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2013… Year of KindaCrunchy

It was one year ago that I first purchased a lot of random used cloth diapers and decided to jump in.

Who would have thought that that one decision would lead me on a whole new journey.   That one decision led me on a path that changed me as a mother, wife and friend.

It was a very slippery slope. First my random lot, followed by a few prefolds and some cheap pockets.  Then I found the swap pages on Facebook and decided to try all the diapers.   In February I tried my first WAHM made fitted diaper and went to the dark side of cloth.  Stalking diapers on hyena cart and trading HTF prints.

Then of course I decided I would like to take my love of cloth to a whole new level and open my own cloth diaper store (online).  I haven’t been able to do as much as I wanted to with it yet, but I hope to grow it in the near future!

It wasn’t until August when I found the babywearing world that I was able to , slow my cloth diaper addiction down.  Babywearing, especially with 3 kids, has been a life saver. It has also introduced me to an amazing group of new friends.

What’s to come this year?  Well I’m starting off by focusing on my health here, and then attempting to balance it all a little better.

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The bad part of cloth diapering.

Here is the bad part of cloth diapering.  I’m going to tell you so you know going into it what you’ll have to deal with.  The thing no one tells you when you actually do your diapering research.

It’s not the mess.  Disposables are far more likely to leak or succumb to poop explosions.  Technically you are supposed to remove fecal matter from dispoables as well as cloth diapers (except in cloth you can throw it into the wash until you introduce solids).   You STILL have to change diapers regardless of whether you use cloth or disposables.

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It’s not that its harder.  Fasten one side, fasten the other. That’s not rocket science is it?  Then do laundry… well shouldn’t all of us know how to and actually do laundry on a regular basis?

The bad part of cloth diapering is the RUDE comments people make when you make this choice.  This choice that is better for the environment, keeping over 2500 diapers per child per year out of landfills (did you know they take 200 years to decompose?)  In addition to that, you are supposed to remove fecal matter from diapers before throwing them in the trash in order to prevent the spread of disease, but not very many people do that. So most people using disposables are therefore spreading disease.   It may take more water to wash a cloth diaper,  but there is far more water used during the manufacturing process of disposables.

This choice that *can* be more economical.  Sure the initial investment can be more.  $80 – $500 to make a full-time cloth diapering stash depending on the type and brands you choose to use.  It costs around $1000 per year per child in disposables.  Except with cloth you can reuse them for subsequent children. The part that rarely gets brought up is RESALE value of cloth diapers is quite surprising.  There is no return on investment for disposables.

(I say *can* because there are those, like myself, who tend to get carried away with cloth diapers and buy and sell to the point that they have no longer made a savings.  If you are the type that is ambivalent about diapering, you WILL save money)

This choice that is healthier for your children. The chemicals found in diapers are potentially DANGEROUS and here. Production of these diapers is self-regulated, meaning that there is NO ONE for these companies to check in with or meet safety guidelines for before putting this product onto the shelf.

This choice that is so much fun.  Picking out different prints by mood, event or season.

This choice that is all-around positive in every way. Why do people feel the need to criticize it?

I don’t set out to make my disposable diapering friends feel bad for making their choice.  (I started using disposables with my first two children). Some people don’t like the idea of washing diapers, I get it.  It’s cool with me, we all have our own set of priorities. Some people have the motivation, will, and priorities to use cloth diapers, and some don’t.  It doesn’t make any of us right or wrong for making our choices. We make them in the best interest of balancing our family needs.

Ideally though, I’m going to say it.  Cloth Diapers are better. (When I say ideally, I don’t mean anyone should risk their sanity or compromise on their own set of priorities to cloth diaper, but I do mean that anyone out there who can should at least research it and learn about it before you discard it as an option)

***This post was written in response to someone coming into my home, looking at my diaper stash and telling me “They make disposables for a reason you know! They are simpler, easier and way less messy”.

Video

How to rock a prefold!

This is a basic beginners video about prefold diapers. I go over different types of prefolds, as well as several different folds, and which covers work best.

**I did not mention that prefolds can also come in bamboo, hemp, zorb and other materials, but you can fold them all the same way**

7 Types of Cloth Diaperers

Before I made the move to cloth diapers, I assumed there was only one type of person that cloth diapered. I basically thought they all lived in shacks in the forest, raised animals, grow their own food, and were generally way less lazy than I was.

Well, I was very wrong.  I have discovered there are MANY types of cloth diaperers, and I am going to outline several of them here for you today.

