Friday, 28 February 2014

Friday Funny!!

This Friday Funny meme was made us by OBGer Liz Camsell as an entry to a Tula giveaway competition being run by Sweet Pea.

Thursday, 27 February 2014

Thursday Thought: Babywearing Fakery?

by Tami Grosset

One of our members recently reported how she felt like a fake babywearer when she wore her baby in her Infantino carrier. It got me thinking about how babywearing can sometimes appear to be an elite sport and it just is not!

You are a real babywearer if you wear them in a towel or bedsheet, and don't actually own a baby carrier!

You are a real babywearer if you wear them in a home made carrier!

You are a real babywearer if you wear them in an Infantino Sync or Snuggli!

You are a real babywearer if you wear them in an Ergo or Beco!

You are a real babywearer if you wear them in a ring sling or mai tei!

You are a real babywearer if you wear them in a Oscha or Uppy!

You are a real babywearer if you wear your baby...... it's that simple!

All of these ways to wear your baby are real and no carrier makes you a fake!

It is the ACT of babywearing that makes you a babywearer, not the product in which you wear your baby!

If anyone ever tells you different then they are just plain wrong and they are a babywearing snob.

Ottawa Babywearing Group does not support elitism or snobbery. We are all parents doing our best to care for and love our babies and we are bonded and made equal by our practice of babywearing.

Tuesday, 25 February 2014

Reasons Why We Wear #8

.... because wearing them in an ergonomic carrier supports the natural development of their spines and hips, in a way in which no other baby carrying device is able.

Monday, 24 February 2014

Are You A Positive Babywearing Advocate?

by Tami Grosset

We babywear in a good era! Really we do! Sling safety has never been better and we know more than ever before about how to wear our babies safely.

Babywearing still seems to have a reputation in our society, of being a risky practice, especially regarding the wearing of newborns. Its hard for people who don't understand the rules and practice of safe babywearing to tell the difference between a ring sling and a bag sling.

Left: the Infantino SlingRider was recalled in 2010 after its implication in the tragic deaths of at least 3 infants. Right: the Maya Wrap Ring Sling, like all 'normal' ring slings hold baby snug against the wearer's body in a visible and kissable position. Used correctly a ring sling like this one is a fabulously safe option for a newborn.

But what do we mean by safe babywearing? Safe babywearing, to me, is where your baby will not be placed at increased risk of death or near fatal injury. It means your baby will not die because of your chosen carrier. It means your infant will not experience a life threatening event because of your sling. The carrier you have may not be ergonomic but it is not unsafe because it is not ergonomic. It may be sub-optimal but its probably safe. The distinction between safe and sub-optimal is an important one to make.

Over the past 4 years or so the babywearing industry has developed. The BCIA (Baby Carrier Industry Alliance) has been collaborating and working with consumer safety agencies like the CPSC (Consumer Product Safety Commission) and ASTM International (American Society for Testing and Materials) to create a Sling Safety Standard. Baby carrier manufacturers in the US are mandated to comply to the CPSIA (Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act). This involves a legal requirement to provide a registration card and model number for each carrier, to report any incidents that occur with any carriers and to test carrier parts to prove the absence of lead or phthalates. There is currently a voluntary ASTM Sling Carrier Standard which asks manufacturers to have samples of carriers tested rigorously and to include safety labels, further increasing user knowledge and infant safety. This voluntary standard will shortly become mandatory and it will be virtually impossible to buy a carrier in North America that has not been subjected to the most rigorous safety standards and testing.

