Thursday, January 31, 2013

Ideas for Creating a Cloth Diaper Stash on a Budget

The upfront cost of cloth diapering can be quite scary. I know it was for me. I was determined to get my
hands on some fluff for my baby though! I knew in the long run that I would be saving my family a lot of

I didn’t get my hands on cloth until my first daughter was 4 months old. Boy, do I wish I had just figured
it out before then and bought some sooner. I did the math and if I had purchased cloth from the
beginning, I would’ve saved an extra $300 during those first 3 months of my daughter’s life! $300! That’s
more than a pack of 24 Smartipants cost.
Buying your stash in bulk would be the cheapest option, but it’s also the most overwhelming. If buying
a bulk stash to receive a discount isn’t in the cards for you, you could always buy a few at a time. You
don’t need a full stash of cloth to start cloth diapering, even just doing one or two cloth diaper changes a
day until you can buy more helps save you money.
Another option is to consider buying seconds quality diapers. Smartipants offers seconds quality diapers
at a discounted price. If you’re on a tight budget, it’s definitely something to contemplate since they
are still useable, just usually have a cosmetic flaw of some sort. Smartipants sells their seconds quality
diapers for $7.95 a diaper, that’s nearly a 50% discount. So, if money is really tight and you don’t want
to purchase used diapers, I highly recommend looking for seconds quality diapers to build your stash.
A few other ideas for building a stash on a budget include, buying used, entering cloth diaper giveaways,
and if you’re really desperate for help considering applying for a cloth diaper loan through programs
such as Giving Diapers, Giving Hope. If looking to buy used, you can find people selling on Diaper
Swappers and Cloth Diaper Swap. You can find cloth diaper giveaways on Change-Diaper’s Cloth Diaper
Giveaway Round-up.

What have you done to help build your stash on a budget?

Contributed by: Alex

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Velcro vs Snaps

When my husband and I first decided to cloth diaper we weren’t at all sure exactly what we wanted and
what would work well for us so we bought a variety of diapers and closures. We originally thought that
the snaps would work the best, but decided to also get some diapers with Velcro because we knew that
they would be easier for grandparents and babysitters.

Fast forward to my son’s arrival and I was very grateful that we had gotten the Velcro diapers. I have
rheumatoid arthritis and after my son was born my joints went into a severe flare (basically it was very
difficult to do anything and my joints hurt all of the time) and I had a very difficult time with the little
snaps on the diapers. For the first six weeks of my son’s life he was almost constantly in Velcro diapers.
The closure was very easy for me to get on and to achieve a good fit, even though I was having difficulty
using my hands. Once I got the mobility and strength back in my fingers, the Velcro diapers went in the
regular rotation with the snap diapers.

When my son was about four months old I noticed that the diapers with the Velcro closure were
wearing faster than the others. I made sure when I did the laundry that the Velcro closures were
securely on their laundry tabs, but the Velcro was still wearing pretty quickly. Since I didn’t need to use
them as much because my joints were feeling better, I decided to pull them out of our regular rotation
and save them for when my son was with his grandparents or a babysitter only.

By the time my son was eight months old, almost all of the diapers with Velcro closures were worn out,
even though they had only been used full time for a few months. While I love the simplicity of Velcro,
I can honestly say that since those original ones wore out, we haven’t bothered with replacing them.
One of the reasons we wanted to cloth diaper was because it was so cost-efficient and since the Velcro
diapers wore out so quickly, they just weren’t as economical.

If I were recommending cloth diapers to somebody I would make sure to tell them that while the Velcro
diapers are easiest, and I would definitely keep some on hand for those not familiar with cloth diapers, I
wouldn’t plan on building my stash out of them because they just don’t wear as well as the snaps.

Contributed by: Katy

Thursday, January 17, 2013

The Challenges of Cloth Diapering a Toddler

When I initially started cloth diapering my son I figured everything would be fine and dandy. I mean just stuff the diaper, put it on your baby, rinse and wash and do it all over again. Much to my surprise as your “baby” gets older things tend to change some for the best and some not so much.

1.  Poop – As your baby grows so do their poops I was not able to breastfeed my son so I cant say much on breast milk. What I will say is that formula milk when he was little was not bad at all. Now that he is older and eats solid food, its like “dude what did you have to eat?” His poop changes everyday some days its those ones that your like “ahh really” then it’s the pebbles kind. Which if it’s the pebbles its awesome because I just toss them in the toilet but if its those sticky ones. That’s where my awesome DIY diaper sprayer made by my husband comes in handy. A sprayer will become your best friend. Also if you don’t have a diaper sprayer disposable liners is another alternative.

