Last Call for Fundraising Raffles!

Raffles, Raffles, Raffles!

Why are we fundraising and doing some raffles right now?

We are a volunteer run organization. We don’t pay ourselves for time, for gas, or other incidentals. We use this money primarily to get new carriers for the lending library, whether it is to buy something used, something new that a company gives us a deal on, or to pay shipping for a donated item.  We LOVE that the lending library is so popular for the group, but it also means carriers are well loved, and see more wear and tear because of the members who borrow carriers.  So we keep track to see when they need to be replaced or pulled out of the library because they become “too loved”.  We also use this money for printing, business cards, or room reservation fees on rare occasions.

We keep 85% of the fundraising money this month (and the other 15% goes to the international organization).  Tickets will be available before, during, and after each event between now and October 25th.  You will choose which raffle (s) you would like to enter and put the ticket (s) in the correct envelope.  Before the raffles end, the leaders will combine the tickets

Our raffle tickets will be 1 ticket for 3.00, 2 tickets  for 5.00, or 5 tickets for 10.00, or 10 tickets for 20.00. So, the more you buy, the less each ticket costs!  We can take cash or a check.  Paypal doesn’t allow online raffle sales through our account, so we will not be taking payment through the group’s paypal account.  If you would like to purchase tickets, but can’t make it to an event, we are HAPPY to get you set up.  Email bwichicagoland@gmail.com or contact a leader for details.

Raffle tickets will be available at both the Grayslake Meeting tomorrow night, as well as the Mundelein Playdate meeting Friday morning.  You can get raffle tickets until 4pm on Saturday October 26th, and will be drawn after that time when leaders can meet up!

If you would like to have the raffle winnings shipped instead of picking it up from a leader, we are happy to do so if you cover shipping costs.  Good luck!

NOTE:  We received two extra, generous offers to add to the raffles.

1.  The first is a one month adult supply of Juice Plus Chewables Orchard Blend and a one month supply of Juice Plus Chewables Garden Blend (120 chewables each).  Here’s Megan’s page!  http://mv87906.juiceplus.com/  This has been added to Raffle #6, with Mary’s custom portrait.

2.  The second is a jar of Charlie’s Soap Laundry Powder that washes approximately 100 standard loads, generously donated by New Mother New Baby in Northbrook.  This item has been added to Raffle #8, with the little boys items.

The RAFFLES!!

Raffle #1:  A gift certificate for two months of swim lessons and registration at Goldfish Swim School in Roscoe Village, Chicago.  Estimated Value of 199.00

Raffle #2:  A one month membership for one child to the Purple Monkey Playroom in Chicago (estimated value 100.00).

Raffle #3:  A 6 pass punch card for Bubbles Academy in Chicago (estimated value 60.00).

Raffle #4:  A 5 pass gift certificate at Bloom Yoga Studio in Chicago, good for 5  drop-in yoga classes, including prenatal, mom &baby, and kids classes (estimated value 70.00).

Raffle #5: One knitted hat from Manziknitz (any size). Winner and knitter will discuss patterns and color choices after raffle ends.  Jen has made some really cute items for others in the group.  We’re looking forward to seeing what the winner has made!  This raffle also includes an adorable  unique Didymos baby bib, with the didymos logo on the front, and a 40 load bag of Norwex Ultra Plus Laundry Detergent.1238325_10201324721934904_50188713_n

Raffle #6:  Juice Plus and a Custom Portrait by Mary Haas:  Mary is one of our fearless leaders, and also an artist.  She has volunteered to donate an 8×10 matted Custom Black and White Charcoal Portrait of a Single Subject.  Details as follows:

Portrait will be drawn on archival quality charcoal paper. Portrait will be drawn from photographs supplied by client. Supplied pictures must be ones for which the client owns the copyright, and has the legal right to reproduce. Please plan to provide multiple photographs to give the artist a better sense of how the subject truly looks. Higher resolution photographs (such as those taken with a DSLR camera) are best. Additionally, the best photographs for portraits are taken in natural light without a flash. Please allow 4-6 weeks for completion of the finished portrait. Certificate does not include shipping charges, if applicable. For examples of finished pieces please visit  http://maryhaas.com/custom-portraits/

Also included is a one month adult supply of Juice Plus Chewables Orchard Blend and a one month supply of Juice Plus Chewables Garden Blend (120 chewables each).

Raffle #7:  WAHM made custom nursing pillow donated from Cygnus Lactation.  The pillow has 3 removable foam inserts to adjust to the height of the pillow.  Also includes a pair of girly reversible teething/suck pads from little trendsetters and a pair of Monkey patterned Rock-A-Thigh baby socks in size 0-6 months.  And last but not least, a fun wooden toy donated from Max and Jack’s Room.1374148_10201324722374915_2032321595_n

Raffle #8:  A Pair of new brown football babylegs (NWOT from a combo pack a leader had), a pair of boyish reversible suck pads from Little Trendsetters, a 2T-3T tie dyed t-shirt from The Pink Willow Tree, and one beautiful grad dyed mama scarf from Lavender Llama.  Also now included is  a jar of Charlie’s Soap Laundry Powder that washes approximately 100 standard loads, generously donated by New Mother New Baby in Northbrook.

