I can’t believe how quickly the Flats & Handwashing Challenge is coming up! Less than a week to go now. Are you participating? It’s pretty straightforward: all flat diapers, all handwashed, all air dried, a five cover limit, and liners are okay but diaper sprayers aren’t. Got it?

I am starting to prepare, or think about how I want to prepare.

The day before the challenge, I will do my usual diaper laundry but, instead of stuffing my FuzziBunz with flats like I normally do (I’ve done away with most of our microfiber inserts) I will be putting the empty pockets in the diaper storage and folding up all my flats for use on Monday.

I almost forgot about the 5 cover limit… so now I’ve decided on:

1) GEN-Y Universal in “Dinomite”
2) sustainablebabyish wool cover in “squash”
3) sustainablebabyish wool longies in “air”
4) Flip in “ribbit”
5) Blueberry Coverall (my only cover with velcro) in “blue on chocolate”

I figure this will give me a good range of what I want to use. I’ll use the GEN-Y when I want to padfold, the Flip will do well for padfolding or using pins and snappis, and the wool is nice in general. I love the Blueberry for overnights.

This weekend my bathroom will be getting a good scrubbing. I plan on washing the diapers in the tub, so I want it very clean (and it will certainly stay clean since I’ll want to disinfect it after washing diapers). Hmm, I like this part of it!

Finally, I will be washing my wool and relanolizing it. I should do this soon, since it takes a couple of days to air dry.

I still haven’t told my husband about this challenge. He’s a pretty good sport, and I change most of the diapers, so I don’t think he’ll balk too much.

I’m feeling pretty good about it all. I’m not too worried about the flats part of the challenge; there was a period of time when I had taken a break from “modern” cloth diapers and was using mostly prefolds, and I have had great success with our flats when I’ve used them (and padfolding in a cover is super easy, and will be vital for when my son initiates the alligator death-roll during diaper changes and inevitably screams bloody murder while I try to pin). The part that worries me is the handwashing… will I get them clean enough? How long will they take to air dry? Will they be “crunchy” after air drying? What if the weather doesn’t hold up and I have to dry them inside (which is a good possibility)?

I plan on washing every other day. I don’t want to go too long and have tons of diapers to wash (which have been sitting for days) but I also don’t want to undertake the washing process every day. We’ll see how it goes, though, I might be surprised and find it isn’t as much of a burden as I expect. Since I haven’t just used flats before, though, I don’t know how long my stash will last me. I plan on changing frequently, so they might add up quickly.

Thanks again to Diaper Junction for sending me a dozen of their birdseye flats to use. I’m excited to compare them to the Target flats that I’m used to using. I can already tell that they are better quality.

If you’re joining the challenge, what have you done (or what do you plan on doing) to prepare?


Welcome to part two of my series on the first six months. I want to share what I’ve learned about cloth diapering. This isn’t going to be a “how to” because, well, there is a whole heck of a lot of information out there on how to cloth diaper. I thought I’d share my own personal experiences on it all, though, along with a few tips that have helped me out.

1) Be careful, it can be surprisingly addicting. If you would have told me that I would want to buy diapers the way I once used to buy designer bags… I would have laughed in your face. I remember having “wish lists” of bags that I wanted to save up for. Now, I have that for diapers. I like trying new things, and once you find something that really works it can be hard not to want to stock up on them. They make some really cute diapers, too. So be prepared for this, because you just might surprise yourself. I think part of the addiction stems from the fact that, well, it brings some fun and purpose to changing dirty diapers. I change a lot of diapers. Anything that can make it seem like a little less of a chore is a good thing in my book.

2) I wish I had tried more things before buying a stash of one diaper. I bought into the “pocket craze” and ordered 15 Fuzzibunz to start out with. While I do like the diapers a lot, they aren’t my favorite and there are definitely better diapers for newborns. I wish I had started with prefolds, and then got a variety of diapers to test out. I have spent a lot of money on diapers (still less than I would on disposables, especially when you keep in mind how many of these diapers I’ll be able to use on our next baby) and could have saved some money if I had been willing to look beyond the new modern cloth diapers.

3) That said, there are some wonderful modern cloth diapers out there. I am thankful for them because they are what turned me on to cloth diapering, and have helped bring about this cloth diaper revolution and make them more mainstream. They can be very convenient. They are super cute. Get some for sure!

