I bought a diaper sprayer* way before Carter was ever born, but I only installed it recently when his poop got a lot more solid. It took a little time to get my spraying technique down, but now? I love it!

It literally sprays all the poop off the diaper, every bit. And so there's hardly any poop going into the washing machine now, and that is making a huge difference with my HE washer. I think it might not be such a big deal with a regular top-loader, but with the low-water washer, I can really tell a difference. I didn't realize how not-clean my diapers were until I started using the sprayer.

Doug says the washing machine no longer smells like a sewer after the diaper wash. I never thought it smelled that bad, but his nose is a lot more sensitive than mine. But now when I open the washer, I just get that slightly citrus-y scent of Bac-out, and not even a whiff of anything else.

If we have another baby, I just might spray the diapers from the beginning!

*A diaper sprayer hooks up to the water line coming into your toilet. You basically hold the diaper down in the toilet bowl and spray it off.
I get nostalgic in the fall; I'm not sure why. Maybe it's the approaching holidays that remind me of my childhood, or maybe it's the cooler weather that makes me yearn for comfort foods, which in turn reminds me of times gone by. But every fall, I find myself wanting to do things differently, to return to the simple traditions I knew as a child: making jam, canning vegetables, baking, knitting, sewing.

Last night we had fried chicken and collard greens for dinner. How southern is that? :-D I wasn't happy with how my greens turned out, and I am going to work on that. I have some ideas for replicating the unbelievably yummy collards at Stubbs BBQ. Anyway, I also made some cornbread to go with those dishes. I don't have the right sized cast iron killet, but I do have a bunch of mini iron skillets. And so I present: mini-corn pones. :-D )

Another thing I've been thinking about in the last six months or so is how to cut back on my energy use. It seems like a no-brainer for someone like me, but I'd gotten lazy. I'd stopped thinking about switching off lights or turning up the thermostat. We've been much better about those things since Carter was born.

But one we hadn't thought much about was laundry. We have an HE washer and dryer, and the dryer is natural gas-powered, so we haven't thought much about energy or water use with laundry. We cloth diaper, though, and so that means a few more loads of laundry every week than we would do otherwise. I feel fine about the water use -- what we really need to do is change out our toilets to double-flush ones. But those diapers take a looong time to dry, at least two cycles on high. And geez, that's crazy!

So a couple of weeks ago, I decided to start line drying my diapers. I put some of the natural fiber ones in the dryer for a short cycle to soften them up (they are pretty crunchy otherwise), and then hang them outside, but the fleece pockets and microfiber inserts go straight on the drying rack. Wipes (which I had stupidly been drying and then re-wetting to go back in the warmer!) get folded, wet a little more, and put in the warmer again.

This has benefits other than saving energy, I've found. Sunlight is an amazing disinfectant and bleach. Stains just disappear, like magic. My diapers have smelled a lot cleaner, to my surprise. And there's just something cool about hanging them out to dry. )
I've really had fun knitting these wool soakers. They're pretty quick and easy, and it's given me a chance to play with color. I tend to avoid using more than one yarn when I knit, and it's something I really need to practice.

Argyle soaker )

Ravenclaw longies )

I've put a registry together for diapering supplies, since Babies R Us doesn't really have much in the way of cloth diaper stuff. It's at Wildflower Diapers. I'm waiting for the Bum Genius 3.0s to come out (apparently this will be in December) and I'll add a bunch of their AIOs to the list. But otherwise, I think that list is the rest of what I'll need to get started. Cut for more diaper talk... )

In other news, we're off to London on Tuesday night for our "Babymoon". It's likely the last international flight I'll be on for a while, so I'm going to enjoy it. :-)
Pictures here )

In other news, my sister found out today that her baby is a girl!
I always thought I would use cloth diapers, since they're so much better for the environment and by many accounts, for your baby's skin and general health. When I lived in Arizona, I remember there was some controversy about the amount of water needed to wash cloth diapers, and that made me think twice at the time. Of course, now I'm back on the cloth diaper path, living in a new place and reading research that's ten years more advanced.

This post has a lot of great information about the benefits of cloth diapers over disposables and is definitely worth a read. The Cloth Diaper Blog is also full of information. Anyone reading this use cloth diapers recently and have any recommendations? I've been looking at all-in-ones and Pocket Diapers, but I'm really just getting started and would love some advice. :-)

March 2013

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