Monday, June 11, 2012

My cloth diapering experience...

Although my babies aren't really babies anymore, being that my oldest is almost 3 and my youngest is 16 months old (today), something kept pushing me into making "The Change" cloth diapers.

I have always thought the newer, more modern cloth diapers were really neat and didn't ever think it would be too difficult, but when I went online to look at them and think about purchasing some, I just couldn't understand all the different types, brands, laundry detergents, cleaning methods, and of course, all the different lingo for them, haha. So, when my sister had her third baby and decided to do cloth with the new baby, I thought it'd be great, so I can finally have someone who I can physically look at their diapers and to have someone explain it to me as if I were two. (Yes, I need things explained to me quite often that way). So, after many-a-phone calls and visits with my sister and getting to see it first hand and hear from someone who wasn't trying to "sell" me into it (and of course my cloth diapering friends helped, too) - I decided it was time. [ok, that and the fact that we had no income & we needed to cut costs anywhere possible.]

Now, my biggest road block in switching, besides not really understanding it all, was the initial investment. Most diapers with inserts generally run between $8-$30+. With us not having an income for a few months, I could not even fathom paying this - AT ALL. HA! Don't ever underestimate my internet shopping skills! I ended up finding pocket diapers on eBay, known to most cloth diapering mama's as "Ebay Cheapies". 

This is what they look like:

I can typically win an auction for a diaper and 1 insert for around $2. I have had an awesome time with these; no leaks or poop 'splosions. I will say this: the insert that comes with it is only a double layer and it is about 2" shorter. You can definitely tell a difference. What I did was purchase a "buy it now" insert that ships from China, as well, for $.99 for 1, free shipping. The $.99 inserts that you can get separately are sooooo much nicer and better. 

I usually stuff my eBay cheapies with 2 of the nicer inserts for overnight or if we are going to be out of the house for a while. For just around the house, I'll put one nice insert with one of the real cheapie inserts that was included in the diaper auction.

For us, the only downfall for these diapers is that they are shipped from China, so they take up to 3 weeks to arrive. I couldn't wait to get all of them, so I used old fashioned Gerber Rubber Pants over very thick Indian unbleached Prefolds secured with a snappi or diaper pins (pins were only used in a pinch, I do not like the pins). Quite honestly, we actually like and sometimes prefer the old fashioned way. I was even able to get my husband on board and he knows how to fold the prefolds and put them on our baby.
This is my preferred cloth diaper get-up. 

Once all my pocket diapers came in from China, I was so thrilled. Here they are (well, most of them):
This is the pocket diapers with the inserts in them.
I am such a cloth diapering geek with my little eBay cheapies, but I take a lot of pride in them and wash them every day and I even keep them in the little diapers stacker that still hangs in their bedroom. See?

I'm so glad I made the switch to cloth. Look how cute my little Princess looks while sleeping with her rubber pants on over her prefold diaper. heehee.

As for laundering them? I simply keep a wetbag by my washer and dryer (nope, it's not even in a pail, it's hanging from a hook) and every night I wash them. I take the inserts out and dump them in. I just do a small load setting & my washer has a "2nd Rinse" setting as well, so I put that on, too. I do not spend the ridiculous amount of money on the special cloth diaper detergent either...of course, I use my homemade laundry detergent. It's great. I do not use any stain lifters or fabric softeners. We have super dooper hard water here, so if I can tell the diapers are not absorbing well, I'll run them through the wash with a few drops of Dawn dish soap and no detergent and it seems to fix them right up. I love to bleach them in the Florida sunshine we are blessed with, but luckily for me, it's summer time so that means it rains everyday, haha! If it is raining or night time, I will put them in the dryer. I've been doing this for about 2 months now and they have all held up and work great. I had 1 diaper cover pull apart from the plastic PUL layer...but that's the best part: @ $2 each, WHO CARES! :)

I really hope other people with babies in diapers would give cloth diapering a shot. At least get some to have on hand...What if there was a bad storm and you couldn't get to a store. What if for some crazy reason the stores had no disposables in stock. What if you wanted to just help our environment, just a teenie weenie bit? ;) Try's really easy - AND CHEAP!

I spent MAYBE $35 on my entire stock of cloth diapers and that's it. I no longer pay for disposable every week or month and do not even pay for laundry detergent....I'm on to something.....Come on, join me. You have NOTHING to lose! :)

Love & Laughter,

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