Friday, February 24, 2012

My Hands-Free Device

I haven't blogged very much about wearing my babies in a sling.
This is mostly because I never like the pictures of me.
This one, though, I actually kind of like.
It was taken before I got my hair cut too short. 
(Not her fault--totally mine.  I thought I wanted to go shorter, but I was wrong.)
It was taken when Elizabeth was a month old,
which would be before I started gaining the 10+ pounds that I've slubbed on my hips, stomach, and arms since losing 30 pounds in the two weeks after she was born.
Oh yes!  That's me--the woman who loses weight while pregnant and GAINS it postpartum.

before anyone gets all up in my bid'ness about how slings are so DANGEROUS,
(yes, I did  have a woman literally chase me down in Target and tell me my baby could die in that thing)
I'd like to direct your attention to the following articles:


I didn't have a sling until I was pregnant with Ruby.
I started reading (ok, ok--blog surfing) about "wearing" my baby.
At the recommendation of a friend (ok, ok--it was a blogger),
I chose the one you see in the picture above.
It was VERY difficult for me to choose a fabric, but I LOVED it even MORE when it came in the mail!  
I knew I'd only get to spend the money once, so I'd better make it count! 
Though I haven't yet had a baby boy to put in there,
I think it is a pretty neutral pattern and could be used for boys or girls.
I ordered it from this site and was pleasantly surprised at the price.
It is pretty disheartening to need some baby things and have them be so expensive--there aren't showers for babies after #1 and 2!.
While $30 is no pocket change, it is much cheaper than many carriers on the market.

Wearing Ruby, Ivy, and now Elizabeth has been wonderful.
I love, love, love having them close to me.
I think it helps them transition well from life on the INside to life on the OUTside.

In church, wearing my baby in the sling is so much easier for my back--
plus it leaves my hands available to hold the hymnal, wipe the toddler's nose,
catch the snack baggie before it falls on the floor, or take a little one to the bathroom.

At home, I have days in which I have the baby in the sling a lot and days in which I don't do so as much--it depends on the day.
I remember, though, before I started slingin' how it felt like I was always just feeding the baby and then placing him or her back in the carseat, bouncy seat, or swing so that I could get the work done that needed to get done.  Now, I can assuage much of that guilt because she can stay right with me while I do much of what I need to do.  Having said that, I also don't feel guilty when I do put her down because I've held her so much already.  I'm a firm believer that babies need to be held.  I don't believe it's possible to spoil a baby by holding them "too much."
Would you like some statistics that back me up on that?
You're welcome.

I also have a wrap which I love.
(Apparently these have gone up in price since I bought mine--I think I paid $40.)

One day, I'd love to have an Ergo but for now, the price makes that not an option.

I also bought fabric the day Elizabeth was born to make my own mai-tai,
but my sewing machine is possessed and won't work reliably for me.

Just like tools in my farmer's toolbox, different slings/carriers work better at different ages and stages and in different scenarios.
For example, I once wore Ivy throughout a whole zoo field trip in my wrap with nary a sore back, neck, or shoulders.  She was about seven months old.
However, if I've just gotten the baby asleep I will grab for my sling because I can't tie the wrap on while holding the sleeping babe.  I may, though, have someone hold the baby while I put on the wrap and then take her back--it depends on how much of a gamble I'm willing to take on her waking up in the transfer!

There is so much out there about the benefits of baby wearing, different types of carriers, etc., so I don't need to re-write it all here.
Suffice it to say, I would encourage any parent to add a sling, wrap, or carrier to your stash of baby gear!
Please remember these important safety tips when wearing your baby--they may also help you not to be the one chasing down any mommys in Target.


  1. Never "wore" my boys but it sure would have easier than having to hold them ALL the time while trying to do normal activities. I also agree that babies CAN NOT be held too much. They have both grown into very independent and self confident young men and I think that is in part to having their "holding" needs met as a baby. There--that's my soap-box for the day! God Bless and hopefully we'll see ya'll before too long!

  2. Both Luke and I love wearing Drew! I wore him more as a little baby in a homemade wrap, but now that we have a Snugli, Luke wears him a lot when we're out and about (fishing, hunting, hiking,etc. solid man-bonding :-)).

  3. Love it!! You look great!!! And the baby is pretty cute too :) I know I am glad I haven't borrowed out my ergo. Scarlett has been getting 2 teeth right now and I have been at my wits end these last few weeks with her following me around screaming "Up Mom, Up!". So I am glad I have the ergo because the only way she is happy is when I am carrying her. And surprisingly my back doesn't even hurt yet! I actually have gotten more done because she won't sit and snuggle with me I have to be up and moving for her to be happy! I love baby wearing! They have actually done studies baby wearing is good because in order for babies brains to develop they need touch!

  4. We had a Baby Bjorn and LOVED it. I wore both my boys until well over 1 year old :)

  5. Our home-made wrap was one of the best things we did when preparing for Michael's arrival. We keep one in the car and one in the house. On our little vacation last fall, I wore him for 3 days straight while we were hiking and exploring with no back pain. :) I agree that you can't "over-hold" babies and wish I had done more with the others!


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