Babywearing Halloween (win a prize)!

Babywearing Halloween Costume

I love the idea of a tandem costume.  You know, you and your wrapped up baby (or toddler) are something together.  A Kangaroo and a joey (as sported by Alyson Hannigan in the above photo).  An owl in a tree.  A two-headed monster.

Whether you’ve got older kids to take trick-or-treating, or you’re dressing up for a party, I want to see those tandem costumes!  Post your photo on the Wrap Your Baby Facebook page next week to join in.  We’ll count up which photo gets the most “likes” and I’ll send a warm fleece babywearing cover* to the lucky tandem pair!

But just for participating, winner or not, you will get 10% off a purchase from my store!  Just send me an email with a link to your photo on Facebook, and I’ll send you the coupon code!

So, everyone who posts a picture gets 10% off, and one winning photo will get a free babywearing cover for winter!  It’s a win-win-win situation!  I can’t wait to see what you come up with!

*if the winner is outside the US, I will have to ask you to pay shipping–sorry!

Some costume brainstorming ideas from the community at large:

The Wrap Photos

I wish I could send a prize to everyone! I am not kidding when I say this was hard.  In the end I practically just tossed a coin because I couldn’t stop going round and round on these great photos.  I had photos of children learning about the world from a wrap, babies were snuggling in  perfect contentment on a parent’s chest, mommies babywearing and daddies babywearing, infants and toddlers, broad smiles, wide eyes, and sleepy grins, wrapping in the water and in the snow, in the orchard and in the city…

It’s just what I wanted: the variety of where wrapping takes you, but I didn’t realize how impossible the choosing would be.  There were also some really stunningly beautiful photos that would win a photography contest, but I was looking for context, too: all the places that wrapping can take you, how much of life you can experience with your baby!

Do you feel sorry for me, yet?  No, you just want me to shut up and show you some pictures, already!  Okay, okay, here’s what you want:

The two mommas who have a free babywearing pendant coming their way are:

Candace, who so epitomized “mommy” that the very description of her photo won the hearts of so many of you–like April who commented, “A picture of how babywearing brings joy and simplicity to what could be drudgery. We all have babies, we all clean up messes on hands and knees, with mussed hair. No matter the ethnicity, the creed, the country. We are ALL mothers!”
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And Amanda, who gave me scores of photos of her family wrapping with multiple parents and through multiple children (sometimes both kids at once) across years in the snow, in orchards, on hay rides and firetrucks…so here’s just a sample:

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I’m going to make these photos into a movie about baby wrapping, but in the meantime, here’s are a  few of the others I had to choose between:

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Beautiful Wrap Photos

I asked for photos of “where wrapping has taken you” and was flooded with beautiful pictures of happy wrapped babies 🙂

One winner was already chosen, but I promised three, and I’m having a hell of a time choosing those last two winners.  Narrowing it down has caused me an entire Saturday of agonizing, and now I seem able to narrow no narrower:

  1. Do I pick the breathtaking moment of sibling bonding in the woods?
  2. Or the mom with baby on back peeking through leaves in an orchard?
  3. I’m sorely tempted to choose the photo of a mom on hands and knees, cleaning up a mess, grinning up through mussed hair with a happily undressed baby on her back–you know, the one I can relate to most of the time!
  4. But then there’s the way wrapping brought a little Native American baby to her first powwow…

So help me out, here.  Based solely on my descriptions, which photo do you choose?

Travelling and Wrapping

Wrapped up baby feeding the ducks.

For the past two and a half months we’ve been traveling (those of you ordering wraps may see varying postmarks!) and the wrap has taken us everywhere from way out in nature, to the Staten Island Ferry.  We haven’t missed a step.

I can’t say it’s more helpful than when we’re at home though, because I use it just as much when I’m being a domestic stay at home mother and housewife type.

And conducting business on the road?  A little tricky because the internet connection and electricity are not reliable–we’re not in hotel rooms, but in our motorhome.  And it’s a very little motorhome so we have to take out the kids’ carseats when we get an order to take a wrap out from the underseat storage.  This hasn’t been too bad, since we just pretty much do this once a day before we drive, and the carseats are taken out every night to change the seats into the girls’ bed anyway.  We sure could have used some of that storage space for clothes, though.  Or craft supplies!

But we’ve kept up relatively well with customer communications and we’ve maintained a speedy shipping rate, and I think the experiment could be summarized as a success!

We’re back in Florida now, where all the grandparents are, and where our house is still under negotiations.  Still under negotiations means it still belongs to us, so that gives us somewhere to park and plug in while we’re here.  And we’re staying a while because we want to have Thanksgiving with our whole family, since we won’t be here for Christmas.  And we’ve got plenty to do before we leave around the first of December.  I would love to get some work done on the Wrap Your Baby business, including but not limitted to:

  • picking photo contest winners (from the contest I held a few months back)
  • compiling a photo montage from the contest entries and sharing it with the world
  • making a super quick “nursing from FWCC” video
  • making a tandem babywearing video
  • putting together a pregnancy wrapping video
  • updating my mailing list
  • adding gift certifcates to my website
  • adding a couple of products for sale on my website
  • adding some sponsorship to my blog

We have a lot of goals that are not Wrap Your Baby related, too, so we’ll see how much gets done!  But as always, I’m available by email, on Facebook, and we are shipping out orders every day.  And at least I’m not bored!

