Thursday, April 28, 2011

The Flats and Hand Washing Challenge

Why I am doing it and how I am preparing?
(I was going to post this a while back ago but my grandmother died and it spaced my mind. So here it is finally!)
I first heard about the Flats and Hand Washing Challenge and I was interested! I read an article a few weeks prior about families who have to leave their babies in diapers for long amounts of time and even wash out DISPOSABLE diapers to reuse them! At the time I read the article I thought "Why don't they just rewash cloth diapers?!" I understand why some families don't want to or don't even know about cloth diapers. When I first heard about diapers I thought "EW! I am not going to do that! That is gross." Then I found out about modern cloth diapers. I looked through a few different brands and the price is what drove me away. I was broke at the time and having to spend $15-$20 on ONE diaper?! NO I could not afford that.
So I understand (kind of) why some families don't want to do cloth diapers. Whether it be the grossness factor or the start up cost. The start up cost CAN be expensive BUT it doesn't have to be! These poor families who rewash disposable diapers could EASILY do cloth diapers if they just knew about them! I am so glad Kim from Dirty Diaper Laundry has set up this challenge. This is a great way to help spread the word about cloth diapers and how easy they are/ can be!

So why am I doing it? To help spread awareness about cloth diapers. I LOVE them and I know that even a family who is struggling to afford food or diapers can do this. I was in the same place when we first started cloth diapering. I still had to buy disposable diapers and try to save up money to be able to afford one cloth diaper every few weeks and it was hard! If I had known that cloth diapering could have been cheaper I would have gone the cheaper route first. I want to show those families that you don't have to spend a fortune every month on diapers! You CAN diaper your baby and not have to break the bank!

How am I preparing? I have 12 huge flats from Diaper Junction and 3 flour sack towels from Target. I am not going to be using a lot because I really want it to be realistic. (All though we will see how it goes after the first few days. I may buy one more package of flour sack towels) I will be using 2 fleece covers, one wool cover, one RumpaRooz cover, and a large Charlie Banana pocket diaper for a cover. (I have the 'Goodbye Disposable, Hello Cloth' diaper and it's way too big to use as a diaper so I am going to get as much use out of it by using it as a cover : ) It's way too cute to just let it sit there!) The wool cover will be used mostly at night. Fleece covers are a great cheap way to go for covers. They are more breathable than PUL covers and are usually cheaper/just as cheap. The RaRz cover it the only real cover I have so of course I'm going to be using that too!
I've practiced folding my flats and pinning them/snappi-ing them. I LOVE it! I don't know what it is (maybe the simplicity of it all) but I love pinning flats. I love folding them! I was very scared about doing all of this but the more I do it, the easier it gets. The thing I'm worried about it washing them. I am planning on washing some in the sink by hand. I believe my mom has a bucket style washer (like Kim from DDL showed you how to make). So if I decide I hate it, I can go and get hers. She told me she paid about $15-$20 to buy. I will try to find where she bought it.
I will also be washing my flats with normal detergent just like a normal family would (Cheap liquid detergent and powdered Tide). I will not be using cloth diaper safe detergent because I know when you are struggling for money and can not diaper your baby, you sure as heck don't have enough money to pay for extra detergent (and the shipping costs too!). I really would like to make this as realistic as possible. I will be drying them a few different ways. In the bathroom, outside (Attached to hangers and hung up on my balcony), and any just hung up on hangers in the house. I dried one of my flats the other day outside and it took about 30 minutes or less to dry! It was hotter and windy so it dried SO fast!
I really hope this challenge will bring light to families who do not know about cloth diapers. I hope these families who are struggling to afford disposable diapers will be able to see that cloth diapering is easy and cheap. I also want to say to anyone who is struggling, there are programs to help families in need. There are people out there who will donate diapers to families in need. If you need help, ask for it! I try to donate to families as often as possible because when I was starting up, someone helped me and it made a world of difference. I was able to cloth diaper my baby full time and I could finally stop using disposable diapers. So if you have extra diapers you, please consider donating them instead of selling them!


  1. You had a lot of the same thoughts and reservations as me! :)

    I couldn't believe how expensive CDs were 2 1/2 years ago when I started doing it. I wish someone could of showed me flats back then and how CHEAP they were!

    I love flats! They really are easy to use and work great!

    You can follow my blog, too if you'd like and how I am doing for The Flats and Handwashing Challenge!

  2. Good luck!! Keep us posting about how it's going!