I may not know much, but I know that we would not have survived our first three months (i.e. the fourth trimester) without our baby carriers. Here's what we got and what we think about them so far.
We both own a soft-structured carrier (SSC), the Boba 3G. Mine is the cute pattern pictured here, and Jake's is a manly black with white pinstripes. Jake basically lived in his for 3 months. Z sleeps her best naps nuzzled against his chest, and for many months it was basically the only way he managed to eat while at home. I was less crazy about it until recently because they were too small to wear the normal way, with their legs wrapped around my waist, so instead we'd have to cinch the carrier up really small and put them in with their legs froggied up.
This was fine when they were TRULY newborns and basically stayed in that shape all day long, but once they were squirmy, active 2 month olds, they kept trying to stand up, shoving their feet between you and the waist band. So irritating! The folks at The Nappy Shoppe showed us how to covert the carrier to the normal setting and adjusted it for our smaller babies using a rolled up blanket. It was way more comfortable but a little fiddly to get them situated. The newer Boba 4G has an infant insert built in for this. My favorite way to use the Boba now is on my back (not recommended before about 6 months), which is ideal when I'm out by myself and juggling two babies. A final word about SSC's: Jake switched to the Ergo for a few months when Harper chewed up a buckle on his Boba, and it TOTALLY jacked up his back. Also, if I could go back in time, I think I would have ordered a Tula instead of a Boba, as they are are even more comfortable and stylish.
Jake also owns a Seven Sling, which is just a big loop of fabric, sized for the user. His is white with little red and blue jolly rogers stamped on it. It has been used once. It was quickly abandoned in the first week when we realized that you're supposed to carry a newborn in a cradle position like this:
And yet it's VERY IMPORTANT to make sure their chin isn't resting on their chest. What?! It was really stressful constantly checking and adjusting, which upset the baby being held. It can't be made tighter or looser, so if you order the wrong size or baby grows really fast, you're going to suffer. Just say NO to the pouch!
I had a Rockin' Baby Sling, and folks, it did indeed rock. So comfortable, so quick, so fashionable. This particular brand sports an extra long tail (which works well with my height), a reversible fabric, and a pocket on both sides. Ring slings take a little bit of practice and patience the first few times, but I was surprised by how quickly it became intuitive. And I love that it is equally appropriate for a tiny newborn and a curious one-year old. Now that they're heavier, I wouldn't choose a ring sling for a long walk or a day at an amusement park, but it's divine for quick up-and-downs, errands, etc. I ended up selling the Rockin Baby and getting a wrap-converted ring sling or WCRS (more about wraps later) that is less clashy with most of my wardrobe. (Yes, I coordinate my carrier to my outfit. Shut up.) I wear that thing at least once a day. It's always within reach.
I also own a Baby K'tan. I've only used the kangaroo and hug positions. When they were teeny tiny newborns, the K'tan was my favorite, particularly for talking those very important walks when recovering from my c-section. They just snuggled up so sweetly and perfectly and went to sleep instantly. However, since they've grown, I've started wondering if I have the correct size carrier for me, because whenever I put a baby in, we both look and act pretty claustrophobic. Between the ill fit and the general warmth of this, it's been entirely discarded. I hope to sell it soon to an expecting mama in need of something for a tiny squish.
Continued in the next post...