Category Archives: Babywearing

Babywearing Goes Boom!

What used to be a casual get-together over coffee to talk slings, SaYas and pouches exploded into a full-blown meet yesterday! Babywearers, experts and newbies alike, gathered at Starbucks MC Home Depot at Bonifacio Global City and the second floor was OWNED. Take a look at these pics!

It was so nice to see lots of mommies (and daddies!) interested in babywearing. The organizers (headed by Benz Co-Rana) tried very very hard to divide the groups into ring slings, pouches and the SaYa, but in the end, we just went around and helped out whoever needed any assistance. It was an unprecedented turnout, and can only mean we will see more babywearing events in the future!

Onsite, we had Denise of Indigo Baby, Jen of Next9, Jenny of Mama.Baby.Love, Abbie Yabot, Mamaway and Buding of SaYa! Other moms helped out too. I was all over the place helping the organizers with SaYa, sling and pouch tutorials (and chit-chat on the side).

One of the moms getting some SaYa help from Cats of Kraze Kitch Bakeshop and from SaYa creator herself, Buding Aquino-Dee!

I really wish I had taken more pics and met more mommies, but it was mayhem (in a good way), plus Basti was in a foul mood.

I had to hoist him on my back to calm him down. Photo courtesy of Martine de Luna.
Mommy Cor with Paola of Mommy Treats
Jenny of Mama.Baby.Love assisting moms
While I was off shmoozing and coaching, my Basti played with Martine's Vito and Paola's Sjofn. Photo courtesy of Martine de Luna.

It was so much fun and I can’t wait till the next one! Babywearing is alive and thriving in the metro, woohoo!!!

Babywearing the Big Boy: The SaYa and Other Thoughts

I got a comment from Tedda, asking about SaYa use for her 2 year old who’s turning 3 very soon. Instead of replying to her comment, I thought that I might as well post a followup “report” on my babywearing status now that Basti is quite a big boy already. Have I shown you guys his ID picture?


Hee hee hee.

So being the big boy that he is now, he’s become quite heavy and recently just learned to walk on his own. Do I still wear him? Yes I actually do! He stays in his stroller for longer periods now, but he still does ask to be worn while we’re walking at the mall or at the supermarket. When it’s just him and me, babywearing still saves the day when I have to pay bills, do grocery shopping, etc. Plus, when he’s moody and cranky, wearing him is still the best way to get him all calm for a much-needed nap.

If you guys have read my posts on the SaYa before (here, here and here), you already know I have three SaYas: 2 in Semi-Stretch Knit (the SSK) and one in Versatekk (V-Tek). Even though the carriers are meant to be worn from infancy to the toddler period, I find that the SSK did not meet that for me. The SSK started become quite tight for me and Basti (NO, I did not gain weight – I know what you’re thinking!! :p) to the point that Basti doesn’t want to be worn in it anymore. Now that he’s bigger, we can only use the Versatekk. I’ve actually sold one of my SaYas already. I was a size L, so I’m wondering if an XL SaYa would be better for us these days.

Our Blissful Babes pouch and Next9 Baby slings are working well for us these days.

(Sorry, it was a no-makeup day. Jennifer will stand in for me in this pic. Otherwise, it’s horrifying)

The pouch and ring sling are great because they’re so easy to get in and out of, but nothing beats the SaYa when it comes to comfort for my poor back. Especially now, that Basti is at 10KG and growing!

UPDATE: Tedda’s baby is only 2 months going on 3 pala. #mommymushbrain

The SaYa Versatekk Carrier vs. The SaYa Semistretch Carrier: A Comparison

I bought a SaYa Versatekk at Mama.Baby.Love’s Expomom booth. I’ve been wearing it the past few days and I just wanted to share my observations about it and compare it with the Semistretch version.

  1. The SaYa Versatekk is easier to put on and take off. It being nylon and spandex, it slides unto your baby effortlessly and is less prone to tangles and knots. If you do tangle up while wearing the Versatekk, it’ll actually still be manageable. A tangle in the semistretch version is SaYa hell.
  2. The Versatekk’s plus is also its minus. Because it’s smoother and stretchier, I find it hangs lower than the semistretch and gives Basti more room to squirm. When carrying Basti in front facing me, he can lean back, almost to the point of spilling from the carrier, something he couldn’t do with the semistretch.
  3. Again, since it’s stretchier, I found I had to get the smallest size. I initially thought I would get a size 1, but eventually got the size 0 because I found the size 1 too stretchy! Basti was spilling out of the carrier! Never mind the sharing-with-hubby part. I’ll teach him how to use the ring sling.

I like wearing my SaYa with the sleeves over my arms:

SaYa Versatekk

(Note: Do you guys like my hair? I had it fixed by Cherry at Toni & Guy. I no longer curse when I see myself in the mirror)

SaYa Versatekk

But today I scrunched up the sleeves to hang like straps over my shoulders and I found that this is the best way to do it with the Versatekk. More stable and less prone to slipping off. (Excuse the bagong-paligo look)

SaYa Versatekk

Back view:

SaYa Versatekk

Overall, I’m happy with the Versatekk too. The reason I bought it is because I want to take Basti swimming and the material is very much like the Gypsy Mama Water Wrap. I’m going to try showering and swimming with Basti in the SaYa Versatekk. I imagine it’s going to be a great travel carrier since it’ll dry easily and is really quick to put on and off. No SPF information on their material though. I think I’ll ask about that.