4) Try the “scary” stuff. Prefolds and flats? Are you kidding me? Snappis, pins, wool? No way. Except, well, they are pretty awesome. When I first started cloth diapering my little newborn, I never expected for any of those things to enter our house. But my son is currently napping in a pinned prefold with wool longies. Never say never! There’s a reason people still use some of these things. They are effective, simple, and inexpensive.

5) There’s something to be said for natural fibers. Cotton, hemp, bamboo. Wool covers. Yes, the microfleece liners and microfiber inserts have their place. But so do these natural fibers. They are thirsty, breathable, soft, and nice. You can’t help but feel good when you put organic cotton on your little one’s bottom. (If prefolds and fitteds aren’t your thing, check out the bumGenius Organic Elemental all-in-one diapers and the Flip hybrid system with the organic insert.)

6) You can use cloth for overnights, but it takes more planning. In the early weeks, I changed my son throughout the night, but once he started getting bigger and sleeping for longer stretches I stopped changing him overnight. You can’t just put a regular cloth diaper on and expect it to hold for 12 hours. Some people swear by “double stuffing” their pocket diapers, but I’ve always struggled with pocket diapers leaking overnight. My favorite choice? A sustainablebabyish snapless multi with two of their doublers. These are wonderful diapers. No matter what you use, you’ll need more of it. Hemp inserts (I like the Babykicks Hemparoo Joey Bunz inserts) hold a lot and are good to pair up with other materials. If you are getting leaks, try something else.

7) Give cloth wipes a try. They are easier than you think.

8 ) The right supplies will make cloth diapering easier for you. Get more than one wet bag if you can afford to. I recommend a smaller, zippered wet bag for the diaper bag. I do most of G’s diaper changes on our first/main floor, but keep his large diaper pail upstairs in his room… so I have a couple of smaller wet bags that I put his dirty diapers and wipes into, and then I can just empty those into his big wet bag. You don’t need a ton of stuff, but things like diaper sprayers (they hook up to your toilet’s water line and you can spray poops into the toilet once your baby is on solids or if your baby is formula fed), liners, extra doublers and inserts, nice storage containers, etc. will certainly help you. (Random note: I had to put a space between the 8 and the “)” at the beginning of this one because WordPress automatically turned that into a smiley face with sunglasses. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8) 9 10).

9) They are just diapers, and it’s just laundry. Really. If you get detergent build up on your diapers they most likely aren’t ruined. You might need to fine-tune your laundry routine but, in the end, they are just diapers. If you need to take a break from them and use disposables for awhile, or don’t want to take them on vacation, you aren’t a bad mother and it isn’t the end of the world. Don’t panic if something isn’t working. Do some research, look around online, ask for advice, whatever. Diapers will get dirty. And if they are stained, the sun is a miracle worker. A good sunning does wonders for stained diapers (and it’s good for the soul, too). Also, the laundry isn’t so bad. I don’t spend my evenings washing diapers, like so many people seem to think. It doesn’t have to be time-consuming. You can cloth diaper, even if you’re busy or have a job. They don’t have to be washed every day.

10) I don’t care if I’m a weirdo. Don’t know anyone else who cloth diapers? Do other people think you’re crazy for wanting to cloth diaper? Do people turn up their noses at the thought of you washing your kid’s poopy diapers? OH WELL. That’s how a lot of people were with me and I just bit my tongue and tried to educate (or ignore) them. So pave the way. Be “weird.” It’s okay… they aren’t the ones doing the laundry, they aren’t the ones changing your baby, they aren’t the ones buying the stuff. Just smile and know that your baby’s bum has less chemicals on it, that you’re saving money, and you’re helping the planet with every diaper change.

Also… it’s a learning process, and there’s a learning curve. Don’t be discouraged by that. It can be overwhelming because there is so much information out there about cloth diapering, and so many different opinions. So take a deep breath. Take it a step at a time. Keep some disposables on hand in the beginning, just in case, if it will encourage you to keep cloth diapering when things get a little tough. Newborns are hard work and you have so much to figure out. But it gets easier. You’ll get braver, more confident, more comfortable each day. Your newborn will become a smiling infant. You’ll learn things together, as you go.

