1) The Swaddle:
We liked the swaddle. We warmed towards its charms slowly as it proved itself by helping Yuval sleep more soundly as she got progressively used to it. We were not able to use large "Tetra" swaddling cloths as our baby would break free or loosen everything up almost immediately, even if the cloth was wrapped meticulously. A second hand swaddle with velcro that my Mom bought in the US, saved the day, or should I say saved the night, and all the nights until Yuval was three months old. At this point, the swaddle became too small and she would easily get her hands or a single hand loose, looking like she was ready for the rodeo flaying her arm about. Rodeo or no rodeo, the socks could be found at the bottle of the swaddle.
The Bigger swaddle was full of promise. It came from a close friend, Hadas, who didn't need it anymore and it saved us from a few more "Rodeo Nights." But every night is so important when you are losing sleep as fast as a public laundry mat looses socks. I wanted that swaddle so bad that I picked it up from my friend's yard without even waiting to see her. Her husband put it out on their table outside right next to a chunk of meat they were apparently defrosting. Glad I didn't grab that instead! And, guess what, it was exactly the same as Yuval's swaddle but much bigger --and so was she-- so it was a good match. Apparently though, although it still calmed her to be swaddled (and we loved the immediate effect), during the night and during naps, she was just too active and we would find her escaping her loving entrapment, Socks though, calm and secure even if they fell off her feet.
Sleep Sacs, that's where we are now. We use them now according to the weather and the temperature in the room in which she is sleeping. It also gives her a sense that night time is here. Honestly, we just started using them so I don't have a whole lot to say except that the direction is good. Also these wearable blankets protect me from my own concerns re: blankets loose in the crib. And socks ... well they end up at the bottom much more frequently since the baby is able to truly and fully kick about.
Note: Re: My belief in no blankets in the crib is not a common concern in this country ... but in the US it feels almost like an unwritten law, at least in the literature that I read.
Our first snuggly looked like it came straight out of the 70's --and I think it actually did. Inbar Yosifoon of Shoemaker, gave it to us especially for use with a newborn. Even in July, she seemed a little eskimo wrapped up in its comfort. My one complaint is that it folded her up around my body and I always felt the need to support her back so that she could lie straight. No socks found their way into this device because she was strictly pants-that-are-also-socks at the time.
Definitely the way to roll. Especially, for me, when I was still a bit nervous about taking the baby down and up the stairs with the stroller+bassinet plus the dog all at once and all alone. This device helps you loose socks. It is especially good if you are trying to slim down your baby sock collection or are more interested in collecting lone socks and not pairs. It looks a bit intimidating before you figure out how to put it on. Everyone I introduced it to (my husband, grandmas and grandpas, and a friend) all got that glazed look in their eyes when I started to demonstrate how to put it on. It also took me a while to understand how to have it worn baby-face-forward without covering the baby's face, but the trick in the reversible snap at the top of the baby pocket is the bomb (once you figure out how it operates). Another plus-- Yuval loves to mouth the texture of this carrier. Maybe Dana Farber, who gave it to us after use with her two daughter covered it in sweetness! There are pros and cons to going secondhand on babygear, you get first hand info on what people already researched and chose, but sometimes you don't get the nifty booklets that come with the products to explain all their features. Its all give n' take and its really all give n' take.
Galya Flint Rosenfeld,
Sock Collector Extraordinaire