Sorry to my readers for not posting anything yesterday. Last night's storms interrupted my Internet service and after several reboot attempts, and many 4-letter words later, I gave up and went to bed.
Today you're going to get a two-post special. Lucky you!!
What I wanted to post yesterday was my review on cloth diapering. I'm not posting this to try to convert anyone or act like I'm holier than thou, but because I had no idea what cloth diapering entailed and I think many other new moms don't really know either. I'm sure many of you are thinking what I thought at first; cloth diapering is way too much work, too gross, and too much of a hassle to deal with. Cloth diapers are those small sheets that you have to fold and then use safety pins to secure them. What if I stab my baby?? On top of that, I'll have to use a diaper service because I won't be able to keep up with the laundry and I can't afford that.
While pregnant I met this fabulous group of expecting mommies at birth class and now we get together all the time for fun and support. Several of the moms use cloth diapers, and when I saw one for the first time I gave that mom a weird look and said what the heck is that?
Low and behold it was a cloth diaper. It looked nothing like I thought it was supposed to. No safety pins, no white sheet, but how could this be? It was instead something that looked very much like a regular diaper with snaps and Velcro, but much softer and even had the cutest flower print. My mind had been blown!
When I got home that day I immediately jumped on Google (because that's where I've gotten all my information from the last decade) to find out more about cloth diapering. What I found was an overwhelming amount of information on the subject. Not only were there websites selling cloth diapers and explaining the different types and uses, but there were online chat groups and local meet up groups dedicated solely to cloth diapering. Why hadn't anyone mentioned this to me when I was pregnant? I didn't even know this was an option. I felt so left in the dark. Curse you Babies R Us for not having cloth diapers as one of your million options on your registry!!
I decided to give them a try based on the cost savings alone. I also am all for saving the environment and not filling up land fills with stinky disposable diapers that take 500 years to degrade, but really it was more about the money. The initial investment can be a few hundred dollars to get a large enough stash that you're not doing wash daily, but over the course of your child's diapering years you save a ton of money. You can spend even less if you find them used. I'm cheap, what can I say!
After perusing through multiple websites, I decided to find a local store so I could get some hands-on learning. I couldn't believe the lack of cloth diaper retailers. There were only a couple stores in my area that I could actually visit to purchase instead of online only. I ended up going to Babies Bottoms and More, which is actually just a retail shop out of a family's garage. The lady was so sweet, and spent several hours we me and my friends explaining to us all the different types and how to care for them.
I settled on one size pocket diapers that had snap closures and only bought a few to make sure I could handle this cloth diapering adventure I was about to embark on. When I arrived home, I realized that they were too big for my son. Rat poison!!! I spent all this time researching and finally made a decision to change over to the cloth diaper world, and they don't even fit?
The next day I went to Target and bought a small box of disposables out of frustration. It took a few days, but I decided to check out other cloth diaper options. I realized that a Velcro closure would be more suitable for my skinny waisted son and also the diaper needed to have snaps to make the rise smaller. I found Kawaii Baby diapers that were relatively cheap so if they again didn't fit I wasn't out too much until my son got bigger.
I received the package with my new cloth diapers in the mail a few days later. I removed the diapers from the box and tried them on my son. They fit pretty well. Super, mission accomplished! Since then we've used them exclusively and it's going great. I've also bought some biodegradable inserts that just lay in the diaper to help contain the poop. They're fabulous! I just fold up the corners and drop the poop-filled liner into the toilet. The rest of the diaper goes into the Diaper Genie that's lined with a garbage bag just like a regular diaper. When the bin is full or I need more diapers (whichever comes first) I just pull the whole bag out and turn it inside out into the washing machine, dumping the soiled diapers and then tossing the garbage bag. I use cloth diaper friendly detergent and then dry them normally in the dryer. I'm doing this basically every other to every 2 days, and it's really not that much more work than doing regular laundry. Even my husband doesn't mind it. I did have to have cloth diaper class with him to explain how everything works, but after a couple times he got it.
Now that I'm in this new cloth diapering world, I think it's great. I'd highly recommend it to any family that wants to save money on diapers and would like to do a small part in leaving a smaller carbon footprint. Do some research before you buy to learn the different types and the proper care. As Levar Burton would say on Reading Rainbow, "You don't have to take my word for it."
For those of you who are considering or are already using cloth diapers please take the poll above.
I'll see you next time