Newborns are TINY. Even if it doesn’t seem that way in the beginning, you will look back and think, ‘Wow, look at those little bird legs.’ Expect this to affect the way you diaper. Changes in height and weight, changes in diet, changes in activity… that will all change how you diaper. Be adaptable. Enjoy it. You will look back on pictures of your newborn in cloth diapers and realize how cute and silly they looked! And how quickly that time went by. Before you know it you will be working on your baby’s NEXT six months and packing away diapers that no longer fit.

And, if you are still worried about cloth diapering and it makes you feel better, I have had TWO poop blowouts EVER. And they were my own fault. Cloth diapers hold in poop like you wouldn’t believe. One of my friends said her (newborn) daughter had a (disposable) diaper blowout every. single. day. No thank you! I like the poop kept in the diapers where it belongs, and not on my son’s clothes or blankets.

I remember when I was pregnant and swore up and down that I wouldn’t be one of “those” mothers who talks about her baby’s poop. So it goes.

Now that I have safely survived the first six months of motherhood, and don’t seem to have forever damaged my child in any way, I thought I would share some of my personal insights on this parenting business. Welcome to the first of a four part series of posts about, well, the first six months.

I am far from being an expert, and I am still learning new things every day about this whole baby thing, but at least now I can say that I have some real life experience in raising a baby through the first half of his first year. I thought I’d share some of my favorite baby (and mommy) products that have made my life a bit easier, and G’s life a bit happier.

At Rest
* Aden & Anais muslin swaddling blankets. These are the best! If your baby likes to be swaddled then these are a must (especially if you don’t want to get one of those swaddlers that you velcro around them). Newborns outgrow receiving blankets quickly. These are nice and big, but also lightweight. I liked being able to swaddle G in them, even in the hot summer months (he was born in July). These are wonderfully versatile blankets, too. They can be used as a blanket, carseat or stroller cover (to shield them from the sun, for example), nursing cover, etc. They get softer with each washing, and you can even double them up if you need a bit more warmth. If the price seems like a bit too much, they make a “for Target” model for about $10 cheaper. That’s what I have and they are great.
* Halo SleepSack Wearable blanket. I really like this, especially now that winter is here. Keeps him warm without the dangers of using a loose blanket for an infant.
* Cloud B Sleep Sheep. Cute, soft, sweet. We use it every night on the “ocean” setting and it is very soothing. It even makes me a bit sleepy!

* Nosefrida: The Snotsucker. This thing is both disgusting and wonderful at the same time. It really does work, though. I still use the blue bulb thingy for when he’s just a little stuffy, but when there’s a lot of snot, the Nosefrida is AWESOME.
* Vanicream Lite Lotion. It’s surprisingly hard to find lotion and bath products for babies that aren’t full of fragrances, dyes, and other things you don’t want on your baby’s sensitive skin. According to the bottle, it is “formulated without dyes, lanolin, fragrance, masking fragrance, parabens, formaldehyde.” It doesn’t really smell like anything, actually. And it isn’t greasy. I use this after every bath. I also have a bar of their soap that I will try out after we’re done with the Method body wash (which I also like).
* CJ’s BUTTer. I love this stuff. A lot. I use it on everything. It’s made for diaper rashes (cloth diaper safe) but it’s also recommended for eczema and all sorts of other stuff. I have several forms and scents. I’m constantly dipping into the big tub of Oatmeal, Milk & Honey BUTTer. I use it any time he gets a red or dry patch. I used it on his mild cradle cap. If he scratches himself, I dab some on the mark. I use it on his bum. I use it to help my diaper pins slide through his prefolds. I use it on my own dry skin (slather this stuff on your feet and then put on some cotton socks for the day and see what a difference it makes!). I like how it is all natural but also gives him a sweet “babyish” smell, especially since I don’t use icky scented baby powdery bath stuff. I put it on him after baths, especially on certain parts (like ankle and wrist creases). And it’s great for protecting his chin from drool! There’s an unscented option if you prefer that (I use the unscented on a q-tip to clean the moisturize the opening of his nostrils).
* Amber teething necklace. We’ve gotten some weird looks, but oh well. My son wears a necklace, and I think it is cute. Not only that, but Baltic amber has natural pain relieving properties. The warmth of the baby’s skin releases oils in the amber, which absorb into the skin. These must be used with care; never leave your baby unattended while he is wearing a necklace, and he should never put it in his mouth. I do think it relieved at least some of G’s discomfort while teething.

