Bringing together parents, caregivers and babies to learn and share knowledge about babywearing.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

October 23 Meeting

We had such a great time this week that we decided to go back for next week! So our next meeting will be at the same place as previously. At the Bisogno Espresso Bar, a family-friendly cafe near the corner of King and Sherbourne (walk north on Sherbourne from King, it is right before that light).

Find all the meeting details and RSVP at our Meetup event listing.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

DIY Sweaters, Ponchos and Jackets for Babywearers

On Tuesday, October 16th we’ll meet at Bisogno Espresso Bar, a family-friendly cafe near the corner of King and Sherbourne.

Shira is going to show us all how to create a babywearing poncho or jacket for the fall, using a regular fleece or knit poncho or sweater. Feel free to bring a garment you’d like to reconstruct!

Find all the meeting details and RSVP at our Meetup event listing.

Friday, October 5, 2007

New Sites

Carry Me Close has two new sites, one online and one “in real life”!

Our website has had a bit of a makeover, and we hope you like the changes. Check back here for updates on the group, news on upcoming discussion topics and guest speakers, as well as additions to the library.

For our meetings, we’re trying out a new location as of Tuesday, October 9th. Join us at Children’s Storefront on the east side of Bathurst just south of Dupont. All the details about the meeting can be found on our Meetup event listing.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

An Autumn Picnic

Announcing a Babywearers’ Picnic! Everyone is invited!

Sunday, September 30th
10:00am to 4:00pm
Earl Bales Park
(at Bathurst and Shepperd)

Meet at the picnic tables between the playground and the War Monument (tall pointy monument).

To get there by TTC, take the subway to Shepperd station. Then, take a Shepperd bus westbound to Bathurst Street, and walk south on Bathurst on the east side, past the apartment buildings, until you get to the park.

You can find a map and RSVP on our Meetup event listing.

Saturday, July 28, 2007

Still Going Strong

Carry Me Close is still going strong! We are meeting happily in Dufferin Grove park until we find a new home. Our members are diligently working on this!

We’ve had lots of interesting meetings in the past month, and tons of new members. Many having just bumped into the group at the park

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Post-Partum Depression and Babywearing

Yesterday, Starr spoke on the topic of post-partum depression and babywearing.

Presented were the general facts about post-partum depression. I urge EVERYONE reading this blog to please visit this resource:

Also discussed was the emotional ride we as mothers and fathers have faced since becoming parents. We discussed our coping tools.

We looked at the ways babywearing has helped us deal with the difficult side of parenthood, as well as how babywearing can be a TRIGGER for some people, excerbated by attempting to learn a new skill during an already challenging time.

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Sad News

I am very sad to report that the Informed Parent will be closing their doors due to a horrendous property dispute.

Please join with me and send loving vibes, good wishes and prayers to the mamas of faith of the Informed Parent, while they try to ascertain direction.

In the meantime, this leaves Carry Me Close displaced. It took us a long while to find the ideal location at the Informed Parent. And here we go again!

While we search for the next best thing, we will temporarily meet at Dufferin Grove Park on Tuesdays at 1:00pm, by the children’s play area.

We decided to maintain the time and day of our meetings, as we have developed a loyal and regular membership of those who CAN attend at that time and until we find a location and HAVE to switch timing, we would like to remain as consistent as possible.

Tuesday, June 5, 2007

Soft Structured Carriers

Today, our new co-facilitator Starr, did an overview of soft structured carriers (SSCs). She presented the definition of an SSC, and described various brands such as the Yamo, Beco, Ergo, Tentoes Click, Angel Pack, and Patapum.

Starr also demonstrated how to do a front carry and a back carry.

As a group we also discussed ways to carry a newborn in a soft structured carrier.

SSCs were unanimously voted as the quickest, most comfy two-shouldered carrier.

Sunday, May 27, 2007

The Picnic

We had a grand time at the picnic today! Surprisingly, most who attended came from out of town! Not a whole lot of show from the downtown core.No rain, tons of food, a bajillion carriers. Representatives from Newmarket, Barrie Groups, Koala Mamas, Carry Me Close and the North group. Very fun!

The photo shows only a SMALL sampling of how many people came out. This was just who we could wrangle in for a picture.

