Friday, March 4, 2011
Crunchy Green Bacon
The Bacon house had gotten a bit more GREEN! Some people might even call us crunchy... but one things for sure.. it's saving us a WHOLE lot of bacon to stuff in our pockets!
We've taken up cloth diapering, and I have to say I'm loving it! Why oh why did we not start this with Bacon Jr. was first born? I just think of all the times we had to run to the store to buy another pack of diapers because we were out ... again. I'd hunt for coupons, buy generic but in the end, they just get tossed in the garbage. That is another thing I don't miss, the bags and bags of garbage from diapers we'd haul out of our house each week. Less garbage now means a lot less diapers waiting 500 years to break down in our landfills. (Yes even Ma Bacon is concerned about Mother Earth and how she'll be when our Bacon grandkids are running around.) So what was the actual selling point to start cloth diapers? Sadly those were not our first concerns, but rather the fact that Bacon Bit was peeing and pooing out of EVERY.SINGLE.DISPOSABLE.DIAPER! UGH... Every time we went to change his diaper, we'd have to do a complete outfit change. We tried out every kind of diaper on the store shelf and none of them worked. We were confused, this never happened with any of our other kids. After complaining to a few friends on a certain social network, one messaged me and suggested cloth diapers... again.
When Little Boy Bacon was born I had asked her lots of questions about cloth, I contemplated doing it, but wasn't sure. I asked Mr. Bacon... well lets just say he said "Ewwww!" So we didn't go that route. But this time when she mentioned cloth, I decided to listen, and ask LOTS of questions! (THANKS to my wonderful friend Mrs. K... you know who you are!) She explained a lot about them, how it works, how to wash them... but I still had one big question. What does it cost? I know they are cheaper in the long run, But I had the same thoughts many others do... I have to spend $20-25 per diaper! That's a whole lot of start up cost. Once again she showed me how wrong I was. There are a lot of great diapers out there for under $20! One very reasonable diaper she directed me to is Kawaii brand diapers, you can only find them online, but the best thing was they were under $10 each! She had just started using some and loved them. So it was off to research time.
I asked Mr. Bacon this time about switching to cloth diapers, this time with research in my hand, and a kid who pooped out of everything on my hip! He wasn't against it, and his words this time were "well you're doing the laundry!" I'm ok with that. My research brought me to decided that a pocket style diaper was best for us. I decided to buy some Kawaiis (this is just one site for the, this is the cheapest site if you buy enough to get free shipping, however they ship from Canada and it took FOREVER to get my diapers, there are a lot of other places that will ship from free in the US that sell them too, but you pay a bit more... off my soap box). They got lots of great reviews online, no leaks, easy to wash.... so in I jumped to the cloth diaper pool, feet first!
So now you're thinking, OK Ma Bacon... you have me interested, but there are SO many more questions... how do you wash them? What is a pocket? Where do you store them? What if they stink? What about the "ewww factor"? Grab a cup of coffee and sit on back. I'm going to walk though cloth diapers for Ma Bacon. I'm going to say this now... it will be a long post, with lots of pictures. I'm a visual learner if you haven't figured that out yet reading my blog!
So what is a pocket diaper? It's a diaper that has an opening that you can add inserts (the things that are going to absorb the pee) into them. The thing I liked about a pocket diaper is that you can add as many inserts as you need. For us, I use one for daytime, and two at night. The other feature I went with in a cloth diaper is having a one size diaper. This means the diaper will fit your newborn all the way though potty training. No other diaper to buy! This picture shows the tiny newborn size at the smallest setting, all the way to the biggest toddler setting! This diaper pictured is by far my favorite diaper! This is the Go Green Pocket Diaper- Champ version. I'll explain more later the features I love about this diaper.
Not all diapers are created equal! I found this out by talking with other cloth diaper (CD) moms, reading lots of forums, blogs, and websites. Some diaper brands hold up better to leaks, some fit bigger, some fit tiny babies better, so have different pocket openings, different material inside them... OH the choices. I have to say I was quite overwhelmed. So I started making a list of things other Moms said they liked. Large pocket opening, good for stopping leaks was a must, snaps hold up better than aplix (another name for Velcro- but a good thing to know in the CD world), hip snaps help hold the diaper better around the leg are just a few that I started with.
I found Kawaii diapers first, but while I was waiting the rather long time for them to be processed and shipped I also stumbled across Go Green. After seeing both in person I found I like the Go Green better, everyone has their favorite so you have to find what works for you.
Here is the basic fun print Kawaii vs. the Go Green silky diaper. Both these diapers are under $10 each. These are both their basic diapers. They look alike, but they actually have different features.
So you can see from 2 very similar looking diapers- the Go Green has the extra hip snap. Also the lining on them are different. I found having a fleece lining makes the diaper rather bulky, giving Bacon Bit quite the big ol' booty! The other feature that you can find online is the Kawaii diaper comes with two inserts which is a bonus, where the Go Green only comes with one. They do have the option online to buy additional inserts. I found doubling them up at nighttime helped!
