Friday, December 14, 2012

New Baby Products...

Just this week we met with New Baby Products on Cheshire Bridge road to explore hosting our Tuesday meetings in their space.  We found out they just finished building a classroom in their space and they are looking for activities to fill it.  The classroom is housed in their big furniture building which is the lefthand building when facing their property from Cheshire Bridge Road.  It is a wonderful space for us and a step up from Glenlake Park where we were somewhat exposed to the elements.  While Glenlake was awesome to use with the playground right next to us, we are thrilled to move to an indoor space that is dry, warm or cool during the summer and free for our non-profit group!

Our first meeting there will be held on Tuesday December 18th from 10-12.  We have not locked down future dates there as of yet but are working to get this squared away and will keep you posted!  We will continue to offer our during the week class at New Baby Products but most likely will change days of the week.

So, come one out to check us out next week and we look very forward to seeing everyone there!!!  Find out more about New Baby Products at

Babywearing International!!!

It's official!  We are now a full chapter of Babywearing International!  We will change our name to Babywearing International of Atlanta.  We are the very first chapter in the state of Georgia and we couldn't be happier!

It took us almost a year to complete the application but we finally got it!  All of our co-leaders have been certified Babywearing Educators since about April but it took us a very long time to navigate our state system and secure a bank account.  Each state has different requirements and ours seems to have a particularly difficult path but we finally were able to work our way through it with a little help from Babywearing International's President.  Huge Thank You to Anne Marie Rodgerson!!!

To find out more about Babywearing International, visit Babywearing International

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Next meeting: 10/16/12

We've had so many meetups in the last week for International Babywearing Week that it feels like the Tuesday meeting is happening too soon (at least to me), but the calendar doesn't lie.  Our next meeting is tomorrow, October 16th, at Glenlake Park from 10-12.  I will be there, of course, with our raffle prizes, just waiting for our winners to show up!

Despite the craziness that was jam-packed into last week, I did enjoy IBW.  I got to know some of our attendees a bit better outside the confines of teaching and it was great to socialize with other moms.  We have some photos posted at the Facebook page; I'll see if I can get permission to post them here as well!

November's going to be a big month for Atlanta Babywearers, hopefully soon to be BWI of Atlanta (can I just say that dealing with banks is a huge hassle in Georgia?).  Firstly, we're crossing our fingers that we can finalize the last thing in the application and get that stuff all straightened out.  Secondly, Aisling is due in November and will be taking the month off.  Given how beautiful her girls are already, I can't wait to see what her next child looks like!  And of course to see what wraps she picks out.  A wrap geek's gotta have priorities.

Monday, October 8, 2012

IBW 2012 Guest Blog: Gretchen's Story

Our last guest blog comes from Gretchen. She and her son had a special situation as well. Babywearing has helped so many!


Babywearing is not a tradition that was handed down to me, but I hope it will have an impact on my kids in a positive way, and I would cry happy tears to get the privilege of seeing them wear their children one day. Wearing my babies has allowed me to truly bond with my them in ways that I otherwise couldn't.

My first son, Devin, was born at 26 weeks and weighed just 2 lbs., 6oz. I had a very rough pregnancy and he had a very traumatic birth. He went on to spend his first 11 weeks in the NICU. He lived in an isolette, a temperature-controlled environment built to mimic the womb he was so rudely evacuated from. I didn't get to hold him for 3 days after he was born and very rarely after that for the first several weeks. When I did get the chance to hold him, I held him skin to skin. Being up against my chest regulated his temperature, calmed his heart rate and his oxygen saturation always improved.

IBW 2012 Guest Blog: Priscila's Take

Last week, I asked if anyone would like to contribute a guest blogpost to the Atlanta Babywearers blog.  Priscila responded with a yes.  She and her daughter have some special circumstances, and babywearing has been important to them.  Here is what she wrote.

Where did you hear about babywearing?

I initially heard about babywearing from my sister-in-law. It was a relatively new concept to her at the time, and she's one to research a subject to death. Upon doing all of the research, she told me that she thought wearing my daughter, Eliora, would be helpful.

I was halfway through my pregnancy, we had just recently learned that my daughter had spina bifida (SB), and we were overwhelmed with the slew of special needs she could potentially have. Children with SB typically have developmental problems with their lower extremities, like severe low muscle tone, hip dysplasia, and clubbed feet. With that said, the mainstream concept of babywearing - using a narrow-seated carrier - was not an option for us.

Sunday, October 7, 2012

IBW 2012: Carrying on Traditions

International Babywearing Week is upon us!  Well, almost.  It's 10:35 PM EST as I write this.  So in about an hour and a half, IBW 2012 will be here!

