Friday, October 28, 2011

The Perfect Cloth Diaper

Is there a perfect diaper? Yes. There is a perfect diaper for your baby and you. There is not a perfect diaper for every baby and for every family. It has taken me a long time to figure that out. I was on a quest for the perfect diaper, and during my search I came to this conclusion. Every review you read and every mom will tell you that ‘X’ is THE BEST diaper ever. And they are right. It is the best diaper ever. Will it be the perfect diaper for you is what you should be asking yourself. Chances are that what I like and consider the best diaper for me and BW may not be the best for your little one. But to be sure I have the best diaper for you and your little one in my shop, I’ve tried out a lot of diapers. And I currently use a lot of diapers. Together, we can find what will work for you and your baby.
First of all, fit plays an important role. Every diaper fits every baby differently. BW is a string bean. He’s been wearing the same size diapers for over almost 18 months now. He has crazy, skinny legs. The rise on his diapers is bikini style, but the fit on his legs is what’s most important. If your baby is a chunky monkey, the size of the diaper may be larger than what you think it should be. Meaning, at 9 months, all the rise snaps may be undone on certain one size diapers, but don’t worry. As your little one grows, he’ll stretch out and you’ll find that you’ll size your diaper down at times. If you’re looking for a good fit and buying before baby is born, look for a diaper that will adjust easily in the waist. Hook & loop diapers are perfect for giving a good adjustable fit every time. If you’re not into hook & loop, FuzziBunz, even with the snaps, gives a great fit, since the waist is adjustable with elastic inside the diaper. GroVia’s OS AIO’s snaps are on a stretchy panel to ensure a more custom fit. Think of what you’re looking for in a diaper for adjustability. There is a diaper that will fit your baby perfectly.
You will also need a diaper that will fit in your lifestyle. Do you mind taking time and folding diapers? If you don’t, then prefolds paired with covers will be perfect. {Bummis, Thirsties} Do you mind taking a sec and stuffing inserts in a diaper? If not, then you’ll find pockets to be a perfect diaper for you. {Thirsties Duo Diaper, FuzziBunz, BabyKicks} Would you like to snap in an insert and reuse a cover? Then, your perfect diaper is an All-in-Two {AI2}. {GroVia OS Shell & Soaker Pads} Or maybe you want the diaper all ready to go. No stuffing, no folding, no snapping. If that’s the case, an All-in-One {AIO} is your perfect diaper. {GroVia AIO} Take the time to assess what you’re looking for in a diaper, and start making your diapering decisions from that point. Don’t overwhelm yourself in the quest for the perfect diaper.
What if you like more than one diapering system? I’m going to take a stand here and tell you to pick no more than 2 diapering systems. This is from experience. I have a crazy mish-mosh stash. It’s complicated. At this point, I’ve committed myself to using a variety of diapers for 2 reasons. First, it is because I’ve invested money in them. And secondly, so I know the in’s & outs of each diaper I sell in order to help you, my client. If you’re having an issue with them, which unfortunately may happen, I can help you work it out. Also, if you’re in the decision making process of what diapering system to use, I can help since I know all the pro’s & con’s to that particular system. I’m committed to helping my clients, so I have a lot of different diapers. But for simplicity’s sake, I recommend 1 or 2 systems to be used. Cloth diapers are easy. Don’t make them complicated by having too many different kinds. Instead of pursing ‘THE MOST PERFECT-EST DIAPER EVER IN THE WHOLE ENTIRE UNIVERSE,” find the perfect diaper for you and your baby. You’ll be glad you did.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Hook & Loop Care

