Are Cloth Diapers Right for your Family?

are cloth diapers right for your family

Now that we’re expecting baby #2 (and I’ve given myself permission to blog more about personal, creative, and mommy-type subjects) I have a backlog of posts just waiting to be finished. One such post is about our experience with cloth diapers.

When I was pregnant with Monica, I had all the best intentions to cloth diaper. They can save money, are better for the environment, can be better for diaper rashes, can be used with multiple kids, and certain brands have good resale value. I read lots of blog posts about the topic, including ones from Young House Love [1, 2, 3], Daily Garnish [1, 2], My Life in Transition, and random ones found on Pinterest as well as talked with some friends who used cloth. Allison also shared her experience with cloth diapers (including with a toddler) shortly after Monica was born.

Looking back, my research may have been a little one-sided since all of the sources were very pro-cloth diaper. Not that there’s anything wrong with that, but many of the bloggers’ lifestyles are a bit different from ours, so I didn’t get the most realistic view of cloth diapering. And let’s be honest, I was wooed by the sweet siren song of savings.

To cut to the chase: Should you buy cloth diapers?

Without looking at the economics (we’ll crunch numbers later), I think cloth diapers are a really good choice when you are home with your kids full- or part-time, work from home, or if your childcare (like a grandparent, home daycare, or nanny) is willing to use cloth diapers. Even if these don’t totally apply to you, cloth diapering can make a dent in the diaper budget over time if you plan on using them with multiple children.

baby Monica in cloth diapers

Our Experience

Right after Monica was born (and we were getting using to life with a newborn) we just used disposables. It didn’t really cost us anything since we received some disposables at baby showers. We tried cloth when she was a few weeks old, but none of us were really ready for them. We transitioned to cloth full time (except for when we left the house) when Monica was a little over 1 month old. Yes, you can use cloth on-the-go and store the dirties in a wet bag, but we never got into it.

Newborns go through approximately 10 diapers per day, and we have 20 cloth diapers, so that meant I was washing diapers about every other day. Things weren’t too smelly or messy during the first 6 months since Monica nursed exclusively. Breastfeeding poop rinses and washes off pretty easily.

Once my 12 weeks of maternity leave ended, we could only use cloth during nights and weekends since Monica’s daycare only uses disposables. It still made sense to use cloth when she was a little baby and needed her diaper changed more often.

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Life Lately: 20 Weeks!

Birthday flowering tree

We made it! It’s Friday! Our routines were a little off-kilter this week between my 20 week ultrasound (everything looks good! and the baby’s heartbeat sounds like someone running a treadmill!) and Monica catching a 24 hour stomach bug. So to say that we’re looking forward to a weekend of relaxing and playing at the park is an understatement.

What I’m craving: Last pregnancy, my biggest craving was chocolate milkshakes. This time, I’m all over everything bagels with cream cheese. But don’t worry, I also won’t turn down a cookie or dessert. Miss Monica isn’t one to turn down a cookie either. Fortunately, these breakfast cookies are full of healthy ingredients that I wouldn’t feel guilty about giving her for a snack or with breakfast. They’re also on my list of things to bake/do this weekend :)

What I’m working on: I’m still waiting to hear from Illinois about the registration status of Brightwater Financial, hence the lack of a substantial “coming soon” page. In the meantime, I’m working on building my website and and overcoming any insecurities. If any of you are feeling insecure about doing something new (launching a business, becoming a parent, etc.), take comfort in the fact that you’re not alone.

What I’m looking forward to: Dressing the belly is a little different this time around since a bulk of my pregnancy will be during the warmer months. Which means that my small maternity wardrobe is already feeling a little tired and boring. And let’s be honest, a quick trip to the mall requires a little more planning than it did two years ago. Thank goodness John’s sisters gave me a gift card to Stitch Fix for my birthday. Because, you guys, they now have maternity clothes!! Do you hear the angels singing too??? I already filled out my style profile and am anxiously awaiting my first delivery of clothes to try on. Fingers crossed that they arrive before Monica’s birthday party.

What I need help with: Speaking of Monica’s birthday party, it’s three weeks away and family members are asking about presents. While girlfriend would be more than happy with a cupcake and 24 hour access to the park, people are asking about something more tangible. Yes, she can always use clothes and loves reading books. I’ve also thought about getting a few more things to go with the play kitchen she received last year (like this adorable salad set). What do your 2 year olds enjoy?

How to Save a Broken Makeup Compact

Monica is now at the age when she likes to imitate everything that we do. This includes trying to put on makeup while I’m getting ready in the morning. Most mornings I hold her and explain my morning routine: swipe on some toner, lotion on my face, concealer, foundation, blush, eye shadow, and mascara. For a while, she was content with playing with a set of travel brushes from a Clinique bonus time gift. She now wants to participate and asks for blush and eye shadow. I play along by very lightly rubbing the brush on her cheeks before dipping the brush in the compact and putting on blush myself.

playing with makeup

On other mornings, she likes to go through my makeup bag and put on my makeup by herself. Obviously I don’t give her the concealer or mascara, but it’s pretty harmless to let her play with my blush and eye shadow.

Unfortunately, some of these mornings result in dropped and cracked makeup compacts. Right now, my Aveda foundation is pretty looking sad. It’s supposed to be a pressed powder, but you wouldn’t know by looking at it.

saving a cracked makeup compact

Fortunately, this is an easy $2 fix as opposed to replacing the whole compact. Simply pick up a bottle of rubbing (isopropyl) alcohol from the first aid section at Target, Walgreens, or CVS. You might already have some in your first aid kit at home because the alcohol is used to clean any bacteria in a scrape or wound.

Trickle enough rubbing alcohol onto the broken makeup to form a paste.

making a paste with rubbing alcohol

Drag the back of a spoon (or a clean finger) over it to reshape.

smooth the paste with a spoon

Leave the compact overnight to dry. The alcohol will evaporate, returning the makeup to its former glory.

saved makeup compact

Big Sister Collage

Here we go again!

If my sporadic blog posts haven’t already given away, we’re expecting Baby #2 this September! Just like my pregnancy with Monica, we’re excited and a little nervous about what a new baby means for our family. Right now, I’m 18 weeks along and the baby is the size of a bell pepper. For the sake of remembering…

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