Baby Carriers
* Moby Wrap. Honestly, not much was better than have my son cuddled up close to me in his Moby during those early months. My son was a big guy and I must admit that I didn’t like this once he started to get a little bigger (beyond 3 months) but it is inexpensive and it is sooooo snuggly. At first I never thought I’d figure out how to wrap it, but once you get the hang of it it’s easy and lovely. When my best friend saw this picture, she joked, “I wish you carried ME around in that.”

* Ergo Carrier. Ahhh, this thing is wonderful. It is pricey but has already been worth every cent. It is so comfortable and my son loves coming shopping with me in this. I can’t wait to bring him places this summer in it, and have him on my back looking around while we hit up the farmer’s market and grab muffins and coffee on leisurely Saturdays.
* Maclaren stroller. Can this be considered a “baby carrier”? Sure, why not. I am big on babywearing but my son really enjoyed our trips to the park in the stroller before winter arrived. Also, when it was hot and humid, neither of us would have wanted me to wear him while we walked around for a couple of hours. This is a very high quality stroller that is easy to use, lightweight, and has some really nice features. It is also made to last and has a lifetime warranty. If Baby #2 arrives in the next few years, we’ll be able to use it for the next baby, or for G if the baby is being worn. We went with the “Ryder” model, in the “Albert Thurston” designer series. I scored it for half off on Gilt (let me know if you’d like a referral) but otherwise I would have went with the Quest. This rates as one of my husband’s favorite baby items. When we went walking with it (before winter set in, ugh) he would totally hog it and never let me push it. Men.

At Play
* Sophie the Giraffe. Yes, it is an overpriced, glorified dog toy. I couldn’t believe I was dropping nearly $20 on something I had to convince our beagle didn’t belong in her toy bin. But you know what? I would have spent five times as much on it. My son LOVES it. It was the first toy that consistently caught his attention, and it was the first toy he started to reach for. It is wonderful. It hardly left his hands when he was teething. It tags along with us almost everywhere. And, to be honest, there’s something so endearing about those sweet eyes and pretty spots. A++++

* Those stupid plastic keys. You know the type, I don’t even have to link to them. One of our friends got him these for Christmas and I’m pretty sure they’re his most-used Christmas toy, and they probably cost $2. He loves those damn things.
* Summer Infant SuperSeat. This thing is all sorts of awesome. Seriously, get one. It works a lot like one of those Bumbo thingamajigs but, in my opinion, has a better fit (at least for chunkier babies). I remember my sister’s kids couldn’t sit in theirs for long because the leg openings were so tight. This is much roomier. It can also be used as a booster seat when they get older. And, the best part, it has an activity center that attaches to it. We use this pretty much every day and my son loves it. We’re getting ready to step up into a larger activity center or Jumparoo, but this has been great for when they aren’t quite ready for it. It seemed to help G work on sitting up, and he could use his arms to support himself if he needed to. We lucked out and received this as a hand-me-down, and I’m so grateful for this one!
* Bouncy seat. I was surprised to like ours as much as I did, but it was great to have on hand. I don’t really use it anymore, but it was great when I needed to put him down while I did something (like empty the dishwasher or cook dinner) and was great so I could actually eat dinner. Well, with both hands and at the same time my husband did.

