Is it possible to mother four children WITHOUT babywearing?
I think not.
Logistically, my life would not be possible if I wasn’t able to wear Eli and thus, be hands free. Because Eli wants to be close (and I want him close!) and Reid’s face needs to be wiped and Max needs help zipping his coat and Jemma and I are back to homeschooling and the laundry, the dishes, the shopping, the everything! Pretty much, babywearing is a lifesaver. And I love it. I need it.
When I first decided to craft this post, to give you a peek into a day in my babywearing life, I thought I’d catalog one full day of how and when and where I wear Eli. But, in reality, a two week glimpse gives a much better scope of how babywearing is weaved into my everyday. How it saves me day in and day out. How it allows me to be the snuggly mama Eli deserves while taking care of the big kids. So, here it is, a glimpse of how juggling four kids is made possible thanks to babywearing and the expertise of places like Carry Me Away.
After Eli was born, I was worried about managing errands with so many little ones. I knew babywearing would be essential to my success and sanity. Loads of grace and snacks too. So, we went to Costco with our trusty Tula Free-To-Grow in hand (or would that be “on body”?). We meandered the aisles slowly and we left happy with food to feed our family of six and a few Christmas presents too. A miracle! Eli slept snuggled up the whole time and Reid gobbled samples from the cart. Two happy babies at the end of a shopping trip? Talk about a mama win!
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At home, I grab my Sakura Bloom slings most. They’re ideal for quick ups and feel like a cozy sweater. Especially Theory. I love how they mold and hold and almost emulate pregnancy. Except in a sling, I get to see my sweet baby’s face, which is the absolute best. Reid, at 30+ pounds still likes a sling hug every once in awhile too. I think the tight closeness is grounding, calming. And not just for him. The weight and warmth of holding a giant toddler balances me too.
While babywearing I can fold laundry, read books to the big kids, walk to the mailbox, and assist with homeschool lessons. Eli is happy, safe, and calm and my other kids get my attention, and hands when necessary.
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Restaurants. I love them. No food shopping, prep, or clean up. If I could eat out every meal, I think I would. Just not with kids. Because, man, that sure changes the dynamic. But, we’ve been out twice since Eli was born and both times that little love has been easy peasy. Wrapped up against his mama, the noise and bustle of the restaurant just doesn’t phase him. And, since I didn’t drop chimichanga filling on him while I ate, well, that was just icing on the cake to our babywearing in a restaurant story.
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Last week I had my annual eye doctor appointment. Dominic and I decided that he would stay with the big kids and Eli would join me. Little bubs just isn’t ready to be away from mama for too long. Throughout my appointment he slept, woke to nurse once, and went back to snoozing. It was a long appointment, an hour and half after I spent time looking at frames, and you know what? He was happy as a clam the entire time. I credit babywearing.
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Tis the season for visiting the pumpkin patch! Dominic was out of town the weekend I planned to go so rather than attempt such a wide open space solo I invited my mom and sister to join the kids and I. Three adults to four kids is the best ratio! Mimi wore Eli in the Tula Free-To-Grow and soaked up all his new baby sweetness, Aunt Kiki wore Reid backpack style in the toddler Tula, and I got to just be me!
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With summer gone and Day Light Saving around the corner, I desperately wanted to visit the beach at sunset before the blustery weather rolled in for the foreseeable future. So we did! Dominic kept an eye on Reid (he tends to walk straight into the water regardless of the weather or his clothing) and I wore Eli in the Tula Free-To-Grow. Jemma and Max explored and shared all their beach knowledge – Wild Kratts style – as we watched the sun set and vowed to spend time outdoors more. Because of babywearing we think we can manage it! Here’s to being a family of 6!
^^^ Love that Jemma got one of me and all my boys ^^^
Are you an everyday babywearing mama too? What carrier, sling, or wrap do you love most?
With Jemma I had an Ergo and a beautiful maroon/pink/red Maya Wrap. With Max, my go to was the Boba and toddler Tula (because that bubs grew up fast!). When Reid was born I discovered Lillebaby (love the lumbar support it offers) and Sakura Bloom, the love for Tula continued too. I assumed that I’d stick with the favorites I had held on to for Eli, but then Tula launched the Free-To-Grow. I was so curious! I mean, it fixed every “problem” I had run in to with soft structure carriers, namely the awkwardness of having to use a newborn insert.
The Tula Free-To-Grow allows mamas and dads to wear their newborns with no infant insert thanks to three adjustable settings. The narrow setting has fit Eli from the beginning and it is extremely comfortable for me while being customized and safe for him. LOVE. IT. Take a peek at the video here showing just how awesome the Free-To-Grow is — it works for little ones 7-45 pounds thanks to the three settings on the seat panel and height panel.
For all your babywearing wishes and dreams, visit Carry Me Away. Not only do they have an amazing selection, they have wonderful insight into the benefits of each carrier and great babywearing resources on their blog. But lots of shops have carriers and blogs with tips, right? Why choose Carry Me Away? Well, for one, Laurel, the owner, is a gem, and she offers personalized shopping through her free Baby Carrier Prescription. Just fill out the form and you’ll get a reply with all the details about what will best work for your family. Isn’t that neat? The questions are in-depth and guaranteed to get you a sling, carrier, or wrap that you’ll love! Carry Me Away also offers layaway and free shipping over $50 … perfect for the upcoming holidays!
Our Tula Free-to-Grow was a gift from Carry Me Away. Like, the greatest gift ever. Thank you!
We’ve used a homemade stretchy wrap (Moby-style) for Jackson so far. He took every nap, every day, for the first month of his life in it. Phew! It sure did give me hands free time for the three big kids and the ability to settle him into the rhythm of our family and life. We are just starting to transition to laying him down for a nap here and there. I appreciate the ‘time off’ (ha!), but still love the snuggles when he is on me.