Sunday, June 3, 2012

Like Tweet

A Cloth Diaperer's Best Friend

The washing machine. It’s sort of like a cloth diaperer’s best friend. So when it’s taken away, a novice cloth diaperer might be a bit concerned. And believe me; I was.

When I first began my adventure in cloth diapering, I had a great set up. I lived in a basement apartment, and the washer and dryer were right smack in the middle of the apartment. Two months into this adventure, however, I moved. The washing machine was no longer right in the middle of my home. In fact, it was no longer in my home. Thankfully, I didn’t have to resort to a laundry mat; my apartment complex had a laundry facility. But I did have to go out the back door of my apartment, down a flight of stairs, and over to the basement of the apartment building next door. Not terrible, but not ideal – especially with a little one at home.

I was not going to give up though. I was determined to make it work, even if it did mean $2.25 every time I washed and dried a load. It also meant pre- and post-rinsing were no longer so convenient. That would mean an additional four quarters every time I rinsed. So I started developing a system – a system I am still perfecting.

Here’s how I’ve made it work so far. I have a wet bag in my little guy’s room and a wet bag in the bathroom. Throughout the day, I toss the dirty diapers in his room. At the end of the day, I lug the bag down the hall to the bathroom and dump the diapers in the tub. I run the water on hot and give those diapers a rinse; then I plop them in the bathroom wet bag. After a couple days of this routine, I’m ready to do laundry.

On laundry day, I dump all those diapers back into the tub for one more rinse. Then I put them (one more time) back into the wet bag and make the trek to the washing machine. Since I’ve already rinsed, I just do a normal wash. When they’re done, I empty the machine, and haul the diapers up to my back porch, where I hang them on my drying rack to air dry. By pre-rinsing by hand and air drying outside, I only have to spend a dollar per load.

So far, the system is working. It’s a little extra effort, and I will confess that whenever I’m spending time at a family member’s house, the bag of dirty diapers finds its way into their convenient washing machines. But overall, I really believe that I can make cloth diapers work even without a cloth diaperer’s best friend close by.

Bio: Aimee is a new mom and a new cloth diaperer. To learn more about her attempts at green and ethically living, check out her blog at www.littlechoices.org.

3 comments:

Julie said...

Good for you for keeping up with cloth diapers! I agree it takes extra planning and a bit more work, but totally do-able! When our washer was out of commission, I really depended on my prefolds and covers. Super easy to wash by hand and the covers can be used over and over.

someonesgottapay said...

Thanks Julie! I kept reading about how prefolds/flats/covers would be easier with coin laundry, but I haven't been able to get myself excited about those. I'm using pockets & AIOs, so the drying time's a little longer, but so far it's working!

Rachel said...

Good for you! This sounds like almost exactly the kind of thing my parents described doing as they shared their apartment living diapering stories with me after they found out I was going to use cloth with my kids.