Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Dress Up Fun: Wearing in Costumes

Doctor Frankenstein, The Bride and wearing The Monster!

October is here! Time for all things fall, and for many that means Halloween festivities!

A Pirate and her Parrot, a Couple Theives and their Loot, Popcorn and Cola, Adventure Time!

Your baby may not care about candy just yet, but extra snuggles from your little one are always a treat! Babywearing could be just the trick you need to create a fun costume idea that isn't lacking in the snuggle department! Not only can babywearing costumes be fun, but here in Ohio they can be very helpful at protecting your little one from the elements. Having your child "close enough to kiss" means you can make sure they aren't getting too chilly when those icy Halloween winds are blowing! If it begins raining while you are out in costume, babywearing means one umbrella has you both covered! 
From Game of Thrones-Mabel is bran (minus her wig because she wouldn't leave it on), Austin is hodor, and Shanna is Osha (Ergo Baby Carrier) and then we have Karyn carrying her Captain America (Kokadi Merlin Stars)

Utilizing a babywearing costume can allow you to easily volunteer at an older child's class party while keeping your baby safe and out of mischief...but still letting you join in the fun by dressing up!

Alicia as a web with her black spider

We all know how anxious we can get on Halloween night when the streets are filled with children and many adults are out for a night on the town. Babywearing is a wonderful way to make sure your child is always near a caregiver and safe from wandering into the streets or getting lost in a crowd.

Tracy and her Tootsie Roll and also a Pumpkin and Ladybug (pet costumes overtop a mei tai)

There are many ways to create a fun babywearing costume! You could use the print on your wrap or carrier as inspiration for your costume, you could cover your carrier with fabric, and I've heard pet costumes fit beautifully over many soft structured carriers! From Yoda on Luke Skywalker's back, to an owl in a tree, a dalmatian puppy with a fire hydrant or a beekeeper with a bee...the possibilities are endless!

Alicia wearing her Pink Puppy (mommy's shirt provides a built-in candy bucket!)  and Karyn with her spider and flower (Moby and Seven Slings Pouch) and also with her bumble bee and flower (bee in KP and flower in a Wrapsody Hybrid  Stretch)

Brittany as "Mama Kangaroo and her Roo" (Moby Wrap) and Merideth as "The Solar System Revolving Around the Sun" (Wrap is Oscha Starry Night Raven)

All of the pictures in today's blog post were submitted by our own members!  We have so many creative folks in our Chapter. If you still can't decide- guess what?!  We have a Pinterest Board for that!  Come and get inspired, there are SO many incredible ideas and fun to be had!

Thank you to our newest member of our Social Media Team, Alanna Mlakar for today's 102 Topic of the month!  Aside from the hard work she does at our Monthly Instructional Meetings, she is blogging for us and also is a Pinner on our awesome Pinterest Account.

Sunday, September 27, 2015

International Babywearing Week 2015: #embraceyourworld with Babywearing International of Cleveland!

We hope that you are as excited as we are for International Babywearing Week 2015, October 4-10, 2015! Your leaders here at BWI of Cleveland have a whole week of wonderful events across Northeast Ohio planned for you. We have in person and virtual events! Join in on our Facebook group, Instagram and Periscope (@BWICleveland)

*Indicates events that have an additional fee to BWI of Cleveland. Other events may have fees involved depending on location.

Sunday, October 4
IBW Bingo
When: October 4 through midnight October 10
Where: BWI of Cleveland Facebook Group
Who: Everyone!
What: A virtual scavenger hunt with awesome prizes! To qualify for a prize, you must be a member of the FB group, post your photos in the thread (link coming soon!), and have a completed bingo card submitted (photo or in person) by Saturday at midnight.
Hashtags: #embraceyourcommunity

