Tuesday, February 3, 2009

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Double the fun!

Cloth diapering one child is challenging enough; how about diapering for two? Whether you have twins or two children close in age, both in diapers – try to look on the bright side… it’s double the cloth diapering fun!

First of all, take pride in the fact that your savings and overall environmental impact are far more significant than a person diapering only one child. I did a quick accounting and even with very modest calculations, with disposables you’re looking at approximately 5000+ diapers per year for two children in diapers – and a minimum of $1000. Wow, the numbers sure do add up in the long term!
PhotobucketMy oldest daughter was only 6 months old when I discovered I was pregnant again. When my second darling daughter was born I was a proud mommy to a newborn and a 15 month old, both in diapers. At that time I was not cloth diapering and believe me, knowing what I know now – I regret it! My husband was initially against cloth diapering so instead we were literally wasting well over $100 a monthon disposables and wipes. Believe me, there’s a number of things I would have rather spent that $100 on rather that tossing my money in the trash!

With cloth diapering, that’s not the case (ok, so I haven’t exactly stopped buying cloth diapers, but at least I’m getting my money’s worth and I have something to show for it). Long gone are our disposable buying days! I even try and imagine all the FUN I missed out on cloth diapering my two girls at the same time! My husband lovingly teases me, “You don’t have daughters; you have two dolls.” Had I cloth diapered them early on I would have thoroughly enjoyed clothing their bums in the beautiful colors and prints that cloth diapers have to offer.

Diaper changesPhotobucket for two don’t have to be a dreadful task! Take advantage of the one on one time and enjoy the moment while you’re changing him/her. Tell your little one a special short story, or make silly faces to catch their attention and bring a smile to their face (and yours too)! Diaper changes are actually one of my favorite times with my little man; I have a cute little stuffed toy I keep on the changing table to use for playing with him during diaper changes. At night, I let my girls pick out which color diaper/pull up they want to wear for bed. As I help them put on their nighttime cloth diaper/pull up I make it a point to give them a big hug and a kiss and tell them how special they are.

Naturally diapering two children is a little more work, but not much. The most important factor is determining your approach and a system that will work best for you.

Things to consider when cloth diapering two:
*Which cloth diapers work best?
If you’re looking to truly diaper on a dime- then prefolds and covers are not only economical but also work phenomenally well. Oftentimes, when the youngest baby grows bigger, you can use premium sized prefolds for both children and then they will each have covers in the appropriate sizes.

However, the one size pocket diapers are rapidly growing in popularity since the one diaper can typically fit both children (with minor adjustments). Essentially you’re getting the most bang for your buck!

*How many diapers will I need?
This will depend heavily on your budget and how often you plan to wash your diapers. Personally, I believe it’s better to overestimate than underestimate. I’d rather have a few extra clean diapers than realize I need to do a load of laundry – STAT! Figure approximately 10 diapers per child per day to be on the safe side.

A general rule of thumb is to do diaper laundry every other day. However, there are some who have just enough diapers to get through a day and others who could go several days. Sometimes it’s hard to think spending an extra $100-200 on additional cloth diapers is going to save you money, but in the long run it can/will. Diapers worn and washed every day are going to wear out significantly faster than diapers worn and washed less often.

So, if your budget will allow you to buy additional diapers versus washing laundry every day or every other day – go for the additional diapers. This will be less of a headache for you but also ensure your diapers last a bit longer too!

Some tips and tricks…
1. Purchase gender neutral colors which can be used for either a boy or a girl.
OR purchase a specific color for each child so hubby (or anyone else) knows which color fits which child

2. Have two diaper pails, one for each child’s diapers and wash their diapers in separate loads so they don’t get all mixed.

- By Serena

38 comments:

Amanda said...

Thanks for all of the great Tips Serena. Your comment about "you haven't stopped buying diapers" cracked me up. I really can't wait until I another little bum to fluff in addition to my daughter. :)

Angela said...

Great tips! I had two different kinds on diapers/ trainer for each of my duaghters.

one day in the life of me said...

These are great tips!

Erika said...

I agree with overestimating your diaper need. Some wash cycles I think I have way too many, yet inevitably we'll have that one day my children will use more than their average. If I didn't have my large stash, I'd be stressing a lot more about laundry.

