Walking, carrying and recycling

Today we decided to go for a walk across the hills rather than going out for lunch. Libby was bundled into the sturdy new baby rucksack that my husband recently bought for her, hoisted onto his back and off we went. For the first 45 minutes, she loved being in the rucksack. Lots of giggles and looking around, but then I think she got a bit chilly despite her snowsuit, hat and mittens. Cue grizzling, grumbling and then floods of tears. Luckily I’d packed my trusty mei tai into her rucksack, so out she came and into the mei tai in a hip-carry. The crying soon subsided and off she went to sleep. I do like the big rucksack, bought second hand it was £25 well spent. It will be fabulous for long hikes in the summer, but I’ve always thought that there was a reason why for centuries people have carried their babies in fabric slings.

This has lead me to thinking about other things that I do that are probably a little bit unusual in terms of looking after a baby, and things that I don’t do that I’d like to try. We do have a pushchair, but haven’t used if for months, I always opt for a carrier because I just think that keeping a baby close to you has to be a good thing. I also use reusable nappies. I know this is a bit controversial and many people think that I spend my days washing nappies. It doesn’t really work like that though. We use disposable nappy liners so they go straight in the toilet and the nappies go straight into a nappy bucket. We wash a load of nappies about once every two days. They come out of the washing machine and onto the line or radiator and we grab them from there when we need them. Not too much hassle really?

I always try to buy things second hand, especially for Libby. She wears / uses / plays with things for such a short period of time that it seems ridiculous to spend the amount of money that things tend to cost. I am also a big fan of recycling and reusing rather than just disposing of things as waste. Our best bargain recently was a beautiful wooden baby walker that we picked up for 99p. Libby just loves it, best 99p I’ve ever spent. I would love to be talented enough to make things out of reclaimed material, particularly after seeing the amazing photos of reclaimed wood furniture made by my good friend +Ben Michelle Powell. I think there are so many things that could be done by reusing items, from clothing to furniture. My sister is thinking of starting a boutique selling things that she picks up in charity shops and thrift stores that she personalises and repairs where necessary. I think this is a fabulous idea but I do wish that I could do something like this myself. There must be craft things that I can do with Libby where we can do something that will be useful, if not to us then to somebody else. I will get my thinking cap on, but any ideas and suggestions would be appreciated!

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