When: 10:00 am - 4:00 pm
Where: Holden Arboretum, 9500 Sperry Rd., Kirtland, Ohio 44094
Who: Everyone!
What: Come to the Holden Arboretum and vote for our Scarecrow in Scarecrow Row! We’re thrilled to participate in the annual celebration for a 2nd time this year! Goblins in the Garden is an unforgettable day of trick-of-treating, leaf trails, cornstalk maze, straw pyramid climb, face and hand painting, wagon rides, live entertainment, and food! $10 a car to join in the fun for non Arboretum members. BWI of Cleveland will walk the trick-or-treat trail at noon and at 3pm!
Hashtags: #embraceyourwild

Monday, October 5
When: 10:00 am
Where: North Olmstead Library
Who: 15 Participants - pre-registration required!
What: Want to learn to wrap? Want to learn fancy finishes? Please join us for a workshop. We will split into new and advanced wrappers after evaluating the needs and skills of attendees.
Hashtags: #embraceyouroptions

When: 1:00 - 3:00 pm
Where: South Chagrin Reservation, Bentleyville
Who: Up to 8 families - pre-registration required!
What: Join us for a babywearing photo session with Candystick Photography. Registration for a specific time slot required. Cost is $30 and includes 5 digital images. Additional prints can be purchased direct thru the photographer.
Hashtags: #embraceyourlove

Latin Babywearing Dance Class*
When: 6:00 pm
Where: Gymboree Play and Music of Strongsville, 14383 Pearl Rd., Strongsville 44136
Who: Everyone - preregistration required!
What: Celebrate International Babywearing Week with us and workout!  This 45 minute dance class will feature easy to follow dance steps that you can do while wearing your baby!
Hashtags: #embraceyourself

Tuesday, October 6
Virtual Group Consultation (link to event coming soon!)
When: 10:00 am
Where: Google Hangouts
Who: 5 participants - pre-registration required
What: Erin Fabian, Advanced Babywearing Educator, will host a free virtual consultation for up to 5 participants! A great opportunity to get focused expertise!
Hashtags: #embraceyouroptions

When: 10:00 am - 12:00 pm AND 3:30 - 5:00 pm
Where: Rosby’s Berry Farm, 42 E. Schaaf Rd., Brooklyn Heights, Ohio
Who: Everyone
What: Bring your family and your carriers to free your hands for raspberries!
Hashtags: #embraceyourcommunity

When: 11:00 am
Where: Westwind Farm 4600 South Madison (528), Madison, Ohio
Who: Everyone
What: Bring your family and your carriers to free your hands for apples!
Hashtags: #embraceyourcommunity

Carrier Question Time
When: 12:00 pm - 2:00 pm
Who: Everyone!
What: Got a question about cleaning? Intrigued about the best way to get out that spit up stain? Join BWI of Cleveland educators for a virtual discussion of carrier care.
Hashtags: #embraceyourstyle #carriercare

When: 5:00 pm - 6:30 pm
Where: Robinson Memorial Hospital
Who: Everyone
What: Join us for our regularly scheduled Ravenna meeting! Feel free to bring a friend or caregiver and any carriers you have that you're interested in learning to use. For newcomers or those looking for specific one on one instruction please let a VBE know so that your needs do not go un-met. We will be in the Cafeteria Annex and need to finish promptly because the LLL meeting is directly after.
Hashtags: #embraceyourcommunity

When: 5:30 pm
Where: Middleburg Heights, OH
Who: FREE to all female caregivers with children in strollers or carriers
What: Join Baby Boot Camp of Cleveland for a free babywearing exercise class!
Hashtags: #embraceyourself

When: 6:15 pm
Where: Faith Lutheran Church Annex on Mentor Ave, Mentor, Ohio
Who: All mothers of higher order multiples!
What: Babywearing twins and more! Have higher order multiples? Want to learn how to keep your hands free? If you are a mother to twins or more come to the North East Ohio Mothers of Multiples (NEOMoM) meeting at faith Lutheran church on Mentor Avenue to learn about tandem babywearing (the practice of carrying more than one baby using baby-carriers)!
Hashtags: #embraceyourcommunity #embraceyouroptions