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Raffle #9:  One beautiful grad dyed mama scarf from Lavender Llama and one Corolle mon premier 12 inch Tidoo Candy doll (bath baby) donated by Building Blocks Toy Store.  Soft and poseable, Tidoo is so light that it floats in the water. Featuring smooth, delicately scented vinyl skin and filled with polystyrene beads that dry quickly, Tidoo is a favorite playmate out of the tub, too. Designed in France and part of Corolle’s Mon Premier Collection for the littlest mommies.- (estimated value 62.00).1394033_10201324722534919_168611583_n

Raffle#10:  One pair of red babylegs, one pair of size 6-8 Rock-A-Thigh Baby socks (they run small), and one size 6 tie dye girls short sleeved dress donated from The Pink Willow Tree.

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To Purchase any tickets, please email us or contact a leader via the Facebook group and we will get you taken care of ASAP.  The raffles will be chosen after this weekend, and some have great odds right now!

Raffles, Door Prizes, and Fundraisers, OH MY!!!

We can’t tell you about all the fun goodies that are being handed out or raffled off this week without thanking all the supporters for our group.  Being able to celebrate together at wonderful locations, with fun prizes (and fundraising options), learning with great library carriers, is all possible BECAUSE of the folks and companies listed below.  We would be amiss if we didn’t send them a HUGE thank you.  We have given them their own page on our website here.  If you look up, there is a tab titled IBW 2013 supporters.  We’ll be adding information about our supporters over the next week.  The best part?  It’s almost all local.  And if you’ve ever heard us talk at meetings, we LOVE to support local businesses.  You can visit their website or online link by clicking on their name, or giving us a few more days to add details to the supporter page HERE.

The Generous Donations and Supporters

Our Gracious Hosts

Be By Baby has been a fantastic host for our Chicago meetings.  We appreciate the use of their space, and that they work with us to help the families in Chicago.

Cygnus Lactation is a long time supporter of our group.  Jeanne has been hosting our meetings for years, (since before the Lake County Babywearers merged with the Chicago group in early 2011).  Her office is the first location we ever met in, and we’re grateful for that.  Jeanne provides us space whenever it is free, free of charge, and is a kind and generous host.  She also donated a Annika print Pikkolo to add to the lending library, and a WAHM made nursing pillow for the raffles.

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Trilogy School of Performing Arts hosted our group for the first time today.  Thank you so much!  It was an absolute blast to have Kim teach a babywearing ballet class.  I had a great time, and hope the rest of the group did too!

New Mother New Baby has also been a very kind host.  Gail and her staff let us use the large (mirrored) room on weekends, and the meetings get quite the crowd! They have hosted us for IBW week in the past, and we’re looking forward to celebrating with them on Saturday! They are also going to be donating some door prizes, which we are super excited about.

JBS Wellness has a new location and will be hosting us this Friday for a Gurnee Celebration.  I’m excited to see the new location, and looking forward to celebrating with them!

Dolphin Swim Club in Crystal Lake will be hosting us for the second time tomorrow, and we are thankful for their space.  McHenry County locations have been a struggle, and we’re looking forward to celebrating with that county tomorrow!

Our Supporters 

Our supporters have donated items for giveaways, door prizes, raffles, and fundraising.  Thank you all!

Building Blocks Toy Store has graciously donated a HUGE amount of door prizes for our meetings this week.  If you come to one of our events this week you might head home with a gift wrapped in pretty green or yellow tissue paper yourself.  They are having a huge 17th anniversary sale this Friday thru Sunday, and some of the gifts included in the door prizes include a package with  a toy, flyer, and postcard with sale info or a discount good for 2014!

Goldfish Swim School has made an incredible donation of TWO months of swim lessons and registration.  One really lucky person is going to have a fun few months of swimming with their little one.

The Pink Willow Tree donated 5 awesome tie dyed children’s clothing items of various sizes.  1377413_10201293515114753_1683507446_n

Catbird Baby has always been supportive, and is sending us a Zephyr print Pikkolo to add to the lending library.6541_10152548001155858_465522172_n

The Gymnastics Spot is a personal favorite of mine since we have a gymnast on team there in our household.  The Gym Spot is donating two separate punch passes good for 5 drop in visits to “Tot Time”.  Tot time is a parent supervised open gym time for children between 18 months old and kindergarten.

