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Monday, March 8, 2010

Fluff Mom Mondays

Tell us about yourself! What is your name? How many little ones do you have?
My name is Laura Cowan, and I am a WAHM: I am continuing my career as a book editor and freelance writer while I stay home with my baby girl. I missed the camaraderie of working in an office and wanted to create a place for media professionals to discuss industry issues, so I started a blog at It's in its infancy stages, but I have had some great conversations there and on Twitter (@a2editor), and I'm learning a lot by blogging.

How long have you used cloth diapers?
About 8 months: since we realized our daughter was not going to immediately grow into size small diapers and we bought newborn covers for her.

What made you decide to use cloth diapers?
Initially, the cost of disposables, but when I started investigating ways to get free diapers, cloth diapers kept popping up, and I decided to try them. Then I learned that by cloth diapering I was saving two tons of trash from going into our overflowing landfills (per kid!), and there was no turning back.

What was your first cloth diaper purchase?
Prefolds and some newborn-size Prowraps and Bummis covers.

Tell us about your stash:
My stash is actually quite large because I wanted to try all kinds of diapers. I didn't want to pay for all this experimentation, though--after all, we got into cloth diapering to save money--so about 3/4 of my stash was acquired via baby registries and blog giveaways:

12 BumGenius OS pockets, plus hemp inserts to make these leak-proof (which bulks them up enough to relegate them to night-time use)
a few snap one-size pockets I use during the day, including a couple Fuzzibunz, Happy Heinys, and a Funky Diaper Co. diaper
30 or so Green Earth chinese unbleached DSQ infant-size prefolds
2 newborn-size Kissaluvs, 2 XS BumGenius AIOs (these were perfect in this small size but expensive)
3 premium-size Green Earth chinese unbleached DSQ prefolds I haven't used yet, planning for 15 total
a variety of Bummis and Prowraps covers in newborn and small sizes
a variety of adjustable-size covers such as Thirsties Duo Wraps,
Blueberries snap covers, and a Grobaby shell I use with prefolds

What is your favorite cloth diaper/diapering system? Why?
We love Thirsties Duo Wraps and DSQ prefolds! My husband actually refuses to use pocket diapers, because we've had leaks with those in the past, but a good diaper cover with leg gussets never fails.

My other favorite part of our system is our gentle and super cheap wipes solution I took from roughly 1 cup water and 1 teaspoon Dr. Bronner's castile soap go into a spray bottle with a few drops of peppermint or lavender oil. We spray it right on baby's behind, but you could also spray a wipe or soak your wipes in this solution. You could add a carrier oil to condition baby's skin if you didn't use a spray bottle. Too much oil gums up the spray mechanism.

Tell us about your wash routine
I use 1/4 oz. of Allen's Naturally or 1 T of Rockin' Green detergent in my HE washer. My routine is pre-rinse followed by a "heavy duty" wash, which is pre-programmed to include a hot wash and two rinses. Since we're now in the semi-solid poop stage (TMI, sorry), I've doubled my detergent and added an extra final rinse when necessary. Sunshine bleaches out any stains.

Have your friends and family been supportive of your decision to use cloth?
For the most part. I'm grateful my skeptical friends listened when I said I wanted diapers as shower gifts. Now I'm a go-to expert among my friends, so I get a lot of shy requests to let people watch me change a cloth diaper. Of course I don't mind. Why wouldn't I want to show off my daughter's Pink Lemonade print Blueberries cover? :) The "Butt Pooh" decoration on disposable diapers can't hold a candle to my cute cloth diapers.

Any challenges you've run into with using cloth diapers?
Our BumGenius OS pockets leaked like crazy until I doubled them up with hemp inserts. Baby girl is a heavy wetter, apparently, so for the most part we stick with prefolds and Thirsties covers, which are much more absorbent than terry inserts and contain messes well with the leg gussets.

Your best piece of advice for someone new to cloth diapering
Try a variety of diapers from the most popular brands (Thirsties, Green Earth, Happy Heinys, Blueberries, Fuzzibunz, and Kissaluvs are my favorites) because moms' favorite brands are favorites for a reason, but you never know how a diaper is going to fit your baby or your lifestyle. And, different diapers work for different purposes and at different ages. You don't want to have a stash full of one kind of diaper that baby suddenly discovers how to take off!

Your favorite scripture, quote, or anything else that you'd like to add?
My favorite scripture is Jeremiah 29:11, which encourages me when the future seems uncertain:

"For I know the plans I have for you," declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future" (NIV).

How cool is that?