Wednesday, October 7
Personal Shopping Time
When: 12:00 am - 8:00 pm
Who: Everyone!
What: On the hunt for a new carrier but can’t decide what you want? Need help picking out your new DISO? Join BWI of Cleveland educators for a virtual personal shopping event.
Hashtags: #embraceyouroptions #personalshopper

When: 10:30 am
Where: Meet at the nature center parking lot at North Chagrin Reservation
Who: Anyone who wants to get outdoors with HikeitBabyCleveland  
What: We will be embracing our wild at the North Chagrin Reservation! We will meet in the Nature Center Parking lot and head out on a easy pace around the Sylvan Loop Trail & Overlook trail, >2 miles, beautiful path with veiwpoints!
Our welcome circle starts at 10:40

When: 6:00 pm
Where: JoAnne Fabrics, Mayfield Heights, OH
Who: Up to 12 participants - pre-registration required!
What: Join BWI of Cleveland educators to make and learn to use a no-sew babywearing poncho! Perfect for the beginning of Cleveland fall!
Hashtags: #embraceyourstyle

Thursday, October 8
When: 10:30 am - 12:30 pm
Where: Fairview Park Public Library
Who: Everyone
What: Join us for our regularly scheduled Fairview Park meeting! Feel free to bring a friend or caregiver and any carriers you have that you're interested in learning to use. For newcomers or those looking for specific one on one instruction please let a VBE know so that your needs do not go un-met. We will be in Meeting Rooms A and B.
Hashtags: #embraceyourcommunity

When: 1:00 pm
Where: Chick-fil-A on Center Ridge Rd.
Who: Everyone
What: Join us for lunch at Chick-fil-A after our Fairview Park meeting!
Hashtags: #embraceyourday

When: 3:00 - 7:00 pm
Where: Sandy Ridge Reservation, North Ridgeville
Who: Up to 16 families - preregistration required!
What: Join us for a babywearing photo session with Bri Yankowski Photography. Registration for a specific time slot required. Cost is $30 and includes 5 digital images. Additional prints available for purchase from the photographer.
Hashtags: #embraceyourlove

When: 2:00 - 7:00 pm
Where: Veteran’s Park Mentor, OH
Who: Up to 16 families - pre-registration required!
What: Join us for a babywearing photo session with Megan Smith Photography. Registration for a specific time slot required. Cost is $30 and includes 5 digital images. Additional prints available for purchase from the photographer.
Hashtags: #embraceyourlove

When: 3:30 pm
Where: Abide Yoga, Cleveland, OH
Who: Current BWI of Cleveland members, up to 12 participants - NO preregistration required
What: A 45 minute babywearing yoga class, $15 pay at the door!
Hashtags: #embraceyourself

Mamas Night Out!
When: 8:00 pm
Where: Abuelo's, 26100 Harvard Rd., Warrensville Heights 44122
Who: All Mamas who could use a night out! (Everyone!)
What: Come meet up with Alicia for drinks and a kid-free time!
Hashtags: #embraceyourday

Friday, October 9
When: 10:00 am
Where: Parma, OH
Who: Free for all female caregivers and children in stroller or carrier
What: Join Baby Boot Camp of Cleveland for a free babywearing exercise class!
Hashtags: #embraceyourself

When: 11:30 am
Where: Panera at 6036 Mayfield Road,
Who: Everyone
What: Join us for lunch at Panera on Mayfield before our Hillcrest meeting!
Hashtags: #embraceyourday

When: 1:00 pm to 2:30 pm
Where: Hillcrest Hospital North Building
Who: Everyone
What: Join us for our regularly scheduled Hillcrest meeting! Feel free to bring a friend or caregiver and any carriers you have that you're interested in learning to use. For newcomers or those looking for specific one on one instruction please let a VBE know so that your needs do not go un-met. We will be meeting in the Ontario/Superior Rooms right after the breastfeeding support group. This is in the Hillcrest North Campus building - across Mayfield from the Hospital. Enter on the west side of the building in the entry that looks like a glass box.
Hashtags: #embraceyourcommunity

Saturday, October 10
**Please note, the regularly scheduled Elyria meeting is canceled so that all can participate in our closing event!**

When: 10:00 am till close!
Where: 10am We will meet at the membership booth!
What: Join us for the close of IBW for a picnic at the Cleveland Zoo!
Hashtags: #embraceyourfamily

We can’t wait to see you for IBW 2015 and see how you #embraceyourworld!

