It’s the little things

There’s more to cloth diapering than just super cute fluffy butts. This is a post to deal with all the other little accoutrements that go along with it. 

Pail liner:

   
 You’re gonna need some where to put the dirties between laundry days. I use a plain ole kitchen trash can with a Planet Wise pail liner. It may seem counterintuitive, but leaving the lid up increases air flow which decreases odor. I have two pail liners that I rotate through so I always have one in play while the other is in the wash. 

Wet bags: 

 Again, I use Planet Wise wetbags. Pictured are small, medium, and large. I also pictured a diaper to help demonstrate size. I keep smalls in diaper bags for quick trips around town. They’ll hold one, maybe two if you really push it. In my opinion, mediums are the best size. They’re small enough to carry with you, but will hold six to eight diapers comfortably. I send these to daycare every day. They’re also great for day trips. I take the large wetbag with me on weekend trips. I’ve been able to squeeze at least 15-18 diapers in that bad boy. 

Cloth Wipes: 

 Using cloth wipes are not a necessity when cloth diapering, but for me they’re super easy and I use them for everything. They come in just as many varieties as diapers. You can buy them, or make them. Single ply, double, different fabrics. Some people use baby wash clothes. I personally make mine from spare recieving blankets. I just cut them into squares with pinking shears. They’re not as pretty as purchased ones, or ones that you take them time to serve the edges, but they work very well. 

Wipe Solution: 

 Just as cloth diapering is personal, so is what works best for you as far as solution goes. Some people use straight water. Some buy concentrated mixes and then dilute. I make my own with a little squirt of baby soap and a little squirt of baby oil mixed with water in the peri bottle I got from the hospital. I know some people use a wipes warmer, but beware…if you’re going to do that, only do a few at a time, or you may face mold issues. 

Cloth Diaper booty cream: 

 I use and love CJ’s BUTTer. I use as a barrier at diaper changes. I send the spray to daycare and keep the sample pots in diaper bags. Usually this takes care of any little bit of redness that shows up, but occasionally (teething!) we get a rash that needs something stronger than CJ’s. When this happens I’ll employ a liner. 

Liners: 

 I just use microfleece to line my diapers if I need to use a non CD safe cream. When E teethes, she gets some horrible diaper rashes, so we have to bring out guns, and thus the liners. These protect my cloth from repelling issues. I’ve read that’s only a real issue with microfiber, but I don’t take chances with my cloth. 

Inserts/Doublers: 

 Sometimes you need a little extra oomph as far as absorbency goes. I use hemp inserts from GMD for a little boost when necessary. These come in handy for road trips or overnight. 

Diaper Sprayer: 

 Finally, my favorite. My Bum Genius diaper sprayer. This little bad boy attaches to the water line of the toilet and clips to the side. It does what it’s name implies…sprays diapers. There will come a time in cloth diapering that you might question your choice to CD. It’s a time between Breast fed poop and plopable poop. It’s known as the Peanut Butter Poop stage, and it’s…not fun. It’s when the sprayer is so wonderful to have around! Some people dunk and swish – not a lot of fun. You could use a handheld shower sprayer if your bathroom is laid out in a way that you could reach the toilet, which would be very convenient in lieu of a sprayer.

As always, happy CD-ing!

Falling for Flats – Mini Kite Fold

Let’s talk about flats, baby! Flats are a great, versatile option for anyone that wants to cloth. This is probably the cheapest option, although like all diapering, can get pricy if you let it. Cotton flour sack towels (FSTs) can be bought for about a dollar a piece at Wal Mart. Flats also come in bamboo and hemp for a higher price, and luxury stretch bamboo flats for higher still. There are endless ways to fold a flat to get a custom fit with specific zone absorbency taylored for your specific needs. Pin or snappi in place and add a cover and voilà!

With E I didn’t even try flats, for many reasons. I was just getting started, and wanted something easy. I was so intimidated by them. My prefolds were working great, and just seemed so easy, I didn’t see a reason to even try anything else. Then we moved on to AIOs, and the rest is history. 

I did buy a few bamboo flats for diaper stuffing (and when I thought I might try them someday). I also bought one luxury stretchy bamboo flat, because I was curious am diligent in my research of all things CD.

So, fast forward to having R. I refuse to buy newborn AIOs, because you can only use them for such a short period. As I posted earlier my plan was to use prefolds, and workhorses until R could fit into one size. When I started cloth on E at two months, small GMD prefolds worked really well for several months. Well, I don’t know if R is just a more stout baby or what, but the prefolds seem really small on her. I could go ahead and move up to Mediums, but for posterity I looked into flat folds to try one day.

