Monday, July 05, 2010

For the Love of Cloth

Last night as we hauled Snoozer home from another fun-filled family BBQ, I asked J if he wouldn't mind giving me a few solid hours in my office today, to write and organize and budget. J loves budgeting so much that he's offered me FIVE child-free hours, and here I am, plunked in front of the comp...

I think I'd rather be napping.

Which is disconcerting, to a lady who claims to want to be a writer. But we shall power through - albeit sleepily - to discuss: CLOTH DIAPERS.

More specifically, my love for cloth diapers. Yes, friends (and naysayers), cloth is a beautiful thing.

To be sure, there is poop. Then there is more poop. And sometimes, some serious POOP. But since Snooze is exclusively breast-fed, the poo is always the same consistency. So at least we know what to expect.

Right now, we've got 16 diaps: some FuzziBunz, some bumGenius. I can't say I have a preference at this point, though I am going to order four more diapers this week (likely two of each) to lengthen the amount of time between washings.

So here's how it all goes down:

  1. Diaper babe.

  2. Babe pees and poos.

  3. Change babe as you would a disposable wearin' kid. We store our diapers in the bottom drawer of his dresser for easy access during changings.

  4. We haven't graduated to cloth wipes yet, so we toss used wipes in a trash can placed next to the changing table/bureau.

  5. I toss the dirty diaper aside. Sometimes for longer than my husband would prefer. (Just the charm of me!)

  6. Once I do get around to rinsing the soiled adorableness, I do so in the sink in our laundry room, which is conveniently located on our second floor, next to Hendrik's nursery. I separate the outer diapers from the inserts, then rinse and wring out; finally, I toss them into a dry pail next to the washer. And done! Nothin' to it, I tell yous.

  7. When it comes time to wash the diaps (usually when H is down to two), I simply toss the contents of the dry pail in the washer, along with the machine-washable bag.

  8. Cold soak and a hot rinse, then low heat in the dryer.

  9. Once dry, I stuff the inserts back into the outer pants, and restock the diaper drawer. Fin.

We even travel with cloth! We spent all weekend on the go, and when we're out on the town I store the dirty diapers in a FuzziBunz tote specifically designed for this purpose.

We've done the math, too, and we figured your average diaper costs about 29 cents. (Huggies and Seventh Generation seem to be right here.) We probably go through 10 diapers a day, but we said for the sake of argument that we'd average 8 per day each year. That equates to 847 bucks annually. If we assume we'll be diapering for three full years, the investment is roughly $2500 per baby.

Our investment? About 400 dollars at his point. There may be a minimal bump in water usage, but you can't really deny the cost savings, in addition to the environmental impact (that's nearly 9000 diapers per child not ending up in a landfill).

Sure, there are a few extra steps, but admittedly... I think cloth is fun. Not because I particularly like being wrist-deep in my precious's poop, but because cloth diapering feels decidedly old-school and... purposeful. I quite enjoy the process, which makes me unspeakably weird. And I'm okay with that.

Oh! And! Cloth diapering means little-to-no diaper rash, and early potty-training! I mean: WIN.

And there you have it friends: a cloth diaperin' diatribe, brought to you by your best good friend HomeValley, who used to talk about drunken nights spent in VIP rooms in Atlantic City and Manhattan and trips to South America. This is not lost on me either. Until tomorrow!

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