Why Spend Money on a Woven Wrap?

13th June, 2012 / Baby Wrap Benefits / No Comments

Curious about the cost of wraparound baby carriers? What makes a simple piece of cloth worth the expense?

Second baby in a woven wrap.

Consider this, while baby wraps may not be common in this culture, their function in caring for your baby is much greater than that of many modern conveniences that are considered necessary baby gear:

A baby will sleep anywhere, so how important is a crib, really? When a second-hand cradle or bassinet will do, or a cardboard box, for that matter! Slightly less ghetto is the dresser drawer option. And even if you want a traditional nursery, there are no shortage of second-hand cribs from friends, family, childrens consignment stores, and thrift stores. Of course, I’m left out the simplest option: co-sleeping, which we have done with two of our three children, and which has proved easiest to manage as a sleep deprived parent! Hey, sleeping with your babies is a time-honored tradition in the history of mankind, and babies are, in fact, biologically designed to stay close to a parent at night. Evolution has not caught up with this new-fangled crib nonsense!

Most of us cannot get by without a carseat. It would take a major shift in our lives or in society for that need to go away. However, I don’t know any reason why you need an infant carseat and later a forward-facing carseat. Get a convertible carseat and let the one device serve all of your baby’s needs for a safe driving environment. Indeed, let it serve for all of your kids, replacing it only in case of accident or expiration. Simplify your life with less carseats; simplify your shopping with less carseats. Save money. Live better (couldn’t resist). Also, for those of you who live in Boston or other cities with great public transportation and little need for cars, you may be able to forgo the nasty things altogether as I swore with each baby I would do before I had another!

Baby bouncers, swings, seats, exersaucers, walkers, play yards, etc: some parents find them very handy. We had a bouncer and swing with our first but they didn’t get used much and weren’t worth the space they took up in our tiny house, so we didn’t bother with them again. Our baby only wanted to be held, and always wanted to be held, rendering these devices useless and a wrap indispensable. If one of the above gives you a safe place to set your baby while you shower, that can be life changing for an exhausted and tapped out mom, and I am happy to see her have that opportunity! If one such device entertains baby so parents can get a break, that’s invaluable and not to be scoffed at. So it’s worth borrowing one or two and trying them out with your baby. But do not think they are necessary, nor beneficial. Your baby learns more from being held or worn on your body than from the buttons and textures and sounds on their baby gear. Babies grow and sleep better in contact with mom or dad. A baby’s motor skills develop optimally in contact with your human body. So don’t buy into marketing that tells you what the devices will do for your baby. And do realize that all of these “conveniences” designed to replace your arms are, while probably harmless, not optimum. A baby who spends more time in gear than in arms should be given sufficient “tummy time” to counteract the unnatural situation. Babies in arms get their tummy time against you. And speaking of tummy time, laying a baby on his or her back or tummy (as preferred) on a blanket on the floor is a very good place to let a non-mobile baby play and be occupied with measuring spoons in lieu of a playmat. So, use these things to the degree that they help your family be happy and comfortable and without fooling yourself into thinking they are the best place for your baby. They are, simply, a helpful break!

A high chair can be very helpful, but again not necessary. My youngest has been high-chair free (except when visiting grandparents) due to our circumstances. Did you know that a baby can eat very easily perched on your lap or sitting on a spot on the floor set up for dinner? May I just interject a recommendation for baby-led solids, here? Again, evolutionarily appropriateness meets convenience for a parenting choice made in heaven 🙂

Baby bathtubs have always seemed to me to be a waste of space. We had a few with our first and soon passed them on. It was much more convenient and comfortable to take her into the bath with us, and when I didn’t feel like that project, she could be wiped with a washcloth. Young babies rarely need to be bathed as long as you are cleaning their bottoms and faces sufficiently after they eat and poop!

That leaves the stroller, and it is probably obvious that a baby carrier can replace a stroller. We found a cheap umbrella stroller helpful when we took our four year old to Disney World in the heat. We bought it at a thrift store, and re-donated it the day we got back. We found a similar umbrella stroller helpful to have as an option for our toddler as we explored the United States, traveling in our motorhome with our baby wrapped up. Even then, we encountered many places where it was more convenient to just wear them both (between my husband and myself), such as those charming cobble-stoned streets of Boston, or through the beautiful forests in the National Parks where she would alternate wanting to walk and be carried. Now, with a 7 year old, a 2 year old, and a 1 year old, we do not own a stroller. We haven’t needed one yet with the 1 year old, and other than that trip to Disney World, we didn’t need one when the 7 year old was little. We did find it helpful with the middle child for a time, and I used it with her during my exhausting pregnancy with number three. I’m very glad I had it. So, see what fits your life. But realize that…

…of all the baby gear mentioned here, a baby wrap is the one that can be the most helpful, has the most benefits for baby, for mother, for those who breastfeed, and for generally simplifying the complex world of parenting. I’d say it’s worth the price!

Click here to buy a wrap. Thank you for your business! This is how I support my family. - Diana ❤️

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