Lavender Llama is owned by a local member and friend who has donated 7 locally hand dyed 47 by 47 inch multi-purpose mama scarfs.

Color Dip Studios is also owned by a local member and friend.  Alisa is a super fantastic, and she is hand dyeing 6 cotton bags that the group is super excited to see.

Comfy Joey has been generous to us this summer, by offering a 50% discount on 3 different carriers for the library, as well as a 25.00 voucher we can offer/giveaway to the group we can use for IBW  (hint hint, you’ll see some activity on that soon enough).

Purple Monkey Playroom in Chicago has donated a certificate for 1 month membership and 25 $5 off coupons.

Bloom Yoga Studio  in Chicago has donated a 5 Class Punch Card for drop-in yoga classes.

Bubbles Academy in Chicago has donated 6 punch card for open play.

Kristie from Max and Jack’s Room donated a really cool Wunderworld Musical Tree wooden toy.

Women and Children First Bookstore in Chicago donated a 25.00 Gift Certificate.

Toys Et Cetera also offered a 25.00 Gift Certificate.

The SOD ROOM in Chicago has donated two passes- Each valid for one admission for a family for one visit to the Sod Room, an eco-friendly playroom on south Michigan avenue.

Mary Haas , one of our very own leaders, has donated a Gift Certificate for a Custom 8×10 Black and White Charcoal Portrait.

Happy Family has donated 200 baby and toddler pouches and coupons for families to enjoy at our celebration events this week.  I can say that they have been a welcomed gift for a few moms with cranky toddlers already this week.  Luckily, since they are easy to find locally at most supermarkets, they were also a familiar item for the kids.1375803_10201298063948471_339463772_n

Manziknit donated free hat from Manziknitz (any size). Winner and knitter will discuss patterns and color choices after the raffle is over.

Our Local Photographer and Independent Sales Friends

HY PhotographyLisa Gauslow Photography, and Lisa Shelly Photography are all local photographers and moms in our group who are taking group and individual photos for us this week.  Eva from 31 Gifts, Sara From Norwex,  Cassia From Norwex, Mandi from Tupperware, and Robin from Lia Sophia Jewlery are all supporting us through donations or fundraising parties.

Raffles, Raffles, Raffles!

Why are we fundraising and doing some raffles right now?

We are a volunteer run organization. We don’t pay ourselves for time, for gas, or other incidentals. We use this money primarily to get new carriers for the lending library, whether it is to buy something used, something new that a company gives us a deal on, or to pay shipping for a donated item.  We LOVE that the lending library is so popular for the group, but it also means carriers are well loved, and see more wear and tear because of the members who borrow carriers.  So we keep track to see when they need to be replaced or pulled out of the library because they become “too loved”.  We also use this money for printing, business cards, or room reservation fees on rare occasions.

We keep 85% of the fundraising money this month (and the other 15% goes to the international organization).  Tickets will be available before, during, and after each event between now and October 25th.  You will choose which raffle (s) you would like to enter and put the ticket (s) in the correct envelope.  Before the raffles end, the leaders will combine the tickets

Our raffle tickets will be 1 ticket for 3.00, 2 tickets  for 5.00, or 5 tickets for 10.00, or 10 tickets for 20.00. So, the more you buy, the less each ticket costs!  We can take cash or a check.  Paypal doesn’t allow online raffle sales through our account, so we will not be taking payment through the group’s paypal account.  If you would like to purchase tickets, but can’t make it to an event, we are HAPPY to get you set up.  Email bwichicagoland@gmail.com or contact a leader for details.  We are going to run this Raffle for 2 and a half weeks to accommodate anyone who wants to purchase tickets but can’t meet up with someone.  The raffle will end on or after October 26, 2013, based on timing of gathering up the leaders with tickets.

If you would like to have the raffle winnings shipped instead of picking it up from a leader, we are happy to do so if you cover shipping costs.  Good luck!

FINALLY, The RAFFLES!!

Raffle #1:  A gift certificate for two months of swim lessons and registration at Goldfish Swim School in Roscoe Village, Chicago.  Estimated Value of 199.00

Raffle #2:  A one month membership for one child to the Purple Monkey Playroom in Chicago (estimated value 100.00).

Raffle #3:  A 6 pass punch card for Bubbles Academy in Chicago (estimated value 60.00).

Raffle #4:  A 5 pass gift certificate at Bloom Yoga Studio in Chicago, good for 5  drop-in yoga classes, including prenatal, mom &baby, and kids classes (estimated value 70.00).

