So you might have seen in my million Instagram’s (I’m really sorry about all of them) that we often use a baby backpack to get around. This not only gives Arlo his own little mode of transport (he thinks he’s in a Convertible up there), but it opens up the places you can go walking that aren’t good for prams. I wanted to be able to take Arlo on the sand/ rocks/ snow…..skateboards/ snowboards??!! EVERYWHERE!!
Why not a sling or normal baby carrier I hear you say? Have you ever tried to carry several bowling balls on your front?? or an over excited Hyena?? Our few walks with Arlo in the sling were similar to a vigorous Army Weight Training Program.
Before Arlo was born I had a sling (ok, 3 slings), beautiful laid out, ready to use for our baby. I loved the idea of wearing my baby, having my hands free, just looking down and seeing him all nestled in my boobs!! ” They liked to be cocooned” they said, “swaddled and close to their mummy, they like to feel secure”…….oh no, not this baby. Even from the first night in hospital (when I’m sure they aren’t really supposed to do anything?), I kept wrapping him up in the blanket, but he would somehow find a way to wriggle out of it.
The older he got, the more he thrashed, and my outings in the sling would be greeted by high pitched screams and attempts at suicide by Arlo trying to dive bomb backwards out of the sling. He did not like to be contained. I got fed up of people passing me on the street and saying “oh, someones not happy??”….. And the screams are REALLY loud when the baby is attached to you!
He would eventually cry himself to sleep bless him, but it was a traumatic experience for both mother and baby!!!
Once I tried to wrap him up in one of those material slings, but he was so wriggly it was near enough impossible. His head ended up under my armpit, his leg in my cleavage and his arm near my nose??
The only way he liked the baby carriers is if he could face outwards, I guess he felt more free that way. Curious Arlo could observe what was going on. But we got to the stage where he was so long that his legs were dangling down by my knees and not only did I look ridiculous (umpa lump) but I was finding it hard to walk. I thought people were looking at me because he was such a cute baby, but when I looked back at pics I realised these looks had been of shock/ horror because Arlo was nearly the same size as me. I decided I had lost the spring in my step and something had to be done.
So here comes in the baby back pack!!! Life saver!! The inspiration was actually from my Dad, he used to use a baby backpack/ or just a regular backpack (!!!) to carry me around in the olden days! I think I was a similar baby to Arlo and very wriggly.
Today we use the Littlelife Adventurer Child Carrier. It says you can use it until the child is 3, but I feel Arlo will be taller than me by then so our window might be smaller? Maybe we could take it in turns to carry each other??!
It’s great, it distributes the weight to your hips so its easier to carry a heavy baby. It has adjustable straps for when they grow, and even has a secret pocket to put all your baby bits in (I didn’t actually find this until last week) so you don’t have to carry yet ANOTHER baby bag! It also has a pull out stand so “technically” you can just stand the baby up on the ground to just chill. Maybe pop him next to the table with you? But if you are in possession of a wriggler, this is not a good idea, they WILL capsize!
The baby has a good view point up there, I swear Arlo thinks he’s on neighbourhood watch or something. But this does distract him from trying the escape. Unfortunately the baby is now at the perfect height for vomiting on your head (is this good luck? or is that bird poo?). And of course you now have the issue of hair pulling. We found putting some little mittens on Arlo (even in the summer?) prevents bald patches.
Now he can kick his legs and fling his arms around to his hearts content. He just so free up there!!!!! However it’s difficult to keep a tab on his activities because he’s on your back. So I recommend taking a friend with you, or a mirror so you can have a look at him. Or use the selfie mode on your phone…..which means you get some good photos too!!
I also thought there was nooooo chance he would sleep in the backpack. But he has actually been caught red handed grabbing 40 winks!! Miracles do happen!
The baby backpack really does give you the freedom to go anywhere…….although I must admit you do look a bit silly doing the Tesco food shop or the housework. And its actually a great workout, feels like you’ve done 100 squats in the gym after carrying a large baby for 30 mins! Arlos new favourite game is to hit who ever is carrying him on the shoulder (does he think he is on a horse now??). So it’s basically like having a personal trainer on your back telling you to go faster!