As I had more children and learned about more and more ways to baby carry I was hooked, though I realized more often than not I was doing it wrong (which was why my back always hurt). Enter in a dear sweet friend who is always a giver of knowledge and I became one of the most staunch advocates for baby wearing ever, I mean EVERY mom needs a ring sling in my opinion,or at least a moby wrap for her newborn! My friend did a few simple adjustments, showed me a better ring sling (by giving me hers straight from her back!) and the rest is history that has spread around the world. (post here)
So for a mama who is newer to baby carrying, where does one start? Lets start off by suggesting that the forward facing, kind of crotch dangling styles are not the most comfortable options for baby or mama.
I really like the Moby Wrap for about the first month or two of baby's life. What it (and many other variations of that brand name) is amounts to a long piece of stretchy (tshirt like) material you can wrap around yourself and baby that keeps baby snug and right on your chest while you "do life" and chase after other littles. Here is a picture of a mama with a moby wrap in action and HERE is a link to a review done by the mama whose pic I borrowed below (blogging at www.earthycrunchymama.com)
When my babes get a bit bigger, I found that I much prefer the ring sling and in a pinch I have used that style of carrier for my son who is fast approaching 2. Not that he can't walk but last summer when I was chasing his then 3 year old brother around it was sometimes nice to at least have one of the two wild ones contained!
The nice thing about a ring sling is that if you sew, they are super easy to make. (HERE is where you can buy the rings, and this site has tons of helpful tutorials on how to make your own ring sling) If not, you can buy them for as little as $25 to as much as several hundred so it fits into many budgets.
I think we are missing out on something in our culture. If you look into so many other cultures, African, Hispanic, Indian, and a slew of others, they all naturally carry their babes wrapped in lengths of cloth and that is the norm. We are the ones who have gotten away from that ideal, in this farmgirl's humble opinion it is a better way to parent.
I have experimented with back carrying, but not to much success. HERE is a post I did about a rough day we had where I used a back carrier for my little (again a gift from my super generous friend) it was just not his favorite way to be carried, though it sure did make my hands freer for cooking dinner!
So, a more natural way of living to me is going against the grain of always strollering my babies or leaving them in infant car seats (which frankly are heavy and take up waaay too much room in my grocery cart!) and opting for a way that women have toted their littles along for centuries. No matter which is your carrier or choice, keeping baby close is, in my opinion, a much more natural way.