Raffle #5: One knitted hat from Manziknitz (any size). Winner and knitter will discuss patterns and color choices after raffle ends.  Jen has made some really cute items for others in the group.  We’re looking forward to seeing what the winner has made!  This raffle also includes an adorable  unique Didymos baby bib, with the didymos logo on the front, and a 40 load bag of Norwex Ultra Plus Laundry Detergent.1238325_10201324721934904_50188713_n

Raffle #6:  Custom Portrait by Mary Haas:  Mary is one of our fearless leaders, and also an artist.  She has volunteered to donate an 8×10 matted Custom Black and White Charcoal Portrait of a Single Subject.  Details as follows:

Portrait will be drawn on archival quality charcoal paper. Portrait will be drawn from photographs supplied by client. Supplied pictures must be ones for which the client owns the copyright, and has the legal right to reproduce. Please plan to provide multiple photographs to give the artist a better sense of how the subject truly looks. Higher resolution photographs (such as those taken with a DSLR camera) are best. Additionally, the best photographs for portraits are taken in natural light without a flash. Please allow 4-6 weeks for completion of the finished portrait. Certificate does not include shipping charges, if applicable. For examples of finished pieces please visit  http://maryhaas.com/custom-portraits/

Raffle #7:  WAHM made custom nursing pillow donated from Cygnus Lactation.  The pillow has 3 removable foam inserts to adjust to the height of the pillow.  Also includes a pair of girly reversible teething/suck pads from little trendsetters and a pair of Monkey patterned Rock-A-Thigh baby socks in size 0-6 months.  And last but not least, a fun wooden toy donated from Max and Jack’s Room.1374148_10201324722374915_2032321595_n

Raffle #8:  A Pair of new brown football babylegs (NWOT from a combo pack a leader had), a pair of boyish reversible suck pads from Little Trendsetters, a 2T-3T tie dyed t-shirt from The Pink Willow Tree, and one beautiful grad dyed mama scarf from Lavender Llama.559439_10201324722174910_270398864_n

Raffle #9:  One beautiful grad dyed mama scarf from Lavender Llama and one Corolle mon premier 12 inch Tidoo Candy doll (bath baby) donated by Building Blocks Toy Store.  Soft and poseable, Tidoo is so light that it floats in the water. Featuring smooth, delicately scented vinyl skin and filled with polystyrene beads that dry quickly, Tidoo is a favorite playmate out of the tub, too. Designed in France and part of Corolle’s Mon Premier Collection for the littlest mommies.- (estimated value 62.00).1394033_10201324722534919_168611583_n

Raffle#10:  One pair of red babylegs, one pair of size 6-8 Rock-A-Thigh Baby socks (they run small), and one size 6 tie dye girls short sleeved dress donated from The Pink Willow Tree.

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Good luck and happy International Babywearing Week!!

Thank you for the Goodies!

We’re gearing up for International Babywearing Week (IBW), and life is pretty hectic for our group right now.  We actually have 9 events planned over 6 days next week!  Can you believe it?  All of our events are listed on our blog calendar HERE.  And we did a preliminary post HERE.  We have gotten two packages in the mail from BWI recently, and we don’t want to forget to say THANKS!

THANKS BWI, Moby Wrap, Boba, Slingrings.com, and Comfy Joey!

We are a large group, and we actually have a really nice lending library.  But we also have a lot of members who borrow the carriers frequently, and get great use out of their optional membership, so we see a lot of wear and tear from use on them.  Between the 4 libraries and around 8 monthly meetings, we’re often running carriers from leader to leader before meetings, to ensure we have adequate carriers for folks to try on at the free meetings!  We are really, really thankful for donations of carriers for the library.  We appreciate the support as we all help support one another in this parenting (and caregiving) journey.

A few weeks ago, we were sent 3, count them 3 Boba carriers!  Boba was kind enough to make a HUGE donation to BWI that was distributed throughout the chapters.  We are really grateful for these carriers.  We get a ton of requests for Boba carriers in our group, so this was a welcomed package at my doorstep.  We received:

  • A black Boba stretchy wrap
  • A striking blue Boba Air carrier
  • A very gender neutral “Safari” Boba version 3G carrier

Much of our group had never seen a Boba Air in person, so we’re excited to hear the feedback from our group on it!  They are very well made and well loved carriers.  You can find more information about them HERE.

Here’s a quick photo:

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Then today, low and behold, another package arrived from BWI.  It contained carriers that were donated from sponsors of this year’s IBW Celebration.

Today’s box contained these fun goodies:
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We received:

  • A black MobyGo carrier with a very pretty pattern called “Barberry”.
  • A few reusable bags that say “International Babywearing Week 2013 Get Carried Away!” and have logos for peace, love, and babywearing.
  • A few coupons included for online retailers, as well as pamphlets that we can give to new attendees at meetings.  (I know a few of you missed those recently while we waited for more to arrive).
  • Multiple sizes and pairs of slingrings, that we can use with woven wraps to show caregivers additional versatility of wraps, with variations on standard and nonstandard carries.
  • Last but not least, a beautiful gray Comfy Joey linen ring sling in “Storm Gray” that has a gorgeous tail accent in “Surf Blue”.

