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Thursday, June 27, 2013

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Confidence That Only Comes with Cloth

As I have a very active toddler and we've had more rain this spring than in the past couple hundred years, mud has been my nemesis. She loves to go out and play with her friends and get muddy. Several times she has done this in either a white shirt or white pants. I've had her come home from daycare with her original clothes in a wet bag (since she's moved on from diapers we use the wet bags for wet clothes) because they were so muddy. The teachers were surprised when I had a, "Well, its no big deal" attitude and sent her to school the next day in white again. Then the next week they saw her in the same outfits and they were white with not a hint of the reddish mud we have around here. Inevitably I got, "How do you keep her clothes so clean?"

The answer lies in doing cloth diapers for a couple of years. Inevitably there comes a messy diaper that you wish you could just throw away. But, because it cost a bit more than a disposable and has a really cute print that you just can't get rid of, you wash it and figure out how to clean that really cute Thirsties or BumGenius print you simply adore. My routine for these nasty type of diapers was: spray with a diaper sprayer, coat in Bac-Out, wash as soon as possible. After washing, it normally took a day in the sun if at all possible. It was quite simple but effective. I have little staining on my entire diaper stash and am able to use the same routine to get muddy clothes clean.

I also like that I am able to use some of my diapering accessories as saving money was always part of the plan. I've been known to hose down my toddler when she comes in with mud all over her legs with the diaper sprayer. Her muddy shoes also get the sprayer treatment when I wonder if the drains will hold that much mud. Wet bags are used for swimming and help keep wet things separate from the rest of the bag. I like them more than plastic bags because if I forget about the wet bag and find it a few days later, the suits don't have that mildewing smell that comes with a plastic bag. It seems small, but makes a huge difference to me. I've cleaned/sanitized my cloth wipes enough that I use them for cleaning around the house, they've turned into fantastic rags.

I wish everything in life translated this easily -- from finding ways to recycle what we already have to using skills learned in one setting to another. Rarely does it seem to work this way, and so cloth diapering gave me a few skills that really and truly did transition to other life areas. I fought what seemed to be a losing battle with my family in cloth diapering my child, but now they too have come around and seen that it was more than simply changing diapers that I learned.

Bio: Carolyn is a working mom to an often muddy toddler girl, and looking forward to round 2 to try new cloth diapering adventures.

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