If you’re looking for tips on how to wear the SaYa carrier, I have posts on that here and here. Here’s to more SaYa success!

SaYa How-To: The Front Carry

One of my readers, Yanna, messaged me on Facebook that she was having the same dilemma as I did with Basti. Her baby Sahaya, was no longer comfortable with the kangaroo carry in the SaYa, but wasn’t taking well to a pouch or a ring sling. She asked for advice on another position to carry Sahaya in the SaYa. (Sahaya in the Sa-ha-Ya. Ok ah. Just saying… wala lang. Carry on!)

I do a front-carry with Basti when he lets me (our record for the front-carry is 20 minutes) and here’s how I do it with the SaYa. (Please don’t mind The Painter taking his pre-painting nap on the sofa behind. Hee hee!)

First, put on the SaYa. I explained my style in a previous post.

With your baby in burping position, slip your hand under the lead sling…

And thread your baby’s leg through it.

Spread the fabric of the lead sling across your baby’s bottom and back to come up with something like this.

Next, get the support sling and thread your baby’s other leg through it…

Before bringing the fabric up to cover his bottom.

Then, just like in my previous demo of the SaYa Kangaroo Carry, put your arm through the support sling on your side…

And slide it over your shoulder.

Again.. SaYa Success!

Here’s a side view of the SaYa front carry.

Basti doesn’t really like this position very much as of now, but I think he’s getting used to it. Hope this helps!

It’s A Ring Sling Thing

So yes, I’m a SaYa fan. I’ve been using it since Basti was 2 months old and we both love it. But. Babies grow up. And in my case, growing up REALLY FAST. (We’re at 7.4 kilos as of last checkup 2 weeks ago) I’ve been noticing that Basti has been squirming uncomfortably in the confines of a kangaroo carry in a SaYa, especially now that he’s taken to wearing shoes. I tried doing a front carry, both facing out and facing in and he didn’t like it either.

So, unwillingly, I’m taking a rest from the SaYa until he gets a little bigger to be side-carried. I dug out my RJellybean ring sling from storage and decided to give it another shot.

It works. The adjustable feature of the ring sling allows me to give Basti a little more room. And also, the ring sling allows me to accommodate Basti’s preference to nap while being carried.

I decided to try out a Next9 sling, a brand also marketed by the same people behind RJellybean. I got this design from their Multiply store. (P.S. Thanks to Jen of Next9 for being so wonderfully accommodating)

Photo courtesy of Next9

So I took the Next9 sling for a road test when I went grocery shopping at SM Hypermart on C5 yesterday. Basti loved it! (Note to self: Try out and review SM Supercenter’s Breastfeeding Room) I guess my learning curve finally caught up with me and I was able to handle the ring sling this time. Successfully breastfed while doing checkout without the use of a nursing cover or bib as well!

So I couldn’t help but compare the two brands. Based on my experience with both slings, here are my thoughts on several points:

  • Material: The Next9 is built from a thicker cotton fabric than the RJellybean, making it easier to handle and less prone to twisting and tangling. The advantage of the RJellybean’s lighter fabric, though, is you can wear your baby in it even on warmer days.
  • Ring: The Next9 has an aluminum ring, while the RJellybean has a thick nylon ring. Both are sturdy enough; strength is not the issue at all. I just found that the fabric slips less on the metal ring than on the nylon ring. I don’t know if it’s the material though – I’m wondering if the heavier material on a nylon ring would work as well.
  • Design: The Next9 is a plain length of cloth with an applique on the tail while the RJellybean has a print overall. The Next9 goes better with my wardrobe. Pero, maarte lang kasi ako, heehee.

Overall, I get along better with the Next9 than the RJellybean. One thing that the RJellybean has over the Next9 sling though, is price. It’s more affordable by a few hundred pesos and that itself could be the dealbreaker for some. And, the Next9 and RJellybean slings are great LOCAL products at affordable prices. Imported slings are more expensive and the fabric they use is usually for cooler weather.

You can order Next9 and RJellybean slings from their website or from several Multiply resellers. I saw some RJellybeans at Baby Co. in SM as well.

Note: These are unbiased opinions. The RJellybean was a gift and I paid for my Next9. Just saying.

