We’ve used a Beco carrier from the beginning and were still using our Gemini from time to time whenever our almost 3-year-old needed a boost. But although his 36-pound body fell within the 7-45 pound weight range, wearing our big guy in the Gemini was starting to feel a little snug. So, you can imagine our delight when we were offered the opportunity to try out Beco’s brand-new Toddler carrier.
The Toddler is designed for passengers from 20-60 pounds, and the proportions are adjusted as such. When we first opened up the carrier, it looked huge! Especially compared to our Gemini. However, as we strapped our happy boy in, it instantly became clear that the roomier seat and extended back would make for a significantly comfier ride—both for the wearer and the wearee. Suddenly our toddler seemed far more supported—and far less squished—and I noticed a positive difference in the way his weight was distributed. Everything felt more secure and less gangly.
The Toddler has all the extras we’ve come to expect from Beco, including an attachable hood (which is nice for naps), and attachable zipper pouch (for snacks or spare undies—I mean, we’re potty-trained but we’re not perfect) and a built in pocket (where I like to stash my phone, credit card, key and lip balm. The carrier also comes packaged in a coordinating storage sack, which is great for stowing the carrier itself or using as an extra place to keep clean clothes, dirty shoes, you name it. Like all the Beco carriers, the Toddler is made in the USA (hooray!) and machine washable (double hooray!). Oh, and the prints are, as always, modern, cool and spot on. It was hard to pick just one!
The Toddler is a cinch to figure out and can be put on without the assistance of another adult, no problem. The straps can be worn like a backpack or criss-cross.
One of the things I love about carrying older kids is that they make the whole ordeal so much easier. “Hop on my back like we’re going for a piggyback ride,” I’d say. Or “Come here and let mama hold you.” My son readily hung onto me while I finished adjusting the straps or securing the buckles, and we were ready to roll in no time. It was a totally stress-free experience.
Now, to answer the question I know many of you are probably asking: Why would I want to lug around my heavy toddler? (He can walk, after all.) Well, I can think of several reasons …
In our family, we regularly walk to a nearby park to play. That’s nearby as in a half mile away. Our 3- and 5-year-olds can make it there just fine, but by the time they’ve run around the playground for an hour, the uphill trek home can do them in. We could drive instead, but it’s hard to find a parking spot much closer than ours at home. And I could push a stroller, but I like the boys to get the exercise (they sleep best when they’re worn out!). Besides, I don’t much care for having to keep track of it as we toggle between the swings and the slide and the sandbox. The carrier is a genius alternative. I strap in whoever is most tired on the way home, and enjoy some extra snuggles (and a bonus workout) as we walk. It’s significantly more comfortable and effective than a rogue piggyback ride, and it’s no biggie to stick the carrier in a backpack and bring it along. It’s so much less cumbersome than a stroller!
I also think the toddler carrier is a good option for parents with younger babies. When big brother needs a little extra attention, consider putting your newbie in the stroller and wearing your older child. Almost instantly, he’ll reap the love and closeness from his mama that he craves.
And lastly, I love wearing my babies and miss how much I got to hold them when they were younger. This carrier lets me prolong that phase a bit, and I couldn’t be happier about it. Our little ones grow up much too quickly, so we’ve got to take advantage of the extra cuddles when we can get ’em.
Bottom line: The Beco Toddler carrier is well-designed and highly functional. Two thumbs up—from both me and my not-so-much-a-baby-anymore boy.
To buy: nickisdiapers.com