(Sad update: photo lost in the shuffle of blogs)

Tuesday, May 1, 2007

Raspberry Rouge Visit

Today, Patricia of Raspberry Rouge ( visited with her new stock of Storchenweige, Vatanai and Didymos wraps. Combined with some veteran babywearers who came to visit with suitcases of carriers in tow, it was as though pretty much every carrier style and brand was represented in the room. I found it rather intense and borderline overwhelming! We had a few newer babywearers and little tiny newborns in the room, so it was great to have such a compliment of expertise for everyone to chat, and teach one another some new tricks.

I realized something today on my way home. I was talking with some of the newer wearers and I realized that I identified three carriers as “the carrier” to get if you can only have one. “Three” is not exactly “one”!

So I thought I’d run through why I would suggest any of those three and maybe justify why I contradicted myself. I do feel that if you are wanting to wear, you should find that one good carrier to be your workhorse. The one you always reach for. One that if you’re going for a long walk or hike you can rely on. Then we always need that carrier for quick ins and outs.

I’d say, if you start babywearing at a very young age for your child, then a ring sling is the best investment you can start with. You can buy a good ring sling anywhere from $30+. Ringslings are great to wear your newborn in a cradle carry or a tummy-to-tummy position right from day one. You can use a good ringsling right up until your child is a toddler, or until you can handle the weight, for a hip carry. Or even a back carry.

The one drawback of having a ring sling as your only carrier is that it only facilitates one-shoulder carries. This (for me at least) can get a bit uncomfortable for long periods of time, especially with a heavy babe. I also find ring slings to be the most challenging carrier to learn to use to its full advantage and comfort, and surprisingly, the most challenging to teach.

Next off, my other suggestion is a soft structured carrier such as an Ergo, Beco, Tentoes Click or Angelpack. They are quick to learn, easy to use, partners are generally willing to wear them, and they fit many body types. They offer front and back carry options. Overall, it’s a good choice, especially if you are doing long haul carries with lots of walking involved.

I also suggest mei tais for the same reasons. Generally, soft structured carriers differ from mei tais simply in that they have padded waists and clip buckles as opposed to ties. They also adjust with clips and can be held in their “sizing” as opposed to a mei tai that you adjust on each wear.

And so that’s my Big Three, apparently. I also love my wraps. I think they are truly the most versatile, but recognize that there is a learning curve to master the variety of ties that make a wrap a good option for the “One and Only”. If someone is willing to learn HOW then I would suggest this, by far, as the best option.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Tummy 2 Tummy Video on Ring Slings

How excited am I? Today we previewed the Tummy 2 Tummy video chapter on ring slings from a copy lent to me, and when I got home, Tummy 2 Tummy had emailed and offered Carry Me Close a copy for us to have! How exciting!

The Tummy 2 Tummy video is astoundingly informative and very easy to follow. Its’ not boring at all and gives tips on how to troubleshoot on pretty much every fiddly bit of using various carriers.

I’d say it’s by far the best resource out there. And so imagine my excitement of having a copy for our group to have for keeps.

We had a great afternoon of playing with Beco and Ergo stoft structured carriers, ring slings, a new mei tai from MangoBaby, a Babyspace onbu, and more.

I always have such a great afternoon at Carry Me Close meetings. I really do. I sometimes feel so tired in the morning and have to, what feels like, “drag” us out. As soon as I get there, I am so happy to be there. I have so much fun and it goes by so quickly.

We also have many more carriers soon to be added to the library. We have a recent donation of a CuddlyWrap from Wee Welcome’s Christine. And soon some ring slings from Mobile Mommy, and many others. I cannot also forget the Yule Bears Didymos wrap in size 6 that is on its way to us in the mail!

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

MangoBaby Mei Tais

Today, Grace of Mango Baby presented her line of mei tais.MangoBaby mei tais have the beauty and asthetic of a traditional Chinese mei tai, yet have some of the comforts of a modern mei tai, such as longer straps and larger body. Grace presented a little of her ethic behind her product, as well as her design considerations.

Everyone dove in and had a go at learning front and back carries. As well as how to use the traditional “twist and tuck” method of securing the mei tai’s straps.

Grace and Shira demonstrated how to safely transfer children of various ages onto the back. I’m a little wimpier and not as practiced and showed the others how to use the sit down method that I commonly use.

I really appreciated the thought and respect Grace puts into her designs. They are very well-constructed and have a deep representation of Chinese babywearing history through both the structure and the designs.

We also talked a bit about other forms of asian-style babycarriers, such as the onbuhimo and podaegi.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Breastfeeding and Babywearing

Today, La Leche League leaders Sarah MacKenzie and Marcia Cunningham of the Dufferin Grove group demonstrated how to nurse a baby in various carriers, primarily a ring sling. They also spoke about the possibility of plugged ducts caused by pressure on the breasts from some carries.

