Thursday, 3 May 2012

Voting and revisiting the Close Caboo carrier

Today Baby M and I went to vote.  As it was yet another rainy day and the Polling station is at the end of my road I decided I didn't want to take the buggy so I dug out my Caboo baby carrier (by Close).  When Baby M was little I loved carry her in the Caboo.  She went through a, rather long, phase where she didn't want to be put down or left alone.  I discovered the Caboo following a friends recommendation and I loved that suddenly I had my hands free again and a happy baby.  I used it mostly around the house, but out and about as well. As my baby became more independent, and heavier, I packed the Caboo away and hadn't thought about using it again until today.

The Caboo carrier consists of two straps connected with a fixed cross and some rings, there is also an outer wrap which doubles up as a bag to store the carrier in.  I liked it initially because it is a soft fabric sling that didn't rely on my ability to tie knots.  The baby can sit in a variety of positions, but as Baby M was tired I had her in the upright position facing in.  I put my jacket over the top and my umbrella up keeping us both warm and dry.

With Baby M safely attached to me it was easy to walk to the polling station, pick up my voting slips and vote in my local Parish and Town Council elections.  I feel I should always take the effort to vote because so many women fought for my right to vote and democracy is so important; even if the outcome will never make everybody happen.  As Baby M grows up I will be encouraging her to vote as well and taking her to the polling booth from an early age seems one way to do this.  (As an aside it is my view that if you don't like the candidates you should still go out and vote, spoiling the ballot paper if necessary. I don't want to be part of the huge number of registered voters who don't vote and are consider apathetic.  It is too easy for politicians to write off dissatisfaction as apathy).

After going to vote I had to go to the supermarket.  I was surprised at how comfortable the Caboo was (Baby M is 7 months and 7.5kg) so I continued to wear Baby M in the carrier.

Good Points about the Caboo Carrier

  • I only wore it for around an hour in total, but Baby M's weight felt well distributed and I didn't ache at all (which I would have done in carrying her without a sling).
  • The sling is light and soft because it's made from organic cotton
  • When not worn it folds up to take up very little space
  • It is brilliant for newborns and small babies as they can be worn close to the parent (even skin to skin).
  • It is great for older babies to sleep in as their head can be supported close to your chest, shutting out stimulation but allowing them to breathe easily.
  • It washes really well: always handy with babies.

Bad points about the Caboo carrier

  • For babies up to about 4 months I have very few criticisms only that I didn't manage to get to grips with any positions other than the upright ones and I didn't find a way to breastfeed in it.
  • With my older baby I found the carrier doesn't allow her to move around and investigate without me having to reposition the straps regularly and Baby M is quite wriggly.
  • The best way to distribute weight and make it comfy for longer wears is to widen the straps over your shoulders.  This doesn't work under a coat and I've found that the straps tend to bunch up and need to be repositioned fairly often.

Overall I was impressed with how well the carrier worked with Baby M today and I will use it again for short trips, but I'm still looking for a more structured carrier that works with bigger babies and for longer periods.

Baby M hiding in the Caboo

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