Friday, April 29, 2011

To quilt or not to quilt...

To quilt.

Yup. I've decided to venture into the realm of quilts. A slightly daunting endeavor but totally exciting to me. The plan is for a twin size for my boy. I'm sure it will take me many many months to complete, it will be well worth it. I've been feverishly checking out blogs and tutorials looking for the perfect pattern. Researching the ins and outs of this art form. I think I'm ready. The fabric is bought, it is on it's way. No turning back now!

Thursday, April 14, 2011


Sunny, happy, crisp, green and beautiful. Finally some spring weather!

On days like this I just know the day is going to hold some special awesomeness. Nothing huge. Just the special loveliness of an afternoon spent outdoors and happiness bouncing around the house. Anticipating another outdoor lunch, inspecting flowers and ponds, pointing out anything and everything that fly's, a chubby little hand gripping mine as we walk through the green.

I can dig it.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

So many options!

Okay, so I told you how I diaper. Now I'll give you a run down on the other options in the cloth diapering world. There are quite a few. From All-in-ones to Pockets to Fitteds.. lots of options, lots of brands. I'm not an expert on any of these. I'm a Prefolds mama through and through. This is just to give you a glimpse of what some other mothers swear by.


These are the cloth option closest to disposables in how they are put on. They are what the name says. All in one. They have the absorbing layer, waterproof lining, and cover all built into one diaper. From what I have heard these are the most daddy-friendly diapers they also are usually what are required at day cares if cloth diapers are used. While they are easy to use and really cute and I really used to want to diaper this way.. there are a few big reasons I went with Prefolds instead. Cost. These come in the price range of $15-$25 per diaper. A big investment. Another con for me was the drying time. They can take a LONG time because of everything being built in. But all in all, if you have the money to spend (they still come out MUCH cheaper then diapering with disposables), these would be a great way to go and really they are what Modern Cloth is all about.


Pockets are somewhat like All-in-ones except they have one added step. There is a pocket (duh) that you stuff the liner into before putting on your babies bum. Pockets also sometimes need a cover. Depends on the brand. The thing that people seem to like the most about these is that you can customize the absorbency to the child. This is good for some children who are heavy wetters at night. I have a friend who makes what she calls the SuperDiaper. It's an overnight diaper that has a pocket where you add however much absorbency you need They are pretty awesome, I have one. I know. Check it out.


Fitteds. I've dabbled in making these. They are basically a diaper that uses elastic to fit to your child well. You can find them with hook and loop closures, snaps, OR you can close them with pins or Snappis. I used hook and loop as I was making them. Fitteds NEED a cover. They are just the absorbent part of the diaper and their specialty is keeping everything IN the diaper. Nice for the newborn stage when the blowouts are a joyfully constant occurrence (snicker snicker). There are many brands of these out there but if you want to try making them yourself here's a good tutorial.


I don't have much knowledge on how to fold a flat. These pre-date Prefolds. But a lot of people love these to get the right fit on their child. They are good for those who hand wash and are incredibly easy on the wallet. You need pins or snappis and a cover for this system.

Good places to go for more info:

Nells Natural Baby
Kelly's Closet
Diaper Jungle
Diaper Pin

Thus concludes my mini-series on diapering. If anything, I hope I opened your eyes to the possibilities!

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

How to care for Cloth Diapers.

There are some rules to follow and you do end up with a lot more laundry. It's worth it though, and really.. once you get into the routine of it, it's not too bad.

The basic guideline is to do diaper laundry every 2-3 days, but not to go longer then 3 days. I do the 3 day or as needed laundering.

For prefolds the care doesn't seem to be as difficult as if you use one of the other methods. Prefolds dry quicker, and are virtually indestructible.

The basic wash cycle goes like so:

A quick cold rinse to get rid of stains, a hot wash with a cloth diaper safe detergent, and one more cold rinse to get rid of detergent residue. Diapers go in the drier, Covers and wet bags hang dry. As the weather gets warmer I plan on hang drying everything outside to save energy. The sun does wonders in getting rid of stains if you're having a problem with those!

I know that other cloth mothers have differing ways to approach washing. I formed my routine by researching and taking a bit of others ideas and in the end found what works best for me. You might find a different routine works better, and might need to change it depending on what kinda of diapers you are using.

One more thing to take care of diapers.. stripping.

