Never thought about cloth diapering? Grab a coffee and let's talk. There's a whole new world out there, and for me, it all started with cloth diapers...

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Cloth Diapering IS For Everyone!

I am a busy parent. Are any parents not busy? I have a 27 month old son and an 8 month old daughter. Unfortunately for my son, I learned many of my mistakes on him that I now do differently for my daughter. He’s turned out all right (so far!) but I feel I’ve learned a lot along the way about not just doing for our children, but doing what’s best.

I stumbled into cloth diapering on accident. My son had been wearing disposables for a year and a half, and then my daughter came along. It’s amazing how your viewpoint changes when you see twice the number of dirty diapers leaving your house each week! Yikes! I still never considered cloth, because I didn’t want to mess with those pesky rectangular poop catchers that you somehow had to fashion onto the baby with pins without drawing blood, and well enough to hold in poop. People who used cloth were crazy!

Then I caught wind of a new cloth diapering generation, where diapers were fitted, contoured, with snaps or Velcro. They had elastic, colors and fun prints! Some even had the cover built in, and some were even self-cleaning! Okay, maybe not self-cleaning, but these things were cool. Different styles and makers can be found on the internet, where work at home moms dominate the market place. You will not find the best selection at big name baby stores like Babies R Us, because I guess they don’t think the 15% of babies who are cloth diapered are a big enough market. There are also so many different kinds available, they probably wouldn’t know where to start.

Even with all of the cool diapering products out there, most people run from the thought of cloth diapering because they abhor laundry. And adding more to their current load is just out of the question. But it really isn’t that bad. I was afraid after my $200 investment I would grow tired of the laundry and give up. Not only did I keep it up, I added my son into our cloth diapering venture and we have been at it now for 7 months. I won’t pretend that I’ve never thought to myself, “I have to wash diapers again?!” But for the most part, it’s so easy that I wouldn’t have it any other way.

Diapers don’t have to be soaked in a wet bucket. They don’t have to be dunked and swished in the toilet. They don’t even require much detergent! Only about half to one-fourth the recommended amount is necessary to get the diapers clean. Any more than that, and you might have detergent residue problems that will actually make the diapers stink. When I change a diaper, I wipe with a wet cloth, dump any poop into the toilet, and then place the dirty diaper into the pail. With disposables, I would do the same thing (and yes, you are supposed to dump poop from a disposable as well) except the diaper goes into the trash- adding to ALL of the disposable diapers that have still not disintegrated from the very first disposable diaper ever used. Diapers don’t require bleach to be “clean.” If any stains remain after a good washing, you lay them in the sun for a few hours, and the sun will bleach them out naturally.

And most importantly, you don’t have to be rich, or poor for that matter, to cloth diaper. The initial investment is substantial, but in the long run you end up saving thousands of dollars. Even more savings add up when you use the same diapers on subsequent children. The most expensive cloth diaper out there will still save you big bucks when compared to disposables. And the cheapest- the good ol’ prefolds that you fold and pin (or Snappi) are still used by die hard naturalists who want nothing but 100% pure or organic cotton next to their babies’ bums. There is something available for everyone and every size baby. If one style doesn’t seem to work, believe me, there will be others that do. There are even stay at home moms that will make your baby custom fit diapers. And no matter which version you choose, you can bet that they will be more comfy than the paper and plastic you are currently putting on your baby’s most sensitive body parts.

I really do believe that cloth diapering is what’s best for our babies. It’s healthier, more comfy, and better for the environment that we will be handing down to our children. I am a busy parent. But not so busy that I can’t take a little extra time each week to do what’s best for my babies. And if you think I’m crazy, you should talk to one of those elimination communication parents that don’t use diapers at all! ;o)

I wrote this article many years ago and reading it brings back memories of my kids in diapers! They are now 13 and 15, and before long I will hopefully have grand kids in cloth diapers. If you are a mom with a diapered baby, cherish these years, because they fly by fast!

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