* Skip Hop Versa diaper bag. I finally found my holy grail of diaper bags. I started off with a Coach diaper bag that I loved and it was very pretty. However, it was heavy and bulky and not very practical. I’ve only had the Skip Hop Versa for about a month, but it’s awesome! If you need to carry a ton of stuff it’s probably not for you, but even if I need to go somewhere for the day with our cloth diapers, it fits without being too hefty. It’s lightweight, the strap is easily adjustable, and it has wonderful options for pockets. I got the one in black, and like that it looks more “purse-ish” and doesn’t scream “I’m a diaper bag!” but is also very practical. Love.
* Pishposh Mommy Carryall. This thing is very cool. I used it until I got the Versa, but am definitely not getting rid of it. It’s great for moms who would prefer to carry their baby stuff in one of their big ol’ purses. It fits a lot and keeps everything very organized. Cool product!
* Car organizers. This one is VITAL to my sanity. I have an Eddie Bauer car organizer that hangs over the back of one of the front seats, as well as a small backpack, and these store some necessities/”in case of emergency” items. Most of the time, if I’m out and about with my son, my car is going to be nearby. It’s nice to have a spare diaper, wipes, outfit, shirt for myself (you never know when the projectile spit-up will attack), mei tai, hand sanitizer, etc. on hand. I don’t need to worry if I leave the house without a spare outfit or diaper, especially if I’m just running somewhere quick and don’t expect to have to change him. I also keep some toys in a bin to keep in the car:

Nursery Organization
* Cube storage units. You know the type. They are great for storing toys or whatever else you need. I like that you can hide the clutter of toys by using canvas bins, but you can also display other items in the cubbies, such as books or nicer looking toys. It’s a practical piece of furniture that, in my opinion, is also aesthetically pleasing. On the top, we keep a lamp, a fan, and some Kleenex and hand sanitizer.
* Munchkin Baby Care Cart. Okay, so this has horrible ratings on Target’s website. I didn’t have problems putting it together (though the wheels were hard to get on) and it works for me just fine. Is it a super high quality piece of furniture? Duh, no. But I put it in his closet and use it store his clothes (just for whatever size he’s currently in), blankets, sheets, Boppy covers, etc. I don’t roll it around the house or put anything heavy in it, so it’s perfect for what I use it for. I like the openness of it and how easy it is to reach in and grab what I need.

* Nursing tank tops. I use the Target ones and they have held up just fine. I wear these every single day. I tried a few different bras but couldn’t find one that fit well and was comfortable enough to wear all the time. I don’t even wear a bra most of the time, I just wear one of these. Then, I can just put whatever top I want to wear over it, and when I nurse I’m not baring my stomach or my whole chest. Helps me be able to not completely flash my dad or one of my husband’s friends when I nurse.
* Reusable nursing pads. I used disposable ones at first, but they get expensive and are sometimes a little bit icky. If you’re going with the disposables, I highly recommend the Lansinoh ones. The others I tried just didn’t absorb as much (especially in the beginning, when I felt like my breasts were geysers that belonged in a national park), and the cheaper ones left bits of fiber and ickies behind. Washable, reusable pads are very comfortable and you just pop them in the wash with your clothes. I recommend getting a few pairs of them, so you’re not left without on laundry day. My favorite? Megaroo’s Nursing Pads. They are made with cotton velour and backed with a layer of PUL (the waterproof material that you see in a lot of cloth diapers and covers). She also makes AMAZING extended tab prefolds that come in super cute patterns.
* Lansinoh lanolin nipple cream. I used this stuff a lot in the beginning, when my nipples were still getting used to breastfeeding (and he was nursing every half hour). I don’t use it anymore, but it was great to have around in the beginning. Another perk? It can be used to lanolize wool diaper covers.
* Boppy pillow. I know these get mixed reviews, but ours has been used every day since he’s been home with us. I initially used it for breastfeeding, and for extra support when I held him; there were days when the ONLY way he would nap was in my arms, so I needed the support. But it was also great for some tummy time, and he still likes to lounge around on it.

The Icky/TMI/Not Fun Things
* This is actually just a tip for anyone who is pregnant and reading this, and hasn’t experience a vaginal birth before. Stock up on menstrual pads. You might not realize how long you may have bleeding and discharge for, but it is yucky and not fun. Have a lot of them on hand. You don’t want to have to go to the store on your first day home alone with your baby just because you ran out of the ones you stole from the hospital. Make sure you get a peri bottle from the hospital to help you clean up when you get home. Also… get a big container of Tucks pads. They are made for hemorrhoids (which, hey, might be a fun bonus after your deliver!) but they can also be used on your tender lady bits; I would sometimes wipe with them, and would also lay them on the pads a few times a day. Oh! And I heard a wonderful tip from someone online. Buy yourself some witch hazel if you don’t already have some, soak some pads with it, and put them in the fridge or freezer. Witch hazel is the soothing ingredient in Tucks pads, so this will basically be a nice, giant Tucks pad that is extra soothing.
* Okay, so this one isn’t icky or TMI or not fun, but also stock up on quick, healthy snack to have on hand. Do this before the baby comes. It can be very difficult to eat when you are with a newborn 24/7, and there were times that I’d look at clock and go, “Oops, it is 3pm and I’ve only had a bowl of cereal today.” Get fruit, fiber bars, and other snacks that you can grab between meals. This is especially important if you are breastfeeding; you need to take care of yourself and consume enough calories (and stay hydrated with plenty of water!). My husband was only able to take a week and a half off of work before I was thrown into parenthood full-force, so this was essential since I no longer had him home with me all day, making sure I was eating and drinking.

