Saturday, July 30, 2011

Babywearing & The Sleepy Wrap (Video)

"Wearing" Avery at 4 weeks old
Now it didn't take long after Avery was born for me to ask myself, "How am I going to get ______ done, now that I have a baby?" The blank being things like cooking dinner, vacuuming, doing laundry, and just plain getting ready to go out in public.  Avery doesn't mind sitting in something we call "The Rock N' Roller" for 10-15 minutes max while she's awake, so I try to get done what I can while she's in that but it's usually short-lived. This leaves me with completing all the tasks I mentioned above, while Avery is asleep or with a baby in one arm. Now this is fine for awhile, but then your arm gets tired and everything you do takes double the time because you have to do it one-handed (which is how I'm typing this post right now...with one hand, since I'm holding Avery with the other hand while she eats-lol).  This leads me to babywearing, or as I call it on some days, "my sanity"!  Babywearing is just that- you wear your baby! I first read about babywearing in The Baby Book by Dr. Sears, and countless other baby books, as it has benefits for both mom and baby, and is used by moms all over the world. 

Some of the benefits of babywearing for babies (according to Dr. Sears website and the Sleepy Wrap website):
  • cry less
  • learn more (are smarter)
  • are healthier (seen to gain weight faster and have better motor skills)
  • get a better view of the world
  • become independent faster since they feel loved and cared for
  • sleep better
  • are happier
Not to mention benefits for parents as well, such as:
  • Creates better communication between parent and baby.
  • Is convenient, since you don't have to lug them around everywhere in a car seat (boy is that thing heavy and awkward!)
  • Encourages parents to stay active since they can easily take the baby with them. I've been able to "wear" Avery here at home, to the grocery store, and even to the beach!
  • Not to mention you probably burn a few more calories when you're wearing them.
  • Builds confidence in parents since they know their baby's needs are met.
I guess this is how the "Sleepy Wrap" gets it's name!
Some of my favorite things about babywearing are:
  • Being able to get things done around the house...hands-free!
  • Bonding with Avery. This along with baby massage as I mentioned on this post, will be one of my favorite things to do with Avery once I get home from a long day of work.  It will be great to have her nice and close, and I doubt she'll mind!
  • It takes the pressure off my arms and back and distributes it evenly so I don't mind holding her for longer periods of time (see more about the special wrap I use below).
  • Knowing all of Avery's needs are met.  Sometimes I feel guilty just leaving her sitting in her Rock N' Roller or doing Tummy Time, what can I say, I'm a new mom! So to be able to get things done and keep her satisfied with me (not just laying around all alone) feels so much better. 
Getting some onions from Costco at 2 months old.
Now babywearing is all nice and dandy when you talk about the benefits, but when you start looking for the type of wrap or sling you want to use, things get a bit more confusing. There's slings (which go over one shoulder and create a pouch for the baby), wraps (a piece of fabric that can be tied and wrapped around for a variety of ages and positions...that's what I'm wearing in all of these pictures), as well as other soft structure carriers (Mei Tai) or probably the most commonly known, Baby Bjorn

So, being the little prepared, pregnant planner mama I research around and found this Seven Slings sling online and decided to give it a try.  But when Avery was born I tried putting her in it and it just didn't feel right.  She seemed so tiny and crunched up...maybe I had the wrong size I don't know, it just didn't feel right.  So I began looking online, and found the Balboa Sling, which Dr. Sears himself recommends.  After paying for next-day shipping (silly momma), it arrived and I tried it out on Avery and although it seemed to fit a bit better, it gave me one aching back after just 15-20 minutes of wearing it...darn it! It basically felt like I was carrying a heavy messenger bag that was only going to get bigger and heavier as the weeks went on, ouch! Slings were not for me. Let the online research and shopping continue!

That's when I came across The Sleepy Wrap.  Originally I was put off by all the wraps and ties, but once I learned how to put it on, it was all worth it.  I loved the quote on the front page of their website: "The baby wrap proven to calm and relax your baby from day one." Sign me up! So, once again I paid for next-day shipping, and when it arrived I tried it on and never looked back.  Does the format look similar to the Moby Wrap? Well, you're right, it's very similar to the Moby Wrap, the main difference is the fabric and how the Sleepy Wrap uses more spandex in it's fabric and it's a heavier, high quality knit.  What this means is that although the Moby Wrap may stretch out over time, the Sleepy Wrap always bounces back and stays nice and snug to your baby and your body. 

On the beach at 2 1/2 months.
Some of my favorite features of the Sleepy Wrap are:
  • No pressure on my back, shoulders, arms, etc. Love this feature! It makes me enjoy carrying her!
  • No special sizing involved, everyone who wears it can adjust it to fit them.  Brandon has even worn it from time to time here at the house.
  • They have organic fabric available.
  • Can be worn for many months (starting right at birth) and even into toddlerhood, without having to buy differnt models or changing sizes.
Need more convincing on the benefits of the Sleepy Wrap? Check their comparison page here, it's very informative.  Maybe you have some questions, so here's their FAQ's page that may help. 

Now one thing to note is that the creators of The Sleepy Wrap do not recommend wearing babies in a "facing out" position. Although this position is a great way for babies to look out and see the world, it
does not provide good head, neck or leg support.  Also, babies can not turn away if the outside environment becomes too overwhelming (something I see Avery do from time to time when we are at a busy grocery store). It also makes it difficult for parents to read their babies cues since they are facing out.  Read more about this forward-facing issue here.

Now just with everything on my blog, do what works for you!  Maybe the Seven Slings sling works great for you, or Baby Bjorn is your go-to carrier...that's great! We're all different and so are our babies, so try out a few and find the one that works perfect for you!

So now that you know the benefits of babywearing and my favorite type of wrap, let me show you how to put it on!  As I've mentioned many times before, I learn best through videos, so when my Sleepy Wrap arrived in the mail I watched YouTube videos over and over about how to correctly put it on, and they were a lifesaver.  So, for this post I figured I'd let you meet Avery (video-style) and show you my favorite way to put on the Sleepy Wrap.  Here we are in her room (Want to see all the work we put into it while I was pregnant? Check out this link!) and I'll show you one way you can put on the Sleepy Wrap:



Did you like Avery just chilling out in the chair waiting while I put on the wrap? He he! She cracks me up.  I have a feeling this won't be the last time she shows up in a video on my blog!

Well that's the Sleepy Wrap, my favorite type of wrap that helps Avery and I reap the many benefits that come from babywearing.  Have you ever done babywearing with your little one? If so, what carrier did you like best? I'd love to hear what worked for you. Happy Babywearing from Avery and I! ( :

3 comments:

  1. Loved the video demonstration! Avery's such a doll! I will definitely be investing in a sleepy wrap one day!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Glad you liked the video Meg! Avery was such a great little actress for me. I highly reccomend the Sleepy Wrap not only for your future baby, but also for your sanity as well! ( :

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  3. I tried a sling with baby#5 and ran her into so many things I just put it away. I didn't really want to try much more since I had my tried-and- true methods from the other kids. Glad you found success with your wrap! She looks comfy and cozy in there and cute, as always!! :)

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