Any carry that applies pressure to the milk ducts of a nursing mother, should not be done for extended periods of time, as this can increase ones likelihood of ducts becoming plugged and a potential for the development of mastitis. Self monitor. When you wrap, use your ring sling or other carrier, take note of where the weight is being carried. Is there any pressure upon the breasts?

Some report issues arising from some carriers applying pressure more towards the armpits, including an Ergo. Of primary complaint would be carriers that tie with a knot over the breasts or a ringsling. You can work with this, by either tying ‘tibetan style’ or with ‘rucksack style’ shoulders. With a ring sling, ensure your rings fall in the optimal corsage placement (in the soft spot by the ball of your shoulder, where one would pin a corsage).

We also jumped into wrapping, ring slinging, playing with BabyHawk mei tais and other troubleshooting of the needs of members who came.

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

PSA Recall on BabyTrend BackPackCarrier

Another recall…Please click the following link for more information:

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

The Amautik and Hip Bundles

Today Jen Gordon of Hip Bundles ( came to the meeting to present the amautik as well as various carriers she carries with her online business, Hip Bundles.

The amautik is the mother’s parka that is worn by women in the Nunavut region of Canada. This beautiful parka is deeply rooted in Inuit tradition and culture and is an everyday item of use for women in the north. Through design, colours and use, the Amautik identifies a woman’s maturity, her geographical place of home and the season.

Although not traditional, a man can wear them too!

We as a group, had opportunity to hear the stories of the amautik, its place within northern Canadian history, and the efforts to protect the amuatik as intellectual property of the Inuit. We also had opportunity to try out both the summer and winter amautiks.

After Jen’s formal presentation and demonstration, we dug into her grand display of carriers ranging from Kozy mei tais, BabyHawk mei tais, Maya Wrap ring slings, EllaRoo wraps, MamaPonchos, Nori jackets, and on and on!

We also made time to work with individual members and help them troubleshoot their carriers that they brought along.

I felt like a kid in a candy store and managed to snag some great deals for the library on a Suses KinderPoncho and a Maya Pouch. As well, a member donated a couple of copies of the babywearing edition of Mothering magazine.

And, as a note:
Jen is a rockin’ person. She’s totally in the know when it comes to carriers, safety and assessing the needs of her customer. I really get the impression that she has facilitated many long-term babywearing relationships between caregiver and child.

I would definitely work with her again and sincerely hope she comes back and visits again!

PSA on Infantino Carrier and Carrier Safety

Today I received notification that Infantino has issued a recall on their SlingRider product. Please click here for more information.

Please note that not all baby carriers on the market are safe. I urge all caregivers to throughly inspect their carriers regularly for pulled stitching, fabric weakness or other defects in product or wear and tear.

I also urge caregivers to look at the positioning of the child. Again, not all carriers on the market, including carriers one may think have undergone stringent testing are. An excellent article on safe positioning can be found at

It pains my heart to think that a caregiver, thinking that they were purchasing a product that would help them nurture their child, ended up with something that led to serious injury or discomfort.

I have never been one to endorse any of the Infantino products or many of the carriers available readily on the market. Please please, select your baby carrier as you would any product you would purchase for investment for your child’s future. Thorough and careful research is necessary.

For excellent information, articles and many reviews on various baby carriers, you can take a look at

Also, if anyone reads this blog, and has been carrying their child in the Infantino SlingRider, please contact us via email.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

A Day of Wrapping with Didymos

Today we had a nice sized group to watch the Didymos instructional video.

The Didymos video showed many ways to tie various sizes of wraps.

Afterwards, we played around with the carriers in the room and did a lot of socializing.

It seemed to be a ring sling and Ergo day, with questions about Ergos and ring slings throughout the room.

Friday, March 16, 2007

The Library

I am really excited to share that our first contribution to the library, purchased with membership dues, has been added! We received an amazing deal on a Chic Papoose Pouch in a size medium.Carriers in the library are available for persons in attendance to the meetings to try out, as well as for members to sign out to borrow for periods of time.

The photo shows the pouch in action for a back carry!

Tuesday, March 6, 2007

Onbus, Wraps, Mei Tais and More!

Today it was like carrier overload! We WERE going to play the Didymos instructional video but decided to play it when we had a larger audience of beginner wrappers. Instead, we just jumped right into playing with carriers. Two wonderful women baring their fabulous stashes of carriers to dig into.