Seven Years Old

My first little wrapling is now a tall, strong, talkative girl who is about to have her seventh birthday! For those of you who are still in babyland, you might like to know that she is much easier than she used to be, a great help to me with the little ones, and very sweet company.  Worth all the sleepless nights!  Happy birthday, Ada!

Ada with her baby brother

Ada with her baby brother

Ada and her one year old sister

Ada and her little sister

Where Strollers Dare Not Go: Coast of Maine

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Out on the rocks into the chilly Atlantic on the coast of Maine in Acadia National Park!

Cassidy couldn’t have come with us in a stroller, and wrapping kept him safe while leaving our hands free to keep ourselves and our other kids safe on the rocks.  More about our time in Maine at Free Range Dreams.

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Annabelle, no stroller baby, had a blast climbing and playing among the rocks (she’s 1/8th troll) but after an hour of this, she was ready to be in arms and cuddle her way back (to where we had foolishly left our shoes and socks too close to the encroaching waves).

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Gorgeous Wrap Sale!

Leafy Bali Breeze Kimber

This is a my-loss-is-your-gain sale. Here’s what happened: A tiny, unnoticed leak in our motorhome got to where my Bali Breeze Kimber wraps were stored. All of my Bali Breeze wraps are in one place except for the Kimber which just didn’t fit. So I’m fortunate that only the Kimbers were affected!

So I’ve washed and dried them and now my entire stock of Kimbers is in like-new, unworn, washed-once condition. Since buyers are supposed to wash these wraps before wearing them, I should really charge extra for the service, but instead I’ve decided to offer these wraps at a discount:

Buy a Kimber baby wrap by end of day Monday to save $12 using coupon code RainyDaySale

Like you needed an excuse to buy a stunning, shimmery, batiked, gauze wrap with earthy leaves and a subdued rainbow of colors…!

Nursing in a FWCC cradle carry with gauze Kimber wrap

BBB Kimber Front Wrap Cross Carry

Quick Switch to Nursing

Someone on the Facebook page asked for help making a quick switch to a nursing position when baby is already wrapped up. Sorry, I don’t remember who asked, but this post is for you, and I hope you see it!

With my 4 month old I’m doing a lot of quick nursing. It seems that nursing is ALWAYS an emergency and once baby starts crying, the pressure is on!

So try to practice a few times when it’s NOT an emergency. In this video, my baby was not yet asking to nurse, so it goes pretty smoothly 🙂

This one shows nursing in a Front Cross Carry. This only works if you’ve got baby wrapped up with both legs beneath both crosses, a FCC variation I like a lot as it holds my baby very close to me and is great for impromptu nursing sessions!

So I’m putting up the video for nursing in a Front Cross Carry and a second video showing how I put Cassidy into the FCC variation in the first place. I’ll try to do a similar video for Front Wrap Cross Carry soon.

Switching to a Nursing Carry

Wrapping Baby Under FCC Crosses

Keep Baby Under Your Chin

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The Front Cross Carry is perfect for lots of ins and outs with a new baby, but the two of you will only enjoy it if you wrap baby high on your chest.

If baby tends to sink down deep into the wrap, try holding your baby and putting the wrap on around him or her for more of a custom fit.

As you go, be sure to pull each part snug across the entire width of the wrap. Take it slow and steady. Do it when your baby is happy just being held so that baby stays content while you take the three minutes to get this just right.

Be sure that the middle of the wrap that is behind your back is high on your back–right below your armpits is probably good. Make sure there are no loose or floppy bits of wrap back there. Do this by pulling carefully on each strand of the wrap as you make the first pass over baby, and just as carefully with the second pass.

Front Cross Carry is most convenient when you pretie, but wrapping it around baby for a couple of days can transform your pretied FCC into one that stays snug. Remember that your baby should be high enough to kiss!

One of Three Contest Winners

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The first winner of my photo contest is Melissa.  Thanks for contributing to my project with your example of things you can do in a wrap!  The pendant you chose is on its way to you for your prize.  Anyone else have something to say about the freedom wrapping grants to parents and babies?  Two more winners will be chosen, and I am still accepting submissions!

Details here: https://wrapyourbaby.com/blog/2011/07/where-has-wrapping-taken-you/

Arms In, Arms Out

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When your little one grows enough that he or she is no longer content always nestling against your chest, pulling one of your baby’s shoulders and arms out of the wrap keeps him close while giving him a little more of a view of the world that is beginning to catch his attention.  This age (3 months, in the picture) wonderfully combines the cuddly closeness of babywearing with the burgeoning awareness and absorption of the world and your activities.  Before you know it, your baby’s sharp eyes will be taking in everything, whether it’s a natural wonder or how to pay for groceries.

