The Stash

I made the decision even before I got pregnant that if I were to ever have another baby I would cloth diaper.  I never even considered cloth diapers with either of my other children.  I have no good excuse why I didn't.  Only that I didn't think of it and it was never a topic of conversation.

At my 6 week check up, another patient and I began a conversation.  She had overheard my talking with my Mom.  Mom had been trying her hardest to figure out how to get Rowan out of the car seat.  I made the comment that baby items had drastically changed in the short span of time since my first daughter had been born, 10 years ago.  It had taken me a couple of tries to figure the damn thing out myself too.  The other lady said she'd just found out that she was pregnant and this baby's sibling was 11 years old.  We began talking about how things were different and of course the talk went to cost.  I told her that I breast feed and cloth diaper and that helps to keep our costs to a minimum.  A case of diapers on average is $20, and so is a canister of formula.  I don't have to pay for either of those.

I noticed she looked a little bewildered with the mention of cloth diapers.  She, like many others when I told them I was going to use cloth diapers, immediately thought of the cloth diapers of yesteryear.  Flatfolds, big diaper pins, and awkward rubber pants.  Not to mention... LAUNDRY.  I recognized her bewilderment.  I felt the same way when I first began researching them.  There are hundreds of different types, styles, and brands out there.  Not to mention the price tag on most one-size all-in-ones.

This is what we have...

  • 6 Tiny Tush Elite - $19.95 each - white - snap closure - MADE IN THE USA
  • 4 Fuzzi Bunz One Size - $19.95 each - 3 buttercream, 1 cotton candy - snap closure
  • 2 EconoBum Diaper Covers - $8.95 each - 1 white, 1 zinnia trim color - snap closure
  • 12 pre-fold cloth diapers - $13.95 for the set - white

In total, we've spent only $178.  The pre-folds and one Fuzzi Bunz were gifts.  That would be only about 8 cases of disposable diapers!!  These diapers will last for years.

Before Rowan was born, I was still a little skeptical.  To be on the safe side I purchased two packs of Seventh Generation disposables.  One in newborn size, one in size 1.  She was only 6 lbs. 14.3 ozs. when she was born so she did have to grown into the cloth diapers.  Buying a few disposables was a good call.  She still wears a disposable at night.  But only at night now.  We used to put her in disposables when we would leave the house as well, but that quickly changed once I got a good grasp on the situation.  I only have one wet bag, but that isn't a problem.  I simply reuse one of the dreaded plastic bags from the week's groceries to store the wet diapers in when traveling.

Laundry?  I wash diapers every other day.  Super simple.  I'm already doing laundry anyway.  Someone always needs something washed in this house.  We have a front loading HE machine.  High efficiency machines aren't really designed for cloth diaper washing, but - after a few trials and several errors - I have mastered them.  They can not defeat me! Ha!  How I do it:  Rinse cycle, no spin.  Easy care cycle ('cause it uses more water), hot water, cold rinse, fast spin.  Extra rinse.  Done.  Now if the sun is shining, I hang them outside on a drying rack that I purchased at Wal-Mart for $10.  Stains?  What stains?  I kid you not, the sun has removed ALL stains from these diapers and trust me when I tell  you they were bad stains.  No sun?  Timed dry 2 hours, extra low heat setting. Done.

First let me say that you have to wash and dry your diapers a bunch of times before they are baby ready.  By a bunch, I mean everyday until your baby is born about 8 times.  Don't use softener and you can easily check your diapers and liners absorbency by pouring a little water on dry ones.  If the water beads up, you need to do more wash/dry cycles.  Now nearly everything (and I do mean everything, everybody, everywhere) says to wash your diapers in a detergent that is free and clear of dyes, perfumes, etc.  I tried that.  I used All Free & Clear formulated for HE machines.  It left my diapers smelling like, well... nothing.  That was until Rowan would pee in them.  There was an odor.  Not a super stinky odor, not really a urine odor, but one that wasn't pleasant.  I tried upping the amount of detergent.  No change.  I tried washing without detergent.  No change.  I switched to regular Tide for HE machines.  No smell.  I couldn't find anything that indicated using a "regular" detergent would physically harm my diapers.  Only warnings that perfumes may irritate my baby's bum, but I was already using "regular" detergent for her clothes and she was fine.  My advice is do whatever is comfortable for you.  Of course there are a million people out there giving advice too!

Our favorite are the Tiny Tush Elites, followed closely by the EconoBum covers.  The hubs can never figure out the snaps on the Fuzzi Bunz.  We have had an occasional leak, but no more than with disposables.  The Tiny Tush also seem to have a better fit for our little one.  However, every baby is shaped differently.

I'm hoping to try more diapers so if anyone wants to send me one (or two) to review, I wouldn't turn them down!  The upfront cost seems a little overwhelming, but in the long run you'll be glad you did it!

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