This year's theme for IBW is "carrying on traditions," which for me has some extra significance.  At Atlanta Babywearers, a lot of first-time parents and first-time wearers learn how to carry at the meetings.  Their first exposure to babywearing comes through us, the VBEs and leaders of the group.  The vast majority of parents have never worn their children before, and are the first ones in their families to wear their children.

That's not true in my case.  For me, babywearing has always been a given, something that I knew about since I was a child and my mother told me about how she'd put her baby sister, 10 years her younger, in a strap carry and go leaping and bounding about in the Taiwanese countryside.  Her mother had carried her, and she carried her sister, and that practice was passed down to me.

Back then, wearing children in wraps was a necessity.  My grandmother came from a decent family but married poor, and strollers were not as much of an "essential" as they are now.  My grandmother would wear my mother, who was by all accounts quite a fussy baby, while doing the dishes, cooking, or cleaning the house.  Later, when my mother grew older, and baby #4 came around, it fell to her to help care for it, and you know the rest.

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

"Practice, not product"

I wanted to link you guys to a great blog post by Arie of the Canadian Babywearing School regarding the practice of babywearing versus the product of babywearing.  It's easy to get caught up in all the material goods out there, or start putting carriers into good and bad categories.

Narrow-seated carriers such as the Baby Bjorn or the Snuggli often are called "crotch-danglers" in the babywearing community because the weight of the baby is concentrated in the area between the legs (versus a "wide-seated" carrier like an Ergo or Boba).  The legs themselves are not supported and are free, thus the dangling descriptor.  These carriers also allow a baby to be faced out to see the world.

In our meetings we've stressed the importance of safe carrying, which means that your baby's head should be close enough to kiss, the baby is able to breathe freely, and that very young babies should not be in a C-curved, chin-to-chest positon.  We talk about appropriate carriers and carries for newborns, infants, toddlers, and even preschoolers.  We've also talked about optimal seating for children, with the knees being above the hips, allowing them to be carried more comfortably.

Narrow-seated carriers such as the Bjorn and some versions of the Snugli do not get check marks for optimal seating, but they do get check marks for being safe.  Babies are well-supported and are at an extremely low risk for falling out.  And that's the bottom line, for us: is the carrier safe?  Can it do its job of carrying a child close?  If the answer is yes, we're happy to work with it.  We encourage babywearing, full stop.

Now, just because the Baby Bjorn-type carriers are safe and do their job adequately doesn't mean we can't trick them out a little bit in order to get a more comfortable carry and create an optimal seated position.  Arie's post has details on how to "pimp out" a Bjorn.  I have to say that this is a really cool trick and I can't wait to try this myself with a narrow-seated carrier.

Why is Arie Wearing a Baby Bjorn?

And lastly, when I mentioned "some versions" of the Snugli do not get check marks yadda yadda ya?  Snugli makes a wide-seated carrier called the Front Hip and Back Snugli.  It looks pretty good!  I have yet to see one in the wild so I cannot give any impressions about what they're like.  Maybe one day...

Sunday, September 30, 2012

International Babywearing Week 2012

Atlanta Babywearers is proud to be celebrating International Babywearing Week this year!  IBW runs from October 8th through October 14th, and although we do not officially have any meetings scheduled for that week (COBB Moms does though) we do have things planned.

Here is our current schedule for the week.

Monday: Facebook photo drive; the theme is "first-time babywearing."  Share your pictures from your first time, or second, or third time babywearing, as long as it's relatively fresh in your babywearing career!

Monday (part 2): Blog posts on the theme of "carrying on tradition."

Tuesday: North Atlanta OTP meetup at Perimeter Mall, 11 am - 1 pm (details to be discussed on Facebook)

Wednesday: South Atlanta ITP meetup in Grant Park, 10 am - 12 noon, at the playground

Thursday: West Atlanta OTP meetup in Marietta Square, by the bandstand, 11 am - 1 pm

Friday: Photo drive part 2, anything goes!  Big kid wearing, grandparents babywearing, kids wearing their toys, whatever strikes your fancy.

Saturday: Membership drive and raffle.  Participants who buy a year's membership to Babywearing International ($30) will be automatically entered into our raffle!  We have some nice prizes... do stay tuned.

And that's it!  I'll update with some more details as the week goes on.

Next meeting: 10/6/12

Having two meetings per month makes me feel as if there's always another meeting around the corner.  That's good news for the moms and dads (and guardians and caretakers) out there who want to babywear!

Our next meeting is coming up on Saturday, October 6th, 2012 at the Solarium from 10 am to 12 noon.  See you there!