Comfy Joey is Extra Awesome!

We also have an extra thank you for Comfy Joey.  They gave a number of lending libraries a 50% discount to purchase carriers this summer.  We purchased 3 ring slings, one of each type.  We bought:

  • A royal blue water mesh ring sling
  • A toddler width linen sling (Sipadan Island- teal green linen)
  • A regular width linen sling (Sullivan’s Bay- sea green linen)

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Here are two of our members rocking CJ ring slings. ;)

If you’d like to find out more information about any of these carriers or accessories, here are the websites that can help you.  We’d also LOVE it if you thanked them for their generosity!

Boba:   http://www.bobafamily.com
Moby:  http://www.mobywrap.com/mw/Home.htm
Slingrings:  http://www.slingrings.com
Comfy Joey:  http://www.comfyjoey.com/index.php

Stay Tuned!

The next week or two will be a flurry of fun activities and information!

Some Ring Sling tips and tricks

We often get questions at our meetings or in our local online group about difficulties and tips when using ring slings.  Sometimes it’s just a quick adjustment or two that makes all the difference in the world.

Some or all of the following tips MAY help you if you’re struggling with getting a ring sling on comfortably for you and your babe.   These tips are for a baby being worn legs out (not legs in froggy style) facing in toward the caregiver in a chest to chest or tummy to tummy position, not a cradled position.  These tips also apply for an older child who is in a hip carry position.  We recommend keeping the baby in an upright position unless the baby is actively nursing. 

A younger baby with legs out will be in an even more exaggerated position than you’d see with an older baby or toddler, with knees not as spread out, but higher above the tush (think of keeping the knees up high, not out wide).  The goal is to mimic their natural fetal/ young baby position, or the position that you would naturally carry the child in.  The ring sling is just a tool to help keep babe in their natural position more easily.

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Some things you can try

Note, some of these tips and tricks say left/right. They were written with the idea of a ring sling with the rings on the right shoulder. If you’re putting the rings on the left side, it’s the opposite.  We’re going to call the baby/child “her” for the sake of consistency.

  1. Before you put her in, set it up- check that it’s loose enough that you can pop her in, but doesn’t have a ton of excess room.

  2. Place the rings on the upper part of your shoulder, near the outside (i.e. not close to your neck, if it’s too close to your neck you may find it rides to your neck when you tighten).

  3. Spread it wide across your back, it will help better distribute her weight.

  4. Tighten it from your back to your elbow (what this does is make it more snug before adjusting… otherwise when you pull the rings they’ll end up at your bellybutton).

  5. When you place her in the sling, pull the material snug across her back towards the rings so the slack is near the rings.

  6. To help get a deep seat, you can take your right hand and reach under the rings, to her belly.  Reach down and grab the material and pull it up as high as you can between you and her- to her bellybutton if possible.  Either now, or as you are tightening, if you lean forward a little and wiggle a bit, you can help get the babies tush into a really deep seat.  You will still need to support the babe while doing this.

  7. When you start to tighten, instead of giving the sling one huge yank, pull it close to the rings- at the top rail (the rail near her neck), middle in 1-3 spots across, and bottom rail (rail near her legs). Repeat as needed. If you give it strong pulls you’re likely to have the material bunch up in the rings and have difficulty tightening.

  8. When tightening, pull the top rail area out to the front and center of your body, and the bottom rail out to the front and to the right of you (if you get the idea).

  9. If it seems like the material is hard to pull through the rings take your left and and very gently lift her up, just a touch, so her weight isn’t working against you tightening the rings.

  10. If you see an area that is still loose (let’s say the top and bottom rails are tight but there is a loose area at her back- find the area of the tail that correlates to that area (i.e. the middle) and just tighten that area.

  11. Goal is to have the rings in the corsage area of your chest. If it ends up higher or lower, that’s fine if it’s comfortable.  If you’re short, there might not seem like a lot of room between baby/rings/your shoulder, and unless you plan to grow, there’s not much you can do about that.

  12. The goal is a deep seat, with her seat lower than her knees.  If she a little older, and has good head and neck control, she can   keep her arms in or out if she is awake.  Try and give the knees/feet an “up and in”.  This is where you can gently push their legs/feet up into a more deep squat position.  It will help give them a better seat and also increase their comfort.  Check to make sure you still have good knee to knee coverage of the sling.  With a nice deep seat, this should not be a problem.

  13. You can use the tail behind her head to make little pillow if she falls asleep by rolling it behind her head in the top rail.

  14. If you find that the rings are a little lower than you like (or your tail is long) you can wrap the tail through/around the rings to make it more comfy if she happens to be close. As long as the rings are laying relatively flat and comfy, it’s fine.

