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Jun 24, 2010

Life Update

Hi all. I know things have quieted down on here quite a bit. There is a reason for that. We are moving! It seems that there are a lot of mom bloggers I read that are moving. We have settlement on our new house on Monday. That will begin the insanity that is moving. But while we are moving we are going to have to get our current house in a place that we can have an open house. That's right, we have yet to sell our old house. That always makes things interesting. So, while I am in the midst of the final planning stages of Vacation Bible school for my church, we are going to be moving in to a new house.
This all means that blogging gets pushed further down on my list of things to do. Oh yes, August then begins the season of color guard practice for which I will be one of the head honchos for the junior high school.
I have definitely come to the conclusion that when it rains it pours. I have had a lot put on my plate, but I love it all and it is making me look forward to when things might begin to calm down a little.
I wanted all of my wonderful readers to know why things have gotten quiet on here. I haven't forgotten this blog by any means, I just don't have all the time like I used to.
Until next time... Happy living!

Jun 17, 2010

New to Cloth - Accessories

I am going to have one last post in this series before the big finale of my first series. If you read my posts, you already know that we are setting up to have our very first give-away. I am super excited for it. Now on to the post itself.
One thing that can be daunting when it comes to using cloth diapers is having to consider all of the different accessories out there. What do you really need, what is just for kicks, and what is an absolute waste of money? Well, I want to share what accessories I use, ones I have considered, and what I would love to have.

First off you can't CD (in my opinion) without some great wet bags. I have two travel sized wet bags that rotate in and out of the diaper bag. I also have a wet bag duffel that I use as a pail liner. I made this duffel actually. Having a wet bag is a wonderful thing. If you buy one that is of good quality, it will contain the stink and wash clean. All you will have to do is empty it in to your washer and then throw it in with the diaper wash. Having a few great wet bags will make your cloth life much nicer.

Next on the list of accessories is wipes. While you could continue to use regular baby wipes, they shouldn't be flushed and they can't be washed. So, you will have the cloth diaper for the wet bag, the poo for the toilet, and then wipes for the trash. That is just too much, to me. I know a lot of moms use cloth wipes if they use cloth diapers. For newborns, I can consider it, but for my two year old, I don't want that mess. I prefer to make my own flushable wipes for him. It is really simple and you can just flush the dirty wipe with the mess from the diaper. Cloth wipes are even easier since you just toss it in the bag with the diaper and wash with your laundry. Very simple if you ask me.

Some moms swear by their diaper sprayer. I do not have one. Usually I don't need one. I would love to try one out, but they can be expensive. They may be a great thing, but I don't think they are always necessary.
Liners. This is how I get around the mess issues with my diapers. I have found flushable diaper liners to be a wonderful thing. I will even go so far as to say that the new GroVia bio-liners are the best. They cost less then other brands and work better. :) All you have to do is put a liner in the diaper. When baby makes a mess, toss it in the potty with the mess and you are good to go. If you have septic, you may have to be careful. I sometimes let the liner sit in the water a bit before flushing so it have more time to breakdown before going through the pipes.

Now one last thing, there are several accessories that can be nice to have, but I feel that really to cloth diaper you don't need much more than the diapers themselves. That should be the point really. One great thing about cloth is that rashes are decreased greatly. My son almost never gets a rash now unless he is in disposables for longer than normal. If you do have to use a rash cream, make sure it is one meant for cloth diapers. Others can ruin your diapers by making them repel something fierce. Again, GroVia has a great balm that is in stick form and you never have to actually touch the balm; just rub it on baby's bottom.
I know there are many more accessories out there for cloth diaper users. I don't really use many. I wanted to highlight what I use and what I think is a good thing for moms to consider when making the switch to cloth.
Do you have a favorite diapering accessory? Feel free to comment to let us all know. I always strive to learn from other moms. We are a community of learners and mothers, lets share the wisdom. :)
Until next time.... happy diapering!

Jun 14, 2010

Potty Help

Hi ladies. I know I have been quiet lately. There is a reason for that, but that is a whole different post. The New to Cloth Series will be coming to a close shortly, I just need to make sure I have all the posts for newbies that I want to add and then we will have a closing give-away. Yes, you read right, I willing be having my very first give-away as the final post in my very first series. I thought it would be fitting.
Okay. So, now on to the main reason for this post. This is not a series post. My son has now been telling us when he pees and poos. But, I am realizing that he is telling us about it not after, but right before. I am thrilled for this revelation.
When he was about 13 months or so, I was able to get him to sit on his potty and he even started to hold some poos until he sat on the potty. Then we took a break because I wasn't ready or able to fully potty train him at that time, because there was a lot going on in our lives at the moment. Of course things have not calmed down, but he seems to be showing signs that he is really ready to start training.
The kicker is that I can no longer get him to sit on his potty. I thought that maybe when he was younger his boy parts may have gotten a slight pinch from the foam seat as it has a little cup area for you to turn it as a shield for boys or flip it down for girls. So, I turned it down so it wouldn't be in the way. Well, that still didn't work. He does NOT want to sit on that potty chair. I even brought it out to the living room hoping if he could sit and watch one of his shows, he would, but no luck.
Do you have any suggestions? What did you do to potty train your kids? I could really use all the help I can get!
Thanks ladies!

Jun 1, 2010

New to Cloth - Stripping

Today's "New to Cloth" post is all about stripping, and no not taking off clothes, but taking off residue. :) Sorry, just a little humor injected by the side of my brain that makes sure to censor what Hubby may try to say.
So, every now and then cloth diapers may need to be stripped. Stripping is needed when there gets to be a build up of residue on diapers. This can be from the detergent you use or just from normal washing and drying. Fabric softener can actually cling to your dryer drum and then transfer onto cloth diapers when they are drying in the dryer. This can cause build up. If the detergent you use isn't completely made just for cloth diapers, it can cause a build up after many washings.
Okay, now on to the meat of all of this. Stripping can be very easy to do. One of the easiest ways to strip your diapers is to wash like normal but then rinse, rinse, rinse, until you do not see any more soap bubbles in the rinse cycle. When your washer is in the middle of the rinse cycle and it has been agitating the diapers for a moment or so, open the lid or otherwise stop the machine. If you see bubbles that are caused by soap and not just the agitation, you need to keep rinsing. Once you reach the point that you no longer see bubbles, you can finish out the rinse and then dry and you diapers are stripped.
One thing I like to use when stripping my diapers is vinegar. Vinegar is great for cutting through residue and it also acts as a natural fabric softener. I would use it in every wash except that it can break down elastic faster than normal wear.
I have heard of the Dawn method and I tried it once, but it really isn't the greatest. It can actually do more harm than good. Dawn is meant for the sink and it can hurt a washing machine. So, now I avoid the Dawn method and just do the rinse method with some viegar as my primary mode of stripping my diapers.
If you have ever heard of Rockin' Green detergent, you may also think about buying a sample of their product and use it to soak your diapers. It can remove a whole ton of dirt and residue from your diapers. I use it all the time now with the diapers and I really don't have to strip my diapers now.
When I do use Rockin' Green to soak my diapers, I fill my tub with super hot water and 3-4 tbsp of Rockin' Green and my diapers. Then let them soak for as long as you can. I like overnight. Then drain and wash like usual, not using any soap. if you don't want to use your tub, just do this in your washer, and stop the agitation process for the length of the soak you want. When you are ready to wash the diapers, just let the wash cycle finish up with the two rinse cycles.
I hope you have found this post to be of some help. It took me weeks to check out a bunch of different ways to strip my diapers when I first started, and everyone had different opinions. This is what I have found works the best and easiest.
Until next time....Happy Diapering!

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