I settled on the mini kite fold, since it was suggested for a newborn. I’ve used both the regular and stretchy flats for this, and much prefer the stretchy. This is mostly due to the fact that my Nickis bamboo flats are no longer square. 

  Start with your diaper laid out on a flat surface. 
 Fold all corners into the center, to create a smaller square. 

 Bring two opposite corners in to the midline. This will give you your “kite”. 

 Fold top corner in, so now you have a triangle. 

 Bring bottom corner up. This step will determine the rise, and will depend on the size of your baby. Mine just happens to be where the two corners touch, but if that’s not enough rise for you, don’t fold as much.  

 Jelly roll in the sides to help contain poop. The baby is usually on the diaper at this point, but to preserve her modesty, I’ll demonstrate without her. 

 Bring center up between legs. 

 Pull wings around to get a secure fit. 

 Snappi in place. 

 Check around legs for secure fit. Adjust roll if necessary by tucking back under.  

 Add cover (this is a Flip, and my least favorite cover, especially for a newborn since it doesn’t have double gussets, but all my others were dirty.) 

 Again, check for around legs.

As you can see, you can get an extremely trim fit with a flat on a small baby. I’ve also had no leaks and these have lasted for some three hour naps. 

This is a Stashify infant sized flat. R is 5 weeks and approx 12 lbs.

“Rear View” GMD Workhorse

As promised, I’m here to discuss the GMD Workhorse. This little fella is aptly named. This is a very affordable option for someone that wants to beef up their stash with some easy, no need to fold diapers. 

  

This diaper can also be referred to as a “prefitted” because they are made from the same type of material as prefolds. This particular diaper comes from Green Mountain Diapers, but other companies do make similar diapers, this is just the only one I have personal experience with. 

These come in bleached cotton and organic cotton options. This is a sized diaper (I’m using smalls), and comes with or without snaps. The snap version is nice because you don’t need anything else to secure this diaper. The no closure option is more customizable with the use of pins, boingos, or snappis. There is a sewn in soaker.

  
This diaper is not waterproof on its own, so a cover is required to make this clothing worthy. 

What exactly makes this better than prefolds? (Which are cheaper, btw)

Nothing makes it better but the fact that you don’t have to fold it, and the fact that it’s got some elastic in the legs makes it easier. This sure does make middle of the night new born diaper changes a lot less painful. (If you’ve ever forgotten to jelly roll a leg on a Prefold in a sleep deprived haze, and paid for it with a poosplosion, you’ll totally appreciate this diaper).

So why do you only use it during the newborn stage?

That’s just personal preference. Workhorses come in newborn size all the way to XL. I don’t use beyond a few months old because, eventually extra absorbency is needed, and I just prefer other fitteds. However, if you love em, by all means…go forth and use workhorses for all of your diapering days. I can tell you if I’d done that…I could’ve saved hundreds of dollars. 

Okay, enough chit chat! Let’s see one on a booty!

   

     

Shown under a Thirsties size one cover. Note the double gussets in the leg. A MUST with runny baby poop. 

(R is four weeks old and approx 9.5 pounds)

Overall grade: B+

Pros:

  • Super easy to use
  • Easy to clean
  • Organic option available!
  • Very soft
  • Cost

Cons:

  • If you have a heavy wetter, may not be absorbent enough.
  • Multiple sizes needed if planning use long term.

Newborn Fluffy Butts

First of all, an announcement! Baby girl R made her appearance May 13, weighing in at 8 pounds, 11 ounces and is a very happy and healthy baby. So, here we are with two little girls! E has self started potty training (I was totally not gonna start that yet with a newbie around) so I have one moving out of diapers, and one moving in. 

Husband didn’t especially want to start cloth until her cord stump fell off, so I agreed to that. This is, of course, a personal choice. Newborn diapers and covers are designed with a notch for a cord. I am also choosing to use disposables at night, because this baby poops every 20 seconds, and in the middle of the night, I just really prefer an easy change. This is mostly because R is sleeping in our room, but the cloth changing set up is in the nursery…so instead of having two setups, this is how I’ve chosen to deal.

There is just as much variety in the Newborn diapering world as there is in the onesize world. AIOs, AI2’s, pockets, fitteds, Prefolds and covers all come in teeny-tiny options. However, because I have 8 pounders, and boob monsters that gain weight like sumo wrestlers, I chose to go with some cheaper options that have multiple uses down the road. 

So, what does my newborn stash look like?

  • 12 GMD small prefolds
  • 12 GMD small workhorses
  • 6 bamboo flats
  • 1 luxury bamboo stretchy flat (stashify)
  • 3 newborn covers (2 Thirsties Duo size one, 1 blueberry newborn Capri)

I chose to skip newborn size for the GMD products because of the size of my babies. Also, besides the workhorses and the covers, I already had all of these things in my stash from E. 