2.  Heavy Wetter – Say what?? You mean you need to stuff more into the pocket?? I thought that the one or two inserts that cloth diapers come with when purchased was all you need. Wrong! As my son has gotten older he is drinking more fluids, and wetting his diaper more frequently.  I get that, I just didn’t know that I would have to stuff his diapers more. Even just during the day I have to add the regular size inserts plus a doublers, when before I got away with just the regular insert. Not to mention for night time diaper I have to stuff that baby up. My son ends up having a really fluffy butt J Sometimes but It works and sometimes I doesn’t so it’s a trial and error try different options even fitted diapers sometimes seem to be your best bet.

These are the two challenges I have been faced with while cloth diapering my mini toddler. Again this is all learning processes so don’t give up just find a solution and then just stick to it. It’s easy peasy !

What challenges do you face with cloth diapering a toddler? 

Contributed by: Pollyanna

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Diaper Sprayers!

Today I am going to talk about diaper sprayers. 

I have to admit that I did not have a diaper sprayer for the first year and a half that I cloth diapered.  I thought it wasn't that bad not having a diaper sprayer to be honest.  But then when I got one, my whole life changed.  Nothing is easier than having a diaper sprayer!  It is just bam!  Done!  

When I didn't have a diaper sprayer I had to dunk, swish, rub, shake and all that good stuff.  I might have stood on my head at one point haha.  But in all reality, diaper sprayers really help everyone.  

Not only do they get the messes out, but I also use them on overnight diapers.  Because your child is in that diaper for so long (sometimes up to 12 hours for babies that sleep all night) I like to spray out that pee too.  Why might you ask?  Because it is already getting to be old pee.  The longer the pee sits, the more it stinks!  So, that is why I spray those.

On top of it all, I also use the diaper sprayer for my cloth menstrual pads.  I HATE HATE HATE HATE HATE doing the wet pail.  I think it is SOOOOO gross!  I know that is what is recommended, but if you use the diaper sprayer and spray them down until the water runs clear, you don't have to do a wet pail for them :-)   SO much easier, in my opinion.

There is ONE con to diaper sprayers though.  That is the mess.  You know, when you don't angle the diaper just right and the water comes right for your face...and you probably, knowing the luck of moms, have your mouth open right at that same second....yeah...I am sure you can get what I am saying from there.  So seriously, I found an EASY solution to that one.  All you do is instead of pressing all the way down on the diaper sprayer, only hold it about half way down.  Or, if you are scared still, flush the toilet then will automatically reduce pressure because it is also filling up the toilet.  Oh, and of course, always keep your mouth closed lol.  

To sum it all up, in my opinion, a diaper sprayer is definitely a must have for cloth diapering!  Until next time....

Contributed by: Nicole

Thursday, January 3, 2013

The Benefits of a Newborn Stash of Cloth Diapers

Confession: I did not cloth diaper my baby from birth. When I first started cloth diapering my son was about 2 months old. Since I had never cloth diapered before and never had a baby before, I wanted to ease into it. Being a new mom comes with a lot of new challenges and cloth diapering was not one of them in my mind. After I got the hang of motherhood I dove into cloth diapers while holding nothing back! Then I said to myself “this is so easy, I should have started it earlier.” From that point forward, I made the commitment to use cloth diapers from birth with my next baby. Thanks to a couple of experienced newborn cloth diapering mama’s I have compiled a list of the benefits of a Newborn Stash

It saves money. While cloth diapering in general saves a ton of money, it is even more so when the baby is using 12-15 diapers a day! Making a small investment in a few diapers can save you a lot of money in the long run, especially if you have multiple babies

The just fit better. Newborn cloth diapers are sized especially for little babies from 5 to 12 lbs. This provides for a more precise and snug fit, hence leading to less leaks and blowouts.

Perfect for sensitive newborn skin. Newborn babies have very sensitive skin. Often times the smallest irritants can cause a painful rash. Newborn cloth diapers do not contain any chemicals like disposables and help to keep your baby redness free.

High resale value because of the limited usage. Because newborn cloth diapers are only used for a small weight range and thus a short period of time, their resale value is excellent. You can expect to get back between 50-70% of what you paid for the diapers. This in essence saves you even more money!

No need to make midnight runs to grab more diapers. The worst part about using disposables is having to run to the store because you forgot to grab more diapers or you used way more than you thought you would use. Newborn cloth diapers solve this problem and leave one less thing for you to think about. Wouldn’t you rather run down to the washer than out to the store at midnight?

Easier to determine how many wet diapers baby has. In the beginning it is very important, especially when breastfeeding to make sure that your baby is getting enough to eat. A good way to track this is by counting the number of wet diapers. In disposables, often times the chemicals absorb so much that you can’t tell how much pee the baby actually went, but in cloth diapers, you do not have this problem. Cloth diapers do not have any chemicals to absorb the urine. The baby simply wets the diaper and you can feel how much they went.

So have I convinced you to try cloth diapering with your newborn yet? I know that making the decision to cloth diaper your baby at any age has its challenges, but to me, and a lot of other mama’s these benefits outweigh the challenges. So if you are thinking about doing cloth diapers on your upcoming baby remember the benefits and give it a try! What do you have to lose?

Contributed by: Julie