct positioning so you avoid that awful back pain that Mama was talking about earlier and it also supports correct positioning for your baby/toddler. Dads also like this carrier because it fits their shape (tested up to adults 6’6″ and has a 57″ waist belt). The carrier we had previously, never quite fit him. This could definitely be a top choice for Mama…especially now since it comes in Petunia PickleBottom Patterns! ERGObaby Organic Petunia Pickle Bottom Carrier, $160, at ergobabycarriers.com.
Another favorite among Mamas is the Moby Wrap where you can wear two babies at once. While it looks complicated, after a few times of learning to wrap the Moby around your back and shoulders to completely support the baby, it is very, very easy and comfortable. Made of a sturdy, durable fabric the Moby you can adjust the fit of your wrap by how tightly you wrap around your back and shoulders so as baby grows, you give them more room without having to adjust any straps or buckles. Also anyone can use it since all Mobys are the same amount of fabric. While the ERGObaby is great for infants bigger than 4 months and toddlers, the Moby Wrap is best suited for newborns to infants/toddlers up to 35 lbs. It’s a great carrier for infants that like to be held at all times and they can be close to Mama’s heartbeat and soothe themselves to sleep. It also leaves you hands-free to deal with other children and the like. Another great babywearing option…Moby Wrap, $44.95, at mobywrap.com.
One of the classic carrier names that everyone will recognize is the BABYBJORN. Who doesn’t (or didn’t) have one of these? Mama used it both with Baby Boy and Lily-girl and it got us through the good times and the bad. However with the classic carrier, Mama did start to get a bit uncomfortable as they got bigger simply because most of the weight was carried through the shoulders. Since then the company has introduced the new BABYBJORN Comfort Carrier with an ergonomic waist belt. While it mimics the ERGOBaby carrier, the comfort carrier is for children only up to 2 years old (or 31 lbs.) and is a front carrier only. In fact, most of the parents that are using this carrier are Dads because of it’s easy positioning and how you can have the child’s legs in normal or wide position. It’s definitely a great upgrade and option from the classic carrier and one that Mama is also seriously considering…hmm…so many options! BABYBJORN Organic Comfort Carrier, $179.95, at diapers.com.
Other Mamas prefer the Ring Slings which provide versatility and allow baby to sit upright in the sling once they are able to do so based on weight and neck strength. One of the most popular ring slings is the Maya Wrap. It comes in a variety of colors and has light padding on the shoulders for cushioning. It is recommended for newborns 8 lbs. to toddlers 35 lbs. and has a built-in pocket for keys, phone, diapers, etc. so you can also truly be hands-free. It also allows you to breastfeed discreetly without taking baby out of the sling. Just make sure you read the instructions for optimum safety. It’s a great first carrier for first-time babywearers! Maya Wrap Baby Sling, $74.95, at mayawrap.com.
Another possibility for babywearing is the Mei Tai Baby Carrier, a version of the traditional Chinese baby carrier that has a body panel, waist and shoulder straps to tie and hold baby. One of these is the BabyHawk Baby Carrier, starting at $89, at babyhawk.com. While it offers tons of styles and patterns for you to choose from, there isn’t going to be as much support in this carrier as there is in ERGObaby or BABYBJORN just because of the lack of padding and ergonomic support. Some people need it — others don’t and prefer the “less is more” approach. The BabyHawk Mei Tai Carrier is adjustable and also fits larger frames and carries newborns (8 lbs.) to toddlers (18 mths. or 45 lbs.) then you can also graduate to the Toddler Mei Tai Carrier. They are made close to Mama in Oceanside, CA and you can customize them all different options to truly make it your own. A great option for those that like to babywear in style!
There are many, many more options for babywearing but these are some of the most popular carriers and methods and ones that Mama is seriously considering….So tell Mama, how do you wear your baby?