Changing Diapers: the Hip Mom's Guide to Modern Cloth Diapering

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Traveling with Cloth!

Our next blog series is about traveling with 100% cloth diapers. 

Our little family at the beach for the first time in San Diego!

In May of 2010, we traveled to the west coast to visit my brother and his (then) pregnant wife in San Diego.  I fell in love!  I am a Texas girl through and through, but I could definitely see myself living in San Diego.  Beautiful pretty much sums it up.  We stayed at their 2 bedroom condo, all 8 of us (9 if you include the tiny baby in my SIL's belly;) -- my brother, his wife, my parents, my husband, our (then) 2.5 year old, our (then) 6 month old, and myself.  It was a tight fit, but we had so much fun! 

I decided to go with 100% cloth for the trip, mostly because I was so excited about it!  My brother and his wife showed interest in using cloth for their impending arrival, so I also wanted to show them how easy it was.  They had a small washer/dryer (the 1/2 size kind that is stacked) in their condo that they said I could use.  I forgot to pack detergent, so we got some Tide Original powder while there. 

I packed most of the diapers we had, enough to wash every other day.  I was nervous about checking them, since it's a LOT of money to trust with the airline.  I've never had my luggage lost, but I just knew that this would be the one time they did.  So I packed them all in my carry on so I could keep them close. 

I used Flips with stay dry inserts for the airport and plane rides, there and back.  Very easy.  Well, as easy as it can be to change a diaper on the plane...

Meeting M-I-C-K-E-Y M-O-U-S-E!

While there, I waited a couple of days until we were almost out of diapers before washing.  Big mistake.  I was used to our normal sized top loader at home.  Their tiny washer could only do about one day's worth of diapers, so I ended up having to do 2 loads on that very busy day.  And the tiny dryer took forever to dry, so all of the pocket shells and Flip covers I line dried in the bathroom, wherever I could hang them.  From then on, I washed every day.

Mid-trip, we planned a trip to Disneyland!!  We had a blast!  We spent a full day there, then stayed at a nearby hotel before another fun-filled day.  And yes, I still used cloth.  I found it was so easy, and not any more difficult than changing disposables while on vacation.  The only difference is our diapers didn't stink up the bathrooms when I was done. 

My little chunker wearing his special
Mickey Diaper (made by Doodle Dypes)!
We were gone a total of 8 days, and E was in cloth 100% of the time.  Riley was on the verge of potty training, and in undies and training pants while there, with cloth at night.  I was so nervous before the trip about juggling laundry while on vacation, but it was much easier than I anticipated.  I just threw in a load while we chatted, then they dried while we went to lunch or dinner (or bed).  I washed each day when I had the chance, and it was not the least bit difficult.  Nor was I tempted to buy disposables once we got there (which I secretly kept in the back of my mind). 

E wearing one of my favorite prints,
made by Doodle Dypes,
at his great-grandfather's house.

Empowered by an 8 day vacation, I knew that our upcoming 5 day long weekend at my husband's grandfather's lake house would be a breeze!  Last 4th of July we packed up to visit my husband's favorite place in the world.  I finally had enough to cloth diaper both of my kids full time (since Riley started going back and forth on potty training), just in time for this trip.  So this time last year, I just put the large basket of diapers in the van along with everything else.  I changed him just like I would with disposables. 

When we stay there, we are outside pretty much the entire time.  It is beautiful there, and right on the water.  The cloth diapers were easy to use while there.  I just made sure our diaper bag was stuffed with enough diapers for the full day, along with wipes and a wetbag.  Easy Peasy.

I knew I could use the washer and dryer there if needed, which I did plan on doing at least once.  I took some detergent with us, but never used it.  Riley did well with potty training that week, and I kept putting off washing the diapers.  That trip we made it the entire 5 days without washing diapers!  We got home in the middle of the night, and I immediately threw the diapers in the wash for an overnight soak.  I added some white vinegar to counter-balance the ammonia that was built up from 5 days worth of sitting and let them soak while we slept.  First thing in the morning, I did several hot wash cycles (minus detergent after the intial wash), then dried them as usual.  They were stink free by mid-day, and we were good again. 

