Can You Hike In It? Pink Nova Karma Twist

I was so surprised  when I opened the package. I was super excited to try a Pink Nova so I ripped it open eagerly.  The colors really threw me for second. Bright pink and purple clovers? I flipped it over and saw the blue and white, then was even more confused! I showed my co-worker and she looked just as perplexed. I love the leaf pattern, but why the odd colors? Then I remembered the name, Karma Twist. The more I looked at the wrap, the more I got it.  It’s not your standard green four leaf clover, this is a representation of luck from a deeper source. I especially liked how it’s two-sided. Karma isn’t always straightforward, it has different faces for different meanings.

Manufacturer: Pink Nova
Colorway: Karma Twist
Color: Violet,pink,periwinkle, and white
Pattern: Clover leaves
Size: Size 6
Materials: 100% Egyptian Cotton
Weave: Jacquard
Release date: June 2015

I had such lovely plans for this wrap, but evil Hyperemesis reared its ugly head and I didn’t get to use it for several weeks. One day I felt well enough to wear Jack to the store around the corner from my mom’s house and was in love with the shoulder cush. 

I planned a lovely nature park stroll for the following week  to give Karma Twist a better test,but nope. I ended up in the ER (I never want an MRI at 2 AM again), and it took me a few days to recover. Then Michael suggested we go walk around the mall and at least get out of the house. 

Location:  Washington Square Mall
Distance:  1.35 miles
Trail Type:  Linoleum
Weather: Indoor temperature controlled, around 70*
Trail Conditions: Clean,smooth floors,not crowded

I started off wearing Jack in a Wendy’s Double Hammock Tied At Shoulder. It was a little hard to keep a good seat with a bouncing toddler. At that moment I wished for a little more grip in the wrap. Once I got him settled and the carry tied, I loved the cush on my shoulder and back again.

Half way across the mall, mama got tired. I still wasn’t 100% from my hospital trip and a 25 lbs toddler wiggling on my back wasn’t helping.

 So daddy to the rescue! Jack went up on daddy (after a small protest that he wanted on mama’s front for milkies). They were very comfy in a Reinforced Ruck Tied Tibetan. We shopped happily without Jack touching everything and running amok in the stores.

 Jack slipped down  a little bit when he started bouncing around to get down, but Michael says it was still comfortable on his back and shoulders. We let him down for lunch, but couldn’t get him back up afterward. Little man wanted to walk like a big boy.
The key features of this wrap are pattern and the cushiness. The pattern and colors are so unusual, making it truly unique. It’s so bright and inviting, it’s hard not to smile when wearing it. And the softness is amazing  While it’s not the best for locking down an active toddler, it so cushy that it didn’t dig in even when the seat started to give a little.

So, can you hike in a Pink Nova Karma Twist? I am not sure I would recommend this for a true hike. A lovely, easy walk or a neighborhood stroll, absolutely. But I think it is just too soft for any long hike with a lot of movement and bouncing.I fear there would be a lot of adjusting as you walked along (I had to stop three times to get the slack out of the Wendy’s Double Hammock). I also would suggest it for smaller babies, newborn to 9 months. Less likely for a lot of leaning and  wiggling, to keep a better seat. For toddlers, you really need multiple or reinforcing passes to keep the seat in place. Come to think of it, I bet this would be amazing for evening stroll around the block with a newborn, so soft and snuggly.

Can You Hike In It: Baby-Doo Rouge

I was so excited when this carrier arrived in Januray, but shortly  after hyperemsis hit me like the plague and I was not well enough to take it on a hike. It sadly sat on a shelf for a month. We did take it OMSI one day, but it was only a quick uppy to get him to the parking lot.
Carrier Info:

Manufacturer: Baby-Doo USA
Colorway: Rouge
Color: Red, white, and orange
Pattern: Stripes
Size: Medium, 4.4 meters, short size 5
Materials: 100% Cotton
Weave: Diamond
Release date: 2014

But one day I was well enough to take it a joint Babywearing International of Portland and Hike It Baby joint event. I helped fit people in carriers and then we go on a walk to see how they like them. We met at one of my favorite local parks, Noble Woods Park. It’s a lovely little park with both nice paved and unpaved trails. When we arrived, Jack wanted to play around with the other toddlers so I didn’t put him up right away. Then once everyone was ready to hike, I realized that someone needed to stay behind to watch the carriers. Everyone else went on the South Loop while we stayed at the picnic area.

