Long ago, James and I decided that we'd be cloth diapering our babies. There are lots of reasons for this:
1. It saves us money. It will be a larger up front investment, but the diapers we buy now should last us from infancy to potty training for two kids. $300-$400 now beats $50 a month for a few years (don't quote me on that... it's a rough estimate).
2. It's better for the environment. Disposable diapers take generations to decompose in a landfill and each baby goes through thousands of them! We will be using more water to wash our diapers every 2-3 days, but combined with the other benefits, we feel that it's worth it.
3. It's better for baby. Disposable diapers have tons of yucky chemicals in them to improve absorbency, and this is one way we can keep them away from our little one's heiny!
4. It's cuter! This last one isn't one of the reasons we're doing it, but it doesn't hurt ;)
In the cloth diaper world, they call a baby in a cloth diaper a fluffy butt!
It's a personal choice and every parent has to do what's best for them. Hopefully this cloth diapering thing works out for our family though :)
There are so many types of cloth diapers that I've been researching recently. I won't even go into it here, but some introductory resources can be found here and here. Tons of mamas blog about it, almost all of whom say that cloth diapering is so much easier and more convenient than they expected.
After reading and reading and reading some more, I finally got comfortable understanding the types of diapers available and what will probably work for us. We're going to be using one-size pocket diapers... most babies don't fit into the one-size diapers until around 10 lbs., so we will be using disposables for that first month or so. I'll have that much less laundry to do while adjusting to life as a mommy!
Like I mentioned recently, I'm an obsessive planner and researcher. As such, I've already purchased almost everything that we'll need to cloth diaper our little one. Yeeeesh I know I'm crazy... but here's all that we've spent:
Approx. 30 diapers: $270
(My limit was $10 each - these were all purchased used, though many are in like new condition. New diapers are more like $20 each. I bought from diaperswappers.com and a few from craigslist)
2 wet bags: $20
(These are waterproof bags to keep soiled diapers in while we're out of the house. Purchased from 529 Baby)
1 trash can with a lid: $12
(This is what dirty diapers will be kept in until they can be washed... like a laundry basket, but having a lid lets us hide the stinkies)
2 diaper pail liners: $30
(Waterproof bags to line the trash can where dirty diapers are kept. Purchased from 529 Baby)
Extra inserts: $25
(Most diapers come with an absorbent insert, but sometimes you want to double up for overnight use. Purchased from diaperswappers.com)
We've also registered for lots of baby washcloths ($30), which we'll use as wipes rather than disposable ones - it just makes sense if we're going to be washing diapers anyway.
Total invested in cloth diapering? $357.
If we were to use disposable diapers and pay $40 per month, we'd be caught up to that by baby's ninth month of life. And babies are in diapers much longer than that... plus we can use the same diapers for baby #2, plus you can even re-sell them when you're done. Plus... look how cute!!
I'll be the first to admit that this whole cloth diapering thing was way intimidating when I first started looking into it. But now, after months of research and getting used to the idea, I'm really looking forward to it!