  15. A lot of babes fuss or cry if they don’t have a good seat or the RS isn’t high enough/snug enough. It is a game between figuring out tight enough (to be comfy) and too tight (and having certain brands ride off your shoulder and up your neck or loosing their seat).

  16. If you over-tighten the bottom (bum) rail, there will be less support for her legs and tush, and she may try to straighten her legs or get out.

  17. If you are using a ring sling that has a wider shoulder, and you find you have restricted mobility in your arm (the side that the rings are on) that you don’t like, there are tips for that as well.   You can take the fabric on your arm, and fold it back up into a “cup” position.  You will still have a large spread across your back to help distribute weight, but will have more mobility from that arm.

  18. If you have a babe who just has a onesie on, a pair of baby leg warmers or socks (such as Babylegs or RockaThigh baby socks) can be a great way to keep their legs covered, and also give a little cushion between the back of their knees and the carrier.

ALL OF THESE TIPS AREN’T NECESSARY EVERY TIME.  THESE ARE JUST SOME ITEMS YOU CAN TRY IF YOU ARE HAVING PROBLEMS!

Some caregivers find they can just pop their babe in, and are comfy from the start.  And though this list seems long and a bit scary, it’s really just to help troubleshoot if you are having difficulties.

Two week old newborn in a Maya Wrap Ring Sling

Two week old newborn in a Maya Wrap Ring Sling- Note the DEEP seat and that the bottom of the tush is almost at the babies ankles.

Using a ring sling is such a great skill to learn.  It can be a real lifesaver for your back and hip, especially during the toddler years, when your little one wants to get up and down and up and down all day long.  As they get older and you get more experienced, it really takes just a few seconds to get them in and be on your way.

If you have a babe who is fussy even though you feel like the ring sling is on in a comfortable position, some of the general carrying tips we talk about at meetings are also good to keep in mind:

  1. Make sure she isn’t hungry.

  2. Make sure her diaper is clean.

  3. Make sure her clothes are long enough (sometimes with one piece outfits, when they bend their legs, the one piece footed clothes can be too tight on their feet and make them uncomfortable).

  4. Bounce a bit while getting her in.

  5. Take a walk, outside if the weather allows.

  6. Keep trying, even if she only likes it for a few minutes at a time at first.

Good luck on your ring sing journey!  This post contains a lot of information, but once you get the hang of it, you’ll be happy you kept trying. :)

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Mundelein Meeting Changes

Group Growth

It’s no secret that we’ve been outgrowing the space at Cygnus for the monthly morning meeting in Mundelein.  As our group has grown we’ve been evaluating options for the Mundelein Meeting.  This is a good problem to have, but a problem none the less.  The meetings have gotten so busy that it has become overwhelming for some of us as leaders, so we can only imagine how overwhelming it can be for new parents!

(Now, granted, this ring sling photo isn’t the best (the rings could be down lower and the shoulder a little farther out) but the photo shows from one end of the Cygnus meeting space to the other.  I think I put my younger boy up to show how you could still wear a 3 year old in a ring sling.  This was my handy dandy Sleeping Baby Productions (SBP) ring sling wrap conversion made from BB Slen Passion Fruit….)

We love the space and kind accommodations at Cygnus.  Jeanne has hosted our meeting since long before the Lake County Babywearers and Slingers merged almost 2 years ago.  It’s a free, available space, with toys and close restrooms.  Jeanne, thanks SO MUCH for letting us meet at your spot.

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Scheduling through libraries is actually a little bit of work that adds up all year round… figuring out schedules, not having a consistent time, asking and waiting for the ok, only being able to schedule 2-3 months in advance, needing someone with a card (and at some locations that person has to open/close the room), and constantly updating our group info with new events.  Having a standing meeting is REALLY convenient for leaders.  To try and keep that convenience and better meet the needs of new parents, we’re going to make some changes.

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Trying something new

We have an early afternoon meeting in Gurnee, and an evening meeting in Grayslake, and both of these locations are pretty close to the Mundelein meeting.  Hopefully, if the Mundelein changes don’t work with your schedule,  one of the other two might be a good substitute.

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The standing meeting at Cygnus the SECOND friday morning of every month will continue, but it will become more of a “Babywearing 101″ meeting.  The library will be available, and we will focus on more of the basics, safety, different types of carriers, general questions.  We want parents to bring the carriers they have, and we will help them get more comfortable.  This “101″ meeting is targeted for new parents or parents who are just learning about baby carriers and are looking for basic information or help with a carrier they own.  It may be helpful to come to the more basic 101 meeting a few times before moving to the playdate based meeting.

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The hope for this “101″ meeting is that it will be a little calmer, a little *teeny* bit quieter, and a better environment for new parents that won’t be quite so overwhelming.  This meeting will be 1.5 hours, to accommodate leader schedules.