Hike Details:

Location:  Noble Woods Park, South Loop Picnic Area
Distance: ~1 mile
Trail Type:  Paved trails, grass
Weather: 50*, cloudy
Trail Conditions: Muddy, wet but well maintained

Jack decided it was time for some milk so up he went. We strolled around the grassy area while he nursed. Rouge did very nicely in a Front Wrap Cross Carry with a toddler. I especially liked how the little bit of grip. Very helpful to keep the seat while when Jack was leaning to the side trying to get my boob out while I was tying.

I cannot find the picture when I put Jack in a RRRR for some reason (Google likes to eat my photos), but once everyone returned from the first loop I switched him to my back (for a few minutes, then he wanted down to play with his friends again).  It was pretty easy to make a good seat, but due to the slight gripiness, it was a little hard to tighten the reinforcing pass at first. This might be a little intimidating for a novice wrapper.  But it held nicely, when Jack started bouncing up and down to be let down.

IMG_1754The key feature of the wrap is texture from the weave. It’s very soft, but has a nice subtle grip. The diamond weaver also gives it such rich colors. It would be a lovely addition to any wrap collection. And it’s a very budget friendly wrap, retailing for under $100.

Can you hike in a Baby-Doo Rouge? Yes, it’s a lovely light-weight but grippy wrap, perfect for hikes and walks in warm to cool weather. I wish I could have taken it out on steeper trail, really test how the grip holds up. Just didn’t work out right now. 

Can You Hike in It: Nunamoochie Anya

This woven wrap was a temporary trade with Twinmommy101. I was really impressed to see such a tight, clean weave on a handwoven wrap. And the colors! They are modeled after a Tequila Sunrise, one of my favorite drinks! This wrap was just screaming to be taken somewhere fun.

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Carrier Info:

  • Manufacturer: Nunamoochie
  • Colorway: Anya
  • Color: Yellow, orange, and pink
  • Pattern: Stripes
  • Size: 6
  • Materials: 100% Cotton
  • Weave: Handwoven
  • Release date: August 2015

Everyone on the Hike It Baby Facebook group kept talking about “Oxbow”. Setting up hikes, go on and on about how beautiful it is, and posting stunning pictures of smiling happy babies. My best friend (yes, the one of the sushi story) asked for a hike with Jack,  I realized Oxbow Regional Park was conveniently halfway between us.

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 Hike Details

I have driven by the exit for Oxbow for years (decades really), I assumed it was one of the parks right off the Interstate. But we kept driving farther and farther…river, to forest, to countryside…then suddenly a random sign pointing down a narrow road. There is no cell reception there so I worried we wouldn’t find Amanda. But there she was waiting right at the park entrance.

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We decided to just head down to the first trail we found and see where it took us. Jack started out walking but quickly switched to an uppy. We started with a Ruck with a Tibetan Ring Finish. It’s thin, but surprisingly supportive. Very easy to make a good seat and tighten. I really cannot believe this wrap is hand woven!  It also threaded through the rings very easily (nothing is worse than fighting with your rings with a wiggly toddler). 

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Oxbow definitely lived up to all the hype. The trails meld nicely with the natural landscape—boulders, roots, small water falls. This makes it a great trail to just relax and enjoy nature. Even though there are not many signs and trail markers, the trails are pretty intuitive.

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We happily wandered through the forest down to the river. We let Jack down to play in the water and sand for awhile. It was so beautiful! Calm and peaceful, the perfect late summer day.

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Then Jack went up on Michael in a Christina’s Ruckless with one bunched pass. It held up nicely when he had to climb up the river bank back to the main trail.

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Michael said the wrap was “nice” and he liked the bright colors. He’s not a man of many words. However, I noticed he didn’t fidget with the wrap. When he doesn’t like a carrier, he will tug and pull at it to make it more comfortable. So, I take it as he actually really liked this wrap.

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After a quick pause for some milk and water, we decided to head back. Jack went up on Christina’s Ruckless on me this time. I just loved the colors in this carry, they just melted into each other in the chest pass.

The key feature of this wrap is the weave. The tight, handwoven weave makes it light but moldable. I would suggest this wrap for almost every trail type. It would do lovely on anything from urban strolls to medium difficulty hikes. However, I would not recommend it for long, strenuous hikes due it not being an overly cushy wrap. I could see it having the potential to be diggy after a long long period of time due to thinnest.

So can you hike in a Nunamoochie Anya? Yes, this wrap is perfect for a warm weather, half day hikes.

