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Sunday, May 11, 2014

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Prefolds and Covers at Daycare, OH MY!

When we first set out on our cloth diapering journey, my husband and I tried quite a few systems before we decided on prefolds. We knew our daycare was open to prefolds since another mother introduced us to them, but there were a few things we learned over time that have made things easier for both the daycare providers and us.

#1) PREFOLD your prefolds
Our providers occasionally have difficulty folding the correct way. For those of you who use prefolds, you know it’s not that difficult, but when you have four other toddlers screaming in the room it is SO much easier to simply throw it in the cover and go!

#2) Stuffing prefolds?
If you can provide extra covers each day, it works even better if you can prestuff your covers. It’s a little thing, but it helps the provider and ensures a better fit which helps prevent those little prefold corners from peeking out.

#3) Covers, covers and more covers
Part of the reason we chose prefolds was to save money on covers. We have learned over time that most of our daycare providers prefer a new cover each time. We started with sending three covers, now we use five, and it has made our provider much happier.

#4) CD safe cream
We orignally used a non-safe cream with liners but we found that often the provider would forget the liner or get cream on the prefold anyways. I finally purchased some CJ’s. Not only is CJ’s amazing, but no more errors and less scrubbing my prefolds!

#5) Wet bags
Wet bags have helped save my diapers in quite a few ways. The first is that the providers know that diapers move from the clean bag to the wet bag, instead of back into the clean bag: yuck! It also saves the trouble of the infamous “white plastic bag”, which can get misplaced or even THROWN AWAY.

#6) Liners, for some but not all
We originally used liners to help with the poops. It turns out that our providers prefer to simply place the folded prefold in the wetbag. This helped us since I no longer had to worry about throwing liners in with my diaper laundry; I had plenty of spraying to do anyways! However, the providers in the 2 year old room have let us know that they prefer the liners so we will be switching back. My best advice would be to provide liners, explain options, and let the provider choose.

#7) Covers with flaps
While we love our Blueberry, Imagine and Kissa covers, covers with flaps help prevent the “prefold sticking out” issue that has lead to LOTS of clothes changes at daycare and a good amount of frustration from our providers. For this reason, we try to use only covers with front and back flaps.

#8) To Flip, or not to Flip?
We felt that AI2’s would be awesome for daycare. We tried Flip’s. No folding, small and thin: perfect, right? For us, it was not. Even though we educated all of our children’s providers about “soft side up, letters down”, after three different “mistakes” I could not deal with another bum-burn. Daycare providers are busy and if you have a daycare like ours, there may be other teachers and substitute teachers coming in on occasion who may not be educated on which way to put a Flip. It may help to write “UP” on the insert. We simply went all prefold. No risk of putting microfiber against the bum and risking a burn. However, if you have a single provider, Flips are a pretty simple system.

If you are looking for a similar system, we have friends who use Best Bottoms successfully at our center. The snaps help the insert go in the right way and also prevents the issue mentioned in #7.

Overall, we have had a good experience using prefolds and covers with our daycare, but we have learned that we need to be flexible. Talk to your provider, let them touch/try things and try to tackle issues head on. It is possible to use prefolds and covers at daycare successfully!

Bio: Carrie Long - Wife and mother of two beautiful girls and one angel. Occasional speech language pathologist and animal rescue enthusiast.

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