Despite all this I have heard frequently of late, in various babywearing forums, advice from babywearing advocates, that the use of one carrier or another is not safe for newborns, even when the carrier is marketed as appropriate for newborns. The advocate often will suggest other carriers that they feel are more age appropriate, usually a wrap or a ring sling. The advice is given with best of intentions and in support of babywearing but this is not what I would call positive advocacy. Here is why:

A potential babywearer (we'll call her Barbara) is interested in a soft structured carrier (lets call it BubbaCarry) which is made by a well known manufacturer and is designed to carry newborns and up to 35lbs. She feels that it would suit her needs more than any other type of carrier. She asks on a babywearing forum if anyone has heard of BubbaCarry and if they can offer a review. The response Barbara gets is that the BubbaCarry is unsafe for newborns. Barbara is now confused. The manufacturer is baby carrier compliant and BubbaCarry has an infant insert which is designed to allow a newborn baby to be worn in the carrier. She trusts the manufacturer and babywearing industry. But she's read this babywearing advocates advice in previous threads and she trusts her as well. She is experienced and really knows her babywearing! Who does Barbara believe; the manufacturer or the advocate?

Barbara might just decide to use the BubbaCarry and not return to the babywearing community for help or advice again. She might fear judgement for using the carrier she chose. She may feel like a 'fake' babywearer for not using the wrap or sling that was recommended to her.

Barbara might choose to take the advice of the advocate. She might purchase a wrap instead of the soft structured carrier she'd initially picked out and as predicted find she does not like to use it. She might find the wrap overwhelming and is intimidated by the length of fabric. Wrapping is not for our Barbara! As a result Babara does not wear her baby at all.

The other outcome could be that coupled with the general belief in wider society that babywearing is a high risk activity Barbara becomes so confused by the whole thing that she jettisons the idea of babywearing entirely and chooses a fancy stroller and bucket seat to push or lug about.

Barbara, like all new babywearers, needs to trust the babywearing industry, the baby carrier manufacturer and the babywearing community equally. If existing members of the babywearing community do not trust the manufacturer or the industry then why should Barbara.

Of course any baby item can be dangerous. Even the infant car seat, one of the most highly regulated baby devices available, can fail in the event of a collision...... if its used incorrectly. As always it is the use of a product and not the actual product that increases or decreases the level of risk. A good baby carrier will mimic in arms positioning. This means that when in a carrier the baby will be held to the body of the wearer in the exact same way the baby would be held if he/she were in the arms of the carer. There are many baby holding devices available to purchase. Baby carriers are just one type. Other devices include bassinets and bucket car seats for example. Nearly all other devices fall short in their ability to hold baby snug against the carer's body with baby's head above the chest near the carers collarbone. (see 3rd paragraph of the BCIA's Position Paper)

As babywearing advocates how should we answer requests for advice about which carriers are safe for newborns? Firstly we should ensure that the carrier in question meets the current safety requirements demanded by the ASTM (US) or EN (European) standards and that the carrier is designed to be used with a newborn. Then we should ensure that the parent knows how to use the carrier correctly, since it is the practice of babywearing, and not the product that ensures the safety of the worn baby. Lastly parents should be advised to look at the position the baby is in, whilst in the carrier. If it mimics an in-arms position where the baby is carried upright with a visible airway and the babies head is at a kissable height then it is safe. It may not be the carrier you would choose for your baby but it is still a safe carrier.

As advocates we should trust our own industry and as a community we should help and support new baby wearers to use their carriers in a safe manner. I urge our babywearing community to be positive in our advocacy and dispense with the confusion that has the potential of tarnishing the reputation of babywearing and the babywearing industry.

Sunday, 23 February 2014

COTW #4- Nursing In A Carrier

By Aline Kelly

Mastering the skill of hands-free nursing in a carrier can make a world of difference in terms of mama freedom and flexibility. Babies and toddlers of all ages can be nursed, and every kind of carrier can be used. The general idea, regardless of carrier type, is to get baby down to the level of your breast and be well-supported while they nurse.

Some notes:
- Be conscientious of baby's airway. Since baby will be lower down in the carrier and have breast tissue around their noses, there are more chances of their airway becoming compromised compared to in a regular carry. Keep an eye on them and don't get too distracted with other things. 
- Use nursing covers if you like, but be mindful with them. Many people use blankets, the tail of their ring sling, or the sleeping hood on their buckle carrier for added discretion. If doing this, be aware of baby's breathing and ensure that fresh air is circulating.
- Again regarding the airway, upright positions are more ideal for nursing in a carrier than cradle positions.