 

Can You Hike In It: Pollora Sylvan Spirit

I purchased this carrier for the lending library I am starting up. It needs some breaking in so I figured some hikes would soften it up. Then I heard all Oregon State Parks were free on Black Friday, so no way we could not hit the trails! I thought it was perfect for a stroll through the forest, all decked out in trees.

Carrier Info:

  • Manufacturer: Pollora
  • Colorway: Sylvan
  • Color: Light green, yellowish green, and white
  • Pattern: Trees
  • Size: 6
  • Materials: 100% Cotton
  • Weave: Jacquard
  • Weight: 290 g/m2
  • Release date: October 2013

It’s definitely a beastly wrap. Thick, grippy, and tough to break in. It was hard to get a good tight knot due to the thickness. But oh, it’s so lovely in person. The lovely contrasting green trees can’t help but this make this Oregonian smile. I figured it would be perfect for a hike, keep us warm and match our surroundings.

 Hike Details

  • Location: L. L. Stub Stewart State Park, Hayes Canyon to Unfit Settlement View
  • Distance: 4.68 MIles
  • Trail Type: unpaved, abandoned logging roads
  • Elevation: 1000 to 1500 Feet
  • Weather: 45* at arrival, 52* departure
  • Trail Conditions: Mostly dry, some muddy patches

I had been dying to take Jack hiking here.  It was very exciting to have a new State Park open just a quick drive from Portland. I first went with my parents when I was still in high school for its unofficial opening weekend and it was a mess. But, I had heard it had transformed into a wonderful area over the years. I was not disappointed!

Jack and I set off right after breakfast, both very excited to get out of the house. We had been cooped up preparing for Thanksgiving for a few days and wanted out. It had been freezing the past few days in the Willamette Valley so I dressed us both very warmly. Two layers each, plus gloves and hats. I put waterproof pants on Jack, worried it might rain on us (or he might find some mud to jump in).
It was cool, but sunny once we arrived. I let Jack run around for a bit while I decided on a trail. Once I selected to head out to the Unfit Settlement View, I chased my toddler and got him up on my back. He was tired and ready for a nap after all that running around, so it wasn’t easy.

I started with Ruck Tied Tibetan and set off on the trail. But after a few steps, my lower back was killing me so I paused to see what way wrong. Jack’s seat was totally gone, bottom rail bunched half way up his back. So I took him down (much to his sleepy protest) and redid the carry. I figured I just had a bad seat and he popped it, happens to the best wrappers. But I noticed it was kinda hard to get a deep seat (and I am very good at getting and keeping a good seat), but figured it was just because I had gloves on and couldn’t feel the wrap that well.

Five minutes later and Jack was sound asleep.This wrap is loaded with sleepy dust! I felt one with mother nature, carrying my baby wrapped in green.

 I walked for a leisurely half an hour, just enjoying nature. This park is truly a hidden gem! Well kept trails with a variety of lengths and difficulty. Our trail wasn’t too hard, but had a few good inclines.

 Then my back started to kill me again, so I reach back to feel my seat was gone again! I gently tried to fix it, but Jack woke up and was pissed. So I quickly set him down and switched it a Front Wrap Cross Carry so he could nurse. I had a hard time getting a good seat even in the front, I was puzzled. But I made it work , Jack latched on and we continued. We walked for another hour or so. Jack dozed for half of it and spent the rest shouting “Tree! More trees! Other trees!” every few seconds.

 

When I took him down when we got back to the car, I noticed the seat was about to pop again. This annoyed me, Jack had not been wiggling and I hadn’t been bouncing him around much. There was no reason for the seat to not hold. It

It was warming up, so I took Jack out of waterproof pants while he ate his snack. When he finished, he decided that was the perfect time to bolt across the field so I darted after him. Once I captured the little monster, I put him in a Ruck again walked back to the car. This time I decided to put Sylvan to the test. I bounced Jack up and down, danced, and told him to jump up and down. The seat did not budge….and it was way easier to do the carry this time too….


When I got to the car and saw the waterproof pants in the trunk it clicked. This wrap is so grippy that it needs other grippy fabric, or else it just slides around. It never stood a chance with slick waterproof pants.

The key feature of Slyvan is its thickness–for both good and bad. I suggest it for urban strolls, paved parks, unpaved easy/medium trails. I would not recommend it for long, difficult trails. I worry about maintaining a good seat wearing hiking clothes (like waterproof pants). This wrap makes a giant knot, which tends to dig into you after awhile. Not the best for long term wearing.  It doesn’t have a lot of cush, so it may get diggy on the shoulders eventually as well. I would not suggest this for a newborn, too hard to wrap around a tiny baby easily in all that thick fabric. However for a 6-months-old and older, this wrap is fantastic. It has lot of grip, so even a wiggly preschooler can be carried comfortably. Lastly, I would only suggest this for colder fall and winter hikes, once again due to the thickness. Don’t want to risk baby overheating otherwise.

