Friday, July 30, 2010

My Six Month Diaper Review

I have been exclusively cloth diapering my December baby since January, so we are right at the six month mark of using our cloth diaper stash. Which diapers have held up best, which are falling apart, and which did I decide I love the most? Here is all I have found about cloth diapering.

BG's with aplix- I bought my Bum Genius diapers brand new, and have used them for overnights. The inserts are still in good condition, with some thinning but not too bad. The aplix does come undone, and my baby is almost too wide for these diapers. I think he will thin out once he starts walking though, so he won't ever actually outgrow the BG stash I have. Overall, a good diaper but not the best.

Happy Heinys- I love HH diapers because the aplix still works great. I do find that the inserts are thinner than the BG's, though. I still use these overnight, but if I don't add an extra insert I end up with leaks by morning. Still love the great fit.

Fuzzi Bunz- Are AMAZING! I have the FB one size. The inserts are still thick and fluffy, and there is no way that my baby will outgrow these diapers before potty learning. They are truly worth every cent.

Prefolds- I mostly have Little Lion prefolds, and these diapers are the simplest to use and easiest to care for. If you are looking for no fuss diapers, prefolds are perfect. I know these will last to potty learning.

Piddle Poddles One Size- I can't snap these anymore, but the actual diapers are still in great condition. Worth it if you have a tiny little one.

Goodmama- I have washed my one lonely GM so much that there are holes in it! It is still super soft and comfy, one of our go to diapers when it is too hot for PUL but we need something thicker than a prefold.

Bagshot Row Bamboo- LOVE these. We have a few, and they are amazing. They have been worn and washed countless times, and are still in great condition and fit well.

Swellbabys- We got these pre-loved diapers for a bargain as one of our first diapers and they are still going strong. Great diapers if you can find them. If you do see some, message me! We love them!

That's about it for our diaper stash. We do have some newer diapers, but I need some time to see how they hold up. Fuzzi Bunz are one of my first recommendations for moms and dads who want a pocket diaper that will last for many years, with prefolds being a recommendation if you want to use cloth on a tight budget. Which diapers have served you well over the years?

Monday, July 26, 2010

Summertime Doldrums

Well, it is officially too HOT to do much of anything with my 7 month old during the day. He despises getting hot, so hanging out in the garden or swingset is just out of the question. Since the mosquitos tend to come out in the evening, when it is finally cool enough for him, we have been spending a lot of time in the house, where its air conditioned.

We live far, far away from the nearest town. Seriously, Wal Mart is over an hour away and the nearest park is just as far. We do have a LOT of trees, some frogs and crickets, and plenty of grass and rocks, though! The creek is fairly close, but with six kids and a husband that won't swim, it takes a lot of planning to go. Especially since the youngest two require one on one supervision while swimming.

So, what do you do when you have hit the doldrums? I tend to work more than usual, and spend a lot of time sewing and playing games with everyone. Hopefully this summer heat is just about over, so we can get back to having some outdoor time!

Friday, July 23, 2010

Back to School Contests: Zebra Pens on Freebies and Much More!

Well, it is almost time for back to school! As a mom with six kids at home, I really enjoy getting ready for back to school because I know that its going to get cooler outside and that we are all going to settle back into our normal routine.

Don't get me wrong, I really do enjoy spending time with my kids during the summer. But, as most parents know, it can really get hairy when six kids are stuck indoors for a few days. We are a one car family, so with my hubby working afternoons and evenings we don't have a lot of time to get out of the house.

Another good thing about going back to school is all of the back to school contests! There is one right now at for Zebra pens. I LOVE Zebra. They make the best pens ever! You can buy Zebra here, too :

There is always a big fight over who is going to get which color pen when I buy a new pack. I usually get some freebie Zebras from my husband, who is just as much as pen connoisseur as I. Nothing better than getting a pink, green and aqua pen to write with! Since I love writing I can never have too many colors!

So, everyone go and enter! They are giving away FIVE packs of Zebra pens at Freebies and More, which equals about $30 at my local discount store! Perfect for stocking the kiddos and me up for back to school!

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Join me at Connected Mom!

I have recently begun posting at Connected Moms, a blog that is full of amazing moms and information on natural parenting. It is an exciting opportunity for me to learn more about parenting and to provide information that other moms may be able to use.