These videos are examples to give you a jumping off point. Nursing in a carrier is something that is very unique to each mother, baby, and their individual anatomy. It's really something that is different for everyone and will require different adjustments accordingly.  

*Note, in some cases these videos are automatically fast-forwarded to the part of the video where the nursing is shown. If you want to see how the rest of the carry happened, rewind the video to the beginning*

Nursing in an Soft-Structured Carrier

Nursing in a Ring Sling:

Nursing in a woven wrap:

Nursing in a Mei Tai: Video link

Please share photos, videos, tips, links, and wisdom!

Wednesday, 19 February 2014

Thursday Thought: Baby Carriers Are Basically Shoes!

I love this analogy from the fabulous South London Sling Library!! Do you have one or two pairs of shoes that you wear all the time, or do you have various different shoes for various different occasions?

Wordless Wednesday: A Week In The Life Of Tami

At 2 years and 10 months Rose is incredibly independent and rarely allows me to wear her. She is also out growing her naps, which used to coincide with bus stop pick up time for her big brother. On days when we've had super busy mornings she has recently allowed me to wear her to the bus stop at the bottom of the road. Its has been an absolute dream!!! I'm loving the big girl baby snuggles!!

Monday, 17 February 2014

Reasons Why We Wear #7

.... because we need to eat, sometimes making a mess but generally going down the hatch and not on baby's head!

Sunday, 16 February 2014

COTW 3#- Reinforced Rucksack Back Carry

by Aline Kelly

Reinforced Rucksack (RR) is similar to the basic ruck, but the leg passes are spread across baby's back and bum instead of bunched. This alteration adds extra support and reinforcement to the carry and is a nice way to switch up your rucksack as baby gets bigger. It can be tied with a mid-length woven wrap, usually a size 3, 4, or 5. Your wrap will generally need a little more length for an RR than for a regular ruck.

General Instructions:
- Get baby on your back and create a seat. Both tails come over your shoulders. 
- Secure one tail between your knees while you work with the opposite tail.
- Take your working tail under your arm and behind your back. Spread the fabric across baby's back and bum, and tuck it carefully under his opposite knee. 
- Repeat with the other tail. 
- Tie in front or tie tibetan. 

The tricky part about RR is getting the fabric spread nicely over baby's back without it getting bunched, sliding down, or getting stuck under baby's bum. Some tips to get nice high passes:
- When you pass the wrap from one hand to the other behind your back, make sure there's a lot of extra fabric between your hands. This helps you maneuver the wrap without it getting stuck or snagged on anything. Holding the fabric in both hands, raise your hands up high behind you, then let the wrap fall high on baby's back.
- Another trick is to "pop" the fabric up and let it land high. Picture it like the giant parachutes you'd play with in gym class as a kid - everyone pops up the parachute at the same time to get air under it. The same kind of idea can be used here. 
- Once your wrap is draped, pull the fabric up towards your opposite shoulder to keep it high, then tighten strand by strand so you don't have any loose fabric stuck anywhere.  Make sure that the fabric continues to cover baby's bum. You can even tuck the bottom rails up under his bum to reinforce the seat. 
- With each pass, make sure there's no tiny feet stuck under the fabric. 
 - Take care when tucking under baby's knee, as passes can be lost or diminished here, too. Ease the wrap down strand by strand, keeping tension, then sneak the wrap under baby's knee. It also helps to straighten baby's knee so the wrap doesn't have to travel as far. 

Babywearing Faith
Please share questions, photos, videos, and wisdom!

Thursday, 13 February 2014

Thursday Thought: Pimping

By Tami Grosset

I recently was challenged to rethink my use of a word that we use regularly when talking about an item that has been customized. The definition of the word 'pimp' used to be soley related to the procurement of a prostitute but has evolved to refer to making something better or bigger or sparklier. Basically making something more glamorous.

But.... is there anything glamorous about a word whose roots come from the objectification of and dominance over women and the sex industry? This blog piece is very succinct about the use of the terminology and it's impact.

