“We cannot stop the winter or the summer from coming. We cannot stop the spring or the fall or make them other than they are. They are gifts from the universe that we cannot refuse. But we can choose what we will contribute to life when each arrives.”
– Gary Zukav
Every time a new sling tester arrive at my doorstep, I get this tingly electric sensation in the pit of my stomach. Butterflies and squeals of delight abound. Followed by the chasing, bribing and superman-tossing of a wriggly toddler. For the opportunity to experience, experiment with, cuddle and snuggle different kinds of carriers and brands without having to dip into the Fluffinay household coffer is indeed a gift from the universe that should be treasured and never refused.
I see spring bloom before my eyes the moment I first glimpsed the delicate pink petals of Daiesu’s Sakura Mei Tai. This beautiful visitor came to stay with us for a short while and we were thrilled to finally be able to use a mei tai and carry with Daiesu, a popular sling company from Malaysia.
Daiesu is a family-run business based in Kuala Lumpur. Daddy Azhar, Mommy Ilyani, and Little Daie boy make #familygoals a breeze as they manage and oversee every aspect of Daiesu’s operation. From accounting to packaging, wrap design, and marketing, as well as promotion and modelling of their product; the family is completely hands on and committed to their company advocacy of babywearing.
A mei tai is a typically a square shaped piece of fabric with straps on all four corners. It has a long history in Asia where mothers often carry their babies in simple fabric carriers they tie around their bodies.
At first touch, Sakura Mei Tai feels like a soft and snuggly baby blanket. Since I am at the bottom of the tester rotation, this beauty came to us fully broken in and floppy. Dainty sakura flowers in an elegant tone of pink drift and laze around a vibrant sea of bright orange. Now, it may seem garish to combine dazzling shades of pink and orange together but this beautiful mei tai pulls it off quite exquisitely.
After almost 2 years of wearing Sophia, I will finally get the chance to use a mei tai. I’m excited and giddy to learn something new but at the same time I’m a little wary of the long straps attached to this pretty visitor. (I happen to have an aversion to long wraps, remember. 😉 )
Although I know a lot of babywearers who list mei tais at the top of their carrier list, it did not raise my curiosity to try one. Not even the relative affordability and accessibility of this carrier type had enough unicorn dust sparkles powerful enough to awaken the budget conscious momma in me.
Or so I thought.
Thus, our first encounter with a mei tai became a huge challenge to my biases against this ancient and traditional carrier type.
After Sophia’s appointment with her paediatrician, Sakura proves its worth by providing one of the most comfy nap time snuggle experience we’ve had with a sling tester.
The cushioned shoulders of the strap feels so nice on my picky shoulders. It’s a heavenly sensation!
I know I always complain about my weight sensitive shoulders and back. (It’s not old age, you know.) But this mei tai make Sophia’s weight feel as light as a feather. It is so comfortable, I want to wear her in it until she graduates from college.
One thing that I totally adore about this carrier is how relatively easy and quick it is to back carry a wriggly toddler.
If you’ve met my almost terrible two year old Sophia Isabelle, then you’re certainly aware of how hyperactive and vivacious she is. A dirty little mommy secret of mine is that I babywear my toddler because I am exhausted and at times exasperated from chasing her around.
And when I do catch her at the height of her exploration of the big wide world, I superman toss her on my back and prepare for the maelstrom of a level 10 toddler meltdown.
With a mei tai, I don’t have to worry of her falling off my back because she has a secure seat tied around my waist and no amount of leg straightening can pop it.
This lovely tester packs tons of sleepy dust. It can lull Sophia to cupcake land or Zootopia (she’s a HUGE fan!) in a jiffy.
When it comes to babywearing, I am the no fuss, straight up, just tie it with a knot kinda girl. I am not fond of fancy finishes. Not at all. They are awesome to look at and can even highlight a curvy mommy’s assets. But complicated looking and showy finishes to a wrap job is something that rank low on my list of must do’s in carrying my baby. (Aside from the fact that I have no asset to show off.)
Since the long straps of Sakura look so elegant and pretty, they inspire me to at least try 2 fancy finishes, a Goddess and a Sweetheart Neckline finish.
Unfortunately for us, the straps of Sakura are too short on my frame for fancy finishes. I guess its back to the ol’ simple knot around the waist for today.
This may be due to a sizing issue since the tester is Baby sized and Sophia is certainly too big for it. The hood didn’t quite reach her head so I ended up not using it when Sophia took a nap.
However, despite the sizing issue, we were both quite content and happy as the straps acted as leg extenders for my little one.
I hope that we get to experience a toddler size next time because Sakura is certainly toddler worthy.
At the end of our adventure with the lovely Sakura Mei Tai, I learned something new about myself. I realised that I actually like mei tais. I never gave them a thought before and would often skip through mei tai listings on the buy, sell, and trade boards. I thought they were just meh, a panel and some straps. I thought that wraps or SSCs were far better investments. After experiencing the cool and comfortable cushiness and toddler-worthiness of one, I have chosen to add a mei tai to my trimmed down stash.
Like the spring breathing warmth and vitality to a cold lonely winter, Sakura Mei Tai have inspired life to my reduced and modest carrier stash. Soon, a delicate shimmery silver-pink mei tai will make back carries a breeze for the Fluffinay mommy and baby.
Toddler: 23months, 11.3kgs
Mommy: Medium Body build
Type of Carrier: Sakura Wrap Conversion Mei Tai (WCMT)
Brand: Daiesu Baby Carriers
Size: Baby Size
Fabric Content: 100% Organic Cotton
Type of weave: Jacquard
Surface Weight: 270gsm (Medium Thin)
Width: 35cm (14inches)
Height: 35cm (14inches)
Suitable for newborns until 2 years old
Type of carries done: Front & Back Carries