Not last year, but one of my favorites!
This is Riley at 11 months, with his daddy,
at his favorite place!
No cloth diapers under his shorts,
we didn't know about them then.
We have since done a few more long weekend trips with 100% cloth.  After our first trip with cloth, I have never even considered doing disposables while traveling, since cloth is just as easy.  If we go camping or travel somewhere with no washer/dryer access, I plan on using flats and covers and handwashing.  Flats are ideal for handwashing since they are thin and wash/dry easily. 

I hear many people express concerns about using cloth while on vacation.  I encourage you to at least give it a try!  I was so nervous it would be a hassle, but quickly realized it was not.  I am glad I tried it, and will continue to use cloth while on vacation.  Different trips may require something different, but we will find a way to make it work! 

Brenda and her husband, Ryan, are the blessed parents of Riley (4 years) and Eli (19 months).   They enjoy spending lots of time together, especially on the few occassions they travel together.  Their preferred method of travel is by car, it's always an adventure!  You can read about their adventures in Brenda's blog, Adventure's of a Crispy Mama.  Brenda is the founder of the DFW Cloth Diaper Group and the DFW Cloth Diaper Project.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Woolies by Sanddi

I didn't start cloth diapering my son until he was about three months old. I just wasn't able to purchase a lot at one time. I slowly begun to build my stash. After getting comfortable with it, I started looking for night time options. Sylas doesn't sleep through the night, but doesn't fully wake up either. So no diaper changing. I needed to find options so we didn't have leaks. I don't mind changing my sheets but doing so every day can get a little tiring.  After doing some researching, I discovered woolies.

I thought, ew, I bet they're going to be all hot and scratchy. After asking a few questions on Diaperswappers, I started searching. We weren't doing so well finacially there for awhile and weren't able to spend a lot. I found a nice lady on Diaperswappers that did cheapish crochet longies. So I put in for a custom order.

My husband was surprised that I actually ordered some because I can crochet. I had no clue how easy it was! I purchased a pattern and began to hook away! It was then my addiction started. Wool is wonderful. It absorbs and repells liquids. It keeps you warm in the winter and breathes in the summer. It comes in many different types and colors. As I stated before, I've made my own woolies from wool yarn. I've used Wacky Alpacky for custom yarn. You can search on HC for yarns you like. You can also purchase premade woolies there! I cannot knit yet so I had Thready Or Knot knit me some shorties with yarn that Wacky Alpacky dyed. You can do a search on Hyena Cart for more knitters, there's TONS of them! The prices are high because of the time it takes to make them. They're well worth it!

Another amazing woolie is interlock. I have an addiction to Wild Child Woolies.  She is amazing and it's just adorable. Very easy to care for. I haven't used upcycled woolies so I can't comment on them.

Another reaction I get is 'It's too hard to wash.' NO WAY! All of the ways people wash their diapers makes me giggle. You're going to gripe about having to hand wash something after you've had to walk to your washing machine five times to wash one load of daipers? pft. Please. I only wash if they have something on them or if they get poo on them. Otherwise, nope. I own two pairs of interlock I've never washed. We'll wash interlock first. Since Sylas is scooting about, a few pairs have gotten dingy. Usually I wouldn't care but since Brenda asked me to do pictures and a tutorial, I washed them.

Follow the links to view the pictures.

Cute picture of the interlock.  First, I'm going to move my knobs to do a 'warm' wash on 'delicate'. What's that you say? I can't wash wool in my washing machine? Sure I can! And I will!  Fill up the washing machine on a small load. Pour a little of your wool wash in.

I use Naturally Luxe's Wool Wash in monkey farts. Lol.  It has lanolin in it. One less step for me is amazing.