So can you hike in a Pollora Sylvan Spirit? Yes, on reasonable trails in cooler temperatures when it’s not raining or snowing.

Wrapsody Weekly Wrap Challenge

11111911_10102021416262516_4242354883282891449_nFor the past 20 weeks, I’ve been hosting the Wrapsody Weekly Wrap Challenge along with fellow Brand Ambassador Nicolette. It’s a little idea I came up with to help promote the brand on social media. It is was inspired by a challenge I did from BWI of The Bay Area.  I learned so much from that challenge, it honestly made me a better wrapper. So I decided to spread idea and help others build up their skills.

So I designed a challenge that could be done over time, so no one left rushed or got frustrated. A week to work on a carry and ask for help. It started with basic carriers that a novice could handle. Then move on to a new, more advanced carry the next week. And the carriers would build off each other, the skill learned one week would be needed for the next week. That way the wrapper gets the fundamentals of how to build a good carry.  I also needed to do carriers that can be done with longer wraps, since most Wrapsodys are size 6+.

Thus, I came up with this list. Twenty weeks to help you go from a novice to a back wrapper.

After some consulting with fellow ambassadors, I came up with this list. Nicolette and I decided to alternate each week. Post a 360 degree photo collage and a tutorial video on Sunday. A reminder on Wednesday. And a Feature Friday to encourage participation. We also offered help and answers questions when we could. Other ambassadors helped too.

But let’s talk about the carries and how they help you learn.

Week 1: Pocket Wrap Cross Carry. A front carry with two cross passes, and torso pass over top. A very basic carry to help you learn the feel for wrapping. A pre-tied carry, meaning you tie the wrap on yourself before you place baby.

Week 2: Front Wrap Cross Carry. A front carry with a torso pass, and two cross passes over top. Another basic carry to help you get comfortable with your wrap. This is a step up from the PWCC as it is not pre-tied and the torso pass is underneath. This means you need to learn how to make a good seat for baby and his to tighten the whole carry properly.

Week 3: Front Cross Carry. A front carry a horizontal pass, and two rebozo passes. This is a pre-tied carry like the PWCC, but is a step up from the FWCC because there is no torso pass to provide extra support.  This means you need to place baby in a good, deep seat in the X of the rebozo passes.

Week 4: Kangaroo Carry. A front carry with ruck pass, two shoulder flips, and two bunched passes.  A wonderful carry for newborns or any sleeping baby, Just in untie and gently place them down without cross passes to get in the way. The shoulder flip can be a bit tricky, but makes this carry very comfortable long term.

Week 5: Front Double Hammock. Front carry with a ruck pass, a torso pass, two shoulder flips. A step up from a Kangaroo carry as it has two layers for support and starts off center. Several other carries going forward start off center, so it’s good to practice that now. This also wonderful prep for the ever so comfortable back Double Hammock later on. Helps you visual what will be going on behind you.

*Please do not attempt hip carries until your baby can sit up unassisted.*

Week 6: Hip Rebozo.  A hip carry with one rebozo pass tied with a slip knot.  Time for hip carries! This carry is normally done in a short wrap so there is not a lot of tail, so I almost left it off the list. But it is the base for several other carries up next so I left it on. Nicolette just reinforced it to get rid of the extra tail. Slip knots can be tricky to learn, so take your time and go slow. But they are a great tool for to tie a carry at the shoulder without a big bulky double knot.

Week 7: Robbin’s Hip Carry. A hip carry with a rebozo pass, shoulder loop, and two bunched passes. A step up from a rebozo with the very comfy shoulder loop and two bunched passes to reinforce the seat. The key to get it right is the placement of the shoulder loop. Too high will dig into your shoulder. Too low will put pressure on your back. Aim for the corsage position.

Week 8: Poppin’s Hip Carry. A hip carry with one rebozo pass, and poppin’s pass. Think of this as a Robin’s Hip Carry, but with the loop going the other way. The lovely poppin’s pass adds support and reinforces the rebozo. Plus it is a great way to showcase the opposite side of the wrap.

Week 9: Hip Cross Carry. A hip carry with two cross passes. This is essentially a Front Cross Carry, but on your hip. The key is to get baby knee-to-knee supported and make sure the X is hitting high on their back. This poppable hip carry is great for a day at the park. Baby wants to run around but needs a quick uppy for a breather once and awhile.

