Monday, August 29, 2011

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Avoiding Cloth Diaper Fatigue

Let's face it. Cloth diapering, full or part time, takes time and energy. Before you even begin cloth diapering, I bet you have spent countless hours browsing online about which diapers are the best, which detergents are the best, what accessories you will need, and just what do you do with a dirty cloth diaper anyway? Once you receive your fresh stash of fluff, you will feel them, smell them, mess with the snaps or hook and loop, adjust the sizes, try out a snappi and prefold and imagine your little one wearing them. Then, you have to give them the first of many, many, washes!

Here comes the time part. The part that I always seem to dread and put off as long as I can, because reality is... it is much easier to just take off a sposie and toss it in the trash- you never have to see, touch, think, or worry about it again! But, since we have chosen to go down the fun and cute (not to mention cheaper and better for the environment) path, we have loads of lovely smelling diaper laundry, that nobody better ever throw away!

With all of the rinsing, washing, soaking, stripping, drying, sun drying, fluffing, adjusting, and stuffing we do, it's easy to get burnt out on cloth diapering and want to pick up a pack of disposables just for a short break. Oh I have been there, and I did that. So how do I continue to care for my diapers and everything it involves, without getting burnt out or just plain tired of doing it? For one, have a good size stash. The more diapers you have, the more time you have in between washes. Spend the money on a good detergent. Don't waste your time and energy on free and clears, regular detergents and detergents just because they are cheaper. It is worth the splurge for the more expensive detergent made for cloth diapers, trust me on this. I have slaved over diapers filled with smell and build up, and ruined a batch or two with bad detergent as well! That is a big time/energy saver. You know how sometimes you have to rinse your diapers a gazillion times? I skip all the rinses, and go for more full washes (without detergent). For example, I use to rinse my diapers 5-6 times to get them extra clean and remove any build up. Now, I just run the regular hot water wash twice after they go through with detergent. It equals out to do the work of six or so rinses. Faster, and I don't have to keep remembering to go back and run another rinse, and another, and another. Stuff and fluff right out of the dryer (or off the line), so they are ready for use right away. When I leave them in a basket or in the dryer because I'm pressed for time that day, I end up having to run and stuff a diaper on demand- big pain! One more thing- take the inserts out of the dirty diaper before you put them in the wet bag or pail. Loading 2-3 day old dirty diapers into the washer is no fun, don't make it worse by having to pull out 2-3 day old dirty inserts before you put them in the wash.

These things have worked for me, and if all else fails - just remember why your cloth diapering in the first place, it is worth the time and energy it takes!

Shay is a stay at home mom of three little girls, a soon-to-be foster mom, and a regular TCDW blog contributor. When she's not homeschooling, changing diapers, or snapping pictures, she spends time blogging about their journey into the foster care system, family, cloth diapering, and raising kids. You can follow along at http://www.busybudgetmom.blogspot.com

17 comments:

Laurie said...

I could use a few more diapers. I'm sure being able to wash every other day or so would help a lot.

Diddlepoyner said...

what detergent do you like?

Brittany said...

I loved this post! Totally made me laugh at how similar us CD'ing mommas are. I just discovered the blog last week & i'm already loving it!

Natalie said...

I was always worried about taking my inserts out of my fuzzi bunz and swaddlebees before putting them into our big wet bag. Then one day, we had some still stuffed diapers get into the laundry and I was totally scared I was going to have to rewash everything. However, to my surprise the inserts all came out in the wash and were as clean as usual! So now, we don't even bother which makes things that much easier! One in a great while, one of my hemp inserts will bunch up in the fuzzi Bunz, but they still come out clean! Just an idea to share!!

Laundry Lady said...

I use Country Save detergent and it's not really much more expensive than the store brand HE detergent I was using in my front loader before. Plus I don't need very much. Two boxes last me almost a year, and that is with using it for all laundry, not just cloth diapers. I agree that it is worth using a proper cloth diaper friendly detergent, but that doesn't always mean spending more money. (Though I do have to order mine online because no one carries it locally).

Brooke said...

I just looked up the Country Save/Bum Genius detergent on Kelly's Closet, and it doesn't have the greatest reviews. Regular Country Save (the non-BG variety) on Amazon fares much better. I assume you use the non-BG version? Is this the one I should try? Thanks - really trying to wrap my head around this laundry thing before the baby arrives!

Ashley said...

Hahaha, I can't imagine getting CD fatigue! I've bee CDing for 8 months now and have never came close to getting tired of it. I hate paper diapers so much.

Anna said...

I use Rockin Green detergent and have been very happy with it. Thanks for a great post! After 3 years of diaper laundry, I find that a reality check of how much 'sposies cost, and a little reminder of WHY I cloth diaper is a big help every once in a while! :)

Sara said...

Oh my gosh, short but sweet article that I'm sure will help me cope with our upcoming adventures in CDing :) -- hot rinses: got it!
Thanks!

Susan Gilchrist said...

After using Rockin Green for a year and a half or so, and having to strip diapers and deal with hideous ammonia burns, I've learned to go with what works. For us, it's Tide. Regular old Tide.

Ryan, Corrie, Max, and Jack said...

Girl, I hear you. My oldest is daytime potty trained, so that is nice, but I still have a 22 month old. And while they were both in diapers... oy! And even if you HAVE a decent to large stash, there's also the size of your washing machine to consider! I COULD go two or more full days between washing, but that many diapers won't fit in my machine AND get clean.

Ashlee said...

I'm surprised how much you rinse! What are your water and energy bills like using that much hot water?
I do a cold water rinse followed by a hot water wash and I'm done.

Traci said...

this sounds like me sometimes on those days where you don't want to do anything, and the last thing you want is to wash and stuff diapers! its very tempting to go back to sposies.....

Betriska said...

I am just so happy to hear of so many mommies AND dads willing to take the extra effort and THOUGHT it takes to cloth diaper these days.

I used cloth but, a 'pre-fold' was something different then! And you used a pre-fold AS extra night coverage. I actually used REAL diaper pins!

The upgrade is genius and being I LOVE knitting from wool? I make lots and lots of sweet little soakers! Talk about an upgrade?! I actually used PLASTIC pants over my babies cloth diapers! *LOL*

I have to confess. With the two youngest daughters? I gave in to disposables. I was weak. But, I hope I made up for it! :o) I DID home educate my girls! AND my youngest and oldest cloth diaper THEIR babies now!

Great article! Now I'll know how to do the wash on my next visit with my Grandsons!

Aloha!

jmorales24 said...

I figured out real quick that it made more sense to take the inserts out before putting them in the wet bag or diaper pail. I also run them under hot water and give them a good ringing out! The dirty diapers, being as my son would not take to the breast, id formula feed. Needless to say, the mess is probably a lot different than it would have been had he breastfeed. Even so, they are still, to my surprise, very easy to clean and never even leave a stain. The problem I am having is my poor baby always has little red marks on his back from the elastic. If I hook them on the smallest snap they're too tight. If I go down a snap, they're too big and it leaks. Then, baby got a bad rash and turned red all down there. I had to put him back in disposables for two days to get it to go away. Wonder if its the scent in the Ruby Moon? Any suggestions?

Paige said...

I am so relieved...we have to use nighttime sposies and some days i just wanna keep him in them all day...but also i need more diapers badly and we just moved so we have a washer but no dryer...the prefolds are so flat and rough, what can I do to make them better after line drying?

DazzleMea said...

My husband is the cause of my cloth diapering fatigue. He will sometimes leave a poopy diaper be, leaving me to care for the aftermath.