Jan 12 2011

Two kids in diapers

Jonathan is 24 months. Vivienne is 3 weeks. Johnny has shown several signs of being close to potty-trainable, but it could still be awhile before he’s out of diapers. So for awhile, we’ll have two kids in diapers.

I don’t love cloth diapers like I once did when we started out, when Johnny was 6 months and we moved to an apartment with a washer/dryer.

I do love the overall cost and how I don’t always need to think about buying diapers — I can just wash a load and be done with it. And the environment and chemicals and blah blah.

But there are things I can grumble about. We have a front-loader washing machine, and I don’t think our particular model (or type) is best suited for washing cloth dipes. So it can take a bit longer to get everything cleaned and rinsed.

I’ve been using Country Save detergent on all of our laundry because it’s a fantastic price, but I don’t think it’s powerful enough for our diapers anymore. It used to be ok, I think, but I just had too many stink issues lately and so I bought some Rockin’ Green and the ammonia getter-ridder and I think that helped somewhat. But still, so much work to keep those diapers in good shape! Not to mention, I live in a cave where we don’t have direct sunlight or a balcony where I can sun diapers.

Johnny has been fighting diaper changes lately, to the point where he sometimes needs to sit in time-out for a few minutes to chill out and cooperate for a diaper change. He’s also been bringing me his soiled diapers if I don’t catch him quick enough. Ick.

We’ve been using a lot of disposables for him lately. It started out as a nighttime-only thing, since the disposables are trimmer and more absorbent than any cloth overnight combo I could throw at him. And then he had a horrible rash that required a few prescriptions to clear up, so we were in disposables for that time too. When I was heavily pregnant, I didn’t want to have a bunch of dirty diapers waiting around for me after our daughter was born, so he was in disposables for awhile then.

Now it seems he’s showing a strong preference for the disposables. I don’t know if it’s a comfort thing or a power struggle or what. I’ll keep trying to use cloth on him, but it’s not worth a fight — ESPECIALLY if he gets his payback by taking off his diaper and stamping his poopy bottom on the floor. I just don’t want to deal with that right now.

I’ve been buying his disposables on Amazon, thanks to the subscribe & save, Amazon Mom, and random 20% off coupons I’ve been able to combine, so it’s not a huge expense thankfully. But ugh! It’ll be great when he doesn’t need a diaper at all.

Share some potty-training resources/ideas with me? Oh, and remember, I don’t have a yard — so I don’t think I’ll let him run around pantsless in the parking lot until he needs to potty.

Vivienne is something like 3.5 weeks old and somewhere in the 9 to 10-lb. range, I’m guessing. She was 8 lbs. 10 oz. at her 11-day checkup. We had her in NB disposables for her first week of life. I introduced cloth to her bottom on day 6 when she lost her umbilical cord stump.

We’ve had trouble achieving a good, leak-free fit from cloth with her. I’ve had cloth and disposables leak, but the worst offenders, sad to say, were some of her cloth dipes in those early days.

She’s chunked up a bit more and I’m now able to put her in some of my one-sized diapers (Flips, Econobums, and my lone BumGenius 3.0). I also have some Happy Heiny size smalls that my friend rented to us.

Of course, newborns go through a ton of diapers per day. It’s really nice not to have to worry about disposables, so long as I’m able to keep up with all the laundry. So far, so good.

But since she’s fitting into the one-size stuff, I’ve gotta say, I think it was a bit of a waste for me to buy newborn cloth dipes. I’ll explore that a little more in another post.

Gotta run — I’ve got some diapers to change!

7 Responses to “Two kids in diapers”

  1. My random thoughts:

    Front-loaders are notorious for being terrible for cloth diaper washing. They beat the diapers up more, and use such small amounts of water (hence the “green” seal) that they do a poor job both cleaning and rinsing- I guarantee you that’s not helping with the stink issue.

    We normally use Charlie’s, but I didn’t feel like ordering any online, and the diaper store nearby sells Rockin’ Green, so we’re going to be trying it when my Charlie’s runs out (probably next week).

    When Lucy was born, I started her out with AIOs and pockets. She was a skinny baby, and we had a TERRIBLE time with leaks. I about threw in the towel, but decided to give prefolds and covers a go. Voila! Junie is similarly-sized and prefolds work great with her, too- no issues. I truly think prefolds are easier to get a tighter fit with, but I know some people love their pockets and AIOs.

    Man, do I understand about diaper changes! We keep a favorite book at the changing table (right now it’s Wocket in my Pocket) and I let Lucy “read” it while I recite it from memory. It seems to help distract her and make things go more smoothly.

    Do you use disposable liners? We use them only once a day- I put them in her prefold after her first morning change, ’cause that’s when she has a bm. Then the liner gets dumped in the toilet (totally flushable!) and even though the diaper’s still dirty, you don’t have to rinse (most of the time). This has helped us a lot, because Lucy’s dipes were getting disgusting.

    Oh, and I REFUSE to buy newborn-sized cloth dipes. We use ‘sposies until the babies are big enough for the small size, which is 8 lbs. The small goes 8-15 lbs, medium is 16-30 something lbs. I’m hoping to get away with just those two sizes, and we only *just* stopped having to fold down the prefolds on the mediums.

