Thursday, January 14, 2016

Cloth Diapering on a Budget

               The whole business of diapering has been something every parent has to deal with. No matter what your family's income level as soon as a baby enters the picture one of the first investments is diapers.  When we had our first child back 5 years ago I didn't even know about using cloth diapers.  None of my friends with small children used cloth diapers and everyone I talked to never mentioned or suggested them. During that time I dreaded the late night runs to the grocery store for diapers or going through so many in one day that I don't have enough for the next day.  Also money back then was pretty tight so we'd always have to shell out or save some from every paycheck just to make sure we could afford diapers when we needed them.  Buying diapers doesn't just end at potty training. Oh no you still have to buy pull-ups or over nights.  I can't even begin to imagine how much money was spent on diapers and pull ups with our first baby.

                By the time baby #2 came around I was ready to try cloth diapering.  Where do I start?  Well there are several blogs and online information about the different types of cloth diapers (and here I thought it was just plain white cloths like what grandma and great grandma used!)  Of course all this information was a bit overwhelming especially when looking at the initial costs of the types of diapers.  I asked myself  "why can't I do it the old fashioned way?" That's when I learned there was fancy terminology for it like flats, prefolds, and covers.  Yeah I'm a complete newbie at this sort of thing!  So today we're a cloth diapering family with an initial cost of about 50 dollars. Yes only 50 bucks total on diapers and covers so far. We have 20 prefolds, 10 receiving blankets that we use as diapers, 4 safety pins, and 4 diaper covers.  We usually have to wash them every other day so the cost of utilities should be considered into the cost of cloth diapering.  I've found that if I add the dirty diapers in with my regular load of towels or other clothes than it saves on how many loads I have to do.

                 Ways to save money by cloth diapering:
  •   Use old washcloths, receiving blankets, and flannel as diapers or wipes
  • Add the dirty diapers to loads of laundry instead of saving them all for 1 or 2 loads of just diapers
  • Air dry the diapers for energy saving costs plus the sunshine is an excellent natural bleaching agent for stains
  • If there is an old wool sweater lying around that you don't use any longer it can be turned into a diaper cover with a little cutting and sewing.
  • Recycle the cloth diapers to use for additional babies or sell them