Baby wearing

One thing that really surprised me when I had Andrew was just how much I loved baby wearing. (if you’re not familiar with the term, it refers to baby carriers). When I first heard about baby wearing, it became clear that the benefits of baby wearing were plentiful. But there was still a part of me that thought baby-wearing was for crunchy, Birkenstock-wearing tree-hugger types. Boy was I wrong.
When I registered for baby items when I was pregnant with Andrew, I registered for a Baby Bjorn without really thinking about it or researching into different carriers. If you are even the tiniest bit interested in baby wearing, I urge you to research – look around online, talk to other mommas, join baby wearing groups online (Durham Region Baby Wearing Group was a huge help for me). It pays to be educated. Not to be all preachy, but there are serious health risks for bebe if you choose a carrier that is not ergonomically correct (such as the Baby Bjorn that I unwittingly chose). On baby wearing forums you may hear these affectionately called “crotch danglers.” Not only are these not so awesome for baby, but it makes a huge difference for you too – in my experience, when carriers are better for baby, they are better for momma. Meaning that you can wear your little one with no pain or discomfort.

My love for baby wearing started with the Original Baby Bjorn

Now, I don’t mean to bash Baby Bjorn at all – apparently they do have some revamped carriers that are great, I just personally haven’t tried them – I am by no means a baby wearing expert. 

What I love the most about baby-wearing is always having my babies close to me. Being able to get stuff done while snuggling and kissing the top of their heads…doesn’t get much better than that!

After I realized how much I enjoyed ‘wearing’ Andrew, I upgraded to a pocket sling from Seven Slings – it was a definite upgrade but still not the comfiest for me. It worked for the remainder of my baby wearing days with A – as an energetic, crazy boy, he was born to run wild.

Eventually I moved to a pocket sling

 When I was pregnant again, I knew that I would be relying on baby wearing as a way to keep my new baby close while keeping up with an active 3-year old. So my research began – I spent hours on the internet learning all the lingo (I could not figure out for the longest time what SSC was – for the newbies like me, it means soft structured carrier. You’re welcome!) and brand names surrounding baby wearing. I picked the brains of the wonderful ladies on the Durham Region Baby Wearing Group on Facebook. Seriously, these women are wonderfully helpful and full of knowledge. If you live in Durham Region and are interested in baby wearing, join the group, you won’t regret it! They even have meet-ups to offer support and give newbies a chance to try different carriers. If you live outside the area, look around online for groups in your region, as I am sure they are there! Finally, after months of reading and asking questions, I came to a conclusion. I wanted to get a soft-structured carrier. And I wanted it to be a Tula. I loved the look and the feel of wraps, but I seriously do not trust the safety of my baby to how well I twist and knot a wrap. I have serious admiration for ‘wrappers.’ I get baby wearing envy when I see their photos posted all over Facebook!

Now, the downfall – Tulas do not come cheap. Even used, they will still run you close to $200. But I finally bit the bullet and bought myself a beautiful brand new Tula!

One of the main reasons I chose a Tula was for the weight limit – it can go from newborn all the way up to 40lbs – talk about getting bang for your buck! As you can see in the photo, A was 2.5yrs and I carried him comfortably at 4 months pregnant! (Note: Tula also has a toddler-sized version that gives them a little more support through the legs). I also love that as baby gets older, you can switch to a back carry, like a piggy back without all the work!
I also have to give a shout out to a local business, Take a Walk on the Green Side, where I ordered my Tula. Take a Walk on the Green Side focuses on providing greener alternatives for your home, with a heavy focus on products for babies. They had competitive pricing, and fabulous customer service. The owner, Amy, always responds to messages quickly, and ships items promptly. I can’t say enough good things about them! If you are interested in a Tula (or green alternatives for your household), please check them out:
Right after L was born, I decided that I wanted something to baby wear that was quicker than my Tula (and also because buying carriers is slightly addictive – I now understand why some women have entire stashes!). I didn’t really feel comfortable having a newborn in the Tula (just me being crazy!), and so I went back to asking questions, and reading on the Facebook group. I quickly decided that I wanted a ring sling, and I received a beautiful ring sling from Say It Ain’t Sew, a local business. The ring sling is as beautiful as it is functional! Sorry for the crappy Iphone shot – I can’t believe I haven’t gotten a better shot of it! Check out everything that Say it Ain’t Sew has to offer here:
I find now that Lily is four months old, I reach for the ring sling and Tula equally, depending on what I’m doing. I have developed a serious love for babywearing, although I’m still a newbie. Maybe one of these days, I’ll get up the nerve to try wrapping!
What’s your favourite carrier? Do you have multiple carriers in your collection or do you stay true to one?

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