In our world of babywearing though.... What term would you prefer to use to describe your unique baby carrier?

A pimped carrier?
Or a customized carrier?

When I first came across this question my knee jerk reaction was that the term had entered into our common vernacular and so I didn't feel like we needed to be so reactionary about its use. But since considering this issue in more depth my perception has shifted. The sex industry is not glamorous and even in this almost simple use, I personally feel that it has no place in the babywearing industry. I will make an effort to change the way I use this word.

Will you?

Wednesday, 12 February 2014

Wordless Wednesday: A Week In The Life Of Ashley Marie

I am a first time momma who loves everything about babywearing. Not only has it created a strong bond, it has allowed us to go just about anywhere. He is always happy when he is in a carrier and I am always happy to wear him. It has been a wonderful 8 months and I hope it never ends. (I know it will eventually but hopefully not anytime soon)

Monday, 10 February 2014

Reasons Why We Wear #6

...... because it gives us a chance to enjoy some of the miracles of nature together!

Sunday, 9 February 2014

COTW #2- Back Wearing In All Types Of Carriers

By Aline Kelly

This week will focus on back carries in all kinds of carriers - buckle carriers, mei tais, rings slings, and woven wraps.

Back carries are popular for the hands-free freedom that it provides. Its easier on your body to carry a heavier child on your back, and older bubs love the vantage point to look around to see the world.

It is important to note that stretchy wraps are not safe to use for back carries, even if the wrap's instructions say it's fine. Stretchy wraps simply have too much give and a feisty baby can easily wriggle free. This video illustrates this well.

Remember to practice new back carries with a spotter or over a soft surface such as a bed. Mirrors are also helpful to ensure baby is positioned safely and securely.

It is generally recommended that younger babies have decent head and trunk control before wearing them on your back. However in a woven wrap or mei tai, with care and preparation, they can be worn on your back from birth.

Various universal ways of getting back on your back regardless of carrier - the most common methods are hip scoot, santa toss, and superman toss.
Photo instructions from Wrap Your Baby.
Video instuctions from Wrapababy:

Helpful resources for specific carriers:

Soft-structured carrier:
Video demo of Ergo, Beco Butterfly, and Boba back carries:

Ring Sling:
Photo instructions from Wearababy

Mei Tai:
Photo instructions from Wrap Your Baby.
Video demo by Becoming Mamas, with newborn and toddler:

Woven wrap:
More back carries in wovens will be covered in future COTWs!

Again, we encourage the posting of as many quality additional links as possible, as well as pics and videos by group members!

Questions are strongly encouraged, and honest feedback and tips for improvement are appreciated! COTW is about learning and improving with the support and collective wisdom of the community.

Saturday, 8 February 2014

Ottawa's Pride (In Light Of The Sochi Olympics)

by Tami Grosset

Jim Watson, Ottawa's mayor, flew the rainbow flag over city hall yesterday, as the Sochi Olympics began their opening ceremony. Us OBGers were tickled pink by his response to a voter questioning the use of the flag, so we created this collage to thank him!

For ideas on how to be a gay rights ally during the Olympics you may find this blog useful. 

Jim Watson may have lost that one vote but I suspect he has gained many many more!!

Friday, 7 February 2014

Friday Funny!!

Check out this awesome clip from Uppymama!!!

I think we all want to be that mama!

Thursday, 6 February 2014

Thursday Thought: Boba (Wrap) & Beyond

by Tami Grosset

Recently a member asked about stretchy wraps, wanting to know the difference between a Boba (or Sleepy Wrap) and a Moby, or other stretchy wrap.

Rose at 5 months in a purple Boba Wrap, photo by Jenna Sparks Bradbury

Most stretchy wraps are made from 100% jersey cotton. The Moby is one of the best known and most widely available 100% jersey cotton stretchy wrap (SW). It is quite thick (think 2 receiving blankets) and has a good stretch. As with all SWs you can pre tie and then pop baby in and out as you need to however you may need to retie or adjust throughout the day as the wrap may start to sag from frequent popping. 