Week 10: Coolest Hip Cross Carry. A hip carry with a torso pass and a rebozo pass tied with a slip knot. This carry can be tricky to place baby in correctly, so go slow and make sure you get a good, deep seat. The slip knot makes it very easy to tighten and loosen for nursing.

*Please do not attempt back carries until your baby can sit up unassisted if you are new to wrapping. Practice against a wall, over a bed, or with a spotter until you are confident. 

Week 11: Secure High Back Carry. Back carry with a chest knot, rebozo pass, a spread pass, and a bunched pass. Time for back carries!  This carry is the main reason I left a rebozo on the list. Starting with a good pre-tied hip rebozo then scooting it on to you back helps you gain confidence with back carries. You baby is safe with the pre-tied chest belt pinning them in place. You already have a good seat, so no worries about their comfort. This way you can focus on how to spread the passes behind your back and get them in the correct position without fear of baby falling. You can feel how the rebozo pass provides the seat, the cross pass reinforces with support, and the bunched pass helps lock the seat in place. The foundation of a great back carry!

Week 12: Back Wrap Cross Carry. A back carry with a chest knot, horizontal, and two cross passes. Another great beginner back carry due to the chest belt to secure baby before you fiddle with the rest of the passes. To help you visual what’s going on, think of this carry as everything you do in a FWCC, but on your back (hence the name).

Week 13: Ruck. A back carry with one ruck pass. No more pre-ties, it’s time to learn how to get baby up on your own. This is the most basic back carry and often the hardest to get right. A ruck is the base for several of back carries, so it’s so important to get this one right before moving on.

Week 14: Double Hammock. Back carry with a rebozo pass, a torso pass, horizontal pass, two cross , and two bunched passes. The ultimate multiple pass carry, so supportive and comfortable. A torso pass in a back carry can be tricky to master, so take your time. Tighten tighten tighten, a loose torso pass will make this carry uncomfortable. Make sure the horizontal pass goes high over baby’s back as well, this will add support and keep them from leaning back.

We also had some fun with this week and showed off all the variations.

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Week 15: Christina’s Ruckless. A back carry with a rebozo pass, torso pass, ruckless chest belt, and two cross passes. A step up from a Double Hammock as the chest belt is a little more complicated. This a a great carry to take pressure of your back and shoulder, as the V holds all the tension. Make sure it it tighten properly if you are experiencing any discomfort.

Week 16: Giselle’s Back Carry. A back carry with a rebozo pass, a cross pass, shoulder flip, another cross pass. Another carry that starts off center and requires some skills to get the wrap spread high over baby’s back to ensure enough support. The shoulder flip in a back carrier is the same principal as in front carries, but can be tricker since you can’t see behind you. It’s essentially a way to make ruck straps in a rebozo.

Week 17: Double Rebozo Shoulder to Shoulder. A back carry with two rebozo passes and a shoulder to shoulder chest belt. Similar to the Secure High Back Carry with the hip scoot rebozo as the base, but a little more tricky as there are no bunched passes to keep the seat secure. You really need a good seat in this carry, so I put it farther down on the list to give you time to work on it. A shallow seat will most likely pop, leaving baby unsecured. And even if it does stay in place, it might be uncomfortable in the long run. But once you get it right, this a great carry to do quickly or in a crowded place where you don’t have room to spread out your tails.

Week 18: Jordan’s Back Carry. A back carry with one rebozo pass, a shoulder flip, another rebozo pass, and a horizontal pass. A great carry for leg straightening babies, as the rebozo pass and the horozinral pass lock baby’s leg gently in place, making it hard for them to push up. They aren’t going anywhere!

Week 19: Wiggleproof Back Carry. A back carry with a ruck, two unpoppable passes. Some kids are just leaners, seat poppers, and leg straighteners no matter what you do. Before you give up on wrapping, give this carry a try. There are two unpoppable passes to lock both of baby’s legs down, making it almost impossible for them to mess-up your carry. It’s far down on the list because it takes skill to get these passes right.They can be very tricky to get high up on baby’s back. But keep it at it and you will be rewarded with a very comfy carry!

Week 20: Taiwanese Carry. A back carry with a rebozo pass, a poppin’s pass, a rebozo pass, another poppin’s pass, and a horizontal pass. We made it to the end! By now you should have a good foundation of wrapping skills, most of which you will need for this carry (hence why it’s the end!). A good seat, measuring correctly for an off center start, tightening and keeping the tension as you go, a poppin’s pass, a shoulder flip, and a supportive horizontal pass.  Once you get that all down, this carry is AMAZING! No pressure and so supportive.

