#FromBellyToBaby *Hugabub Baby Carrier review and giveaway*

I love holding my babies, being close to them, able to kiss them, touch them, smell them, whenever I want.  It comforts me – and I know it comforts them.  Aside from that, there are tons of benefits to babywearing – they sleep more, eat more, cry less, mommy can accomplish things, and a million other reasons!!!  Plus, wearing my little one calms me down.  Now, don’t get me wrong, I love our stroller – we have about 4 different ones and they all serve their purpose.  Our double stroller is especially wonderful during softball season so I know the kiddos are safe and away from foul balls.  But, I love babywearing!  LOVE IT!!!  When Maggie was born, I bought a wrap, and was not confident in it at first.  She cried whenever I tried to put her in it.  Very seldom did she calm down at first, but after trying it again and again, eventually she didn’t mind it.  Thank goodness!  This girl never slept, wanted to nurse constantly and really loved being held.  So I held her and she napped and all was right with the world.  Then she realized that it was awesome being that close to mommy all the time.  We had our garage sale and she couldn’t walk quite yet so I put her in the carrier we had.  She babbled and looked around and nursed.  When she was tired, she slept.  It was amazing!  But I wanted something different.  I didn’t love the carrier that we had.
When we found out we were having another baby, I knew without a doubt that I needed something I was confident and comfortable wearing because there was no way I would survive with a 20 month old and a newborn baby without it.  I wanted a carrier that was easy to take with and store, as well as put on.  Well, my search took me to Hug-a-bub. 
Suzanne and Tania are the wonderful ladies behind hug-a-bub.  After seeing how other cultures carried their babies and how little they cried, they both realized that this was what should be happening.  Suzanne and Tania as well as the rest of the hug-a-bub team are advocates of attachment parenting. Read more about how they got started here.  Their passion is to bring the joy and ease and freedom back into mothering while ensuring they are getting their most important biological needs met at the same time.  Hug a bub is in it’s 14th year and are the original creators of the pocket wrap.
The hug a bub is designed to support baby’s neck and spine as well as distribute the weight equally across mom or dad.  The hug a bub is recommended by midwives, obstetricians, physiotherapists, chiropractors and osteopaths because of how it works.  You are able to have your hands completely free while baby is wrapped securely and firmly against mom.  It is even recommended for kangaroo care and other similar programs for premature babies. 
 The hug-a-bub is available in three different styles.  The Hug-a-Bub Original Wrap, the Hug-a-Bub Certified Organic Wrap, and the Hug-a-Bub Pocketless Wrap.  
I was sent the Hug-a-Bub Certified Organic Wrap in raspberry to review.  The wraps come in a variety of fashion colors with an awesome self storing pocket. 
You can wear your baby in 4 different positions.  The peapod, heart to heart, on the go, and koala cuddle.  While this wrap style carrier is a one size fits most, they also have two other options for people that need more fabric and I love the names for them.  The huggable (one size fits most), the very huggable, and extremely huggable for people that need more fabric.  

We don’t use the on the go carry much because it pulls on my back more and isn’t as comfortable for me, and it doesn’t look as comfortable for her.  We did try it out though and it was fun for her when I put her in it to play the piano. 

The Hug-a-Bub comes with the carrier, the attached pocket to store it in, and a dvd with complete instructions and tips for all different carry positions. 
Here are two videos of how I put on the hug a bub and how to carry your baby or toddler.  The first video is the heart to heart carry ( my favorite – and Charlie’s).  The second video is the koala cuddle carry for an older infant or toddler.

I was super excited when the mail came and I could finally check out this carrier.  My first thought was wow – this is a really soft carrier.  It is made of the world’s most highly certified organic interlock cotton which gives it the soft luxurious feel.  From doing my research on the website, I knew I wanted to try the peapod carry right away with Charlie.  We like to go for walks and play outside, so I wanted an easy way to breastfeed the little guy.  That was a must for me to love a carrier, so we gave it a shot.  To put him into the peapod carry was very simple.  Charlie however wasn’t interested.  We tried again and again, but he just doesn’t care for the position.  He prefers to be more upright and snuggled against my chest so we went for the heart to heart carry.  This is one he loves!  He is able to breastfeed from this position and when he is finished with his meal, he just turns his head to the side and goes to sleep.  To breastfeed him from this position, I did need to loosen the wrap just a bit to let him slip down a little lower.  Putting the carrier on and him in the heart to heart carry takes some getting use to, as with any wrap style carrier.  There is a learning curve when using a wrap style carrier and it can be intimidating.  Don’t let that stop you!  After our first couple uses, I was able to remember how much fabric I needed up top to hold him in securely.  As long as I have him in there as snugly as he needs to be, he really enjoys the carrier.  There have been days where he has taken a 2 or 3 hour nap snuggled up against me in our Hug-a-Bub. When he falls asleep, I simply pull the fabric over the side of his head to hold it steady while he sleeps.  Don’t mind the wet slobbery fabric – Charlie man loves to chew on the wrap when he’s awake.

I like how I can pull the pocket a little lower to cover his feet and legs which was important to us because we wanted to protect his newborn skin from the sun.  It has also been really great to protect him from the wind.
Now, what did Maggie think of it and how did it work for us with her?
I don’t wear Maggie all that often anymore.  She loves to be on her own walking.  When I did wear her, she loved it!  And wants to be in it a lot now.  She loves to be up close and be silly with me.  Plus, she gets a different view than when she climbs up somewhere on her own.  
I love the flexibility in sizing with this wrap.  Not only can I wear both of my kids in it, anybody else can too!  

One of my favorite features of this wrap is the self storing pocket.  Not only does the wrap fold up into the pocket when we are done, but I can store my phone or keys in there without them pushing up against his back.  This pocket also adds an extra layer of warmth to baby as well as extra support and strength which make it more comfortable for carrying heavier babies.  In the DVD that comes with the wrap, they also show how you can pull the pocket down for more breathability.  When doing so, please use extra caution as this takes away a layer of protection and security.  We didn’t do this, I like the extra support for his little neck since he’s so young still.  The drawstring on the pocket can be pulled shut when storing it, or we have used it to tie it around the strap on the diaper bag.  It does fit nicely into our diaper bag, but I have two in diapers and need that space for diapers, sippy, snack, etc..

Overall, I really, really, really love our hug a bub!  We use it almost daily if only for a short time.  Lately, little Charlie man has been really sick.

Since it is International babywearing week, head on over to hug a bub’s facebook page and post pictures of you babywearing for a chance to win more great stuff!

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Win one now!
Giveaway open Worldwide
Ends 11:59 pm October 23, 2012
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*Disclosure:  I was provided with the hug a bub baby carrier for the purpose of this review.  All opinions are 100 % my own and only influenced by my experience with this carrier.* 

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