The Boba (which used to be called the Sleepy Wrap before rebranding) wrap has 95% cotton and 5% spandex which gives it a bit more stretch. You pretie it as you would all other SWs but you tie it much more tightly. Because of the extra stretch you get from the spandex you can tie it super snug (so it snaps like pantie elastic) and you can get baby in and out easily for a whole day without the wrap starting to sag. It also allows a user to not worry about getting the tension right for the size of child you're wearing. This is why the Boba is so highly regarded... If you tie it on tight it's going to work super well for any sized baby and no adjusting needed. Plus it's cheaper- the Boba Wrap generally retails for $60 and the Moby retails for $65 whilst other brands of SW might sell for around about $90.


Any SW can be a great carrier for a newborn baby but they don't always work for new babywearers! If you're considering buying a carrier as a gift for a new family it may be a good idea to gift them a gift card or invite them to shop with you at one of our awesome local babywearing boutique stores where the staff are well experienced and are expert at their stock. (See our list of local recommended retailers.)

Wednesday, 5 February 2014

Wordless Wednesday: A Week In The Life Of Jennifer

Clockwise from top right: testing out a new variation of DH--realized mid-wrap that it would not look great with a CCCB; we've been rocking the dinner-prep wearing lately; killing time while he slowly wakes up; this is what your perfect seat looks like if you don't heed your toddler's request of "Don't stop to take a picture!"

Tuesday, 4 February 2014

Reasons Why We Wear #5 I can catch up with my favourite blogs, Facebook groups and check my email without having to type with one hand!

Monday, 3 February 2014

My Stash Monday: Kim's Story

I always tell everyone that my two favourite parenting tools (the ones I couldn't live without) are breastfeeding and babywearing. My son Xavier, who is now ten months old, has been carried in various carriers since his birth. This is the story of how my "stash" of baby carriers grew exponentially over the past year.
I have many carriers, but (as I tell my husband) I know I'll be able to resell all my carriers when we're done having babies. I see it as an investment... in our sanity! They really are invaluable parenting tools- even my husband agrees. He's actually become just as much of an advocate for baby carriers as I am. When people tell us we have such a happy, smiling baby, we credit babywearing. Babies are so much happier in our arms.

Of course, you don't need 15 carriers to carry your baby! I happen to like having a variety of tools in my arsenal, but I could definitely get by with just one or two carriers. Learning about the advantages and disadvantages of each type of carrier became a kind of pastime for me during my maternity leave. And I especially love being able to help other moms choose and use carriers, now that I've tried so many. I even took a two-day Babywearing Educator course so that I would feel even more comfortable helping other moms. Babywearing makes my life so much easier, and I know it can help others, too.

My First Contact with the "Babywearing World"

My first encounter with babywearing was more than four years ago. When the first of my friends had a baby, I accompanied her (and her newborn daughter) on a trip to Milkface to choose a carrier. She bought a stretchy wrap, but after looking at all the options, I secretly picked out an Ergobaby as my carrier of choice for my future baby.

I knew I would be a baby "wearer" just because it had always seemed more natural to me to hold a little baby in my arms rather than a big car seat or stroller. I always feel frustrated whenever I see new moms pushing strollers back and forth to try to calm a crying baby, or struggling to soothe a tiny baby fussing in a huge bucket car seat. Fast forward to my pregnancy. My mother, a certified Lactation Consultant who "wore" both me and my brother when we were babies, had been selling stretchy wraps through her business. She mentioned that she'd like to give me one as a shower gift, but I told her that wraps looked much too complicated and I didn't want that type of carrier. I already had my heart set on an Ergobaby and put the new Ergobaby Performance model on my baby shower wishlist. Luckily for me, a very kind and generous friend bought it for me. I thought I was all set!

I bought carrier #2 the day after giving birth. I bought it off Kijiji, with my iPhone, from my hospital bed. My natural, unmedicated birth with a midwife turned into a c-section... and so the day after Xavier's birth, sitting there in bed while my husband held our baby, it occurred to me that I wouldn't be able to wear the Ergobaby waist belt across my c-section scar. I needed another carrier!