We did it! You now understand how to wrap your baby. This does not make you an expert yet, but it’s a great start. Keep working on these carries, even the most advanced wearer still learns something new everyday.

Check out these other great resources as well:

Water Babywearing

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You know the one drawback to being an experienced mom? You get to facepalm yourself when you find a new product that could have made your life easier from the start. Babywearing allowed me to eat, go to the bathroom, and clean up around the house while keeping Jack happy. But I always had to wait until he was either asleep (and do the paranoid mom checking the monitor every 30 seconds) or wait until Michael got home. And sometimes things got so busy I forgot to shower (more like I fell asleep before I could even think of it), that it could be days before I got the chance.  Jack loved baths with me, but sometimes you need a good standing scrub to feel clean. Sometimes Michael would hold him in the shower, but it’s hard to shower and hold a baby (they get heavy after awhile!).

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Hard to thread, slid down easily, choked me, and only instructions were for front facing.

A few months later I bought a water ring sling to use at my sister-in-law’s house. It got the job done but was not comfy at all. I used in the shower when I needed to (like when I remembered it’s been 3 days since I had a good shower), but never really loved it. It made Jack happy, so I decided to hold on to it. But I knew I was not going to use it with another baby. It would be back to dreaming of showers.

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Fresh out of the box.

Then Lorene from Frogmama let me test out Wrapsody WrapDuo and everything changed. The night it arrived, Jack and I took tested it in the shower. It was a hit!

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The most fun shower ever!

We tried a Front Wrap Cross Carry, one of Jack’s favorite carries. He was so happy! All secure and tight—I could never get that stupid ring sling tight so he was never this secure before. It was easy to nurse in to (because toddler logic says a shower is a great time to nurse….).

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Happy husband to wear his son, grumpy baby ready for a nap.

A few days later I let Michael try it out at the local splash pad. Jack was grump and didn’t want to get wet. But Michael liked the wrap a lot.  He liked that I could pre-tie it on him, pop Jack in and out as needed. He said it would have been nice to have used when Jack was a newborn in the shower (that’s when I facepalmed myself).

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Jack is shocked at how supportive it is at the pool!

Then we tried it out at the pool and it was another big hit! Sadly, I forgot to check the open swim times and we only got to swim for a half an hour. But it was a savior in the showers afterward. Jack was furious we got out of the pool so early. I kept him in the wrap and rinsed us off quick and ran to the car with no fuss. It was very comfortable in a wet Robin’s Hip Carry while we got the chance though.

Pool time in FCC!
Pool time in FCC!

Lastly, we had a playdate with Myste, another Brand Ambassador, at a pool with a splash pad. It was a little chilly when we arrived but Jack wanted to check out the splash pad still. He stayed warm enough in the wrap close so my body that he was happy to play. Later we went into the pool, and Jack was still just as happy. This time we did a Front Cross Carry so I could pop him in and out as needed. And it was once again a life saver in the showers. Jack was upset playtime was over, but we got right into a warm shower and he calmed down.

Here are my final thoughts on the WrapDuo…

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Not toddler worthy when dry unfortunately.

Cons:

  • The wrap is only suitable for front and hip carries since it is a stretchy wrap. This is a good thing because it not safe to have your baby in water and not be able to see them their head level in the water. Since this is a wet/dry wrap, it kind sucks you can’t use dry on the back. It would have been a lot easier to carry my bag and the wet towels to the car after the pool with him on my back.
  • It’s not toddler worthy out the water. The dry weight limit is 20 pounds, which means Jack at 22 pounds was technically too heavy. So when I was wrapping him before the we got in the shower first time, it was really hard to get him tight enough without popping his heat. And Michael said he felt like Jack could have just leaned back and fell out when he was walking to splash pad. I am sure this would not been an issue at all with a baby under the weight limit.
  • They take a while to dry. You know how your swimsuit can still be wet after hanging in the shower hours later? The wrap is made of similar material, so it also can be awhile before it it totally dry. Not a big deal, but it is more wet thing you have to shove back into your bag.
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Even wet, it is small enough to fit in a small bag.

