Comparing Mei Tais to Woven Wraps

This is not so much an introduction to Mei Tais as it is a geeky comparison.  When I first launched WrapYourBaby.com in 2005 I included instructions for both wraps and Mei Tais.  My favorite carriers were woven wraps and Mei Tais and I wanted to teach others about them at a time when there weren’t local groups and spotting other babywearers “in the wild” was rare.  Now that my site is dedicated to woven wrapping, I wanted to find a way to incorporate these images with my oldest daughter from all those years ago.  I don’t have the originals anymore, so I can’t offer bigger versions, but I hope you will enjoy them anyway in the context of this comparison!  Read More

Kinds of Baby Carriers

Historical Note: This was one of the first pages on my original educational website, long before I added a store.  WrapYourBaby.com was one of the earliest websites providing photo tutorials for wraps (and originally mei tais as well) before YouTube came along and provided video tutorials.  I created this page to help explain the most popular kinds of carriers when they were less well known.  Note that ABC was the popular descriptor for Asian-style carriers in 2005, and pouches were much more popular at the time – they are safe, ergonomic carriers and not another name for the dangerous bag carriers in which baby dangles by the parent’s hip. This page did not include descriptions of Soft Structured Carriers as the Ergo had not yet become so well known at the time that I wrote this (2005) and other brands of SSC were yet to follow.

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Make Mothers Day Meaningful

Baby Carriers for Refugees Mothers Day Giveaway

This Mother’s Day help a refugee family by donating money or carriers to Carry the Future and comment on this Facebook post to tell me you did. I’ll choose one random winner to receive one of my exclusive woven wraps.

Carry the Future accepts donated soft structured carriers and mei tais which are personally brought to Greece by their volunteers.  These volunteers are trained in the use of the carriers and meet refugees where they land in Greece or at other camps to pass out the carriers and teach the recipients how to use them.  Because of the language barrier and the very short amount of time they have to teach the families safe use of the carrier, they only accept SSCs (soft structured carriers or buckle carriers) and Mei Tais: carriers that can be easily and quickly demonstrated visually.

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Babywearing Halloween Contest 2015

Do I spy Pumpkin spice . . . everything? Must be time for Wrap Your Baby’s annual Facebook Costume Contest!

One entry will win a free woven wrap!

Start planning your babywearing costume now. Share it on the Wrap Your Baby Facebook page anytime in October. I will share some of the photos on social media or on my blog and on 3 November I will collect all entries to a contest album and voting will occur the first week of November.  The photo with the most likes will win a woven wrap!
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Natibaby Wool Wrap for Summer

I donated a wool Natibaby wrap to the Babywearing Group in Augusta, Georgia, with the request that they try it out in the Summer and tell me if the rumors are true: is a wool wrap really breathable and (relatively) cool in hot weather?
Here are the responses from members of the Augusta Area Babywearers:

Woven Wrap with Snowflakes

“Thick but not too heavy. I had this wrap in fall and it was perfect. Not too hot at all. Loved the way it wrapped, it got me hooked on baby wearing!” Kaitlyn G.

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My First Wrapped Baby Turns Eleven

How I became a mother, Wrap Your Baby became a business, and you got 25% off a Natibaby wrap this week – read on!

I became a mother on September 9th 2004.  It was a girl!  I had planned to name her Molly if she was a girl but once he met her, David insisted that she didn’t look like a Molly.

Wrap Your Baby's First Baby Birth

Does she look like a Molly?

We spent our first day together in bed (all three of us) trying out names and the first one we all really liked was Ada.  David’s father comes from a Jewish family and we loved that Ada is a form of the Hebrew name Adah, which is found in the bible and means “ornament” or “brightness.”  I didn’t find out until later that Ada means First Born Daughter in the Nigerian language Igbo,  and while we have no known ties to Nigeria, I love that it is appropriate in another language as well.

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Babywearing, Family, Special Needs

Connie graciously allowed me to share her Facebook post to friends from earlier this month:

Wrapping Family, Special Needs

Why do we babywear?

For my child with cerebral palsy, babywearing allows him to engage with the world when he was a non-walking toddler; now he walks with orthotics, but tires easily, the carrier allows me to offer him rest and respite.

For my child with ASD, the snug hold of a carrier helps him to organize and calm down when he feels overwhelmed and in need of refuge.

Babywearing allows our children to be fully engaged in the world. We take them places that strollers cannot go, we show them the world that we see. My child who cannot walk without his braces can still go up a mountain, or down to the edge of the sea. My child who gets over-stimulated can still participate in our family and friends’ celebrations and be a part of the community.

One of the fears I have as a mother to special needs children is that their world will be smaller and dimmer than I’d hoped for them. Babywearing helps me to combat that, to write a different future for them, in a world where they know, from the beginning, that they belong.

How to Share Babywearing with the World without being OBNOXIOUS

What do you love about wrapping your baby?

I know you love wrapping your baby: the closeness, the connection, and the convenience!  AND it’s so pretty!  And mastering the different wrap carries is fun and makes you feel a sense of accomplishment!

Naturally, you want to share this amazingness with EVERYBODY.  But does everybody want to hear?  Are you just turning everybody off of babywearing with your enthusiasm?

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Pediatric Babywearing

Mandy is a pediatric nurse.  She doesn’t work in NICU so hadn’t had experience before with a baby going through withdrawal, but as a babywearing mother, when she found herself responsible for a distraught baby, she knew what she could offer him for comfort!  When she shared this in our local babywearing group, I felt fit to burst with emotion:  compassion for the baby and mother and also a deep gratitude for the ability to comfort babies with the simplicity of human touch; for the good fortune to know how important this is for babies; and for Mandy to be working when this little one needed that.  Mandy reported that the other nurses were continuing to wear the baby so that he was not left adrift when she went home.