One final bit of advice… you don’t need a ton of stuff. I know, I know, I’m sitting her telling you all the products that were so great for us. But there are a lot of things you can wait to buy. In the very beginning, your baby only wants and needs you. Every situation is different, and what works for one baby won’t work for another. What one mother loves another despises. We never used pacifiers or a swing, but I’m sure other mothers would rate those items at the very top of their lists. Get the essentials and the things you will want early on, and don’t stress if you haven’t picked out what spoons you’re going to use when you start feeding solids.

There you go. The items that helped us through our first six months. Now that G is working on the second half of his first year, I am already finding new products that we love and starting to pack up some of the old stuff. You may have noticed that I left one glaring product line out of this: our cloth diapers. I have waaaaay too much to say about that one, so stay tuned for the next part of this series where I will talk about cloth diapering a baby through the first half a year, and what I have learned.

Rockin’ Green Winner

December 21, 2010

I had a lot of fun with my first blog giveaway! I hope I can bring you more in the future. Thanks again Kim @ Rockin’ Green for donating a bag of detergent.

Lucky #5 – Congratulations to Sarah! Check your email.

Don’t forget!

December 17, 2010

The Rockin’ Green Giveaway ends in just a few days! You have until Monday night to enter, and you can get up to four entries.

Happy Friday everyone! We spent today wrapping up our Christmas shopping and took Grant to see Santa for the first time. He was all smiles, thank goodness!

(This is a cell phone picture of the photo, so sorry about the quality.)

I am a handbag gal. In 2005 B.C. (before child) I started getting into purses a lot more. I had always liked having an assortment of bags but I was starting to want nice bags. It was the one thing I was materialistic about; I would wear jeans from Target and tops from the Old Navy clearance rack, but pair them with a Marc Jacobs bag and I was happy as a clam. (Are clams happy?)

Since having G, my priorities have shifted a bit. So have my finances. Unfortunately, I’ve had to sell off a lot of my handbag collection, only keeping one favorite and a few of my more practical bags. In fact, I carry my cheapo Envirosax Slingsax quite frequently (it’s lightweight and so convenient, but that’s a review for another day).

Anyhow, I have a very nice Coach diaper bag that doesn’t get a whole lot of love. I’m just not finding it to be all that practical. It’s bulky and heavy if I’m just running errands or going to lunch or something. Unless we’re going to go somewhere for the whole day, I prefer to leave it home.

I also have a bit of “bag ADD” in that I like to change up what I carry a LOT. What feels good one day doesn’t the next; I’ve never been one to stick to one purse for any length of time. But it’s a royal pain in the butt to change things up so frequently when you have to worry about leaving necessary baby items at home. It’s no longer just MY stuff I have to swap in and out.

Enter the Pishposh Mommy Carryall. I’ve had it for about a month now and it’s one of my favorite baby-related products. I wish I’d gotten it much, much sooner. There’s a zipper version (what I have) as well as a drawstring version. I went with the “Pacifica” print but I also really like “Townsend” (unfortunately it was on backorder when I ordered).

At first glance they may seem a little pricey, yes. But I keep in mind that I have wanted to order about 10 different diaper bags, hoping to find a system that works. I figure this will save me quite a bit of money in the long run, since I’m not the best at fighting a “good deal” when I see one and make some spontaneous, spur of the moment purchases sometimes.

If the price seems too high for you, keep in mind that coupon codes do become available (I used one for mine; “like” the company page on facebook to keep updated on them). HOLIDAY20 is the current code and will score you 20% off (what a great Christmas gift this would make!).