Friday, August 7, 2015

Babywearing Days of Summer

Kickoff to our Babywearing 102 Series- Summertime Babywearing

It is finally August in Northeast Ohio. And while it has been a mild summer, temperatures and humidity are rising fast. If you are anything like me, your summertime babywearing experience probably hasn’t been too different from the rest of the year. But the last week has been a game changer for me as a new mom and babywearer. There are a few things to be aware of with hot weather wearing. Here is what I have learned about safety and comfort, as well as special summertime activities.

Safety and Comfort
According to the Baby Carrier Industry Alliance (BCIA), hot temperatures bring additional safety concerns for the babywearer. They suggest staying out the sun as much as possible, dressing both you and baby in light breathable fabrics, and drinking lots of water. Check out the full article here.

It is worth noting that safety and comfort go hand-in-hand when it comes to hot weather babywearing.

Safety and comfort tips for hot weather wearing:
  • Dress to be cool. Wear one layer less than you might otherwise—remember: you will also be wearing your baby. Follow the same advice for baby.     
  • Pick a carrier that works for the weather. There many carriers that work well in warmer weather. Many wearers prefer lightweight fabric woven wraps, while others stick to soft-structured carriers. You can try out a summer carrier from the library at a BWI meeting this August.     
  • Minimize sun exposure. Try to stay out of the sun as much as much as possible—even in the hottest of conditions, the shade is cooler. Pick a carrier that has built in UV protection and make sure to use sunblock on all exposed skin.     
  • Stay hydrated. Make sure that both you and baby stay hydrated by drinking lots of fluids- water for you, breast milk or formula for baby.     
  • Take breaks. Regularly take baby out of the carrier to release trapped heat and allow both of you to cool down before resuming wearing.
  • Know the signs of overheating. An overheated baby might be more lethargic or irritable than usual. Heatstroke in babies is a very serious condition. Read about the signs here. Monitor yourself for overheating too. Feeling flushed, dizzy, or lethargic are things to be concerned about. Here are the signs of heatstroke.

Summertime Activities
Summertime brings with it all kinds of fun things do. Here are some quick tips for a few hot weather favorites in Northeastern Ohio.     
  • Water. Wear your baby in the pool or at the Splash Pad with a ring sling or wrap that is made specifically for wearing in the water. These are quick drying and perfect for water fun. Since the rings in a water sling might slip on the mesh fabric, it is good to get your sling wet before loading in baby.     
  • Hiking. Wear your baby on your back (when age appropriate) to feel more balanced and have a better view of the trail ahead. Use whatever carrier you prefer for back wearing—I am a new to back wearing, so I like to use an SSC or Mei Tai because I find it easier to get my baby up with those types.     
  • Biking. Never wear your baby on a bicycle. Babies should be secured in an appropriate baby seat or trailer.     
  • Boating. Would you, could you on a boat? Skip babywearing in favor of wearing life jackets (for both you and baby).     
  • Camping. Pack a cooler weather type wrap or carrier for snuggling if temperatures drop at night. I use my Moby wrap, which makes me too hot otherwise, to snuggle baby at the campfire.

Summertime is a time to get out and enjoy so many amazing things in Northeastern Ohio. Babywearing is a great way to enjoy picnics, farmer’s markets, and summer festivals. Summer doesn’t last long in our region, so bask in the summertime babywearing while it lasts!

Thank you to all of our Volunteers that submitted these incredible pictures for our post today! 