It’s no secret that I’m partial to hook & loop/aplix. It’s actually a necessity with my alligator boy. But hook & loop doesn’t hold up to wear and tear like snaps. There are a few things you can do to help keep your hook & loop diapers stay strong. The most important thing you can do is to make sure the hook & loop is firmly put together on the laundry tabs before putting it in your diaper pail. Don’t put it together all wonky-like. Any hook left unattached has the potential to snag on other diapers in the wash, which will then pull apart from the loop. So not only will your hook & loop show wear faster, but they will also “eat” at your other diapers. Making sure the hook is secure on the laundry tab also prevents lint build up. This can be a pain to clean out, and keeps your hook & loop from being very “sticky”.  Another thing you can do to keep your hook & loop from wearing too quickly is to line dry. This keeps it from tumbling and potentially snagging other diapers while in the dryer. Line drying in general will also help in keeping your diapers from wearing too quickly. The lint you clean out from the lint trap is fiber from your clothes. Having a good size stash also keeps your diapers from wearing too quickly. You may only change 8 diapers a day, but constant washing, drying, and wearing is hard on the hook & loop closures and your diapers as well. {Minimum stash size is 24, if you're wondering.} Basic diaper maintenance and care in addition to using the laundry tabs properly will give your hook & loop a longer life. Yay!
Thirsties Duo Wraps, Fitteds, & Diapers have excellent laundry tabs that work well to keep the hook & loop “sticky”. I have Thirsties in rotation that have been used for over a year and still work great. GroVia has laundry tabs plus a loop to tuck the hook part and keep it hooked. This is a major improvement over the older GroBaby shells. I used to use a lingerie bag with my GroBaby shells inside to keep them from attaching to everything else. It made diaper chains obsolete. I highly recommend a lingerie bag if you’re having issues with your hook & loop diapers making diaper chains in the wash. It will help minimize wear and tear on your entire stash. And a lingerie bag is a must when washing your Bummis Swimmi. It’ll keep your suits from catching on the hook & loop. {Learned that lesson the hard way. Bummer.} At this time I don’t have any use for the lingerie bag for my diapers, but I do use it for BW’s bibs. No more snagged shirts & shorts when I do the boys’ laundry. My sister gave me that idea, and I remember she used a bag to wash tiny baby socks to keep the washer from eating them. So many uses for more than your lingerie.

Thirsties Duo Wrap with Aplix

Thirsties Duo Diaper with Aplix

GroVia OS Shell with Hook & Loop

I have little desire to convert to Team Snaps. Hook & loop is the best choice for me. Even though BW tries to take off his diaper when he’s pantless, he’s mischievous busy like that, it makes diaper changes so much easier for me. A little extra effort to make my diapers stand up to constant wear and tear if definitely worth it. And if I’ve totally turned you off to hook & loop, no worries. I agree with you that snaps are awesome. We don’t do naps & nights without them. I may love the ease that hook & loop gives me when changing a diaper, but I’m not a fool to think that BW would never make a poo masterpiece if given the chance. If you’re a snap lover, Thirsties makes their entire line in snaps {the Duo Diaper in snaps is their newest addition}, GroVia Shells, Newborn, and All-In-Ones come in snaps, BabyKicks 3g & Fitteds are only in snaps, and of course the entire FuzziBunz line is snaps. And if you’re a fan of hook & loop, Thirsties entire line and GroVia Shells come in hook & loop. The choice is yours. Feel free to mix and match to suit your diapering needs.