We had a go at several different wrap brands, Didymos, Storches, and Hoppediz. We also played with a BabyHawk mei tai, a Kozy mei tai, a traditional mei tai in the traditional tie, an onbuhimo, a dupioni silk ring sling, and the ever elusive Felix Pera winter jacket that accommodates a worn baby in both a front and back carry. We got to see a couple of back carries in action and to try out a few ourselves.

Overall, for a very cold day, it felt very fruitful! I know I learned a few tricks that I didn’t know before (such as a back carry with an onbuhimo!)

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

The Selendeng

We briefly took a look at a handout on the selendang. This handout was compiled by HUGS. Help Us Give Slings (HUGS) is an organization giving aid to mammas in the area of Indonesia impacted by the Tsunami and earthquake. You can learn more about this organization here:

We also reviewed making a wrap into a no-sew ring sling! Using a wrap, plus two rings, it is possible to temporarily convert a wrap into a ring sling!

Afterwards, we all delved into helping one another out with slings, wraps and other carriers of interest.

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Our First Meeting

It was an AWESOME success. Approximately 13 parents plus babes came out, despite -25 degree celcius temps and warnings of snowsqualls!

We had so many, that we had to open up the wall between two rooms, to accommodate everyone that came!

We had varying levels of skills and a whole LOTTA different carriers in the room. Lots of ring slings, padded or not, a pouch, a Babyhawk mei tai, an amautik, and a gorgeous rebozo!

We spent the time, introducing ourselves, going over some back carry ideas, as well as other tips for wrapping, pouches and ring slings. Then it was a free for all, diving into playing with the various carriers offered to the table, as well as many members flipping through the babywearing book by Maria Blois. (Which I highly recommend for all those interested. This book can be available by order from, a retail store here in Toronto)

Lots of little babes as young as 10 weeks, and as old as 3.
Seeing so many little tiny ones really brought me to a place of reflection of my own short babywearing ‘career.’

As we were playing with back carries today, I reflected on how very recently this wasn’t even a possibility my partner and I were willing to try. I felt intimidated by something that looked very unsafe to me. With gentle guidance and research, we slowly learned comfort with it, as well as how to do it safely. I’m still slowly venturing into that journey of babywearing, but its interesting to remember that I felt this wasn’t a carrying option for me, not all that long ago.

Now I put the measures in place to ensure I feel good about trying it out. I ensure I do it in an area I feel safe with i.e. over the bed, and with someone I trust to help spot and brace the babe.

As we who have worn a babe, babywearing is definitely a SKILL to be learned. And with a skill it takes knowledge building and practice!

Even playing with the slings today, there was so much perspective that each group member was able to provide. Not all babes like to be carried certain ways in certain carriers, or can be. Before I reached out to the the Koala Mamas in Etobicoke ( when my own was 10 days old, I could barely make my little old hemp sling work without slippage in the rings or sitting uncomfortably for both babe and I. I didn’t really know the range of carriers possibly available to us.

And so, we are very happy with the response….

I was pleased to find more emails in the CMC inbox when I got home, from other caregivers interested in coming out to the next meeting!

I hope to continue working together as a community to help foster one another’s long term babywearing careers. I personally have so much to learn, from both beginners and so called experts alike. Everyday I hear a new tidbit that makes me go ‘hmm…’

The thought ‘it takes a village’ comes to mind, after today.

Sadly no pics this time around, as we had a camera-shy bunch! Hopefully next time!

Please note that there will be no meeting Tuesday February 20th, as the Informed Parent is refinishing the floors. We will resume meeting on February 27th!

Monday, February 5, 2007

Let the Adventure Begin!

With all the details pinned down, we are ready to head out into the world with CMC, Central Toronto’s newest babywearing group!

We are so excited to meet all the other people out here in the city who are interested in babywearing!

Both Shira and myself are passionate babywearers. We love to snoogle our babies as we go out for our walks and as we do chores about our homes!

It is interesting to reflect on what may come of this group. Maybe no one will come? No way! Maybe 20-30 people will come right away!? Now that would be cool….

I personally am interested to see what sort of carriers come walking in the door that first day. Will we have some traditional carriers, the very fashionable ones, or some made by their owner (my personal favorite!)

And who! Will we have Dads? Uncles? Aunts? Grandparents? Mamas? Brothers? Sisters? Friends?

Sigh…what dreams may come!