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Wednesday, June 8, 2011

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Traveling Is Hard Enough... How Not To Let Cloth Diapers Ruin Your Trip!

A few weeks ago, the stars aligned for a big family adventure in the minivan. We would be traveling almost 2000 miles, attending 2 weddings, and staying in 3 hotels plus my parents’ house over the course of about 8 days. Never mind buckling four kids in and out of car seats, I was slightly stressed about traveling for that long and with such a haphazard schedule, and successfully cloth diapering my little guy. I didn’t hesitate to switch to disposable nighttime pull-ups for my two big kids, but Baby R has never done disposables and I figured a long car trip would not be a good place to test them out.

After a little bit of research and some strategic planning, I decided that I would attempt a hybrid cloth diapering approach.  For the daytime car trip, I purchased a package of FLIP disposable inserts to use in the FLIP covers that I already own. I was pleasantly surprised by how affordable they were! I layered two FLIP disposable inserts into my cover and hoped for the best. 240 miles and four hours later, we stopped for lunch - I hadn’t heard a peep from the rear-facing carseat in ages. I grabbed my diaper bag with additional FLIP inserts, a Fuzzibunz pocket diaper (just in case his bum was looking red), some Kissaluvs diaper changing spray, and headed into the (surprisingly clean) restroom.

The FLIP disposable inserts were a total success. They were wet, but his bum was not red, the FLIP cover didn’t leak, and he was not at all uncomfortable. We decided to give a double disposable FLIP insert another try for the next leg of the trip. I switched out covers and decided to use a Bummis cover (the bright yellow one in the background of the photo up top). I felt like I could rest a little easier now that the disposable inserts had passed the first big test!

When we arrived at our first hotel for the night, I wanted to stick with our regular nighttime routine: a Bum Genius pocket diaper stuffed with a regular insert plus a hemp insert, lined with a disposable Bummis liner, covered with wool - usually a Kissaluvs cover or longies my mom made. Although I wouldn’t have access to a washer for another day, I grabbed the plastic “laundry bag” from the hotel room closet and turned that into my mini travel diaper bag (yup, totally forgot the wet bag!). Back in the car the next day and back on the road, I only put a single FLIP disposable insert into his cover because our road time was only scheduled to be two hours before we reached our next destination - New York City! The singly insert was also a success. No complaints and we all arrived happily at our hotel.

After we checked into our second hotel, I went back to my normal daytime cloth routine knowing that I was about 24 hours away from the use of a washing machine at my mom’s house! (Such a nice feeling.) I used about a 1/2 days worth of my regular mix and match cloth diaper approach - an all-in-one, a fitted with a cover, a pocket... I can’t commit! All of these diapers were tossed into our de facto diaper laundry bag, ready for the big washer at Mimi’s house! Using Bummis disposable liners helped keep the mess to a minimum while we were out of our element.

Back on the road the next day, we were back to our road-friendly double layer of disposable FLIP inserts and a cute cover. Knowing that we had about five hours of driving from New York to Boston, I also put a pair of fleece pants on - they seem to help with any leaking issues. (I certainly didn’t want to be dealing with a wet carseat.) Finally arriving at Mimi’s house, I made a quick dash for the laundry room and dumped all the diapers in for a good soak in cold water. For the rest of the time at my mom’s house, we were able to continue our regular routine and I wasn’t at all hesitant about using the disposable inserts for our long trip back to Charlotte at the end of the week. Having a cloth diaper travel system in place really helps me to know that I have one less thing to worry about on my next trip!

By Erin Brighton, Charlotte, NC  


Sheena said...

We just spent a week in Disneyland and used Flip disposable inserts for the day and it worked great! I hand washed the covers at night since we had no access to washers. We also used our Bum Genius plus hemp at night and I rinsed them well in the morning- not totally ideal, but it worked and they are stink free now that they have been washed!

holley family said...

Thanks for sharing your experience! WE have 2 big road trips coming up (one for my husband and I to travel to charlotte nc actually :) to look for a place to live and then another for our entire family (kids 7,5,3, and right now 4 weeks) to move to wingate, just outside of charlotte... i feel like i already have a "friend" there now :)

*reyanna klein* said...

Awesome! Thanks for this! :-)

Higgs Happenin's said...

This is great! I've been wondering how this could work. I was just going to go to sposies, but disposable liners are an awesome idea. I"ll have to look into that a little more.

Do liners like the bummis liners absorb a lot? or do they mostly just catch solids? I guess I need to do some research. I saw someone use rice paper or something once. hmmm

Erin said...

@holley family - definitely look us up! we are new here, too! and our 4 kids are similar ages!

@higgs happenin's - Bummis liners mainly catch solids - only very recently (at about 9 months) I felt they were useful. Before that, there isn't much point if you have an ebf baby!