Friday, October 14, 2011

FuzziBunz vs Bedwetting

CW is a bed wetter. It doesn’t bother me. It does bother him. It’s not fun waking up wet in the morning {or even after a nap}. It’s not a great way to start your day {or your afternoon}. He’s now 3 ½ and has outgrown one-size diapers. I panicked when that happened. Luckily, the panic was quickly eased when I remembered that FuzziBunz makes bigger diapers. ~Whew~ I think CW was also relieved that he didn’t have to wear a paper diaper to sleep. {For the record, his fav nighttime diaper was BabyKicks 3g in Poppy. It was double stuffed with 2 hemp inserts, and it's amazing. Then he grew. Darn him.} So FuzziBunz became his new night diaper. And all was well in the land of sleep once his new FB’s arrived. Because he’s older and a heavy wetter, I use the microfiber insert that comes with the FB and a Thirsties Hemp Prefold. It’s bulky, but it works. He’s also able to shimmy out of his diaper in the morning to go to the bathroom. He and I are both so happy that he can sleep comfortably while he’s working on staying dry at night.
I don’t want moms to feel stressed if their child isn’t potty trained day or night once the One Size diapers have been outgrown. There are options out there. FuzziBunz makes Large {25-45+ lbs} and even X-Large {45+} diapers to accommodate your child’s needs. And like their One Size counterparts, they are trim, absorbent, and have an excellent warranty. I carry the Large in stock, and they are $15.95, which is a great price when you compare the cost of disposable underjams & large nighttime diapers. If you’re interested in X-Large diapers, email me at tonya @ greenbabyelephant dot com and we can discuss placing a special order.
I can’t say enough nice things about CW’s Large FuzziBunz. He really loves them. I’m glad FuzziBunz makes a diaper for older kids dealing with late potty training and bedwetting. Let's not add extra stress to a situation that is already stressful for our kids. Live in the Tucson area and want to see before you buy? Contact me at tonya @ greenbabyelephant dot com and let’s meet. If you’re not in the Tucson area and you have questions, feel free to email me and we can chat about your child’s needs. You’ll save money and your kiddo will sleep in a soft comfy diaper.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

On the road again

Last month’s traveling really took me out of the habit of blogging. Now that I’ve been back these past couple of weeks, I’ve found plenty of excuses to keep me away from writing. So I’m back. I have a lot of new things that I found at the ABC Kids Expo, and I’ll be sharing them with you in the coming weeks. But first I’d like to share my experience of traveling with my 3 year old and 17 month old boys.
washing in the sink
GroVia’s hybrid option made packing BW’s diapers easy. The BioSoakers took up less room than cloth diapers and disposable diapers. The GroVia shells that I took also hardly took up any space. I knew I wasn’t going to have the time to hand wash cloth diapers in the sink or tub, and I don’t believe in beating myself up about using BioSoakers. Yes, they are disposable, but they are made up of compostable materials. I also love that they are fragrance and dye free. BW never had a leak daytime or nighttime with the BioSoakers. The covers were washed in the hotel sink one night. And they did not dry overnight. Ack! So I used the blow dryer in the morning to dry one for him. The others air dried in the car the rest of the day. The reason it took so long to dry was because it rained constantly. Every day we were there, it rained. Blah. {I love sunny Tucson!} The rest of the time that the shells were washed was with our regular laundry, and then they were hung to dry. It was so nice to have a healthy alternative to cloth diapers for BW while traveling.
I also will fully disclose that I used Huggies Overnights on my oldest, CW. It sucked! He leaked every night. Poor him. Poor me. {I shared a bed with him.} But I knew we were going to be so busy that we just had to suck it up and deal with it for a few nights. And I did call Huggies once we got home and complained. I am getting my money back. I don’t know what I could have done differently for him, and if you have a suggestion, please share.
Two other “cloth diaper” items came in handy while on vacay. The first was detergent. I packed 2 samples of Rockin’ Green to wash the GroVia shells and our clothes. And the second thing was a pail liner. I am soooooooooooooooooooo glad I packed a pail liner. It made the best hamper. Dirty clothes weren’t strewn about in the hotel rooms, and laundry time was made easy by having it all in one place. It was also nice to have our dirties separate from our clean clothes in the suitcases.  I didn’t have to be anal and rewash our clean clothes because there wasn’t any mingling with the dirties. {I’m weird like that.} Rockin’ Green washed our clothes up amazingly. Stains were non-existent in the boys’ clothes without my usual pre-treatment. I’m seriously considering using it as our everyday detergent. And to be totally honest, I did use a sample packet of Tiny Bubbles {GroVia’s detergent} one day for laundry. I couldn’t find the Rockin’ Green I packed, and I had a sample from the ABC Kids Expo. It washed our clothes just as well. It’s nice to know that once my cloth diapering days are over, I’ll still have use for my pail liners and eco-friendly detergents.
How do you travel with cloth diapers? Please share your experiences or lack thereof. I’d love to hear how other families travel with cloth or maybe don’t travel with cloth.