Because it’s recommended to change a newbie every two hours, it’s nice to have 24-36 changes available to be able to wash every other day. If you are exclusively breastfeeding, the poo is water soluble, so the soiled diaper can come directly off the baby and go straight into the pail. If you’re formula feeding a quick spray may be necessary. Most EBF stains will sun right out. Generally with my newbie stash, I wash, and hang dry outside, then fluff up in the dryer. 

Stay tuned for a Rear-View on workhorses, and some flat folding tutorials for tiny people. 

A wee update

First of all, let me apologize for not posting in oh…forever. Work got hectic and my child got mobile and I started existing in survival mode. 

Here are some things you need to know.

  1. E will be TWO years old next month. 
  2. She is starting to potty train, but is still exclusively in cloth.
  3. She is expecting a little brother or sister in about two weeks! 

That said…here are some things you can expect in the next few weeks:

  1. More posts! I’ll be on maternity leave, and E will still be in daycare, so I’ll have more time to post!
  2. Adventures in diapering a brand new newborn. (This will be an adventure for me too, since I didn’t start with E til around 2 months).
  3. More Rear Views, both commercially available and WAHMs that we’re loving.

If there’s anything you can think of that you’d like me to post about, leave a comment and I’ll do my best to accommodate. 

Thanks to those of you that have hung around. Hi to those of you that have joined, and probably thought this blog had gone dormant. Hopefully I’ll be back between now and when Squish arrives for some other helpful posts. 

“Rear-View” – Nicki’s Bamboo AIO

Today, we’re going to be talking about the Nicki’s Bamboo AIO, or as it’s affectionately known, the NBAIO.  That’s not to be confused with NB AIO, which would stand for Newborn AIO…so that space is very important!

This diaper is one of those in my stash that I don’t reach for all the time, but when I do use it….I don’t understand why I don’t reach for it more often.

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                                                NBAIO in Blue Razz

As the name implies, this is an AIO with a bamboo inner. It is One-Size, and it does come in snap and aplix options. The soaker is a bamboo terry that’s pretty soft and squishy – although it can be crunchy if you’re a line dryer.  The soaker is detachable, which makes for faster drying…and if you’re like me and prefer to line dry things with elastic, this helps, because you can throw the soaker in the dryer, and line dry the shell.

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This diaper is SUPER thirsty.  It’s actually probably the most absorbent thing I have.  I use it most for long car rides, or Daddy Days Out, since he’s not in tune enough to think about changing her unless she is emitting a smell. In all seriousness though, these things can hold a LOT of urine.  I think this is certainly a night worthy diaper – although I’ve never done it…I have used it for some pretty lengthy naps.
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This diaper has a great fit. The elastic is rolled, so it’s very gentle on little legs. It also creates a tight fit that helps to prevent any would be leaks. However, because of the rolled elastic, you may have to roll the legs back in to create the leak proof-ness that we all desire in our diapers. If left un-corrected, it will look like this:
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So, why is that a problem? Well, if you leave it like this, there will likely be wicking around the legs, and onto the clothes your young’n is wearing. That’s never good, if it can be avoided. Speaking of wearing clothes; I think this diaper is pretty trim, and works well under clothes.
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I do think that this diaper looks a little smaller than most of my other one-size diapers, so if you have a super chunky baby, I may get one to try before investing in a whole bunch.  Although they do have great stretch, and E is still on the middle rise, and has a LOT of room left in the waist in this diaper, she’s a pretty petite little girl at a year.

Problems others have reported with this diaper, that I haven’t experience myself are: wicking through the tag, holes forming near the soaker snaps, and elastic giving out too quickly.  Although Nicki’s has GREAT customer service, and are generally really quick to address any issues. Now, that said…I’ve been using these diapers for over six months, and have had absolutely no issues.

Overall, I give this diaper a B+

Price: $$

Pros:

  • Price
  • Fit
  • Dry time
  • Absorbency

Cons:

  • Because of leg elastic, there is some finagling involved.
  • May not fit all babies
  • May be quality issues

 

State of the Stash

I’ll go ahead and warn you; this is going to be a lazy post. Mostly words, few pictures…and mostly for narcissistic reasons. You’ve been warned>