Stripping is needed because after a lot of washes detergent begins to build up (the build up will happen faster if you are using a detergent that is not safe for cloth diapers, natural detergents are a better idea for cloth diapers) in the diapers. The build up can cause unpleasant smells. So if you are beginning to get frustrated and fall out of love with cloth diapering because of a stinky ammonia smell coming from your childs behind or the changing station.. chances are you need to strip the diapers. I do this once a month or as needed. My routine for this is to wash as I would normally and then start a HOT wash cycle WITHOUT detergent. As this cycle runs you will see suds coming out of hiding in the diapers. It's amazing how much build up can happen! After a good strip the diapers are fresh smelling again and go back to having no odor. From what I understand prefolds are the easiest to get rid of build up. Another plus for prefolds!

I think those are the main points in taking care of cloth. It may sound like a lot.. but once you start doing it, it's really NOT bad. It becomes a part of your life and really I would never go back to using disposables fully. I love fluff.

Saturday, April 9, 2011

I can't hide it anymore..

I have a deep love for Cloth Diapers. Okay, so I haven't ever really tried to hide it.. But the point is. Cloth has changed our diapering lives for the greater good. I feel very earthy, very frugal, and, well my son has a cute (and rather large) butt. It just makes me smile.

When people think about cloth their minds automatically go to plastic pants, pins, and diaper bins full of dirty diapers and nasty water. I know, because that's where my mind went when I first heard that people still use them.Think again though.. it's not like that. Not in the least bit. Modern cloth is cute, easy, pin free, and no, you don't have to use a diaper pail full of water.

Here's what I use.

I've chosen the cheapest method for diapering. Prefolds are older fashioned then other modern options. You CAN use pins on these. I don't. I just fold them and put them in a cover and on my little guys booty. There are different size options on these and MANY different brands. I chose the Indian cotton Prefolds because of their durability, absorbancy, and ease of washing. When I have another kid, I'll probably just use the Gerber Prefolds for the infancy stage until they fit into the larger ones we already have. I bought 32 of these. I probably could have done alright with a few less, but it is nice to have the extra for the diaper bag or if I'm delayed in doing laundry.
Indian Cotton Prefolds

The covers I chose were Thirsties Duo Wraps. They are cute, come in a myriad of color options, and either use a snap closure or hook and loop. I have both and a lot of the colorways. I tend to like the snap closure because they don't wear out in the laundry like hook and loop do after awhile. Also, Isaac can take the hook and loop diapers off, snaps he has yet to figure out. The hook and loop are nice for easier changes (night time) and are easier to get a better fit. I like to have both on hand. The Duo Wraps come in One Size sizing. They adjust to the size of the child by use of snaps and you can by the large or the small one size wraps. I have the large at the moment which I believe can be used from 18-40 lbs (or something like that). So for the next child I will have to invest in more covers.

Thirsties Duo Wrap Hook and Loop Closure
Thirsties Duo Wrap Snap closure

Other things that I have found necessary.
These I use when Isaac has a diaper rash. Most diaper creams are not cloth diaper safe, meaning they will coat the diapers and start to repel moisture. A liner keeps the cream off of the diaper. Fleece also pulls moisture away from the babies bum. There are natural diaper creams out there that are cloth diaper safe, but they are expensive. 
Planet Wise Wetbags. I have three. Two large and one medium. This is what holds all of the dirty diapers. They have a water proof lining inside and cute fabric exteriors. I use the two large ones in his room and the changing area and the medium goes in the diaper bag. I also use these if I'm using disposables when out and about. Why waste more with those little plastic bags when you can just throw the dirty diapers in these cute bags and wash and reuse?
Cloth wipes. Why use disposable wipes when you have already switched to cloth everything else? I made this realization awhile ago when I had to throw out the disposable wipes but didn't have a disposable diaper to wrap them up in. I bought 12 terry cloth wipes. They work well. Especially on the toughest of bums to clean. Right now I'm in the process of making more our of flannel. Easy, cheap, and just makes sense.

 So, there. If anyone was curious that's how we diaper in this household. That's not to say that we don't occasionally use disposables, we do. On vacation, if I'm having a low motivation day, on some day trips. But for the majority of the time we use cloth, and we love it. I'll do another post soon on how I wash cloth diapers. There is a little bit of method to it, but really, it's pretty straight forward and simple. I might even do a post on other methods of cloth diapering. I like to educate people on this subject, because it really isn't as hard or nasty as people seem to think it is. The more you know..