Okay, so here’s the concept: it’s a pocketed pouch that holds your diaper bag essentials. You can take this pouch and put it in one bag, and then in another, and then another… so if you want to use a big bag one day and throw in a lot more than what you usually carry, you can. But you’ll still have what you need if you want to throw it in a tote bag and go to lunch. That’s right, no real diaper bag required. You can use your purse, a canvas tote bag, a backpack, whatever.

We use cloth diapers (bulkier than disposables), and I’m impressed that I can definitely use this and carry a few diapers without it overflowing. Last weekend I fit two pocket diapers and three prefolds in it! It won’t fit into a small purse by any means (at least mine won’t if it’s filled), but it conveniently goes in almost all of my bags. Check out the dimensions (about 10inW x 9inH x 5inD before stuffing) to make sure it will work for what you carry. It’s not very structured so it has some “give.” It has lots of pockets to keep you organized, but still has a nice bit of open space in the middle for bigger items (like cloth diapers).

(It was difficult to show the interior, and the pockets are hard to see, but they are wonderful!)

I love love love (LOVE) this thing. I keep mine filled with wipes, wipe solution, at least one diaper, some CJ’s BUTTer (another review for another day, love that stuff!), hand sanitizer, Kleenex, lip balm, a toy, burp cloth, small wet bag, and a couple other little things. I can add things to it if I need to (or toss some other things directly into the bag I’m carrying), but I always know I’m covered if I need to run out the door.

One thing about it that I really like… it’s nice to grab just the pouch if you’re somewhere and need to do a diaper change. For example, I was at my aunt and uncle’s house this past Sunday, and when I changed him I didn’t need to haul my whole bag with me. Just grabbed the carryall and had everything I needed.

I definitely recommend this product. Order it from Pishposh Mommy; retails for $44.99.

Happy Monday!

We use cloth diapers, and we love them. Even my husband prefers them and is glad we use them.

That love has followed me into my laundry room. Cloth diapers do require a bit more laundry (duh) but I really don’t mind. To us it is worth it, and I love seeing all of our clean diapers neatly organized in G’s room:

Yes, I could probably use a support group.

Anyhow, my detergent of choice is Rockin’ Green. This stuff is fantastic. I keep mine in a canister in our laundry room and measure it with one of their magnetic laundry scoops, which conveniently sticks to the side of our washing machine. Awesome!

Copyright belongs to Rockin’ Green Cloth Diaper Detergent

Why do I love this stuff? Let me count the ways.
1) It is free of phosphates and contains no dyes (or some of those other ickies found in many detergents), making it better for the environment AND your kiddo’s skin.
2) It is made for cloth diapers, so it is safe to use on them and rinses clean. And, while it was formulated for diaper duty, it can also be used on your other household laundry. I don’t like to use “regular” detergents on G’s clothes or bedding, so I often use this stuff.
3) It works for various water types – just choose your formula and amount based on whether you have hard, soft, or “normal” water.
4) It comes in yummy scents that are natural and don’t stick around. Yup, they rinse clean, too. So nothing is left behind to irritate skin or cause build up on diapers, but the scents make doing laundry a little more fun.
5) Their customer service is among the best I’ve ever encountered. No, seriously. The owner herself will help you if you have any problems, questions, or need to fine-tune your diaper washing routine. Plus, she is so darn nice! And so are the other staff members I’ve encountered.
6) They are FUN. From their rock ‘n roll themes, to their contests and giveaways on twitter and facebook… they keep things fresh, hip, and modern. This ain’t yo’ grandma’s detergent! (Though I must say that my mom, G’s Grandma, is actually quite fresh, hip, and modern.)

Rockin’ Green (often shortened to “RnG” by its fans) also just came out with an ammonia laundry booster called “Funk Rock.” You can also “rock a soak” with the regular detergent in order to help remove build-up and other gunk (you should see the water after soaking sometimes! this stuff gets out a ton of grossness, even from “clean” items like towels and bedding). I love RnG and you should really just try it out yourself. I guess you could say it has a cult following, and its fans get pretty excited about it sometimes.

Alright, this got wordy. But it’s Monday, so how about a giveaway to help you through it?