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Pictures from the Tuesday meeting

Nature was kind enough not to rain on our whole meeting today so I was able to get some pictures!  Unfortunately, as the meeting drew to a close the skies opened up and spewed forth a deluge of water, so those of us left got to hang out for an extra half an hour.  It turned out just fine, as babies were sleeping in carriers all around, and the toddlers at the meeting jumped in puddles and got themselves soaking wet.

We had a nice mix of journeyman babywearers, adept babywearers, and master babywearers today (if I may borrow some terms from high fantasy literature and/or the occult).  I had a great time helping people out and getting some help, myself!  Even though I'm officially a volunteer babywearing educator and have passed the exams, that doesn't mean I have experience with everything, and today it was a Beco Butterfly II that stumped me.

Anyway, here are the pictures!

Katy is already a pro at using SSCs, but today she came for some help with ring slings.

Here's Kate, one of our co-leaders, demonstrating a carry with a newborn in a Galaxy Grey Ergo.

That dratted Beco Butterfly II!  Mother and baby - especially baby - look pretty comfortable, though.

And here's another front carry, this time with the Ergo Sport that lives in our lending library.  This baby has some motor developmental delays and it's so lovely to be able to carry her in safety and comfort.

I'm looking forward to our next Tuesday meeting!  I'm usually not at the Saturday ones, sadly.  We also may be changing our Tuesday meeting place.  Again, check Facebook to stay updated.

Monday, September 17, 2012

Tuesday meeting!

Our next Atlanta Babywearers meeting is... tomorrow, September 18th!  Ah, it's totally my fault that I didn't post about it earlier.  I'll see you guys at Glenlake Park in Decatur, right off of Church Street, from 10 am to noon.  As usual, we'll be in the big pavilion right by the playground.

There are tornado warnings for tonight until 3 am, with heavy rain in the forecast.  As of right now I expect to be at the park, but if it's coming down in a Biblical sense then I will cancel.  Keep your eyes peeled, both here and on the Facebook group!  And stay safe!  I remember the last tornado that went through here.

Oh, and one more thing - I will be bringing my camera to tomorrow's meeting to take pictures!  I know tired moms with spit-up on them are really attractive and all, but we haven't had picture day in a long, long time.  We're overdue.  Say cheese!

Friday, August 31, 2012

Next Saturday Meeting is September 8th!

Hello All! Due to the holiday weekend, our next Saturday meeting will be moved to September 8th at Glenlake Park in Decatur instead of our usual location, The Solarium. Hope everyone has a great holiday and we will see you and your little ones next week! For meeting updates, be sure to join our Facebook group.

Monday, August 20, 2012

Next meeting: 8/21/12

Atlanta Babywearers' regular Tuesday meeting will be tomorrow, August 21st, from 10-12 at Glenlake Park in Decatur!  Directions can be found here: Atlanta Babywearers Facebook.  See you guys there, we'll be hanging out in the pavilion!

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Meeting time again!

Hope to see all your lovely faces this Saturday at the Solarium from 10-12!

Friday, July 6, 2012

International Babywearing Conference 2012

This past weekend, I had the exciting opportunity to attend the International Babywearing Conference, held at the Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C.  The conference was attended by about 300 Babywearing Educators and researchers, Doulas, Lactation Consultants,  Birth Professionals, and parents from the US, Canada, and around the world who wanted to learn more about babywearing and other parenting topics. 

Many workshops were geared toward babywearing educators, including Babywearing Safety, Babywearing in Clinical Settings, and Ergonomics for the Baby and Babywearer.  There was a fascinating research review from Katie Nicolai of the German babywearing group, Offene Traggegrupe Oberhausen covering topics including infant spinal stress, kangaroo care, and some of the evolutionary aspects of baby carrying. A lecture on the benefits of touch from Dr. Henrik Norholt, Chief Scientific Officer of Ergobaby discussed the relationship between babywearing and infant attachment (Dr. Norholt has some great articles based on his research on the Ergobaby blog). There were DIY workshops and  lots of classes on how to use specific carriers, including classes on tandem wearing and babywearing from a man's perspective.

There were also workshops on parenting topics such as breastfeeding, diapering, Elimination Communication, and green cleaning and some fun classes on Babywearing Yoga and Bellydance!  One day of the conference was open to the public, with 101 classes, a vending hall, and a babywearing fashion show. I especially enjoyed the keynote speaker, Rachel Coleman of Signing Time.  Her story is truly inspiring.

I had a great time! Also, thanks to Ergobaby and Babywearing International, we now have a new Ergo Sport for our Atlanta Babywearers carrier library!

Here are a few snapshots and a look at some more of the exciting workshops that were offered.

Tina Hoffman of Didymos presented a lecture on The Art of Weaving, offering a detailed look into the  process of creating a woven wrap.