Erika said...

Good advice!! I never really thought about the two diaper pails.......

Cecile said...

I realize that I need a lot more diapers...! I've been running out of diapers all the time and doing laundry round the clock. My little one has had diarrhea for the last couple of days and I actually had to run to the store this morning at 6 am to get sposies...

Carol said...

Great advice! I'll have to keep these tips in mind when the 2nd one comes along.

the momma said...

Great ideas, Serena! I currently have two daughters who use cloth, but 1 is potty trained and the other is training, so their use is mainly night and nap. But, we're getting ready to welcome DD#3 in about 8 weeks, and I've been working on building a newborn stash that will work into our current every other day laundry schedule. I like the idea of 2 diaper pails- should keep sorting to a minimum and make it easier for my husband to help with the diaper laundry!

Jon, Lindsey, Alex, and Ben said...

These tips are very helpful. I think it is easier for me to cd 2 since they are about the same size (twins) instead of being 2 completely different ages/sizes.

Serena said...

It truly makes my day when I see how my thoughts, ideas, suggestions, etc... are helpful for you all. It's also great when others take the time to post what works for them - as we're all trying to help one another here.

Amanda - LOL - yet another packaged arrived via UPS yesterday and my husband already KNEW what was inside without me having to speak a word!!! HAHA

Cecile- Sorry to hear your little one is sick!!! Diarrhea is definitely a rough patch to get through for both you and baby - sending some warm and happy thoughts your way...

I remember when my daughters both got Rota Virus at the same time - my youngest daughter was only 3 weeks old and was hospitalized for 3 days, my oldest was at home with my hubby and had to go to the ER twice... it was really really rough on them and us!


On a completely different note:

The pictures are of my daughters from a 2+ and 3 years ago - my youngest daughter will be 3 in only a few short days!!! I was searching through all their photos hopeful I would find a picture of them in dipes together - but all to no avail. I did find the posted photos which would give you an idea on how close in age they are. Nevertheless, it was a BLAST going through all their old photos - so for those of you with older little ones - try going through your old photos/files and take a moment to enjoy the memories!

Katie said...

One of our first deciding factors in choosing cloth was that we want more children, so the savings over using disposables just multiplies with each child. This post brought up some practical and informative points. Thanks!

Katrina said...

Your girls are adorable! I too loved your comment that you haven't stopped buying diapers. I'm in the same boat. I definitely have more than enough now for my boys, but I can't help picking a few new cute diapers here and there. Having two diaper pails is a great idea - esp if you have different size diapers and one child who goes through more diapers than the other.

Maggie said...

Those are some really good tips. Thanks!

Sara in Seattle said...

Definitely overestimate your need, even for one child! You never know when things just aren't going to go as you planned... and I'm sure that goes double for those of you with two little ones!

Dani said...

Thnks Serena, I'll keep your tips in mind when #2 comes along!

Meghan said...

What a great article! Thanks for all the tips. Now I will know what to do if another one comes along while my daughter is still in diapers.

Kelly said...

I can't wait to have double the fun. the countdown in on, 16 weeks to go...

And I love the tips too! Definitely something I might need to try.

A Psych Mommy said...

Thanks for the tips on cloth diapering two, Serena. I only have one right now, but if we have a second while the other is still in dipes, then I'm definately going to come back to this post. I also need to start buying more of the gender neutral diapers! I get so carried away with buying all the boy prints--although I know there is nothing wrong in diapering a girl in "boyish" prints. I think my hard thing if I have a girl is I would probably want to buy all new diapers for her with all the cute girl prints out there!

Kelly said...

This is great info! Thanks!! I like the FAQ part!

Umm Sayf said...

Masha'Allah! your girls are super cute, Serena.
Thanks for the post. I know that I love the special diapering moments with my little man, too. And, actaully, he loooooves to be changed. Don't know if it's the warm wipes or just being naked, but he smiles and coos the minute I put him on the table! :)

AScott said...

Haha, I'm having the same problems as Cecile. My little one has had diarrhea for the past week and have had to use backup disposables since I only have enough cloth to last her through the day and its laundry time! It is probably a good idea to have more extra's!