Written by:
Bridget Kriner
Today's post is written by a new addition to my social media team, Bridget Kriner.  I am so excited to have her on board and I know you will all love reading her voice too.  Thank you Bridget for the kick off to our Babywearing 102 series!  For further in person tips and advice on Summertime Babywearing please attend one of our Monthly instructional Meetings during the month of August! 

and a thanks to VBE Erin Fabian for lots of helpful info!


Sunday, June 21, 2015

Happy Father's Day!

Happy Father’s Day everyone! We here at BWI of Cleveland wanted to do something fun to celebrate with all of our wonderful dads so we’re introducing a very special blog post! Around Father’s Day we often see a lot of groups posting “in honor of father’s” or speaking about father’s. We decided to speak to the dad’s themselves! An exciting interview with some of our babywearing dudes! We asked a variety of questions to get a better look into the intriguing life of a babywearing dad. So first, here are our fathers:

Mike T- Mike Tankersley aka Tank from Madison, Ohio has five children Michael Jr (7), Katy (5), Kelcy (3), Jeffrey (3) and Kayla  (8 months).

Jon K- My name is Jonathan Knight (I go by Jon most of the time). I grew up outside of Pittsburgh, PA but now live in Thompson, OH. I currently have four children - Hunter (8), Kendall (6), our twins Jon David and Sonia Faith (2). We also have our second set of boy/girl twins due in early August. 

Spenser M-F- I'm Spenser Miller-Fellows, out of Cleveland, Ohio. I wear my son Oliver, who is 13 months old.

Jessie M- Jessie, daddy to Jamie(almost 5) & Jackson (3)

Bob R- I am Bob Russell, king slayer and ruler of the northern herds. I wear my 15 month old son who is the spawn of the ice banshees. He was given his name thru the sacred fire rituals which emboldened him with the power of smoldering cuteness. He goes by the name of Clayton.

Aaron M- Aaron Mlakar from Brunswick, Ohio. Father to four kids from 16 years down to 16 months (Killian).

On to the questions!

#1. When did you start babywearing and why?

Mike T- 7 years ago, because it’s easier than lugging a stroller around.

Jon K- With our 2nd child (Kendall our oldest girl) and my wife wanted to.

Spenser M-F- I started babywearing pretty soon after Ollie was born. We had been having trouble 
getting him to sleep, and I had a number of things to do around the house. I finally gave up and put him in so that I could do something in the kitchen. It worked great, I had my hands and could start cleaning up.

Jessie M- I started babywearing when Jamie was about 6 months old. I wanted to be able to hold and snuggle her, and babywearing gave me a way to do this and be hands free to do other things as well.

Bob R- We discovered at a young age that the draconian harness devices known as strollers did not please the temperament of the baby known as Clayton.

Aaron M- Started in March of 2014, and it was an easier way to carry your baby.
#2. Why do you babywear now?

Mike T- My kids love it and it makes trips easier.

Jon K- It is extremely convenient and is much less stress on you or the baby

Spenser M-F- I love being close to my son while still able to devote my attentions elsewhere. It makes me feel connected and like he is learning the actions that I do.

Jessie M- Now, I typically only wear when one of the kids is in need of a nap or just wants some daddy snuggles in a carrier.

Bob R- So my spawn can rightfully see the vastness of his empire laid out before him. And it’s good for cuddles...

Aaron M- It’s an easier way to carry the baby and I can actually multitask more.

#3. What is your current favorite carrier?

Mike T- Can’t remember the name (then the following conversation with his wife…)
Wife: “They want to know which carrier you like best.”
Mike: “It’s the one I always use.”
Wife: “with flamingos?”
Mike: “The only one I ever use?  I only use one. I don’t know what it’s called…”  (flamingos tula) Wife: “That one right?”
Mike: “I don’t know, like I said I only ever use one kind.  You are the one that knows what they are called.”
Wife: “Yes you only use buckles. But they want to which brand you like best.”  
Mike: “I have no idea.”
Wife  “Well do you like that flamingos best or one of our other buckles you've used in the past?” Mike: “They are all the same to me!”

Jon K- My Kinderpack. Before that it was my Boba

Spenser M-F- Beco Soleil. My wife got me a custom hood with bat wings for it.