Thanks to the wonderful Mrs. K- she took some pics of her different diapers so you could look to see how similar they can look. She compared Bum Genius, Fuzzibunz, and Kawaii.
So That gives you some comparison on different brands. Now I've mentioned I've found my favorite diaper so far, But honestly I've only tried out two brands. The Go Green CHAMP diaper had lots of features I really liked.
Go Green is truly a one size diaper. Most diapers have 3 adjustable sizes, Go Green has 4 making this fit a newborn baby all the way though to the biggest toddler! You can see the small to large settings on the picture with the yellow diaper above.
The Champ has two inside pocket openings. This makes it easy to 'stuff' the inserts in. It also means I don't have to unstuff the diaper when it's dirty (make the 'eeww' factor less!). The washer will take the insert out for me when I wash. The openings are also nice and wide to get the insert in easy!
The insert snaps in the diaper to keep it in place and from shifting! The Champ diapers also come with two inserts each!
They are a LOT less bulky than the Kawaii diapers. Here is a stack of 6 diapers each (yes the picture says 5, this is what happens when you edit pictures while sleep deprived!). The Kawaii's all have fleece insides (not all their diapers do, just the ones I have) Also their inserts are thicker. The Go Green while the inserts just as absorbent, are thinner and they also have micro suede lining to make the diapers thinner and more trim on baby.
But one of the biggest features that sold me on Go Green was the double leg gussets! They help keep the poo in the diaper where it belongs!
So I got my diapers- now what do I do with them? First you need to prep your diaper. They need to be washed before you use them. This helps take any oils out of the fabric. For the diaper I got, I only had to wash them once. If you are buying diapers made of other material such as suede, bamboo, cotton, or hemp you'll have to research how many times they need to be washed to get all the oils out in order to be absorbent.
I use a laundry soap made to be gentle on cloth diapers. You want these to last until potty training (and beyond if you are planning on using them with more than one kid). I choose Rockin' Green laundry soap. It gets good reviews in the CD world, but there are lots of options. There are even people who swear by Tide or any free and clear soap. Again.. there are lots of ways to go about this.. I'm just highlighting the Ma Bacon way. You can buy Rockin' Green on a lot of websites for about the same price so watch for free shipping! It comes in lots of yummy smelling scents too! The other thing I love is a little goes a long way, you only need 1 tsp for a HE washer or 1 TBSP for a normal washer!We have a LG front loader washer and dryer. To wash my dirty diapers I use a 'normal' setting with hot water wash/cold rinse. I add a prewash and the 'water plus' option that adds more water to the cycle. The more water, the more soap that washes out of the diaper which I've heard is a good thing! How often do I wash diaper? It depends on how many diapers you have. I have 25 diapers right now in my stash. With that and how often I need to change Bacon Bit, I only wash every three days.
As for drying... I put the inserts in the dryer with a few dryer balls (no you don't need to use these, but they do help cut down on dry time for all my laundry which means shorter dry cycles = less electricy used= more bacon for my pockets!) As for the diaper part, I hang dry these to increase their life and make sure they make it to the toddler years! A cheap drying rack works great for this!
Now it's time to stuff them. I sit down with a basket while I watch TV at night or while Bacon Bit plays on the floor. For some reason he thinks it's funny to watch me stuff his diapers and will laugh at me while I do it! Stuffing them ahead of time means they are ready to go when we need one and it really doesn't take that much time to do.
All ready to go.. off to change a diaper. Everything is waiting on the changing table making it easy to change.
Once you change the diaper, now what to do with the used one. You need to store it in a wet bag. I found the Fuzzibunz in and out wetbag. It has an additional zipper on the bottom so when I go to do laundry, I unzip it and toss the whole bag in. No need to take the diapers out since the washer will take them out for me! Now Mr. Bacon asked about the openness of it, and wondering if it will make the room smell. And actually the answer is no. A sealed pail will keep the stink in the room though. We hang this one on the back of the door keeping it convienent.
So how do the diapers fit? They look great on Bacon Bit and he hasn't complained one bit about them! Snug around the thighs, but not too tight. Nice fit at the waist too and isn't he super cute in his Giraffe diaper! Really the cuteness factor of cloth diapers is worth it too!
So what about night time? I use two inserts in Bacon Bit's diaper for night time. With the Go Green he's been in them for well over 12 hrs sleeping and woke up without leaks!! It does add a little bulk, but not much.
And what about on the go? Cloth is easy for on the go too... look for a small wet bag. I like the two pocket feature on this one. I can stick clean diapers in one pocket, dirty one's in the other. When I get home I add the dirty diapers and the wet bag to my wash diapers and clean them on laundry day.
PHEW! That was a lot of information. I really hope this helps someone who is considering trying cloth out though. I'll say it again, I love our cloth diapers. I've never had one leak yet, I have less garbage, no more running out of diapers, and no more chemical smells from disposibles sitting on Bacon Bit's butt!
So leave me a comment and let me know if you use cloth, how do you like it? Do you have any tips? Was any of this helpful for you? Do you want to see other pictures comparing anything?! I love to know my readers have stopped by and love when new readers follow my blog!