Monday, October 5, 2009

Seasonal Wearing: Autumn Pt.1

Autumn is a wonderful time of year to get out wearing your baby or toddler. There is a new world opening up to them for exploration. After the long, hot days of summer, the air is turning crisp and the leaves are beginning to change. You can use babywearing to share this glorious change of season with your little one. This week, we’ll explore some ideas for how to use your carriers to get outside and experience the season with your little ones.

One fun family outing in the fall is a visit to the pumpkin patch or other fall festival activity. This is a great place for children to participate in games, hay rides, try fresh cider, and depending on your location, visit farm animals up close. However, the terrain at many fall festivals is uneven and difficult to traverse with a stroller. It can make an otherwise fun day a test of patience and strength. But, with a good carrier, your child can be up high enough to see everything and you can walk around where you like without the burden of the stroller.

Last fall my youngest was about 9mo. We went to the Pumpkin Patch at Cox Farm and enjoyed a fun family day. My 3.5yr old was able to play on the slides, we took a family hay ride, we fed the pigs, danced to Rocknocerous, and my little one even caught a nap on mommy’s back. Without a carrier, I might have missed out on sitting at the bottom of the big slide and watching my husband and daughter ride together because I was stuck with the stroller, but with baby snuggled on my back, I was in the middle of the action.

This year, my little one is a toddler and I’m 7mo pregnant. When we went to Cox Farm a last week with friends, I used my carrier to contain my toddler when she decided that watching the mommy smuggling a basketball chasing her up hills was a fun activity. Having her on my back also helped me share her excitement at seeing the sheep and telling me they say, “Baa!” And wearing a toddler on your back can also help keep little fingers off the germy walls and floor when the pregnant mama needs to use the port-a-potty, AGAIN.

Babywearing tip: Events like this with toddlers lend themselves to carriers that allow a lot of quick ups and downs. A Mei Tai, Soft Structured carrier, or Ring Sling might work best. With an infant that will not want up and down, a wrap may be cuddlier on a cool day.

Posted by: Ann Marie

Thank you to Heather for additional photo.

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