I'm cheap... I mean, frugal; I love buying things used, so Kijiji was the place I turned to first. I didn't really know what other types of carriers existed besides buckle carriers like the Ergo and big, long stretchy wraps. I happened upon an ad for a pouch sling and thought that would be perfect: no waist band! I emailed the seller, who offered to deliver the sling to the hospital. (Another reason I love buying used! She actually showed up with a little plant as a baby gift, too!)

Pouch and Ring Slings

Little did I know that I wouldn't actually be doing any baby carrying for several weeks. It took me that long to recover from my surgery, and in any case, those first few weeks were spent sitting on the couch nursing and sleeping. My husband and my mom were the first to carry Xavier in a carrier. My husband put him in the Ergo when we ventured out for our first few walks. And my mom, who was a huge help those first few weeks (and still is!!), took a liking to the pouch sling and cooked and cleaned with my son in it. He fell asleep every time she put him in it, giving me a much-needed break. I thought the pouch sling was convenient, but hard to adjust around my baby. I went to Kijiji again and bought carrier #3, a soft cotton ring sling. So much easier to put on! And I loved that I didn't have to put down my baby to put it on; I could just slip it over both of us, then tighten. That's still, to me, one of the biggest advantages of ring slings.

Buckle Carriers and Mei Tais

As my baby got heavier, though, I started wishing I had a two-shouldered carrier. I could wear the Ergo at this point, but it felt huge around my son, and with all its buckles, it just wasn't the carrier I reached for when I wanted to snuggle my baby. Back to Kijiji I went, where I spotted carrier #4: a very inexpensive BabyHawk mei tai carrier. It was older, and well-loved, but still in great shape. I used my mei tai to put our son to sleep almost every night for the next three months.

When Xavier was two months old, my husband went back to work... in St. John's. (He travels a lot for his work, several weeks at a time.) We decided that since I was on maternity leave, I would travel with him, living out of a modest hotel room. My son and I have taken over a dozen flights back and forth to St. John's (and elsewhere) now. I can't imagine not having a carrier in the airport! And having a carrier also meant that I could put my son to sleep anywhere. (This is still useful when we go over to our friends' or parents' houses, too!) The other thing that I love most about traveling with my baby in the mai tei or the Ergo was that I could nurse easily and discreetly anywhere.

 Getting Out and About

I started trying back carries with the mei tai while I was in that hotel room in St. John's with nothing else to do. There was a big mirror by the bed, so I could stand over the bed while practicing. Back carries were so comfortable! Both my son and I were happy with him in the mei tai on my back. I could get laundry done, go for a walk, have breakfast, all while he could look around, over my shoulder, or nap if he wanted to. I practiced back carries with my Ergo, too, until I was comfortable moving my baby around from front to back and back to front in both the mei tai and the Ergo. When we were out and about, I mostly used the Ergo, because the straps of the mei tai dragged on the ground. At home, I preferred the mei tai because of the comfort of cotton, and because there are so many different ways to tie it (one-shouldered, straps crossed, etc.).

My First Wrap

Since I didn't really have much to do at the hotel, I decided that I would finally try out the one carrier that I hadn't tried yet, the one that I thought looked so complicated: a wrap. I walked over to the nearest fabric store and picked out a fabric that didn't need to be hemmed. (It would actually have been less expensive to buy a ready-made baby wrap, but there weren't any babywearing stores within walking distance of my hotel!) When I tied on my stretchy wrap (after watching a few Youtube videos), I finally understood why people love wraps so much. My stretchy wrap (carrier #5) was, by far, the most comfortable carrier I had ever worn! I still didn't love that it took a minute or two to put on, but it was definitely worth it in snuggle-factor and weight distribution once it was on. If I didn't have any other carriers, I think I would just tie my wrap on in the morning and keep it on, popping baby in and out as needed.

