Monday, January 6, 2014

Cloth Diapering Update

I thought I would do an update on how cloth diapering is going for us as a bit of an introduction to those who know nothing about it and for those who may be on the fence about it.  Hopefully it is informative for someone.

Why am I cloth diapering? 
The biggest reason is to save money.  Disposables are so expensive.  Even the cheaper boxes from Costco add up quick.  I am just not interested in using so much of our budget up on diapers.  Just ask the hubby, I don't like things that can't be reused.   It's just too much waste for me. 

When did I start cloth diapering? 
I started sometime in July I believe.  By the time the kiddo was born I knew I wanted to cloth diaper but I wasn't interested in cloth diapering a newborn.  I thought it would be too overwhelming and I don't regret that decision.  Now that I know more experienced, I would consider cloth diapering our second child from the start. 

How many do we have?  
We now have over 20.  I don't actually know the exact amount anymore.  When we started out we only had about 5 and each month we would add more to our stash.  The pros of doing it this way are you can test out cloth diapering before making a huge investment, you can cloth diaper part time initially to get used to it, and it's not a huge investment all at once.  The cons are that you still have to buy disposables and you have to wash often.  I do like the fact that I didn't have my whole stash built initially because it allowed me to try different brands and types of diapers. You can always rent diapers to test out how cloth diapering works for you and to decide which type of diaper you want to use before building your stash.  Either way, I would not recommend building your stash completely before you have your child. 

How much did they cost us?
Sometime in January I need to go back and calculate exactly how much I have spent already but I think it is around $400.  You can cloth diaper for so much cheaper or for so much more.  It just depends on type of diaper and brand of diaper.  You can even get cloth diapers used though their retail value is often pretty high.  If you find someone local, they may be willing to sell you their used ones for much cheaper.  

What is washing them like?
Washing them has to be one of the biggest learning curves ever and I think this rightfully stops many people from trying cloth diapering.  But I am here to tell you its doable.  You will run into problems and you may make mistakes you have to undo, but you will figure it out as you go.  Or at least that is what I keep telling myself.  I have been having a problem getting the detergent amount pinned down which has caused a few problems but thankfully nothing impossible to deal with.  As for smell, sure they smell and you have to smell it as your are putting them in the washer and its awful but it only lasts for a minute and anyone can handle that (unless your pregnant and then I understand completely). 

How is traveling with them?
I know people who cloth diaper when they travel but I decided not to when I traveled to Utah in November.  I thought I would regret it and I sort of did (hello all the poo I had to scrub off his clothes) but I had my reasons and looking back I think I made the right decision.  I did not want the extra weight of them in my suitcase and I didn't want to deal with cleaning them in another person's wash machine.  Since some detergents don't work with cloth diapers, build up in another person's washer from their detergent could have gotten on my diapers and forced me to strip them and I wanted to avoid that.  And since I got sick on my trip I am glad I didn't have the extra laundry to deal with. 

How is everyday errands and church with them?
Easy!  I use a wet bag that contains the smell really well.  One pocket is for clean diapers and the other is for used diapers.  Basically they aren't any harder to deal with. 

What about night time diapering?
So far it's going fine but adjustments will need to be made as he gets older and has heavier pees.  At that time, there may be another learning curve for me but for now our system works.  We basically use a pocket with two inserts and very rarely have leaks. 

What has been my favorite type of diaper?
I love pocket diapers.  I think they are easy to use, even with the stuffing involved, and work really well.  I am currently working on learning prefolds.  I need to spend a bit of time learning folding methods since I am not great at the fold I have been using and I am unsure if it's the best fold for his body type, but I do have to say that they are much easier than people make them out to be and work really well.  This past week, I didn't even fold and pin them.  I just folded the cloth, put it into his diaper, and used is as any other diaper.  It worked and it was easy and less expensive than a pocket.

What has been the hardest part of cloth diapering?
The learning curve and figuring out a sufficient wash routine.  Learning about cloth diapers, deciding which ones to buy, and getting a wash routine down all take time and trial and error.  

Would I recommend it?
Yes!!!  I kept reading about all these mothers who were addicted to cloth diapering and I thought they were batty.  But I am now that batty mother.  I am so glad we made the decision and while it's not for everyone, I think there are many mothers out there who would love it if they just gave it a chance.

By the way, many sources you read make you feel like you should never have leaks and if you do, it's a problem with your product or with you.  And while that may be the case, I have tried to give up caring when we have leaks and give up spending all of my time trying to figure out why (unless it's leak after leak).  I figure that even if we have to deal with some leaks every now and then, its better than dealing with the poo blow outs that tend to happen with disposables.  We rarely have issues with poo when we use cloth, something I am extremely grateful for.

1 comment:

  1. I love this post! Jack looks SUPER cute in his cloth :-)