Jessie M- My current favorite carrier is superheroes inspired, standard size KinderPack.

Bob R- I only wrap with wovens made from the finest glistening unicorn hair found at the summit of 
Old Smokey All Covered With Cheese. (note from wife… It’s a Hoppendiz Montreal size seven…)

Aaron M- Grey zigzag tula

#4. What’s your favorite babywearing memory?

Mike T- Wearing the kids around the zoo.

Jon K- Carrying one of our twins while on vacation in Florida

Spenser M-F- Dancing with my wife with my son on my back.

Jessie M- Jamie was about 6 months old and she could not settle down the first time she stayed home alone with me. I had to figure out a way to help her to be happy, and I had seen my wife use this carrier(Japanese mei-tai) we had at the house. I figured it out and she ended up being a happy baby again.

Bob R- When Clayton felt so secure and loved while I vanquished Lord Snaggletooth in the bowels of the Target during Black Friday 2014.

Aaron M- Cutting grass while babywearing.

#5. Did you always plan on babywearing?

Mike T- Nope! Never knew it was a thing until my wife showed me!

Jon K- I had never put any thought into it before my wife brought it up to me.

Spenser M-F- I was never against it, just figured if I liked it I would.

Jessie M- No, I had never heard of babywearing until Jamie is born. When my wife first mentioned it, I was like, you want to do what? But then I figured out that I could hold my baby and have my hands free to do things. It was awesome.

Bob R- Have you seen my majestic side burns? Of course I always planned on wearing a baby.

Aaron M- Yes

#6. Have you gotten any funny comments while babywearing?

Mike T- Nope.

Jon K- "Oh there is a baby in there!! I thought it was just a back pack!!"

Spenser M-F- Lots of "Oh, doesn't he look cozy." Typically most people are more interested in cooing over the baby than me.

Jessie M- I have seen people whispering to themselves, but I don't remember hearing any of the comments.  I can only imagine what they could have been saying at those times.

Bob R- Any questionable glances or jaded looks were deflected by the mighty glow from the tigerseye talisman Clayton wears as a trophy for his defeat of the flatulence-powered hydra. (It’s all been positive stuff!)

Aaron M- No

#7. What would your ultimate babywearing adventure be like?

Mike T- Hiking the Smokey Mountains wearing my kids.

Jon K- Any where I go with my family IS a adventure. (We will have 6 kids in August including TWO sets of twins)

Spenser M-F- On Safari in southern Kenya or on a walkabout in the Australian outback.

Jessie M- My babywearing adventure would be a tour through Europe or Australia while wearing one of my kids on my back.

Bob R- As Clayton and I rise from the ashes in our FCC (forward cross carry) we continue our crusade; we seek to travel beyond the borders of our empire where only darkness touches. We must ride on the wings of a mighty pegasus to the land of frightening smiles and scary glass eyed minions known as Disneyland.

Aaron M- On the beach.

#8. Any advice for other fellow dads who are interested in babywearing?

Mike T- It is easier than it looks and the chicks dig it.

Jon K- Don't give up if you don't like the first carrier you try. I've tried many carriers but have only liked a few.

Spenser M-F- Just go for it, but seek advice from an educator first. Its comfortable, and frees up your hands for whatever you want to accomplish in a day.

Jessie M- My advice to other dads would be A) find a carrier that works for you and your child/ren. B) wear them as much as you can/want. Nothing beats being able to have your baby/kid snuggled, close to you and being hands free to do other things.

Bob R- Every man has two responsibilities in this world. #1. To grill and eat as many delicious meat products as possible and #2. To wear their child proudly.

What an informative, and entertaining look into the everyday life of a babywearing daddy! We just want to thank those fathers that took a bit of time to share their thoughts and stories with us and thank all of those other awesome babywearing fathers and grandfathers who know how special it is to carry those children close to them! If you'd like to share in the Father's day fun comment below or share a pic on instagram! Don't forget to tag #bwicleveland