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A few parents from meetings at Cygnus, who were still early on in their babywearing journey, who would have benefitted from this new format:

(Sakura Bloom, Moby Wrap, Gypsymama Breeze, and Angelpack SSC featured here)

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Playdate based?

We are going to add a second Mundelein meeting for the THIRD Friday of every month. This meeting will be more playdate based, and targeted for folks who have already been to a meeting, and heard the general info at LEAST once, but preferably a number of times.  The hope for this meeting, is that it will be more playdate based, more peer-to-peer learning, and less “talking” from leaders.

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Let’s be honest, some of the regulars who have come to a year or two of meetings really don’t need or want to hear about an open airway for the 25th time.   Unless they want to step up into a leadership position… but we’ll talk more about that in a post in the near future.

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The playdate based meeting will probably be a better option for folks who don’t get scared off by excited toddlers and preschoolers, and want to revel in some babywearing geekery.  We will start off having this at Cygnus. If we outgrow Cygnus we will look for an alternate location.

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Normal Meeting Information

Meetings:  Our meetings are ALWAYS free.  Parents and caregivers are ALWAYS free to try out the carriers we bring to the meetings.  If you would like to support our group and become an official BWI Member, with privileges to borrow carriers between meetings, a 30.00 optional membership is available for a 12 month period.

The lending library will be available at both meetings.

If you *can’t* come to the meeting that best fulfills your needs, you are free to come to the alternate meeting.  We’d rather have you come to the alternate meeting than not come at all.  We’re just trying this option out to see if it helps everyone as much as it will help leaders.Please note: though this meeting is held at a lactation office, babies and children who are fed by both formula and breast milk are always welcomed.  We can teach you how bottle feed in a carrier just as easily as we can teach you how to nurse in a carrier.  Jeanne Cygnus provides her meeting space to our group for free and we appreciate the availability.

Thank You’s and a chance at some Goodies-

We want to announce some fundraising efforts and thank some people and businesses, both local and online.  I know some of you have been waiting VERY PATIENTLY to hear what we have this year.  But first we want to introduce you to the folks who’ve made these donations (in no particular order)…  We are so thankful for these donations.  Some of the items donated will be raffled off.  Some of the items donated will be incorporated into our lending libraries.

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THANK YOU ERGOBABY (and Heather L.) for allowing us to have our own BWI Chicagoland Ergo giveaway.  One of our members, Cheryl Hansen will get to choose her new Ergo from a few different options!  In addition, Ergo sent me some waist extenders, teething suck pads, and a black front pack that I’m donating to the group.  The front pack will be part of the fundraiser, the teething pads and waist extenders will be added to the lending libraries.  Here is a direct link to the front pack.

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THANK YOU to Kristie from Max and Jack’s Room, for the donations of the Kissaluvs Proucts including two premium organic cloth wipes (in the Dino Mino and Owl’s Life prints)… and a 4 oz. bottle of Kissaluvs Diaper Lotion Potion spray.

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THANK YOU Susan Field, one of our leaders, for a donation of a Large (18-30lbs) Loveybums Crepe Wool diaper cover in mint green (with snaps) and one Beco Mini toy carrier.

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THANK YOU to Jen at Marsupial Mamas for her donations of a two fantastic Natibaby Ring Sling carriers, a Iris Ring Sling, and a Dinos Ring Sling.

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THANK YOU to Kristy at Little Trendsetters for 4 reversible pairs of carrier teething/suck pads.  I think these might be the cutest I’ve ever seen in person!

THANK YOU to Natibaby for two fantastic woven wraps.  The Natibaby bamboo/linen blend Pancy Pearl (maxi 5.2 meter) will be raffled off, and the Natibaby Organic Ecru size 6 wrap will be added to the lending library!  (Sorry the Natibaby photo on bottom with both is a little yellowed out from the photo).  One of our leaders, Rachel, just dyed it a gorgeous color that will work great for the lending library!

Isn’t this a beautiful dye job for a new lending library wrap?


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THANK YOU to Jen Manzi, who is starting a new business called Manziknitz, for her donation of a semi-custom knitted hat.  The winner will provide measurements of their child’s head and Jen will give a few different options for the hat style she will knit.
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THANK YOU to one of our members, Allison Myers, for her donation of a bottle of Young Living Essential Oils Gentle Baby Oil.


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THANK YOU to Corry of Clean Green Nappy for her donation of multiple pairs of Rock-A-Thigh Baby Socks.  We have a few different sizes of the grey and the chunky monkey patterns!  (These are two for pics that are out of the plastic packaging.)


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THANK YOU to Janelle Dent, another leader, for her donation of a Beco mini (child’s play) carrier.


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THANK YOU to Fluff Envy for hosting a special event for some of our families in the western suburbs.  It was so nice of them to host us, especially outside normal store hours.  Justine also offered a 25.00 gift certificate at the event, and we are SO thankful for that!

