We found out we were pregnant with baby number 5 in August 2009. It was a huge shock as we hadn’t been trying and we were only in our second month of business. Pregnancy, 4 kids and a hotel/pub to run wasn’t easy. Then in May 2010, baby Tahnee was born at my sister in laws house and we came back to the pub when she was a few days old. I’ll admit it was tough, business doesn’t stop just because we have a new baby. We tried using our ERGObaby carrier with her but having an 18 month old who was (and still is) going through the ‘it’s mine’ phase, it was impossible to wear her in it without him tantruming over his precious ERGO. Matt and I had discussed whether we should get another, there was no way I would get a pram because a pram never really worked for us before – we end up carrying the baby and pushing an empty pram around the place – not to mention the fact that we had very little space for a pram in the car.
Then there was the callout for a Year in the Life of an ERGObaby and here we are and Tahnee now has a beautiful organic ERGObaby to call her own. I’ll tell you now that we love our original ERGO, both Matt and I wear it – it’s easy to adjust and we wear it for hours without getting uncomfortable. The only thing I can complain about wearing it is that my darling toddlers just love to play with my hair when they are in a back carry and I end up with huge knots!
So anyway, back to Tahnee’s organic ERGO. I slipped it on for the first time on an outing to the supermarket(which is a whole 88km away from home) and could not stop gushing about how it’s even more comfortable compared to the other one we had, much to Matt’s embarrassment. Yeah, I need to learn to gush quietly. Tahnee snuggled down into it and went to sleep as if she had always been a little ERGObaby.
It really does make life a little easier. Take for example, grocery shopping. Most of us dread shopping with young children, even worse with a 3 AND almost 2 year old. There really aren’t any shopping trolleys designed for 3 children. Either I let my 3 year old run up and down each aisle making as much noise as possible and picking all the sugary cereal off the shelves to dump into the trolley, or I put two toddlers into the trolley seats and carry my baby. Then I’m picking things off the shelves with one hand and also trying to break up the toddlers from scratching each others eyeballs out because the seats are too close together and they are invading each others personal space. I swear I’m getting grey hairs just THINKING about it. Pop Tahnee in the ERGO and I have two hands free to break up fights and do my shopping.
I can also wear her whilst I’m doing the washing, vacuuming, mopping, serving customers and picking the kids up from school. The only thing I don’t do is cook because she is a bit too close to the stove for comfort (but I use to cook with Jye snoozing on my back when he was big enough).
These early days are super important for bonding with a baby and having her close to me all day just seems right to me. She is now 14 weeks and a happy, content little baby. She does have a touch of reflux, where she will vomit quite a bit after having a feed and carrying her has really helped with the amount of vomit, in fact I would have to say that the projectile vomiting has stopped since keeping her upright most of the day. The ERGO is easy to pop into the wash too, which we’ve had to do a few times now! Her head control is fantastic and she loves to peek out at everything going on around her, it has really given her a sense of being a part of our busy family life. She even puts her two cents in now that she has perfected the art of blowing raspberries!
One of my favourite things about the ERGO is being able to breastfeed while I work. It does take a little getting use to but it really is worth trying. I have breastfed Tahnee on demand since she was born which means that she doesn’t feed at the same time everyday. I know with my first few babies I stressed about being caught out somewhere that would make it difficult to give them a bottle. I don’t stress now, I simply let out the shoulder straps and feed her on the go – anytime, anyplace. Just be warned that most people love to peek under the hood to get a glimpse of your cute squishy little baby and be surprised when they come face to face with your breast – really funny when they pull back the hood without asking, believe me it happens more often than you think!
Living in a pub means work for us, every single day of the week. We are literally in the middle of nowhere, our town is just farms, our pub, a general store and a school. So when we do have some time to spend as family time, we don’t get to venture very far. As a family we love to go for walks, especially with 4 boys who are right into bugs and dirt! Have you ever tried bushwalking with a pram? I didn’t think so. Matt will wear Jye (20 months) and I now wear Tahnee and we can go exploring in the bush across the road from our house. The kids love it, we love seeing them enjoy themselves and we all get some great exercise(this is more important to us than it is to the kids, they just want to spot a kangaroo or an emu)!
Right now our life is even more hectic. In addition to everything else, we are in the process of selling our little pub. We’ve already found a house to move into at the end of September back in the city and now we’re madly packing all our belongings. Matt made a few phone calls and was lucky that a previous employer had a position available for when we move. His job means that he will be going back to shift work though, which means the ERGO will get just as much of a workout while I juggle 5 children on my own most of the time. I may even have to try tandem ERGObaby wearing (a toddler in an ERGO on my back and a baby in an ERGO on my front). Does anyone have any tips on tandem wearing with the ERGO for me?