Friday, January 1, 2010

Journey into cloth diapering

Towards the end of my pregnancy with Charlotte I had the notion that I wanted to cloth diaper, but at the time it seemed so complex and daunting. I never got around to researching the whole process and once Charlotte was born I was lucky to survive her first 7 months with non stop crying.....cloth diapers were not something I wanted to add to the mix!

For the last month or two I've been thinking about cloth diapers and researching constantly! This may or may not be a surprise, but Dan and I are not done having kids......NO, I'm not pregnant!!! But I figured what better time than now to start our journey into cloth diapering. Charlotte is pretty regular and isn't a heavy wetter....right now is a good time to jump in and learn the ins and outs of the cloth world and maybe by the time we have another baby Dan and I will be pros!

*Okay, so if you are not interested in cloth diapers at all, or don't want to hear how I came to the decision to buy pocket diapers then skip this next section.*

I bought some used Fuzzi Bunz one size pocket diapers off Craigslist the week before Christmas. They were a really good deal.....only used a few times by a Mama who had 1 year old twins and a newborn and couldn't handle using cloth diapers. Her loss is my gain! If you are interested in cloth diapers, there are tons of resources for buying used which will save you even more money! There is a whole underground world of cloth diaper swappers.....hit me up and I'll share some of the sites with you. Anyway.....after lot's of research I had come to the conclusion that I wanted either the Fuzzi Bunz one size diaper, or BumGenius organic one size all in one diapers. I thought it would be best to start with an easy, user friendly seemed less scary. After hearing some personal reviews from people I know that BumGenius diapers aren't all that great, and all in one (AIO) diapers take forever to dry because all of the absorbency is built in.....thus making it all in one.....I decided to go with the Fuzzi Bunz pocket diapers. The great thing about these diapers is that they grow with your baby. The legs and the waist of the diaper have adjustable elastic so you can change the fit as necessary, and there are snaps all along the front to help you get a custom fit all the way up to 35 lbs! Charlotte is somewhere near 30 pounds and she still has lot's of room in these diapers! For those who are new to the lingo of cloth diapering, a pocket diaper is a waterproof diaper cover with fleece on the inside. There is a pocket that runs the length of the diaper which you use to stuff absorbent inserts can use many different fibers such as microfiber, cotton, hemp, bamboo and fleece to stuff into a pocket diaper. I really liked the idea of being able to add more absorbency and trying different fabric inserts. The lady I bought the diapers from also had some hemp inserts that I bought as well.

We have been cloth diapering for 2 full days now and I must tell you that it has been awesome! We haven't had any leaks, we haven't had to change Charlotte's diaper more often than disposables and they are really super easy to use! It has taken some trial and error to figure out exactly how tight to make the elastics but I think we've found a winning combination and diaper changes are a breeze! A hanging diaper bag came with the diapers and we use it to store the soiled diapers until I wash which is every 2-3 days, so the dirty diaper comes off.....if there's poop it gets dumped into the toilet, I pull the insert out and all of it gets dropped into the dirty diaper bag. On laundry day I unzip the bottom of the bag and everything goes into the washer. Washing cloth diapers is a little tricky and if you google it, you will find dozens of different techniques but every washer is different, you just have to figure out what works best for you....not super complicated, just a little tricky at first. And as far as drying them goes, you can hang them out to dry (which I plan to do as soon as the sun decides to come out more regularly) or put them in the dryer. I obviously don't know drying times for all diapers, but with 20 Fuzzi Bunz diapers, 20 infant inserts and 20 toddler inserts it took the covers 20 minutes to dry.....I took them out and the inserts took another 20 minutes and both were on low heat setting. That's not even a full dry cycle in my dryer!

Cloth diapers are expensive! That is the main reason I chose not to use them with Maddie.....we had looked at a package deal in 2006 and it was like $500 and we just didn't have the money at the time. The initial investment into cloth is a big one if you plan on cloth diapering full time, but Dan and I did the math and if we spend $500 on cloth diapers and only have 1 more kid we will be saving nearly $2500 by not buying disposable diapers!!!! And if we have 2 more kids.....I'll let you do that head math! lol :o) And there are lot's of ways to save even more money by buying used cloth diapers, hanging them out to dry or choosing diapers and fibers that have a longer life. We haven't yet gotten rid of our disposables....Charlotte is still wearing one at night but I ordered cotton prefold diapers and wool covers and soakers that I plan on using for nights as soon as they arrive and I lanolize them. But I'll save wool diapers for another about diaper lust!!

I can't say with 100% certainty that cloth diapering will completely replace disposables for us, but thus far it has been really easy and fun! And I figure if it's been this easy and we're just starting shouldn't get harder right?!? Worse case scenerio.....we sell all of our cloth diapers and get back pretty close to what we payed for them.....I did mention the world of used cloth diapers, and good condition diapers garner more $$. So, that's our journey so far. I'm sure that you will be hearing about cloth diapers from me for some time......I know you're already waiting with bated breath to hear about my lust for wool diapers! For now I will leave you with pictures of my dear Charlotte wearing her first ever cloth diaper. Just for your information she has both the infant and toddler inserts in the diaper pictured, but we have only been using the toddler one during the day.....a lot less bulk. Isn't her heiney just so delicious in a cloth diaper? My little bubble butt baby!

Charlotte's sneaky journey onto the table

She looks at me to see if I'm watching

Just a little bit clooooser

Then Mama made her sit down
Insert grumpy face

1 comment:

Becky said...

She looks SO MUCH like Maddie in her grumpy face picture!! It's funny how kids like to make sure you notice them getting into trouble. :) Good luck with the cloth diapers, you are a braver woman than me! :)

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