Pros:

  • It is easy to put on and take off. It’s light weight, glides nicely when tightening, but still makes a nice secure knot. No complicated rings to thread or buckles to snap. As long as you know the basics of wrapping, than you are set! And when Jack wanted out to play on the steps of the pool, I just pulled him right out with no fuss. Plus you can do all your favorite front and hip carries, so it is very versatile.
  • It is toddler worthy in the water. The wet weight limit is 30 pounds, which covers most kids well into toddlerhood. I never had issues tightening and securing Jack when the wrap was wet. It felt like any other good quality wrap. It did not dig or hurt in any way either.
  • Easy to store. It is very light weight and folds up small even when wet. It didn’t hog up space in the diaper bag or feel like I was carrying any extra weight.  Nothing is worse than your diaper bag weighing more than your baby.

Overall, the WrapDuo is a great wrap. Like I said, I am facepalming myself for not knowing about it when Jack was still a clingy baby who never me set him down. I could have at least been nursing him for 30 minutes straight while I took a warm shower!

Thanks Frogmama for letting us testing it out! I so need one when I have another baby.

Carrier Types

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There are countless way to carry your baby. I could dedicate an entire blog just to the subject of babywearing over the ages and in different cultures. But who has time for all that?  Since I get asked about babywearing and carriers a lot, I thought I would make a simple post on the most common types of carriers and provide some resources on them. Not every type of carrier is right for everyone. I LOVE wraps, but maybe you will hate how long they can to learn. So a ring sling may be your jam. Or maybe you want to skip all that fabric because it makes you hot, and go straight for a SSC. So check out the common options and think about what would work for you….

Soft Structured Carriers

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Standard Tula Prisms.

Soft Structure Carriers:  Think baby backpack. Most are pretty easy to use—just a few snaps and buckles. Most are pretty easy to put on alone and most an be shared between wearers easily. Most can do front, hip, and back carries.  Also, most are very economic and can be worn for a long time. Note I said most….not all SSC are created equal. If you buy a $35 off eBay or at Walmart, it probably won’t be that comfortable for you or the baby. Also watch on for cheap, poorly made ones from China, they can actually break and hurt your baby. But a good SSC is amazing and pay for itself overtime. And just because you hated one brand, don’t give up!

Loved this Action Baby we borrowed.
Loved this Action Baby we borrowed.

Everyone is different and there are so many brands nowadays that odds are you can find the perfect on for your needs. Common brands are Ergo, Tula, and Beco. I personally love Action Baby, but we own a Tula since that’s my husband’s favorite.

Woven Wraps

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Woven Wraps: A long piece of woven fabric that you use to secure your baby onto you. Can easily be shared between wearers, great for nursing, and can be tied in many different ways to suit your needs. Can be used for front, hip, and back carries. When tied properly, very ergonomic and comfy. However, there is a huge learning curve. It’s takes time and patience to learn how to wrap. But once you get it, it’s magic!  Once you get a carry down, it is very easy to do alone (even back carries!). Then there is the whole addiction issue….you might become a total wrap junkie and own more than you can count. There are so many brands, sizes, patterns, materials, weaves, and so on. You find one you love and suddenly want to try another. Then another. And another. Soon you’ve spent a small fortune!

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My dream wrap, Kokadi Kurma. It will be buried with me!
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My first and true love, Girasol Tahoe.

It doesn’t have to be this way though, I do know responsible people who only own one or two wraps. But it’s a fun world to get into if you can afford it. Common brands are Diddymos, Girasol, and Lenny Lamb (honestly this list could go on and on). I am a wrap girl, my two personal favorites wraps are my Girasol Tahoe and my Kokadi Kurma (both size 4).

Bei Dai/Meh Dai

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BabyHawk Copper Glow on Olive

Bei Dai/Meh Dai: An Asian-style carrier, sort of a mix between a SSC and wrap. Your baby sits in a like SSC, but you tie/wrap the straps like a wrap. Easy to use and much easier to learn than wrapping. Can be used for front, hip, and back carries. You can do some of fancier finishes like a wrap, but have the simplicity of SSC while putting your baby in. However, since the straps do not adjust like a SSC, it can be harder to share between wearers. And they can be harder to fit as your baby grows and might be too big for a newborn.  And they come in as much variety as a wraps.

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Fidella Fly Meh Dai Outer Space Blue, it’s heaven.

You can even convert a wrap into one. Common brands are Infantino Sash, and BabyHawk. I love Meh Dais for hiking, especially my Fidella Fly Meh Dai. The body panel adjusts so it can fit from newborn to toddler. And it’s sooooo cushy and soft.