How to enter? There are several ways. You can get up to four entries total, but you have to comment separately for each one. I will use Random.org to pick the winner. Contest will run for one week, and ends on Monday, December 20th, at 11:59pm.

***Comments are moderated and will not post right away, so don’t panic if you don’t immediately see your comment… please do not post it again.***

Don’t forget to include your email address in your response so I can contact you if you win!

My apologies, but I’m opening this up to those with a U.S. address only at this time.

1) Head on over to Rockin’ Green‘s website, spend a couple of minutes looking around, and comment which formula and scent you would most want to try or use. Choose carefully, if you win this is what you will get! (I use Classic Rock and love their new scent, “Mighty Mighty Marshmallow.”)

2) “Like” my blog’s page on facebook. Then, come back here and comment that you “like” it.

3) If you haven’t already, “like” Rockin’ Green on facebook. Comment here to tell me you are now, or already were, a fan of their page.

4) Follow my blog (using Google Reader or whatever else you prefer to use to keep track of the blogs you read). I’ll have to take your word for it, so after you add it come back here and let me know that I have a new follower. πŸ™‚

That’s it! I will close comments next Monday and notify the winner as soon as I sort through the entries. Good luck!

Disclaimer: I am not affiliated with Rockin’ Green, nor was I compensated in any way for this review or giveaway. I am simply a fan of theirs. The review was 100% my own opinion of their product and company. They were kind enough to donate a bag of soap to the winner.



November 26, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving. πŸ™‚

Last year on Thanksgiving, I knew I was pregnant but we hadn’t shared it with anyone yet. Well, other than my best friend (since first grade), who I told before my husband even knew… he was out of town and I had to tell SOMEONE about it.

I was battling my “morning” sickness and trying to play off the fact that I wasn’t drinking, even though I was quite the social drinker and had at least a few glasses of wine or a couple cocktails at any family gathering.

We told people about two weeks later, after my first doctor appointment. But boy was that a tough Thanksgiving! I had so much to be thankful for but I hate hiding things.

We had a wonderful first REAL Thanksgiving with G today.

Hanging out with Grandma… his shirt says, “My Grandma Makes the Best Turkey” πŸ™‚

I love my family. I am really lucky. My husband is actually still hanging out with my family… he’s staying up with them for awhile, playing cards and having a good time, before he braves the crowds with my aunt at 3am (is he freaking crazy?! lol).

I, on the other hand, opted to stay up late and take advantage of some of the internet sales going on, starting at midnight. While watching Roseanne. J gave me the go-ahead to order some cloth diapering stuff that I wanted for G. Not that we really need anything else, but I find it fun and we’re still saving money by not buying all those disposables each month… anything that makes changing diapers more fun should definitely be encouraged. Right? Right.

Anyhow, I scored some great deals and I’m hoping I get some of the free diapers or diapering accessories that are being given away. I already know I have a few free things coming to me, the rest is the luck of the draw. I’m currently waiting for theΒ Rockin’ Green website to come back up… I guess a LOT of other eager CDers wanted to take advantage of their sale, too. I love their detergent (a review and giveaway will be coming up in the near future) and am excited to stock up on it for a great price.

I used to get this excited over sales on designer bags. What happened? If you had told me a couple of years ago that I’d be stalking cloth diaper sales and trying to buy diaper detergent at 2am on Black (or “Green”) Friday, I’d have said you were nuts! πŸ˜‰


November 11, 2010

I took this last Wednesday. Dim lights, tired eyes, no makeup. Husband out of town. Quiet night together, just us two. Babywearing. Brand new Ergo (which I already love love love).

One of those imperfect perfect moments.

Inspired by: styleberry BLOG

Bummis diaper

September 30, 2010

Here’s Little Guy wearing the Bummis Tots Bots Easy Fit cloth diaper in “pomegranate.”

These have the BEST laundry tabs. I think they’re the only hook & loop style diaper I have that hasn’t come unvelcroed in the wash. And I love not having to pull out the dirty “insert” (it really does agitate out on its own).

They have some new prints that I’m dying to try out. My favorites are Tutti Frutti, Starburst, and Cosmic.

Have a Bummis diaper or wrap and want to try to win one of these? Check out the giveaway over at the Bummis blog.