Education isn’t just for big kids–it is a constant process for any human being and the younger you are, the faster you’re learning!  It’s no coincidence that my love of wrapping my babies progressed to a discovery of the unschooling philosophy!

Keeping your baby close in your wrap means that your baby is learning from your every move–whether his muscles are learning balance from your muscles, or he is taking in the delicacy of human interaction.  When you see an old friend, how does your breath, heartbeat, and body language change?  How does your voice sound, and what expressions do you make?  How about when you interact with a panhandler in the parking lot.  Baby notices the differences and is learning all the time, effortless for both of you.

How cool is that?

Where Has Wrapping Taken You?

Now that I’m traveling fulltime in my wrap, I’m inspired by all the places it’s easy to get to with a wrapped up baby.  You know, like the middle of a creek:

Wraps in Creek

And isn’t it remarkable, the number of things you can accomplish with a wrapped up baby.  Like feeding your older kids, or vacuuming. Even using the computer.

Wrapping makes life easier, and I want every new parent to know it.  So I’ve decided to make a slideshow of photographs that demonstrate this.  I need YOU to send me your pictures. Where have you been, and what have you done?

From all the submissions I receive, I’ll choose not one, but THREE people to receive a really gorgeous glass mother pendant like this one (or another from my store):

Glass PendantSend your photos to me at diana@wrapyourbaby.com

Send as many as you like, but they should show a baby/child being worn in a wrap (not other carriers):

  • in an interesting or difficult to access location
  • at an interesting/unique event
  • or while accomplishing a task/multitasking.

I won’t use every picture, but please include this line in your email: I give you permission to use this picture (or these pictures) in promotional material.

Babywearing Excursions

Our dear friend Robby took us to the most beautiful national park yesterday: Grandview in West Virginia.  He also brought his camera so I have a great shot of me, my baby, and the heavenly forest surround.  I also have a slightly less picturesque shot of my husband with our one year old beside a breathtaking and treacherous ravine.

So, when wearing your baby out on hikes or other outdoor adventures this summer, I think my family photos can provide an easy to remember babywearing endorsement:

 

Wrapping makes it easy to hike and nurse!

Hands free nursing on a hike!

 

 

See what can happen if you don’t bring a wrap?

Is it summer, or what?

We’re crossing state borders regularly now, and so far we haven’t escaped Summer.  Most of the country is HOT right now! Mothers of babies are, perhaps, destined to be a little warmer than the rest of the population.  Like pregnant women, it is part of the package: we trade uninterrupted sleep and bodily autonomy for the joys of motherhood.

Well, growing a baby in your womb is hot work, and producing milk on demand is hot work, and holding a hot little bundle of joy is hot work.  The last thing you want is to wrap all that warmth up in a thick piece of fabric!

What to do?

My suggestions: thinner fabric, and cooler carries (less layers).  And when all else fails, how about taking your babywearing into the water?

Keep your baby’s comfort in mind, too.  Make sure neither of you are getting overheated.  If you need to, find an indoor playplace to replace outdoor playground outings.  Stay hydrated.  Use a hand held fan.  There are lots of options, and here are a few more ideas for staying safe and comfy in warm weather.

What tricks do you experienced babywearers have for staying cool while staying close?

 

https://wrapyourbaby.com/summerbabywearing.html

Wrap Your Baby . . . On the Road

on the road

Not content to go on supporting a life we don’t love ecstaticly, we are making a BIG change. My husband just quit his day job doing construction, even though construction pays the bills. But that’s the thing—we’re getting rid of the bills, too. We’re trading in work and bills for a life of freedom on the road, traveling, making music, spending our time together and showing our kids everything that’s wonderful in this wide world.

I can not tell you how excited I am. We’ve lived in this city for eight years and all three of our children were born here. Two of them have never been out of the state! June 17th, that’s all changing. That’s the date we drive away. It’s not a vacation, it’s a new life.

We don’t plan to do it forever. We have a long term dream of owning land and homesteading somewhere beautiful. The idea to travel was born of my husband’s music—this is a tour to sell his recently released album Son of Ojito.

Maybe a year. We’ll see how it goes. And we’ll also be looking out for our dream land as we go.

I am excited for Wrap Your Baby, too. Stripping our expenses as we are gives Wrap Your Baby an opportunity to really support us. Sure, there’s nothing wrong with a labor of love, but even better if it can buy groceries, I say! And that’s the point of this change. We want to live on the things we love. If music and babywearing can support our family, how cool is that? Utopian, even!

I’m going to chronicle our adventures at FreeRangeDreams.com where I hope by spelling out how we’re making it work for us, that we might get cogs turning in other people’s minds too. No other family will want to do exactly what we’re doing, but I hope to inspire some ideas about how to live an unconventional life of your choosing. I might even run contests: make a drastic and wonderful change in your life and win a prize! What do you think of that?

Are there others out there living wild and woolly? Will you leave a comment to tell me about it?