Tula Families // Michelle & Family
Where do you live?
Nantucket Island, Massachusetts
How many in your family?
Just we three.
I’m 26, he’s 25, and the little he is 2.
I’m an artist/ illustrator/doll-maker/stay at home mum. Zak is a landscaping supervisor. Odin is a toddler, although he doesn’t get paid for that. Really he should pay me, I think.
When Odin was too big to carry in the sling, I came across Georgia at Documenting Delight’s blog post about the Tula vs Ergo for a bigger kid. Instantly knew I needed one. I was in love with Zoom Zoom but it was discontinued, which is how I found the Tula B/S/T on Facebook. Very luckily, I instantly found my Zoom Zoom and have since passed it along to another mumma since finding WC.
How long have you been babywearing?
Since the beginning! We had a Moby wrap but it was so ridiculously hot. We moved onto a Maya Wrap ring sling, but the padded shoulder was uncomfortable so we started using the Ergo more. Sakura Bloom ring slings were much more comfortable and then we found Tula and nothing felt as heavenly! haha!
More than one?
I own one full toddler Mockingbird and one standard Benvolio. I also just received a toddler Mermaids which I designed! It is so special to have my art made into a Tula. I had another standard canvas that I gave away recently to another mumma who I knew would appreciate it!
I was in the Sakura Bloom Sling Diaries, so I am also a big lover of ring slings. I find them most comfortable with smaller babes though! I didn’t really get into wrapping until just recently, which is sort of inconvenient since my child is more than half my height at two years old. I’d like to play around more with wrapping with the next one though.
What do you like about Baby Tula?
Besides the fact that it’s super comfortable, I really like the fact that it comes from a small family business. Ula is rocking it with her work and it’s pretty inspirational. I like the design more than other buckle carriers and even when doing comparisons, Tula still wins for comfort for me and my little.
What makes your family unique?
I think we have some pretty interesting hobbies. We have a huge garden and we keep bees. Zak is a studying mycologist and we grow our own medicinal and gourmet mushrooms which is pretty interesting. It’s neat to be able to teach Odin about the different mushrooms we come across and about the honeybees and how important they are to the environment. I make art and it’s really cute to hear Odin ask if we can do art together. We have some pretty cool friends who all do something unique and Odin loves them all to pieces. It really does take a village and in our first year we lived with four friends. Having spent his first year with six adults, he tends to warm up very easily to people.
What’s the strangest thing we’ve done while babywearing?
Zak insists that he’s fought off an alien invasion while rocking Odin in our Amitola. I think the strangest thing I’ve done is use the bathroom, but that’s pretty ordinary so I think Zak wins.
What’s your biggest struggle right now?
Trying to balance my art with my mothering. I have some help this summer since Zak’s little sister is out of school, but it’s overwhelming to know that I have to really work towards setting up my foundation so that when summer ends, I can easily continue to work even with a little one home all day.
What makes you happy to be a parent?
When I can directly see my influence in him or when he shows that he is learning something positive by example (sometimes it’s the opposite though and he copies something he shouldn’t! Ha!). Recently, he found a piece of trash in one of the flower boxes outside of our favorite coffee shop. He picked it up and sighed, shaking his head. He then brought it over to the trash can. That made me ridiculously happy.
How does babywearing make your life easier?
Odin doesn’t want to be worn too often lately, but for a long while it was the only way to get things done throughout the day. Art making or chores or even longer walks. We wear him now mostly on those longer walks when his little feet grow too tired to keep going.
What’s one piece of advice you’d give a new parent?
Go with the flow and don’t stress. Things will constantly be up and down and right when you think you have it all figured out, it WILL change. Do what works for you, regardless of what everyone around you says or what seems to be most popular. Every so often, someone tried to guilt us for nursing in public/nursing a toddler or co-sleeping. We never let it bother us and things run pretty smoothly (generally).