So. I’ve been using cloth for almost a year now. I started very modestly. I bought a dozen prefolds, two Flip covers, a BG 4.0, a 2 BG Freetimes, and two BG new style elementals. I later added a few more flips, and the GMD workhorse that’s in this picture. And here’s the thing…this stash worked wonderfully for me. I could still be happily CDing with this set up (if I still stayed home, and didn’t have to send E to daycare)…but my, how I love to try new fluff!
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In the year that’s followed, my stash has changed like crazy. I’ve added a few things, and destashed a few more. So where do things stand now? What am I loving? What am I considering sending on it’s way? What do I want more of? What do I have enough of? Here’s the break down…
 photo D25B6D8E-7DE7-4548-87FF-0F72A18211D3_zpsvk5l3ck2.jpg(This picture was taken a few weeks ago…and even since then I’ve added/destashed a few things…okay, okay…added more than destashed)

Pictured above

  • 6 Nicki’s Bamboo AIO
  • 6 Blueberry Simplex (3 bamboo, 1 cotton, 2 aplix)
  • 17 Tots Bots (V3 and V4)
  • 1 Goodmama fitted
  • 1 Poppy Fields fitted
  • 1 EarthLINGZ fitted
  • 3 Bamboozles
  • 2 Tangerine Babies
  • 1 Sprouting Jems
  • 1 Lily Lou Hoo
  • 6 Teeny Textiles
  • 9 OBGE
  • 1 Bububebe Sleepytime
  • 4 Pooters fitteds (1 hemp, 3 bamboo)
  • 1 Chelory
  • 1 Padded Patootie
  • 2 Bottombumpers
  • 2 Ragababes
  • 5 BG 4.0
  • 2 Flips
  • 1 Blueberry Capri

Not pictured, but was included in my stash at the time this picture was taken are 2 dozen prefolds (1 dz small, 1 dz medium) 1 B4 sleepytime, and 1 Capri.

I’ve since destashed the Chelory, and have added 6 more Simplex, 2 more Pooters Bamboo, 2 more Teeny Textiles, 1 more Tangerine Baby, and 1 Patty Pants fitted.

So.  Hypothetical situation.  Someone has a gun to you head, and you have to streamline your stash.  What do you do?

I keep the Simplex, because in my opinion, they are THE ULTIMATE AIO.  If I could get them ALL in bamboo, that’d make everything even better…but they’re still supremely excellent. I keep the Teeny Textiles, because they are my favorite fitted for daytime airing out of the booty.  And I keep the pooters, because they cannot be beat for nights, paired with wool (which I didn’t picture, because they can also be considered clothes)

Okay, but now I’m confused.  It was so easy for you to hypothetically pare down your stash…why don’t you do it for reals, yo?

Because I don’t WANT to!  I LOVE ALL THE DIAPERS!  Okay.  On a serious level…the NBAIO are excellent for long trips. Super absorbent, and fit SO great.  They’re also a great bang for your buck. I use these when travelling to see the grandparents, which are about 2 hours away.

The OBGE’s fit great and you can’t get them anymore!  What if they’re the ONLY thing that works down the line?  I keep these mostly out of fear that I’ll want them later. 

The Tots Bots are our day care diapers.  As far as ease of use, these are tops! Not only are they super easy to use, they’re pretty easy to keep clean too.  And it helps that the prints are so darn cute.

All the fitteds? I love the variety. Next to the Teeny Textiles, I adore Tangerine Baby diapers next. Also, most of them I bought to try out for myself after glowing recommendations. Even though they may not all be my favorites, they do work…and most of them are too darn cute to get rid of.

The Sleepytimes? What if they Pooters suddenly stop working for me overnight? I don’t want to have to wait for more of these guys to ship from Canada!

The Bottombumpers? They’re so trim!  What if she needs to wear skinny jeans?

So that same dude holding a gun to your head says you can keep most of it, but you have to get rid of 15 diapers.  What do you let go?

That’s actually pretty easy.  I let go of the OBGEs, and the BG 4.0’s (okay…that’s 14)…aaaaand, the Goodmama.  Mostly because I really don’t love the BG product line all that much.  And of all the fitteds that I have, the GM is my least favorite.  But thank God, no one is actually holding a gun to my head, so I can hoard them for as long as I want to, and you can’t do anything about it! 

Really, Jenni?  Seems like you need to get a grip!  

I know, I know.  It’s completely over indulgent.  This has truly become a hobby…and is about way more than E’s cute little booty.  But I figure, I’ll only be using these for a short while, so I may as well get all the enjoyment out of it that I can, while I can….and besides…if my husband can buy a dump truck, I can darn well BUY ALL THE DIAPERS!  

Okay, enough about you…does E have a favorite diaper?

No.  She’s an equal opportunity pooper.  Although, when I do hold a basket out to her and tell her to pick one, she tends to reach for orange ones first?  So, maybe she DOES have a favorite…

(Reviews to come on all the diapers mentioned here that haven’t been “Rear-viewed” yet.)