In Mandy’s own words, “I’m a pediatric nurse and had a baby going through withdrawal. I made a makeshift sling out of some baby blankets and “wore” him as much as I could. It was the only thing that consistently calmed him down! Wear ALL the babies, even the ones who aren’t our own!”

Summer Babywearing and Woven Wraps

Babywearing in the Summer - a Survival Guide

Summer babywearing in Florida means knowing how to keep everyone comfortable in a baby carrier in hot weather.  Here are my suggestions for lighter Summer baby wraps, recommendations for cooler carries to use with your wraps, and tips for surviving hot weather wrapping so you don’t have to stay in-doors all Summer!

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London Intro to Babywearing Walks

Intro to Babywearing Walk with Walking Mums in London

Walking Mums offers Intro to Babywearing Walks for trying out different kinds of carriers

Motherhood is an experience that is unique to each of us yet there are certain experiences that many of us have in common.  That’s why other moms can be the best allies and friends and help to keep us sane and make us happy.

Jay (founder of the organization) understood that because she felt the absence of that “village” of moms when her baby was born and out of necessity Walking Mums was born.

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Dear New Wrapper . . . You Got This!

Sometimes I hear that wrapping is too hard.  It has a steep learning curve.  There is even a popular meme circulating that begins with “Dear New Wrapper” and promises that as terrible and frustrating as it is to learn to wrap, it will all be so worth it.

I disagree.  Wrapping doesn’t have to be hard.

Learn how easy baby wrapping can be.

I get emails all the time from parents who just received their wrap, tried it on and LOVED IT.  And that’s what I want to happen every time I ship a wrap.

But it is not uncommon for a parent to try a wrap for the first time and end up with a big mess.  Baby crying, wrap not supporting them, back hurting . . . what went wrong?
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Farm Babywearing – Woven Wraps & a Farming Family

Farm Babywearing: Parents wrap toddlers on horse farm

photo by Petal & Vine Photography

Tatyana relates her experiences with farm babywearing – wrapping her babies and toddlers as she and her husband Frank, always adventurous, embark on the adventure of farming:

With two babies 13 months apart, babywearing has saved my sanity way too many times! Me and my husband met hiking the Appalachian Trail, so backpacking is what we love the best. Only when babywearing your load is much more precious than a load of camping equipment. Read More

Babywearing: Beneficial or the Biological Norm?

Babywearing is the Biological Norm

Yesterday the Canadian Babywearing School posted this Facebook status update:

Do you know that there are NO benefits to babywearing? It’s the biological norm and being carried and kept close is the minimum babies expect at birth. When we use language like “benefits”, we establish babywearing as a nice extra (like a university fund or tennis lessons) instead of the normal behaviour that carrying is. Change our language, change the world!

How can you say there are no benefits to babywearing?

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Fitness and Community with Babywearing Ballet

Making Fitness Fun for Moms with Babywearing Ballet Classes
Wrapping moms know that life can carry on (pun intended) with baby in tow and that the experiences had in a wrap enrich baby’s physical and cognitive growth far more than sitting on the sidelines.

Wrapping your baby is a great way to keep both mother and baby in fine physical fettle and any gentle activity will be comfortable and soothing to your wrapped baby. Bonus points for a fun activity that gives mom an opportunity to build community and engage with grown-up friends!

Wrapping dance instructor demonstrates for ballet class.

Ballet Instructor describing how the mothers in the babywearing ballet class should point their feet as they arabesque across the room.

Ballet Bar Work with wrapped and worn babies.

Folding chair were used when the standing bars were all filled up.

Babywearing ballet with Ergo and wrapping moms.

You can use any safe and ergonomic carrier for a babywearing dance or fitness class, although wraps are the most flexible both in terms of lack-of-structure and ability to customize the carry to compliment your activity and body preferences!

Wrapsody Breeze Morgaine hugs baby against wrapping mom's body during ballet class.

Babies are soothed by being wrapped against you during the motion of your day, so why not do something fun and artistic as well as active while your baby snoozes?

 

Wrapsody Breeze wraps are light and flexible; great for active lifestyles!

Mothers and babies practicing ballet walks across the room. Wrapsody Breeze wraps are light and cool, perfect for active families with babies.

Double Hammock Carry for a Second Arabesque in Babywearing Ballet

Baby watches the class from mama's back in a Double Hammock Carry as she demonstrates a Second Arabesque.

Wrapped snugly in Front Wrap Cross Carry for Babywearing Ballet.

A snug wrap job in Wrapsody Breeze Ada keeps baby secure while practicing curtseys.

Back wrapping while teaching babywearing ballet!

Elizabeth Bedore, our talented Babywearing Ballet Instructor, wearing Wrapsody Breeze Kimber.

Most of the wraps used in this class were Wrapsody Breeze wraps which are so light and thin that they are much appreciated here in Florida, and also lend themselves expertly to work out activities.

Most of the mothers have their babies wrapped in either a Double Hammock Back Carry or a Front Wrap Cross Carry variation.  Any secure carry will work.  A back carry is most convenient for bending and raising legs but front carries should be used by anyone not already a competent back wrapper and it is easy for a babyweaing instructor to adjust the class to fit the needs of the moms.  A knowledgeable instructor will keep the motions of the class gentle and smooth, and advise mothers not to overreach while doing the double workout of ballet and babywearing.

Back carries wrapped a little lower rather than super-high on mom’s back may be more convenient for an activity such as this and keep you better balanced.

Palm Harbor Florida is lucky to have a mom-owned business dedicated to bringing fitness and community to moms in a family oriented environment.  If you are in the area you will want to visit Om Sweet Om and discover all the classes available.

If you are anywhere else in the world, find your local babywearers and see if you can find a qualified individual who wants to start a class!