I also wrote a guest post at Top to Bottom Baby Boutique. I love writing, and nothing is more satisfying that writing about the topics that I care most about!

So, come join me at Connected Mom! It looks like the blog is just starting out, but I have a heads up that there is going to be an amazing giveaway next month for all you breastfeeding mamas out there!

Friday, July 9, 2010

Starting Out with Cloth Diapers

If you want to try cloth diapers, there are some things you need to know. First, cloth diapers don't have to be confusing! When I started using cloth I was so overwhelmed by the dozens of choices that I didn't know where to start. The cost factor also freaked me out a LOT because as a Mom of six I am on a budget and didn't want to end up with expensive diapers that I hated.

There is the basics of the many types available:

Pockets- I was SURE I hated pocket diapers at first because I couldn't fit my hand into the tiny newborn pockets that I got for free from some caring mama who wanted to share her love of cloth. At the newborn stage, it is best to stick to prefolds and flats, really. After a few months, having two or three pocket diapers for overnight is a must. If you are worried about the cost, check out Spot's Corner on Hyena Cart, Cloth Diaper Nation, or DiaperSwappers to find some good used pocket diapers for about half the cost.

Prefolds- Prefolds are one of my favorite diapers. They are versatile, functional, and flexible. You will want to have at least a dozen in your baby's size. Preemie prefolds can double as mama cloth or doublers later on, so don't worry if your baby can't wear them for long. I started with one dozen premium sized prefolds and one dozen infant sized, along with six preemie sized prefolds. I still use them as a big part of my stash, especially in the summer when it is too hot for pockets.

Fitteds- Fitteds are diapers that have absorbant cores and doublers. The outside is usually a cute fabric, too. Fitteds are good for babies who need a breathable diaper. Some of the softest fitteds are made from velour or bamboo. They can have snaps or aplix (Velcro) or they may need to be pinned. Start with just one or two fitteds to see how you like them.

Covers- Covers will be a big part of your stash if you use fitteds or prefolds most of the time. Covers can be made from PUL, FOE or wool. Wool is my personal favorite, and we can wear it year round without issue. PUL is a plastic like material that is covered in cloth on the outside. PUL gives my baby a rash in the summer, so we only used it at night on pockets and in the winter. FOE is a softer cloth like material, and although less common than PUL, it works in the same way. You will need about 10 covers to diaper your baby when you wash every 2 days.

To wash my cloth, I just throw it in and wash! I dump any solids out first, though. You should avoid any kind of fabric softener, but other than that we have had good luck with a touch of bleach and some Tiny Bubbles detergent. We also love Rockin Green detergent for diapers, too.

There is tons of information on using cloth diapers. Don't be afraid to jump in and start using cloth because you are confused. Buy something simple, like one pocket diaper, one fitted, and a few prefolds to look at and try out on your own. After prepping, you will find the cloth love quickly. Your baby, the planet, and your wallet will all benefit from the change to cloth!

Why You Do, or Don't, Use Cloth

As a person who adores cloth diapering, I sometimes wonder why more people don't use cloth. Not only is it wonderful for your baby, there are more benefits than I can list in this article. Some of the most important to me are that my baby's skin is the healthiest that I have seen, even on his bum.

After raising five other babies, all of whom had their fair share of rashes, I can be confident when I say that it was the disposable diapers that caused it. I change my baby when he needs it, and don't have to slather on diaper cream to protect his skin from the harsh chemicals in his diaper now.

I also (unfortunately) want to convince people to use cloth. Their reasons for *not* using cloth diapers just don't seem valid to me, but then again, they may not be convinced that ditching the disposable is worth the hassle of cloth.

In reality, using cloth is no harder than doing a load of laundry. That's it, nothing special. I don't even do an extra rinse and all my nappies come out of the wash fresh and clean every time. I am a little more understanding of mamas that have tried cloth, and had issues with things like ammonia build-up, rashes from PUL or problems with their significant other because of their choice.

I, so far, have had only a minimum of problems using my stash. I haven't had a disposable on my baby since he was a newborn, and don't plan to. My only issue was when I was using Tide. My diapes started to smell strange, but that issue cleared up quickly when I switched to a more cloth diaper friendly detergent.

If you don't use cloth, why not? There are lots of mamas that just can't do it for a lot of reasons.