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THANK YOU to New Mother New Baby for hosting our big event last week, and also the generous donation of MULTIPLE items that were given away at their store.  There was a JuJuBe bag, an Ergo, a Boba Wrap, gift certificates, mama products, baby products, socks, and a TON of other prizes that I know our members will appreciate.

The Nitty Gritty Details…

Now for the fun stuff!  Raffle tickets will be available through Saturday October 27th.  Winners will be drawn on Sunday October 28th.

Tickets are 5.00 each or 5 tickets for 20.00.

You can get tickets by contacting a leader through our Facebook group, or also emailing the group address, bwichicagoland@gmail.com.  Leaders can be found in Elburn, Algonquin, Harvard, Mundelein, Wildwood, Hainesville, Waukegan, and Chicago.   We can take cash, check, or paypal for the tickets.  The extra time is to accommodate anyone who would like to forward a check in the mail!

Contact Heather, Janelle, or Tabitha for raffle tickets (a few of our leaders are going to be out of town).  There will also be tickets available at the Gurnee meeting on Monday afternoon, or the McHenry meeting on Friday morning.  And please bear with us if it takes a day or so to get back to you with the busy weekends, we will be following up with anyone who wants tickets!  There will be follow up confirmations made with anyone who has interest or gets tickets before anything is drawn on Sunday October 28th.

You will choose which raffle you would like each ticket entered into.  Winners will need to pick up their item from either a meeting or a leader’s house (or near a leader’s house).  Alternatively, the items can be shipped locally, but the winner would need to pay for shipping.

 

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The Goodies!

Pictures and additional info for each raffle is listed in the thank you section above. :)

Raffle 1- Natibaby Ring Sling:  Dinos, size Medium

Raffle 2- Natibaby Woven Wrap:  Pearl Pancy, size 5.2m

Raffle 3- Baby Package:   Young Living baby oil, Loveybums Diaper cover, 4oz. Kissaluvs Diaper Lotion Potion, and a pair of premium Kissaluvs cloth wipes

Raffle 4- Boyish Fun Pack:  Beco Mini Toy Doll Carrier (the one donated by Susan, with the blue, gray, and white leaves), Your choice of one of the pairs of Boyish Teething Pads from Little Trendsetters, and a pair of Rock-a-Thigh baby socks

Raffle 5- Girly Fun Pack:  Beco Mini Toy Doll Carrier (the one donated by Janelle, with the turqoise background, pink, white and orange flowers), Your choice of one of the pairs of Girlish Teething Pads from Little Trendsetters, and a pair of Rock-a-Thigh baby socks

Raffle 6- Babywearing Accessory Package:  Manziknitz hat, 2 pairs of Rock-a-Thigh baby socks, and a black Ergo front pack

Mundelein’s February Meeting

Mundelein’s morning meeting was alot of fun!  We had alot of new moms with us as well as older members of our group. 

Two of our members: Alisa on the left wearing her son Dominic in a Natibaby Fairytales. And Cassia on the right wearing her daughter Vida in a Natibaby Organic Ecru

We went over the various types of carriers that are used. There are 5 main types of carriers mei tais, ring slings, wraps, pouches and SSCs (soft structured carrier). Within all of these categories are many different brands and types.

Ring Slings: a piece of fabric with rings sewn on one end. Primarily worn on front or side/hip. Can be used for a nursing cover or blanket. Can be worn from newborn on up through toddlerhood.
Popular brands: Sakura Bloom, Maya Wrap, Sleeping Baby Production

Pouch: a sized tube of fabric. Primarily worn on front or side/hip. Daddy friendly, no fuss, quick and easy, small for diaper bag. These need to be sized, so most likely will need two different ones to fit mom and dad.
Popular brands: Hotsling, Peanut Shell

Mei Tai: rectangular body with two pairs of straps to tie; one for the waist and another over the shoulders
can be worn front, back or side/hip.
Popular brands: Catbird Baby, Kozy, Babyhawk, Freehand

Soft Structured Carrier (SSC): like a mei tai but with buckle style straps. Can be worn front, back and side/hip. Low learning curve
daddy friendly, no fuss, quick and easy
Popular brands: Ergo, Pikkolo, Action Baby Carrier, Beco, Olives & Applesauce

Wraps: a simple piece of cloth that wraps around the wearer to hold the baby. Worn in several carries in front, back and hip. This type has the highest learning curve but is the most versatile.
There are 2 types of wraps; stretchy(4 way stretch) and woven(diagonal give, most supportive)
Popular stretchy brands: Sleepywrap, Anaju and the Moby
Popular woven brands: Didymos, Natibaby, Ellevill, Storchenwiege

 Another very useful website is www.thebabywearer.com. It  can be like information overload at first, but once you get the hang of it, it’s easy to navigate.