Stretchy Wraps

Stretchy Wraps: A wrap made from stretchy jersey-knit fabric that you use to tie your baby onto you. Similar to a woven wrap, but with one big difference—they are NOT suitable for back carries. They should only be used for front and hip carries. Can be easily shared between wearers and very easy to put on alone. A much smaller learning curve than a woven wrap because you can pre-tie the wrap on then insert the baby. Perfect for newborns, so snuggly! And most can support a baby into toddlerhood, but it will probably be uncomfortable. The stretch makes it harder for heavier babies to stay high and the straps might dig into you.  But they are a great way to start babywearing and see if you like wrapping. And they tend to be cheaper than woven wraps. Common brands are Boba and Moby. My first baby carrier was a Boba and I loved it. So snuggly and saved my sanity with a newborn.

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Boba Wrap in Orange, the first time I ever wrapped Jack up at one week old!

*There is an exceptions to the back carry rule. A few brands make hybrid stretchy wraps ones that can be used for back carries, such as the Wrapsody Hybrid wrap .

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Back carry in our Hybrid Stretch!

With a Hybrid, you can pretty much do everything you can with a stretchy wrap (like the snuggly Pocket Wrap Cross Carry) and most of the stuff you can do with a woven (like the supportive Double Hammock). 

Ring Slings

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Lenny Lamb Heavenly Lace Large Ring Sling

Ring Slings: A piece of woven fabric with two rings attached to one end that you use to make a sling for your baby. Can be used for front, hip, and back carries. They are fairly easy to share between wearers, but since they are sized, they may not share well between two people with a big difference in size. For example, a petite wife will probably buy a small and her body-builder husband probably would want a large. They come in many colors, patterns, weaves and fabrics like woven wraps so the possibilities are endless. When picking one, watch for the quality and strength of the rings. Cheap rings run the risk of breaking and dropping your baby to the ground. Ring slings are easy to nurse in and are wonderful for newborns. Also very easy to put on alone and perfect for quick ups. There is a much smaller learning curve than woven wraps—pretty much learn how to thread the sling, place your baby correctly, and tighten. But it can get uncomfortable with a larger baby or toddler for long periods in a front or hip carry, since the weight is distributed over one side of your body. And back carries are a a bit tricky to learn, similar to woven wraps.

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Sigh, the oh so beautiful Natibaby Nebula Ring Sling. I miss it.

Common brands are Maya, Sakura Bloom, and most wrap brands make them as well. To be honest, I am not that big a ring sling fan. My favorite was my Natibaby Nebula, it was so beautiful. But like I said, not all carriers are for everyone. Ring slings and I just don’t get along well, so I sold it.

Here are some wonderful links and resources for some experts:

This is a wonderful chart Wrapsody made comparing different types of carriers. Yes, it’s a biased towards their product (and it honestly is a darn good wrap).  And it goes into more detail on carrier types than I do. But it shows you all the potential options in a carrier.

Wrap You In Love is a totally awesome babywearing Consultant in Germany. Her website is a wealth of knowledge. She explains different types of carriers here in great detail. And here she lists pretty much every brand of carrier I’ve ever heard.

Babywearing 102 is another wealth of knowledge. It started as a Tumblr and now is mainly a Facebook page. Both are a great resource. This babywearing glossary was SO helpful when I started started out.

And lastly, the ever wonderful Babywearing International. I recommend you find your local chapter and attend a meeting. You can borrow carriers until you find the right one for you and get advice on how to use them properly. The website is very helpful if you cannot attend a meeting.

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And regardless of the type of carrier you use, please remember to follow proper babywearing procedures at all times! This nifty poster can help you remember.

And just for fun, here is montage of all these carriers!

Almost Knotless Ruck Carry

What do you do when your baby is cranky from teething and you want to try a new carry? Put on some music and have some fun! This a knotless ruck carry using a size 4 Girasol Tahoe, but I did one more bunched pass to get the one long tail out of the way.  The song is “Girl In A Country Song” by Maddie & Tae. Warning, white girl dancing! 

If you have questions about babywearing, please go check out  my links section and contact a babywearing educator.

Pre-tied Back Carries With Four Variations

After watching my last babywearing video, I was not that happy. It wasn’t me… I’m not a stand there and give instructions kind of person. I am not trying to be a babywearing educator, I’m just trying to show people the fun of babywearing.  I decided to take a new approach with my videos. I am just going to demonstrate how I like to do carries and add some fun music. That’s more my style, doing rather than dictating.

Anyways, this is how I learned to back carries. I struggled with making a seat and spreading the passes because I was worried he would fall. Someone from my local Babywearing International chapter showed me this video and it all started to click for me.  This is just how I like to do.

For information on how to do back carries safely, click here.