Add your woolies and a few towels. Set it and forget it.  See?  They're still there!  And lay them flat to dry.   It'll take a day to a few days (depending on your house) to dry but they'll be good as new!

When it comes to my knits and crochets, I haven't gotten brave enough to throw them in the washing machine. I was told I could, but I just can't yet.  We're going to wash a pair of crochet shories.

Fill your sink, bath tub, bucket, whatever with warm water. (Like my fancy plug? And ignore the paint stains.)

Pour your wool wash inSwish around.  Squish and swish your woolies.  I like to use a wool bar on the crotch of these woolies. I'm not sure if it helps any but it makes me feel better. I got my wool bar from Crow Mountain Crafts in lavender. Mmmm.  Scrubby scrubby.  Then you squish a bit more.  Squeeze your woolie. Do not wring it.  Don'tLay it on a towelRoll it up.  And step on it.  Bam!  Clean woolies!

These will also take a day to a few days to dry.  These are all of my woolies I have at the moment.  I do have a few more in the works and on the way.  I have a feeling winter will be fun. I've already started stocking up!  I use fitteds or prefolds under my wool.  Our night diaper set up is either a SBish sized fitted with all the soakers or a premium prefold with an infant prefold and Thirsties soaker snappi'd under a WCW soaker.

Sanddi is a SAHM to her 7 month old son, Sylas, and 4 large dogs.  She has been married to her off-shore oilman, Preston, for about 6 years.  They live in the HEB area.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

555 Member Auction!

**AUCTION IS CLOSED!!**  We raised $371!

When we hit 555 fans on our Facebook page, we will open an auction to raise funds for the new non-profit program to help homeless teen moms with cloth diapers!  All proceeds will go straight to the program, to help with start up costs, diapers, and diaper accessories for the babies in need.

Auction will take place on our facbook page, via the photo album.  Each item will be listed, and you bid by commenting on each picture of the prize you wish to win.  The bidding will end at a specified time (will be listed at time of auction).  The highest bidder at the closing will be the winner.  Money will be due within 1 hour after the close of the auction (via PayPal), or the prize will go to the next highest bidder. 

Winner is responsible of contacting the donating company for the prize they won.  Each company is shipping directly to the winner, after payment is verified by the DFW CD Group. 

Here are the prizes that are up for grabs/auction (more will be added as they come in):

One 1-Hour Photography Session, and the winner's choice of their 2 Favorite Full Resolution images with print release, donated by Brandi Thompson Photography.  Value: $195  email

One Custom Cloth Diaper Woolie Cover, donated by FluffaBebe.  Value:  $32  email

One Blissful Booty AIO with 1 free booster, size and color of winner's choice, donated by Blissful Booty.  Value:  $20.60  email to redeem your prize.

One itti bitti tutto, color of winner's choice (in stock only), donated by the Nappy Shoppe (and itti bitti).  Value:  $26.95  email

One Thirsties Duo Diaper, size and color of winner's choice (in stock only), donated by the Nappy Shoppe (and Thirsties).  Value:  $18.50  email

Custom Hooded Towel, donated by Lily Baby.  Value:  $25.  email  Shipping for this item is $5.

Semi-Custom Wool Shorties (size of your choice), donated by Sanddi.  Value:  $30.  email

Custom Wet Bag (fabric of winner's choice, 12"x15"), donated by Sweet Lil' Mama.  Value:  $17.  email

Personalized Monogrammed Robot Tee, size and color of winner's choice, donated by Kalamity Kids.  Value:  $25.95 (includes shipping).  email

One Mini Photo Session, 5 High Res Images (Choose a location from 6 preselected spots across the DFW Metroplex), donated by Stefani Marcus Photography.  Value:  $100.  email

One Raccoon Ear Flap Hat, donated by LolaLand Creations.  Value: $30.  email

Two Drink Cozies, donated by Blessed Creations by Becky.  Value: $12.  email