The Flats and Handwashing Challenge starts on May 23rd and ends on May 30th. For this week, those who join the challenge can only use flat fold diapers, no more then 5 covers, and hand prep and wash these diapers for the entire week. We cannot use diaper sprayers, washers, or dryers. The purpose of this challenge is to show parents that any one, in any circumstance, can cloth diaper their babies for about the cost of a case, or a months worth, of disposable diapers. In a baby’s first year, new parents will have brought home an average of 2,788 diapers for a total cost of $557.60 *based on an average price of 20 cents per disposable diaper. I am joining… will you?
Today was my first handwashing day and I have to say, Putt Putt really decided to put this to the test. She woke up with a blow out I doubt ANY diaper could of contained. Thank you neighbor lady that fed her lots of fruit salad yesterday!! The Thirsties cover did a great job of keeping it in the cover though! It was on the edges of the cover, but that was it. No runny leaks down the legs etc. Great way to wake up in the morning though!!
Hubs started the breakfast for kids, so I headed into the bathroom to fill up the camp style washer bucket. First I filled the bucket with cold water, swished it a few times with the plunger, then left to go make a cup of coffee. This allowed them to soak for about 20 minutes, and since I was using cold water before hot water, it also helps keep them from staining! Which I really needed this morning.
After they soaked for about 20 minutes, and I had some life sustaining coffee in me, I went back and swished them around for about a minute or so with the plunger my mom found me at the dollar store for a buck. Everywhere else I looked they were three or four dollars for the rubber part, and another two or three for the stick! So use your local dollar store ladies! It really comes in handy! I did all this in our tubless shower. I dumped the bucket, and squeezed the water out of the diapers, then I put them back into the bucket. I added about 1 tsp of The Peaceful Housewife’s laundry detergent, with it’s yummy, Japanese Cherry Blossom scent, and filled it with HOT water! I really needed that yummy smell by then! Remember to turn on your bathroom fan and leave the door open! It really helps!
I swished it around and allowed it to sit for about five minutes, while I gulped some more coffee. Then I used that plunger and plunged up and down, up and down for a good three minutes! Talk about a work out!! I dumped that bucket, and squeezed out the excess water from the diapers. I rinsed the bucket out well then tossed the diapers back in. Filled it with cold water, used the plunger for a few minutes, and the water was clear, and bubble less. Dumped, and wrung out the diapers, and took them outside to hang dry in the already warm sunshine. A rarity here on the Oregon Coast!! But apparently it’s the calm before the storm, as they are expecting downpours all later this week and this coming weekend! UGH!!
All this was finished before the kids finished eating the pancakes Hubs made for them! It felt like forever, while I was plunging and wringing, but it only took me (except for the soaking time) about 10-15 minutes to do all this!
Yesterday I used 3 Green Mountain unbleached birds eye flats, 1 Green Scene Bamboo Fleece Flat (now stained, praying the sun will do it’s job today!), 1 Aliyah’s Hope Chest printed flannel flat, 1 Thirsties cover, and 2 homemade wipes. I have no idea how I used less wipes then I did diapers?? I always use wipes with every change… I am lost. If this keeps up, I will be looking for some wipes to review when this week is over!
I also realized that the reason the Origami fold wasn’t working was because I was trying to start upside down! Now it works great, though I still like the kite fold for Putter’s. The Origami was a little short in the rise area but it does give you a few extra layers for more absorbency…
Here is a new fold I am going to try today:
Lessons for the Day:
1. Use rubber gloves… my hands are so dried out now! You can also find these at the dollar store or use an old pair from the kitchen you are getting ready to toss!
2. Add the hot water, then the laundry soap, swish and THEN add the diapers.. this helps the soap dissolve better. I am not sure I got all the soap out since The Peaceful Housewife detergent doesn’t suds up much!
3. Drink your coffee before starting… maybe that should be lesson one?!