Thursday, June 7, 2007

Baby Wearing

We went sling shopping last week. The carrier we have been using was OK, but the straps slip so after an hour, Jackson would be riding near my hips rather than my chest. He's also at a weird size for it, big enough to put his legs through the leg holes, but in that position, too short to see anything. So we went to the baby store to try carriers and see what we like.

This was an adventure in and of itself. I multi-tasked trips. For us, multi-tripping is not just something the energy saving articles say you should do to save gas. We live out in the sticks, so its a necessity. But the timing was bad, so when we got to the store, Jackson was hungry. Fortunately, the store is very progressive and had space to nurse him. They also had diapers available, and since I didn't want to go back to the car, I tried one of their unbleached cotton, chemical free diapers. Then we tried on carriers. I tried the wraps, but I didn't like all the extra fabric involved and although they say they're secure, I'm afraid that the fabric would slip out of the rings and we'd have the same trouble as before. So I settled on the sling. I was still trying them when all of the milk Jackson drank worked its way through his system, and blew right out the top of the feel-better-about-landfilling-this-diaper. Lucky for them, we were currently wearing the sling I'd opted to buy.

Jackson really likes it. He can sit forward or backward or sideways. When he grows his legs can hang out, and I can swing him over to my hip or even my back. It folds up tightly, and there are no straps to worry about adjusting or buckles to fuss with. Supposedly I can feed him in this discreetly in public. So far, I haven't been able to manage that. If anyone has tips on how, let me know, but I don't think there's enough room. The sling puts pressure on my shoulder and spine, but I'm hoping my muscles compensate and that goes away.

There isn't much different functionally between the various sling brands, but the one I chose is made by Hotslings. As an added bonus, the sling was designed by a mother a few years ago, she grew the business up as a cottage industry, and the sling is still made in country. The fabric is either domestic or imported from factories that guarantee fair wages.

ps. The sales person recommended cloth diapers as a way to prevent blowouts. I'm suspicious since I remember my mother using cloth diapers and the mess and hassle involved. But she swore they are no longer my mother's diapers. The fabric is thicker and more absorbent, pins are a thing of the past, and there are many types to choose from. She also claims that while he's eating only breast milk, there's no need to prewash, I can throw the whole mess in the washing machine. I'll be looking into this. If I'm brave enough to try it, you'll be hearing more.


  1. i'm so glad you found a good sling...we never quite got that worked out, i'm sad to say. We have a baby bjorn and a backpack we like, but one of these days I'd like something that holds elliot on my hip.

    We use cloth diapers part time, and like them quite a lot. we use fuzzibunz, and haven't had a problem. they are cute and easy and don't smell. we only have six, and use them just in the afternoons/evenings (e uses disposibles at daycare, and when we're going to be out and about). just fyi!

  2. Yes, we do like the Fuzzibunz. But as for using them to "prevent blowouts" . . . . umm, no. Exactly no.

    We'll do a blog post about this sometime. Short version: we split our time between Fuzzibunz and disposables. Pampers Swaddlers are fantastic. Eventually we downgraded from the Swaddlers to regular Huggies, with few ill effects.