Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Attempting Cloth Diapering: Pros & Cons

Cloth diapering is something I've wanted to try since before we brought Kal home. I researched it. I followed along with a friend's successful attempt at it. But there was just too much going on at that point in my life to add another challenge to it. Plus, we didn't have a washer and dryer until this year, so that was definitely needed first.

It took until March of this year - just before Kal turned 2 - before I finally got around to trying them.

For me, there were 2 big reasons why I wanted to try cloth diapering.
  1. environmental reasons - trying to live a "greener" life, not filling up landfills with who-knows-what
  2. financial reasons - they can be cheaper in the long-run if the same cloth diapers are re-used for every child in the family
I knew there'd be some disadvantages, but I thought it was worth a try. So, I went ahead and invested in my cloth diapering experiment and bought:

Posing with the stash.

Trying to juggle the dryer balls.

What's left of our disposables.

After using cloth diapers almost exclusively for about 3 months, these are my pros and cons:

  • We throw away fewer disposable diapers. Yay for the environment!
  • We haven't had to buy anymore disposable diapers since we made the switch.
  • There are so many styles and colors that are super cute.
  • The diaper liners are super nice to just catch the poop and flush it down the toilet.
  • They (at least the FuzziBunz diapers that we've used) are really easy to wash and dry. No lingering smell and drying them in the sun removes stains. Drying them in the dryer with the wool dryer balls is so fast.
  • It's convenient to always have diapers on hand. With disposables, you can run out and have to make an emergency trip to the store. With cloth, you always have that backup.
  • My child pees like a racehorse. The diapers can leak and the ammonia smell can get horrid if he's not changed regularly (much more than with disposable diapers). The diapers are sprayed down with an odor eliminator and then quarantined in the laundry room immediately.
  • Along with having to change him regularly, if I don't... he gets a rash.
  • So far we haven't been able to keep them from leaking at night and have had to use up the rest of our stash of disposables for night time.
  • They seem a little small for him, even though he's still in the weight range. I've heard they're big on newborns and from my experience they seem small on a toddler, so maybe the one-size-fits-all deal isn't perfect. There are various sizes of cloth diapers that we might try.
  • The flushable diaper liners are nice, but does nothing for out-of-control diarrhea explosions. Diarrhea plus cloth diapers is the absolute worst.
  • I am clumsy with the toilet sprayer and usually end up getting water everywhere, including all over me, while just trying to give a diaper a gentle spray down. Nothing like splattered poop water in your face. :)
  • When we're on-the-go, changing cloth diapers gets yucky. We usually tie the dirty diapers up in a plastic bag, throw them in the diaper bag, and deal with them when we get home.
Despite the cons, we are still using them. And plan to with Baby #2. Kal should be potty-trained not long after baby gets here (hopefully). It might take him another few months. But with the new baby, I'll get a better idea of how cloth diapers work with an infant. Infant poo is much more innocent than toddler poo, so it may be easier. Ha ha. I think the longer we do it, the more we'll adjust and the easier it'll be. I think it's worth it.

Kal was running around in his diaper this morning so I said, "Kal! Get up against the wall so mama can take a picture of you in your diaper." And this is what he did. Ha ha ha! I said, "Perrrfect." And he waited to hear the click and then ran to see the picture. That's my boy! :)

Since I'm a newbie at this, if you have any cloth diapering tips let me know!

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