My SaYa Baby Carrier Review and Personal How-To

I love the SaYa Baby Carrier so much that I am spreading the gospel of this babywearing method. Take note that I do not work for SaYa and I am not paid to do this stunning review.
So as I mentioned in my previous post on babywearing, the SaYa Baby Carrier is my and Basti’s favorite carrier among the three systems I have because:
  1.  The material is soft and stretchy. There are no rings that dig into my shoulder and it feels like wearing a t-shirt.
  2.  Just as advertised, Basti’s weight is spread evenly across my back and both shoulders. I can wear Basti for hours and we both don’t mind.
  3.  It can be peeled off, making the transition from carrier to crib wake-free for baby.
The things that can turn off a user from the SaYa are:
  1. It can be a challenge to put on.
  2. Once you’re carrying baby, it’s harder to carry anything else.
  3. There are limited designs available in stock.
For the first drawback, I’ve decided to share my own technique to make it clearer to those interested in getting the SaYa (and because I’ve received a number of messages asking how I figured it out). Here’s what I do when I kangaroo-carry Basti.
The SaYa comes as two linked pouches.
I noticed that the printed pouch seemed to be stretchier than the plain one, so I decided to put that around my waist and make it the support sling. The fabric gets all bunched up, so it helps to run your hands round the fabric to straighten it out before positioning it with the SaYa label on your belly button.
Then I get the other pouch and run my hands through the fabric to get rid of the bunches and twists…
.. before sliding my arm through the opening that faces my back…
.. and putting it over my head.
Spread it across your chest..
.. and get your baby ready by crossing his legs like a little Buddha.
With confidence and conviction, slide your baby into the pouch. I emphasize CONFIDENCE and CONVICTION because you really need these to put your baby into the seemingly small space. Even the tiniest bit of hesitation causes an epic SaYa fail.
Take the support sling…
..and slide it over your baby, with the label facing forward.
Now, slide your other arm through the support sling…
.. and put it over your shoulder.
TADAH! SaYa Success!
Now for the other two drawbacks: I find it hard to carry my baby bag with the SaYa covering my shoulders – the strap keeps slipping! A solution I found is to carry the bag with the strap under the SaYa fabric. Most of the time, I bring a stroller along too, so instead of carrying the baby, the stroller becomes a baby bag trolley.
How I wish Roots and Wings would make more of the designs available! I really wanted the brown/floral design, but had to settle for the purple print one because it was the only one available in my size!
And to prove how much I love the SaYa…
I got another one! This time in plain brown.
With the SaYa I’ve really enjoyed babywearing. It’s enabled me to bring Basti everywhere with less stress. Since I started wearing Basti I’ve been researching on other ways to wear him. Next on my wish list… the wrap or the mei tai!
UPDATE: Recent studies state that the Buddha carry is not recommended for long period. Try the front-carry! Instructions on this blog post.

Adventures in Babywearing

Even before I got pregnant, I said I would definitely wear my baby. It looked so cute and cuddly, and mommy always looked so composed. Orley and I decided to follow attachment parenting, and babywearing is high up on the list of do’s for this parenting style.

My first glimpse of babywearing was when my then-student JM’s mom, Abbie Yabot, walked into Gymboree wearing him in a Maya sling. When I became pregnant, Mommy Abby became my lactation consultant, and encouraged me to wear Basti when he came out.

I had trouble wearing Basti when he was a newborn. Now that he’s closing in on 2 months in age and solid as a stuffed chicken, I’m more confident handling him when I put him in and out of whatever system I’m using that day. Here’s my take on my three babywearing gadgets.

1. The Ring Sling

It took me some time to learn how to thread the ring sling right. If you don’t do it properly, it gets all tangled up and I wish you good luck trying to adjust the slack once your baby’s in there. I’m somewhat successful in wearing Basti in a ring sling, but it’s not my favorite method. The tail bothers me and being the klutz that I am, might cause me to trip on it. This is an RJelly sling that my friend Krisbau gave me. She wasn’t happy with it and never got to use it. I like that the material is light enough for our weather, but I have a feeling that if it were made with a slightly heavier cloth, it would be easier to handle.

2. The Pouch

This is a Peanutshell baby carrier that I bought from My Baby and My Sling. I chose the Peanut Shell for the reviews and friendly price. The seller was so nice. She met up with me to hand me my Peanut Shell and told me her own babywearing stories. She’s a babywearing mom and has used all the products she sells on her site. A++ seller!

I love this pouch! It’s easy to put on and the DVD gives clear instructions on how to wear using different positions. It’s cotton, and reversible and easy to stow in the baby bag. The first time I used it, Basti fell asleep in it and stayed asleep for hours. My back didn’t hurt at all!

3. The SaYa System

The SaYa is my absolute favorite among these three systems. I love that it’s made of t-shirt material, comes in great designs, and Filipino-made! Dear fellow Povedan Buding Aquino-Dee is the woman behind this carrying system.

When I first opened the package I thought I ordered a size too small. It seemed I was never going to get Basti in there! I had to Facebook Buding and she assured me that I got the right size. Once I finally figured it out, Basti was in babywearing heaven, and so was I! Look at how happy he is in there. A few minutes after I took this picture, he was fast asleep. Compared to the Peanut Shell, the SaYa is easier to peel off so I can ease out Basti from the pouch and put him in his crib. It’s a bit more challenging to wear and put on but once you’ve got that right, it’s the best pouch ever! Orley loves this pouch too, though I can’t say he’ll ever try it. :p

I’m really looking forward to wearing Basti as he grows older. I don’t want to lug a stroller around all the time! Good luck to all mommies who want to wear their babies!