The Frugal Mama

This type of mama will create a minimal stash of prefolds and covers.  For her cloth diapering has no bigger value than saving hundreds of $$Dollars$$ a year.  She is the cloth diaperer many of us initially thought we would be when we made the decision to try out cloth ourselves.  These are the women we are talking about when we sway our husbands into believing that cloth diapering will save us money!

The Mainstream Mama

The Mainstream Mama will do all her research before making the choice to cloth.  She will select one brand of cloth diapers and buy a whole set.  She may enjoy cloth diapering, she still saving money, and is still passing for a relatively sane person.

The Dark-side Mama

So, there are some mainstream diaper brands that create an exclusivity to their brand.  Some of their prints or colors become HTF (Hard to Find) or HSA (Highly saught after).  This creates a collectors mentality.  All of a sudden if you like them, you want ALL of them.  You must have every version of that diaper ever made so your stash is complete and so other mamas who see your stash will be jealous!

The Bat-Shit-Crazy Mama

This type of mama is even crazier than the dark-side mama. She has been sucked into the world of WAHM (Work at home Mom) diapers.  All of a sudden her calender revolves around diaper stockings, which leads to diaper stalking.  She watches auctions and usually will pay more than any sane person would ever consider appropriate for ONE single cloth diaper… BUT they are so adorable.  This type of mama usually owns babylegs so she can show off her baby’s bum more often than not.

The Hog Mama

The Hog Mama is a little bit of everything. Her stash is actually about 5 stashes because she can’t decide which ones she likes best, but having one or two in each brand doesn’t make sense.  The Hog Mama has the potential to be the most dangerous because she may lose all grips on reality and end up having her stash worth enough to get a divorce over.

The Earthy Mama

These Mamas tend to choose fitted diapers or prefolds and cover them with beautiful wool.  Soakers, shorties, longies and skirties, and these bottom pieces probably cost more than their own clothing. They know that their diapers take the least amount of time to decompose and are made with all-natural fibers.

The Super-Crunch Mama

This Mama is the ultimate in ecological cloth diapering.  She may even make her own diapers.  She is what I envisioned when I originally heard about cloth diapering myself.  She may even hand-wash her diapers, make her own cloth diaper detergent, and hangs them all to dry.

 

Which one are you?

Birth (First of three)

After many attempts and eventually giving up for a while, I found out I was pregnant with our first child on August long weekend 2008.

Fast-forward to April 2009. I was coming up to my due date and had been trying every natural labor induction method I could find.  April 12th at 2:30am I woke up to an odd feeling.  I couldn’t quite place it, but decided to make a dash to the toilet where my water broke.

I called my husband who was still out playing poker that evening to come home because it was really happening!

He was home in record time!

We headed to the hospital expecting to be parents that day, but unfortunately the baby had other plans.  My labor did not progress at all that day. I even headed out to my parents house for Easter dinner.  When we got home I walked, bounced, timed and WILLED the baby to come… nothing.

Finally around 4am contractions started to get uncomfortable, so we headed back to the hospital.  When my Doctor came in to check me at 8am I was still about 3cm, so he decided to give me an epidural and augment me.  This was not part of my plan, but being that it had been so long, I consented.

The next few hours were pretty boring. My family arrived and came in to visit, my husband played on his phone, and I didn’t really feel like I was in labor anymore.  I was still able to walk, although my legs didn’t really work well, so I decided to stay in bed.

Around 11:30 I started to feel some really intense pains. By 12:00 my Doctor came back to check me.  3cm STILL!!  My Doctor looked at me and said “Looks like we’ll be having this baby by knife!”.  At this point I started crying from the pain.  My Doctor looked at me funny and I said quietly “I’m not crying because of the c-section, I’m crying because I’m in pain”.  He called in the OB to give me a quick consult before we headed down for my c-section.  Then he turned up my epidural to help with my pains and left the room.

When the OB arrived 30min later, he decided to check me as well, and I was now “10cm and ready to push” he said.  They called my doctor back to the room, and set me up for pushing.

When they told me they were going to turn off my epidural, I panicked.  I did not want to go back to that pain.  Then they said I could push whenever I was ready.  With no patience left, and the fear of pain approaching, I decided to feel my stomach for contractions and push with them.  I pushed for two hours before my son started having heart decelerations.  At that point I was told we needed to get the baby out faster, and we were going to try a vacuum assisted delivery.  After all 3 suction attempts it was all up to me. I had to push like a meant it or resign myself to a c-section. I chose to push.

At 3:13pm my precious 9lb 12oz som was born. He left behind him a trail of 3rd degree tears that took weeks to heal, but I loved him more than anything.

 

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