When I found out I was pregnant I started looking into cloth diapering. I had a couple of friends who were "CD-moms" and were in love with it. I had always been very interested in the concept, especially for environmental reasons. I did not like the thought of the amount of paper diapers one child goes through until they are potty-trained. It was also a factor that usually the cost of cloth diapering should be less if you use them for the whole time your child needs diapers - but of course that depends on how much of a hobby it becomes. A lot of people get really into it and become collectors of certain diaper-types! Of course, you can often sell the diapers after use and regain a part of the original cost.
It just so happened that me and my boyfriend traveled to the U.S. when I was pregnant, so we could order some diapers online on a site that does not ship to Iceland. We also bought some second-hand diapers on Facebook, in a group where you can get diapers in good condition for a reasonable price. We also got a lot of information from Youtube - especially here, as well as in an Icelandic Facebook group designated to discussions and questions about cloth diapering.
We had decided to start using cloth diapers when our daughter was big enough to use One Size diapers - but usually newborns need special newborn diapers or other solutions. The One Size diapers have settings so they "grow" with the child. However, when our daughter was born she was so tiny that it looked like i would be months until she fit into the diapers we had. Soon I got tired of the disposable diapers and excited to start experimenting with cloth. We decided to buy a few prefolds - thick cotton inserts used with a waterproof cover.
We also bought some second-hand newborn diapers - personally I liked the prefolds system better and will probably use that from the beginning for the next child. At this time we were using disposables alongside the cloth diapers, since we did not have enough of the latter ones.
It was a happy day when our girl, at 2 1/2 months and just under 5 kg, started fitting in the One Size diapers! Now we only use cloth diapers during the days, although we still use the disposable ones at night. We have a total of 20 diapers and also sometimes use the prefolds and covers. I have found out that we can go up to four days without doing diaper-laundry, but usually we do it every third day. Below are the types we use.
Bumgenius Original (pocket style)
This diaper consists of a waterproof shell with a pocket for an insert. These come with two inserts, one small and one larger (the larger one is in the photo above). A lot of people use other types of inserts than the ones included to better control the absorbency. These diapers do not require you to remove the inserts before putting the diapers in the machine, as they do so themselves during the wash.
These diapers have two absorbent tabs that are attached to the waterproof shell. This is a so-called All-In-One diaper, since you do not need to assemble it like the pocket style diaper above.
Tots Bots Easyfit
I bought those second hand on the Facebook page mentioned above, for a very good price since they were slightly flawed (crooked seams, nothing major). These diapers have an attached insert - a "tongue" that is inserted to a pocket on the outer shell (the tongue removes itself in the wash like the inserts in the pocket diapers). These diapers have a velcro fastening whereas the others have snaps.
All in all, I prefer the Bumgenius pocket style diapers, since I feel that they fit my daughter best (she is still very tiny). I also like the snaps better than the velcro, but that is of course a matter of personal preference.
We keep the clean diapers in a shelf above the changing table, and put the dirty ones in a special bag (made from what is called pul-material) that contains all smell. When the bag is full we just dump it directly into the washing machine and wash it along with the diapers, so contact with dirty diapers is minimal!
We also use cloth wipes instead of disposable ones, I for one think they clean better and we just wash them along with the diapers.
Now I have been an almost all-in CD-mom since November and I have found that I prefer cloth diapers to disposable ones any day! Personally I find it to be much more of a hassle to constantly have to buy diapers and wipes, have an overflowing garbage can - not to mention the fact that the disposable ones are so smelly! We very rarely have to deal with "explosions" that make their way up to baby's back, since the elastic of the cloth diapers contains all that much better,
Of course we all have different situations and opinions, and cloth diapering is not for everyone. I at least hope that this blog will provide some insight into my reasons and experience, if there is anyone out there who is interested but sceptical. It really is no problem!
I had a birthday last spring and many of my gifts were dedicated to the new role I took on this fall: motherhood. One of them was a gift certificate for a massage course, intended for a spouse/birthing partner to learn how to ease the aches of pregnancy and childbirth, Me and my boyfriend attended the course in the beginning of June (at that time I was 24 weeks pregnant). The course took place during one evening and consisted of a short presentation followed by practical exercises. The course was attended by eight couples, ranging from 21 weeks to 35+ weeks pregnant. Of course, the partners had to practice massage with "the clothes in the way" - in light of common decency! However, we got a good insight into techniques we can use, both during the late stages of the pregnancy and also during birth. We also thought this was a good way to empower the partner to find a role as an active participant of the pregnancy and birth process.
For me, personally, it was a slightly different approach to things I had thought a lot about. In the work I do for Cuddle-Me I am constantly thinking about infant massage and other aspect contributing to infants' well-being and growth. In the course we took I was in a different position, as the "massage recipient" - my well-being becoming very important since I was carrying the child. This is something I have had to remind myself of during the pregnancy. In general I have a strong inclination to be working on many projects at once and even at times pushing myself more than I should. During the pregnancy I had to be more aware of taking care of myself, since I was responsible for this tiny person whose well-being was closely related to mine. So I tried my best to put myself and the baby in first place. A course like the one we took is certainly one way to do that, but what is most important is to be open with your partner about how you feel, not being afraid to ask for help, listening to your body and being realistic about what you demand from yourself. Which is exactly what I had to do later on, 34 weeks pregnant, when I had to cut back on my hours at work due to my health. Luckily my employer was very understanding, more so than I was understanding towards myself. Nonetheless, as I soon realized, the fact is that during the pregnancy there was something more important at stake than what I demanded of myself - on behalf of others. Therefore, it became a regular part of #missionbaby to work a half-day, go swimming and relax with my feet up in the air (heeelllooo edema).