International Babywearing Week (IBW) was a blast! We had so much going on that I hardly remembered being 38 weeks pregnant. It made me oh-so-appreciative for toddlerwearing, too!
Please visit our Facebook page to see some of the images of us “getting carried away,” which was the theme for 2013.
Our week started in Houston with a gorgeous weather on Monday, beautiful babywearing families, funky blue crepe myrtles (The Blue Trees), and professional photographers Courteney Miller of Once Upon A Lifetime Photography and Alexander Mayhill of Newlife Photos.
Tuesday, we met at Milroy Park in the Heights and practiced babywearing with traditional household fabrics: towels, sarongs or pareos, and tableclothes. It was a beautiful morning with lots of laughs.
On Wednesday, directed by the generous Janaki Mayhill, we experienced intense closeness with our little ones at the tranquil Pilates Place of The Woodlands. Our “babywearing yoga” session started with a lavender oil massage that started with their tiny feet and worked up to their heads. Once little ones were secured into wraps, SSCs, and mei tais, we moved through some gentle stretches and poses that, no matter how gentle, had us all sweaty by the end of class — sweaty yet energized! Courtney Zadik of Cocoa’s Dream Photography, a babywearing mama herself, documented the class.
For “Tutorial Thursday,” I had everyone over for a dolly sling sewing day. The kids played together while the adults busied themselves at sewing machines making baby carriers for our little “mommies and daddies” to hold their baby dolls, cars, stuffed animals, and any other precious items.
Friday was another gorgeous day, and we took full advantage of it! For three amazing hours, babywearers enjoyed the splash pad at Sawmill Park in The Woodlands, where we talked parenting, cloth diapers, carseats, pregnancy and birth, and of course babywearing, while the little ones kept busy with the water, play set, and picnic snacks.
We wrapped up IBW with our monthly Saturday meeting, where we discussed airway safety, optimal positioning, and carrier types. We helped fit several caregivers with a compatible carrier; for some, it was ring slings and others, toddler SSCs. We also showed a mother how to use her SSC to carry her child on her back. It was another fun meeting helping each other find (and maintain!) the babywearing love.
How did you celebrate the week? We’d love to hear from you!
— Mary Potee
VP and VBE for Babywearing International of Greater Houston