Discovering the Ottawa Babywearing Group

With all the traveling I was doing, I started wishing I had a smaller, more portable version of my Ergo. I started researching and looking at other buckle carriers. When I saw the new Ergo Stowaway on sale, I bought carrier #6. (I keep the Stowaway in the car now, or toss it under the stroller on the rare occasions that I do lug it out.) During my research, I also read about the Beco Gemini, and how it was supposedly a better fit for smaller women, so I decided to look for a used one to try. I found one on Kijiji, and although I didn't end up liking it very much (and re-sold it), that purchase turned out to be well worth it if only because the seller turned out to be OBG admin Ariane! When I admitted that the Beco would be carrier #7, she told me she had more than 10 carriers! I wanted to run out to the car and tell my husband, "see, I'm not the only crazy one!" Then she told me about the Ottawa Babywearing Group on Facebook. I have to thank Ariane for introducing me to this great network of knowledgeable babywearers! And I also have Ariane to credit for really getting me interested in woven wraps: that evening, she answered the door wearing her toddler on her back in a beautiful wrap, tied in what I now know was probably a double hammock with saltwater finish. When I commented on the wrap and how I had always thought they looked too complicated, she told me about "shorties." Hmm. A shorter wrap? Now that idea I liked!

Finding the Woven Wrap Love

Through the OBG, I bought the least expensive wrap (carrier #8) that I could find... but it was much too long. I didn't like it at all. It wasn't very soft, and I still just found it to be too much fabric. But I remembered Ariane's suggestion, so I borrowed the shortest wrap that I could from the library (a size 2). I practiced with that wrap for two weeks, in front of the mirror. Finally, I found the woven wrap love! It was definitely more comfortable, AND more snuggly than any of my other carriers. It's hard to explain what makes a wrap different from other carriers. I love that I can wrap it around my baby while I hold him (no need to put him down). But best of all, when I wear him in a wrap (in a front carry, especially), I feel like we are snuggled in a blanket together! I bought my own size 2 wrap (carrier #9, for those keeping track!) shortly after returning the library's wrap.

 I've bought a few other wraps and carriers since then, but they are more of the same -- more mei tais, more buckle carriers, more ring slings and... more wraps. I've stopped counting. I use a variety of carriers every week, and rarely does a day go by that my son isn't carried at all.

Even if I didn't own any carriers, my baby would still be carried... but my arms would be more tired and I would probably be more frustrated! Babywearing makes life so much easier.

Sunday, 2 February 2014

Carry Of The Week #1- The Basic Ruck

by Aline Kelly

Welcome to Carry of the Week! 

One year ago, Aline Kelly and Tami Grosset debuted this OBG feature and it became a great success. Each week featured a new carry or theme, and as a group we could learn, troubleshoot, and share successes and stumbling blocks together. Sometimes new favourite carries were found, sometimes members just had fun becoming aware of different options that were available to them. 

Over the course of 50 weeks, many carries and skills were learned, many babies were snuggled, much fun was had, perhaps some sanity was saved, and maybe even some babies and mamas were happier for it. 

This week we are restarting the series from the beginning. The old posts will be re-edited, links will be updated, and the fun will begin anew. We encourage members to add links, tips, and helpful suggestions in the comments section. 

Carry of the Week #1 - Rucksack carry with a woven wrap

The Rucksack carry, or Ruck, is a simple one-pass back carry that can be used to wrap babies of any age, from newborn to toddler and beyond. It is best achieved with a mid-length woven wrap and is a good way for beginners to get started with back carries. It is appreciated for its simplicity and lightness in warm weather.

As with all wrap carries, importance is placed on baby's legs being in a good M position (knees above bum) and fabric supporting under the legs from knee to knee.

Younger babies should have fabric supporting them up to their necks, whereas older babies should be supported at least up to their armpits.

Beginners are advised to practice over a bed or with a spotter. Mirrors are also helpful for proper positioning.

Getting baby on your back:
Photos (WrapYourBaby)

Making a seat:

Photo instructions:

Video instructions:

Newborn rucksack with different finishing options (BabywearingFaith)

Please feel free to share questions, photos (successful and non-successful attempts), tips, and experiences with this carry!