I agree that cloth diapering is addicting! It's like purse shopping, but for babies! You can never have too many!

Katie said...

It is god to have a extra diapers. I have just enough and if I forget to run the wash or get behind in the wash, I have to supplement with spoises until the diapers are dry.

I agree that you have to find what you like best. I has taken me about 2 years of trying all kinds of different diapers to find what I like best and what works for both my boys.

calabaza said...

I have also noticed that the wear on my diapers decreased dramatically when I added a few more to my stash.

Senior Family said...

i love this post :) i cd both my boys .. just wish we could find a good nite solution for them ...
thanks for all your insights :0)

Liz said...

Those are some great tips, Serena! Now more than ever I wish I knew about CD with my other 2 DD! And I really doubt I will experience 2 in dipes again...3 DD is plenty!

Angela Sundara... etc said...

Good idea on the separate colors for sizes. When I was doing FB's in two sizes I ordered a certain mix of colors for each size, which made sorting a whole lot easier! Now I'm using medium FB's and BG's for all three of my diapered children. I should write a guest blog on how to cloth diaper THREE efficiently and effortlessly! LOL!

Katie said...

Thanks for the input - I'm almost 3mo. pregnant with my 2nd baby - and they'll both be diapers together for 6-12 months (hopefully not much longer than that - but by then, there could be a third baby on the way!!)
This was really helpful - especially knowing that it will be worth it to bulk up my stash (even though it seems expensive) in the long run.
Thanks!

Day to Day Tripper said...

I have 3 in diapers and multiple types 2 of the children wear so I just throw everything in the wash together to save water and time. It would have been nice to pick certain colors for certain sizes though. I always have to find size tags when seperating diapers.

Thanks for the great story and tips. Cute kids!

Jess said...

I sooooo wish I knew about cloth diaps when I had my 2nd & 3rd lil boys they were only 14 months apart & wow the money I could have saved! However I am so glad that 2 yrs later & a 7 month old & a PTing lil monster I have found cloth! It really is easier on me to cloth diaper (& my very very short budget) ;) Thank you so much for the tips!

foodie_mom said...

Great idea to include a video. It always helps to see someone else do it!

foodie_mom said...

My husband was originally against cloth, but once he saw the $savings, he jumped on board!! Now, he talks them up to other new dads.

Kelly said...

I totally agree that cloth diapering is fun. I mean, no one likes changing diapers, but when you get to adorn your baby's bum with softness and cute colors, it is a lot more enjoyable.
And if the budget allowed, I would probably have at least double the diapers I have. I can't stop buying either!

The McKitterick Family said...

Thanks for sharing your story. Your kids are really cute! Your article makes me less nervous about cloth diapering two in August when my second is due! Looking forward to expanding my diaper stash, hopefully some newborn sizes.

Matt, Sara and Kinsley :) said...

These are great tips! I especially love that you are recommending prefolds, covers. Everyone thought I was nuts at first, but I find that they are easier to care for then my 3 bumGenius....which reminds me I should be trying to strip them while the baby is sleeping :(

erinsmomma said...

Thanks for the great tips. We don't have plans to have another baby for another year or so, but I'll try to keep them in mind when we do!

Kelly said...

I actually have a friend who has used cloth diapers since her second child was born. She is now pregnant with her SIXTH child and still using cloth! She's had three of them in diapers at once (whoa) and made it work. That gives me hope that maybe I can make it work, if not for the few months until my oldest is fully potty trained, then with our newborn (due anyday - have had contractions on and off the past few days). Love reading about how people are making cloth diapers work for their families! :)

Kelly said...

Regarding the tip:
"2. Have two diaper pails, one for each child’s diapers and wash their diapers in separate loads so they don’t get all mixed."

I've noticed that several readers have also commented about washing cloth diapers separately for their children. Is this just to make sorting easier or are there also health reasons for keeping diapers separated?

I'm wondering if one of my kids is sick and I wash her diapers with my other child's diapers (just put them all in one load), would I risk spreading the illness to both kids? Or would the hot wash cycle or a squirt of bac-out reduce the chances of that sort of problem?

Just wondering! Thanks! :)

Lacy said...

I hope that with the 2 dozen flats I bought, I will never need to do an emergency disposable run! Thanks for the tips!