It seems like I'm always thinking about babies, why wouldn't I though I have 3. I was thinking today about my decision to cloth diaper my Elijah exclusively. I tried with Grace who is now 3, I just didn't know enough about it and I got discouraged and basically quit after a few months. I kept the diapers though and again tried with Hannah but again didn't know anything and I thought she just peed to much and they wouldn't work. This time around though I was committed to making it work and I got online and researched brands and cloth diaper topics and really got familiar with how it works and how to care for them to get the best use possible out of them. So, I decided to plunge right in and do it from birth to potty training, for a lot of reasons. Some of you are probably thinking that cloth diapering is expensive, those all in one diapers can cost you upwards of $15 each depending on the brand and by the time you buy enough so your not doing laundry every day your spending a pretty penny. The truth is though that you will spend aproximately $1000 dollars more through out your child's diapering years on disposables. Another great reason to cloth diaper is knowing that your childs skin isn't being exposed to the harsh chemicals and products used in disposable diapers and lets be real it's much better for our environment.
With all that said, I did my research and made some purchases and I now have a stash of about 40 cloth diapers, yes that is a lot, I have my favorites too. Let me give you a run down of what I have brand wise, I have Bum Genius One Size 3.0 and 4.0, I have Bum Genius all in ones size small, Fuzzibunz perfect size, Bum Genius bamboo fitted, Bummis Bamboozle, Flip system, econobum, Grovia, rumparooz, and happy heinys. Well lets talk about terminology first, the one size diapers are diapers that will last your baby pretty much from birth to potty training, you can make them larger as your baby grows, it's a cover with a pocket and you put an insert inside the pocket and then put it on baby. The all in ones are just that, the are the cover with insert sewn in and it's just like a disposable diaper, no tricks or work to it, you just put on your baby and they are sized small, medium and large. The fitted diapers are diapers that have no cover so you have to buy a cover to put over the diaper, I use thirties duo wrap or bummis super whisper wrap. My favorites are the Bum Genius all in ones and the fuzzibunz perfect size. My least favorite are the Happy Heinys but they all seem to work really well so far. I have really enjoyed cloth diapering Elijah, so much that I've decided to convert Hannah, she is 20 months now and will be in diapers probably for another year, I can use the One Size with her and so I am going to give it a shot again.
I never thought I would really enjoy something like diapering but it really is so much fun and they are so cute, it's hard not to spend a lot of money on them though because it can become an addiction. :) I would say if your on the fence, go for it, cloth diapering is really not hard.
So now for what I learned in my research that I did wrong the first time and had NO clue about. First of all who knew that they needed special attention when washing? First time around I just threw them in the wash just like everything else I washed, at the time I was using tide so I put my tide in and then the big no no fabric softener, who doesn't want their diapers to be soft?? Yeah big mistake. Well I learned that fabric softener repels moisture so therefore your diapers won't soak up anything, they will leak and you can't just use any old detergent. So, I researched cloth diaper friendly detergents and found Charlies Soap, I love charlies soap, I bought it just to use on my diapers but quickly converted to full time use. It's a great detergent, and it's safe for your diapers and best of all it's reasonably priced, infact I think I'm saving money and even better than all of that is they ship free to Alaska. I just bought the 5 gallon bucket and they shipped it to me free via fed ex. You know that isn't cheap. Second thing I didn't know a lot about was storage of the dirties. I was spending a lot of time going up and down the stairs to the laundry room to get dirty diapers out of the the babies room. Well, I found planet wise hanging wet/dry bags. FABULOUS.....you just hang the bag on the door, throw the dirty diaper in and I'm telling you there is no smell that comes out of that bag. I have a bag full of dirties and you wouldn't even know there are 15 dirty diapers in the room. Amazing. When it's full I carry it down to the laundry room and start the laundry process. It's a great system.
I have to tell you also that I absolutely love cloth wipes, I especially love Fuzzibunz organic cotton/fleece ones. They are so super soft, I can't believe I ever used regular wipes before. I love these, I put them in my wipes warmer with water and when it's time to use them, I just pull them out and they are moist and soft. I recently discovered too that Planet wise makes a travel wipes bag so now I'm taking my cloth wipes on the road with me. So excited about that. Well I don't know if your inspired now or not but I'm telling you take the leap, jump in because it's something you won't regret. I'm hoping soon to do a giveaway of some "fluff" that is what we cloth diapering mama's like to call it and if your on the fence or baby isn't born yet, maybe you will win and be inspired to take the plunge.
Above is my little Elijah at 4 weeks in his Fuzzibunz perfect size diapers