Monday, January 30, 2012

that cloth diaper post, pt2

I feel like I should lead with a disclaimer: I'm not a cloth diapering kind of girl.

At least I didn't use to be. There is a certain ick factor that goes along with having kids and I was the girl who thought I'd never be able to handle it. All of the things that come out of a baby grossed me out and I just knew I'd be doing things in the most prissy way possible.

But then I got pregnant. And thankfully, the Lord softened those parts of me and I got over myself. Or at least I'm getting over myself. Cute babies and reality will do that to you, I guess.

So let's talk cloth diapers, shall we? Here are the questions I got...

What kind do you use? We use the BumGenius 4.0s. They're one-size (meaning they grow with baby) and they have inserts. We were leaning towards the all-in-ones so we wouldn't have to stuff the inserts into the covers, but the 4.0s went on sale about a month before Jack was born, so we went with those instead. And honestly, I haven't really thought about it since.

How do we clean them and does the smell bother you? We wash them in the washing machine! Since he's exclusively breastfed, his dirty diapers aren't solid. You just do a rinse cycle before you wash to get the yuckies out and keep them from staining, then do the wash and another rinse. Once he's on solid foods and the diapers are a little more...substantial...they have sprayers that you attach to your toilet to get the yuckies off before you put it in the wash. Honestly, that stage is a little intimidating, so I'll have to let you know how that goes.

We have a trash can (with a lid) lined with a (washable) wet bag that holds the diapers until we're ready to wash them. That does a pretty good job of keeping the smell contained, but I usually sprinkle baking soda in there to help with that. The smell is more ammonia-like than anything, which is just kind of annoying, but not gross. Who knows how that will change once he starts having big boy diapers. And I just recently learned that baking soda can mess with the pH of the diapers, which can (and did) cause diaper rash. But a splash of vinegar in the rinse cycle takes care of that.

How many diapers do you have and how often do you have to do laundry? We have 18 diapers, which allows us to do laundry about every two days. Any more than that and the ammonia stench is a little more than I can handle, plus you don't want the diapers to get stained. However, the sun is like magic and if you lay the diapers in the sunshine, the stains disappear. It's pretty neat.

Also, in case you were wondering, we haven't noticed an increase in our water or electricity bill as a result of having to do extra laundry. I think the water bill went up maybe $2 compared to what we were used to? And when I compared Nov 2010 to Nov 2011 of our power bill, 2011 was $20 higher. But I think that's because we never had the heat on upstairs unless we had guests. But then his room was upstairs so of course, we ran it all the time.

Is it harder than disposable diapers? Honestly, aside from the extra laundry each week, the actual process feels no different. I guess I've gotten used to it, but I've never once wanted to go back.

You must get your smarts from your Daddy. Not a question, but yes. There's surely no other explanation for it.


Also, a few other things that I forgot to mention in the last post:
  • I use cloth wipes as well, because if you're throwing a diaper in a pail to be washed, you might as well put the wipes in there instead of having a separate trash can. You can buy them or use wash cloths, but I just sewed some flannel fabric scraps together. I made a solution of water, baby soap and baby oil and use a squirt bottle for that. Easy peasy. And that also saves money!
  • There are a ton of great resources out there for cloth diapering that answer all kinds of questions and will help you navigate things. Just start Googling and you'll be set.
  • Traveling with cloth diapers isn't that bad either. We have small and medium sized wetbags that I keep in my diaper bag to hold diapers until we get home and can put them in the pail to be washed. Instead of throwing the diaper away, we zip it up and take it home to be washed. But in full disclosure, if Jack didn't leak through ever disposable we've ever put on him, I probably would use those for overnight travel - only because it's a hassle to have to do laundry at someone else's house when you're there for more than just a weekend.
So there you have it. Our love affair with cloth diapers :) Hope that helped!

1 friends said...:

  1. Loved reading this. So glad you are liking cloth diapering. I will admit, I was scared of the solids phase. However, after almost 6 months of it I will say it is definitely just as easy as the EBF phase, if not easier, since she doesn't poop nearly as much. :-) The diaper sprayer is a godsend for sure. :-)


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