    I’m sorry CDing is becoming a pain for you :-(
    I’ll be honest- if I didn’t find CDing to be so convenient, I would likely go to ‘sposies. But every situation is different, and if it’s causing you headache, don’t worry about going back and don’t let anyone make you feel guilty for it.
    With two young kids, you have to do what works for you.
    Emily´s last post ..Wordless Wednesday

  2. I’m sorry you’re having such a hard time. :-( And you’re right – front loaders are terrible. I’ve been having major stink issues too. I finally boiled my inserts! That really did the trick. I’ve decided to switch to all-cotton diapers. From what I’ve been reading, the microfiber inserts just hold on to the minerals in the water very tightly, so they’re especially bad for hard water.

    The more I’ve been reading about disposables, the more I’d rather stick to cloth. I’d love to do cloth from birth for my next kid, but we’ll see.

  3. I have nothing to add about the cloth diapers, since I have only used disposables, but I think that a front loaders is not helping with the stink! :(

    As far as changing your son – do what works right now! Don’t stress yourself out, it is not worth it for any of you! He will not be in diapers forever, so if you have to spend some money on disposables for him, it will be worth saving a “headache” for you! You are doing a great job as a mommy of two…do what is right for you and don’t worry about what anyone else thinks – because it does not matter! :)

  4. I can relate on your cloth diaper issues! My youngest is 2
    and has been wearing cloth diapers since she was 3 months old – we
    had a stockpile of newborn & size 1 diapers given to us by
    my sister so we let them run out before buying cloth diapers. We
    also had a 22 month old at the time, and went through a tough
    adjustment period, so I don’t regret using disposables for the
    first few months. Plus, the first cloth diapers we bought were the
    ONLY cloth diapers we bought, and they still fit her. She was fine
    in cloth exclusively until about 13 months, when she started
    getting horrible re-occurring diaper rashes. After battling them
    for 2 months, we switched to disposable diapers at night and the
    problem went away. For detergent, we have used Charlie’s Soap, if
    you buy in bulk it is cheap and we use it on all our clothes. We
    did start having stink issues with “clean” diapers, so I started
    soaking the diapers in the washer over night, then washing 2x. I
    used BAC-Out for a bit, but it is expensive and I think it
    contributed to the rash problem. Sometimes I put a 1/2 cup of
    vinegar in the rinse cycle for odors. Works great and cheap

  5. I had to wash all our cloth diapers by hand so can’t help you out on the washing machine issues…but as for potty training Johnny…maybe tell him you don’t have the money to buy him any more diapers (or only one a day). I’ve heard this tactic used before. I think he’d understand fairly well and be agreeable to using the potty. I’m trying something similar to get my son (2 years 3 months) to switch from store bought to homemade yogurt.
    Or you could go on an outing for a few hours and “discover” that there are no extra diapers for him in the diaper bag. This really happened when I was watching an almost 4 year old girl and took her back to my parents house to play for an afternoon. She was forced to use the bathroom and from that day on, never wore another diaper. Even though she was twice your sons age, I doubt it will be a problem as I remember a line from a book that said that over half the world’s children are potty trained before age one.
    Hope one of these ideas work for you.

  6. I’ve been following you for a little over 2 years and many of your views seem to align with my wife and I. Our son is almost 24 months old right now. He’s been in cloth diapers since the disposables we got from the hospital ran out. At around 18 months he started showing interest in the potty and watching me potty. Not trying to be weird, but I’ve just read on some dad blogs that watching helps teach. We had bought a potty already and he would sit on it and put his stuffed animals on it. We also had a couple of books off PaperBackSwap and a video from the library we had been introducing to him for a month or so.

    Anyway, when he started saying “pee”, “poop”, “potty” and could tell us when he was going in his diaper I jumped on Amazon and bought 4 of this to take advantage of the free shipping:
    We waited until the weekend after they arrived, because I would be home and could help, and we had him in the training underwear all day except for his nap and bedtime. He peed through the underwear and pants the first couple of days, but after both of us working with him that weekend staying on top of it and my wife with him through the days he had peeing mostly figured out by the next weekend.

    Now we’re at a point where he has peeing almost completely under control and can usually hold his poop, but won’t poop in the potty. He rarely poops his underwear, usually he holds it until he has a diaper on. We’re able to grocery shop with underwear on and he’ll tell us when he has to go.

    I know all kids are different, but for us anyway we both feel that diving into the underwear helped us. He didn’t like being wet. When he would start leaking it was touching his skin and he didn’t like it so he’d clench up and hold it until we rushed to the bathroom. I keep trying to tell my sister this for her 3 year old, but she doesn’t want to listen. She keeps telling me she has the pull-ups, books, potty, etc and nothing works. From my point of view though, the pull-ups suck too much of the moisture away and act as a diaper still. These underwear get wet quickly, but have enough padding to soak up the first bit before you get to the bathroom.

    Hope this helps.

  7. @Emily — We have the Bummis liners that we used when Johnny was in the “sticky poop from starting solids” phase. Those things helped a lot! I don’t really need them anymore for him, thank goodness. I may just jump back into disposables for awhile with her for that phase, because it is gross as can be.

    Thanks for the suggestions, everyone! I have a feeling this will be an adventure, but we’re gunna get through it!

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Hey! I'm Kacie, wife to Shane and mother to Jonathan (7), Vivienne (5) and Amelia (2) . I write about my family's finance: how we save money, improve our spending, and plan for the future.

I hope I can inspire and encourage you to improve your situation. See disclosure.

I'm adopting a much slower-paced posting schedule, and treating this as a hobby blog now.

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