Our daughter - Rachel Emma Boot - finally arrived earlier this month. Just in time for paternity leave to run nicely into Christmas for an extended family break together. Rachel fortunately loves a sling and seems only too happy to enable me try out all the library carriers with a smaller baby (many of which were only bought for the library after Tom was already too big to go in them).
Looking to the New Year, my maternity leave will continue for the first few weeks of Janurary while I get used to being a mother of two! I will be taking bookings for private consultations again anytime from the 14th of January onwards. Then Sling Library meets will go back to the normal pattern of 10am-12pm last Saturday's of the month and 2-4pm 1st and 3rd Tuesdays of the month starting from Saturday 28th January.
Upcoming dates therefore will be:
- Saturday 28th January, 10am-12pm
- Tueday 7th February, 2-4pm
- Tuesday 21st February, 2-4pm
- Saturday 25th February, 10am-12pm
- Tuesday 7th March, 2-4pm
- Tuesday 21st March, 2-4pm
- Saturday 25th March, 10am-12pm
- Tuesday 4th April, 2-4pm
- Tuesday 18th April, 2-4pm
- Saturday 29th April, 10-12pm
- Tuesday 2nd May, 2-4pm
- Tuesday 16th May, 2-4pm
There will be a couple of changes to these sessions. The first is that I will no longer be asking for deposits from those hiring slings. I have found taking deposits is a) quite inconvenient for parents and can be off putting, b) is quite a suprising amount of admin and faff for me and c) doesn't actually seem to make a big difference when it comes to ensuring the safe and timely return of a carrier. I am very fortunate that the vast majority of library users really value the service and completely understand that not returning their sling on time means another parent doesn't get to see it. So going forward I have decided to drop deposits and simply trust people.
The second change is that I will be introducing a suggested donation of £2 for the sling library drop in sessions. This will be waived for anyone hiring a carrier. It is really important to me that people who might not want to hire a carrier feel really welcome to attend these sessions (i.e. people who already own a carrier they are struggling with, expectant parents who'd like to learn about carrier types in advance, and people who'd just like to try a couple of things on before buying and don't feel like hiring a sling would be helpful to them). But equally I need to balance the fact that the hire fees are what pay for the slings in the library collection to be available both for those who wish to hire and for those who wish to simply learn. So the fairest way to do this and ensure the library can continue to grow is to simply ask everyone not hiring a carrier for a small donation toward the cost of these carriers.
I have hesitated to introduce a suggested donation for a long time, because its really important to me that the sling library meets are accessible to absolutely everyone who'd like to come. And I really hope this doesn't put anyone of. So for this reason I'd like to emphasise that this is very much a donation and not an enforced charge... there will simply be a jar.