In Babywearing and Culture, Arie Brentnall-Compton of the Canadian Babywearing School demonstrated a variety of carriers used around the world, such at this Scottish wool carrying and nursing shawl.

Here, Arie shows us how to use an Amauti, a babywearing parka used by Canadian First Nations. 

Arie demonstrating how to use an African Kanga. 

How to teach the ringsling workshop, with Jan Andrea Herlitzer of Sleeping Baby Productions and 
Ellen Schaad, VBE for BWI of DC/MD/VA.

Advanced Back Wrapping, taught by the fabulous Becca Morse, Babywearing Consultant and VBE of BWI of Ann Arbor.  Becca also has a great babywearing blog.

I had the opportunity to meet many of the fabulous Volunteer Babywearing Educators for Babywearing International, what a truly wonderful group!

With Faith Rayland, VBE of BWI of Central New York, slinging our demo babies. 

There was even a babywearing fashion show! 

Babywearing and happy babies everywhere! A fabulous time was had by all! 

Monday, July 2, 2012

Next Atlanta Babywearers meeting!

Atlanta Babywearers will have its next meeting on Saturday, July 7th from 10 am to 12 noon at the Solarium.  Same Bat-time, same Bat-channel.  See you guys there!

The Tuesday meeting is scheduled to be the third Tuesday of the month.  I will not be in town for most of July, so the meeting will likely be led by Aisling, as Kate will also be out of town.  Stay tuned to our Facebook page for up-to-date changes.

Speaking of Aisling, she went to the International Babywearing Conference and has returned with some goodies...

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Atlanta Babywearers Lending Library

We here are Atlanta Babywearers are fortunate enough to provide a small carrier lending library as one of our services.  In addition to our friendly faces and wandering children, you can also bring home a public-use carrier for 2-4 weeks.

Our lending library wouldn't be what it is without generous donations from Jen Harris of Marsupial Mamas.  Jen is fab in every way possible, generous to a fault and runs one of the best babywearing online stores around.  Like her page on Facebook and you'll be privy to flash sales and sneak peeks of what she's stocking.

Another patron of our library is Susan Horn of The Blueberry Tree.  I've bought wraps from Susan for years now (has it really been that long?) and she's always great to work with.  Plus, she's a graduate of babywearing school and includes samples of chocolate in every package.  She can't be beat!  Oh, and she'll toss in free babywearing info cards and brochures as well.  Susan is a wonderful babywearing resource in addition to being a businesswoman who genuinely cares about her customer base.  Like her page on Facebook too!

And now, without further ado, here is our current list of carriers available in the lending library:

Next meeting: 6/12/12

Update to the sky!  The next Atlanta Babywearers meeting will take place on Tuesday, June 6th at Glenlake Park from 10 am to 12 noon.  All are welcome!

This time I'd like to talk about carrying in the summer (I may even invoke the dreaded s-word).  We'll focus on carries that can be done with short wraps, hip carries that can be done with mei tais and soft-structured carriers, and troubleshoot ring slings.

General questions are still encouraged, so come one, come all!

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Next meeting 6/2/12

It's that time again!  Join us for our next meeting on Saturday, June 2nd from 10 am to 12 noon at the Solarium in Decatur.  Trust me when I say we have everything!

Monday, May 14, 2012

The care and feeding of baby carriers

When it comes to baby items, one will inevitably ask the question, "How do I wash it?"  Baby carriers especially are in the direct line of fire when it comes to bodily functions both high and low, and concerned caregivers should know how to wash and care for them.

Before I get into the specifics, I will note that all brand-new baby carriers will have care instructions packaged within.  After all, the companies don't want the customers to damage the carrier in some way, making it unsafe. So, in addition to checking your carriers for safety, always read the care instructions.

Saturday, May 12, 2012

The next meeting of Atlanta Babywearers will take place Tuesday, May 15th, at Glenlake Park from 10 am to 12 noon.  I will be hanging out in the pavilion by the playground!  See you guys there!

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Review: Didymos Ruby/Gold Old Standard Indio

On Friday, April 13th, Didymos released a limited edition wrap called Ruby-Gold in the Old Standard indio weave.  The fiber blend was 60% cotton and 40% linen, and weighed in at 180 grams per square meter.

Didymos swatch

Friday, May 4, 2012

Atlanta Babywearers is holding its next meeting tomorrow - Saturday, May 5th, from 10 am - 12 noon at the Solarium in Decatur.  We're looking forward to seeing you there!

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Koala Mamas Decatur is now Atlanta Babywearers! Please join us for a free monthly meeting to learn more about babywearing and socialize with other babywearing parents. For meeting updates and more info, join us on Facebook!